Residents of the Mountain State will no longer be ordered to stay at home starting May 4.
West Virginia's Republican Gov. Jim Justice on Friday lifted the state's stay-at-home order and replaced it with a “safer at home” plan which advises, but does not order, most West Virginians to remain at home as much as possible.
The new directive goes into place on May 4.
‘Safer At Home’ still strongly encourages all West Virginians to stay at home when not performing essential tasks, but no longer mandates them to stay at home,” Justice said.
“Our people have been knocking it out of the park, but we need to keep it that way. You should still stay home if you have any symptoms or have come in contact with someone who has the virus,” WBOY TV reported.
The new plan allows small businesses to open with ten or fewer employees and limited customer contact. This is a change from five or fewer employees and no customer contact.
Public gatherings of more than 25 are prohibited, which is a change from more than 10 in the previous plan. Restaurants are now allowed to have outdoor dining, which was previously prohibited.
Barbershops, hair and nail salons will be allowed to reopen with restrictions – customers must book appointments well ahead of time and remain in their cars until it is time for their appointment - while church gatherings will be replaced with phone or online meetings.
On May 14, horse racing will be allowed, without spectators, but other amusement options, such as zoos, casinos, playgrounds, bowling alleys and movie theaters, will remain closed.
West Virginia has had 41 deaths to date, and Gov. Justice said, “In a lot of ways, I’m going to be glad for April to get gone. I hate like crazy every time I have to announce that we have lost another great West Virginian.”
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