After statewide closure of non-essential business on March 23, state government of Virginia issued stay-at-home order for residents to contain the spread of coronavirus until June 10. The order was executed on Monday by Governor Ralph Northam stating that it effects immediately for protecting the health and safety of Virginians.
Residents are allowed to leave home in extremely limited circumstances for buying food and beverages, seeking medical attention, traveling for work and education and volunteering for social services. Social distance of six-feet must be kept by every individual in outdoor spaces.
Virginia's fight against Coronavirus
On March 23, Northam ordered closure of non-essential business and K-12 schools for rest of the academic year and banned gathering of more than 10 people. Beaches were also closed except for fishing and exercising. Statewide media campaign "Health in your Hands" was launched by the governor through television, radio and billboards statewide. The government expected residents to understand the risk and put in efforts to stop the transmission of virus.
"Our message to Virginians is clear: stay home. We know this virus spreads primarily through human-to-human contact, and that's why it's so important that people follow this order and practice social distancing. I'm deeply grateful to everyone for their cooperation during this unprecedented and difficult time," said Northam in a news statement.
Virginia department of health reported 1,020 cases confirmed, 25 deaths and more than 12,000 have been tested till now. Out of these, 136 patients are hospitalized.
Washington and Maryland also issued stay-at-home order
Along with Virginia, Washington DC and Maryland also issued stay-at-home order on Monday amid coronavirus outbreak. Mayor of Washington DC, Muriel Bowser stated that those who found guilty for violating the order can be charged for fine up to $5,000 and imprisonment up to 90 days. Meanwhile Maryland governor Larry Hogan said that they are no longer asking or suggesting Marylanders to stay home but are directing them to do so.
There have been 164,603 cases confirmed and the death toll surpassed over 3,100 due to coronavirus in United States so far. President Donald Trump urged Americans to be prepared for a nationwide lockdown as number of deaths is soaring every day.