After a reluctance in March to ask Arizona businesses to close, Gov. Doug Ducey finally issued a stay-at-home order on March 31 to help slow the spread of the deadly coronavirus.
Gov. Ducey’s executive order, “Stay home, Stay healthy, Stay connected,” asks Arizonans to limit their time away from their home. People can still go outside, but the governor has asked residents to always practice social distancing when they do.
“We do not want people to feel trapped or isolated in their homes,” the governor said. “The weather is beautiful right now. Find a way to get out and enjoy it — with physical distancing.”
Anyone who violates the order could be charged with a misdemeanor, but only after police have issued a warning the first time. Gov. Ducey also issued a list of businesses that are considered essential. Businesses providing services on the list can remain open.
Arizona has not been as heavily impacted by the COVID-19 disease as states like New York, Louisiana and Michigan, although Arizona’s Department of Health Services reports that the rate of cases in emergency rooms has risen from 2% to nearly 7% of all visits. Arizona has 3,018 reported positive tests for COVID-19 and 89 deaths. To learn more, visit the DHS website.
To read the governor’s executive order, visit here.
Are There Any Exceptions?
Under the Executive Order, Arizona residents should limit their time away from home during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, they may leave their property or place of residence:
- For employment or to volunteer in essential functions
- To participate in essential activities.
- To utilize products or services provided by essential business service.
- For employment, if they run a family business or are sole proprietors and conduct work in an office not open to the public.
That said, the governor also encouraged Arizonians to maintain social connectedness despite the challenges posed by COVID-19. They could do this by:
- Educating fellow residents on the harmful effects of social isolation
- Strengthening and maintaining communication with friends, family, social groups, and neighbors
- Engaging in physical activity, neighborhood projects, volunteer activities, virtual social gatherings, or connection campaigns to increase resilience.
What Are Essential Activities
Governor Ducey also clarified which operations, businesses, and activities were deemed “essential” in regards to the policy. These include:
- Activities essential for health and safety, including obtaining medical supplies or medication and seeking emergency services.
- Obtaining necessary products or services for household members, family, and pets. These include food and supplies, groceries, sanitary products, or supplies and equipment needed to work from home.
- Caring for a friend, family member, or pet. This could include but is not limited to, obtaining necessary supplies and services or transportation for essential activities.
- Outdoor activities such as hiking, running, golfing, biking, or walking if appropriate physical distancing is observed.
- Constitutionally-protected activities such as religious functions, voting, or court proceedings if appropriate physical distancing is maintained.
- Attending or participating in essential services such as transporting children to child care services.
Highlights of the Stay-At-Home Order in Arizona
When did the order go into place?
Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey issued his order on March 31.
When will the order be lifted?
The executive order will be in effect until April 30, unless it gets extended.
What are violations and penalties associated with the order?
Police and law enforcement are instructed to issue warnings for the first violation, and after that, anyone violating the order can be charged with a misdemeanor.
What kind of order was it?
Gov. Ducey’s executive order, “Stay home, Stay healthy, Stay connected,” asks Arizonans to limit their time away from their home.
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