COLUMBUS — The Ohio Department of Health issued a “stay at home order” Sunday afternoon in response to coronavirus, effecting 11:59 p.m. Monday. It remains in effect for at least two weeks, until 11:59 p.m. Monday, April 6.
“This is not a joke. This is not a drill,” said Dr. Amy Acton, director of the Ohio Department of Health. “We all need to limit the exposure and the spread of this disease.
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine said the order — online j.mp/3bjiNj2 — is similar to other states’ “shelter in place” rules.
DeWine said the stay-at-home order will start to be enforced Tuesday by local health departments and local law enforcement.
“This is a health order, it’s not a health suggestion, and so we would expect people to comply with it,” DeWine said at a news conference at his office.
There are exceptions for “common sense” activities, such as health and safety, getting necessary supplies and services, outdoor activity (although playgrounds are closed) and taking care of others. Certain types of businesses have been deemed “essential” and can continue to operate so long as they maintain cleanliness and 6 feet of social distancing. Carryout restaurants will remain open.
“If everybody cooperates, we’re going to save a lot of lives,” he said.
State officials urged other people to remain at home.
”Mostly we need folks being at home, snuggling up with the Netflix, binge-watching your way through this,” Dr. Acton said.