A new step forward for Georgia, with plenty of rules
Here we are. As of midnight April 30, 2020, Georgia’s stay home order officially ends. New rules and social distancing guidelines now apply. Here’s what to expect.
Changes for people
The first major change is for those Georgians being asked to continue to shelter in place until the new date of June 12, 2020. Governor Brian Kemp says these rules are for the most vulnerable people in the state.
- People 65 years of age or older
- People living in a nursing home or long-term care facility
- People with chronic lung disease
- People with moderate to severe asthma
- People with severe heart disease
- People who are immunocompromised
- People with class III or severe obesity
- People with diabetes, liver disease, or chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis
In addition to the new stay at home orders for the most vulnerable Georgians, Governor Kemp extended the public health state of emergency through June 12, 2020 “to continue enhanced testing across Georgia, ramp up contact tracing, and maintain effective emergency response operations in every region.”
Changes for businesses
The new executive order for Georgia businesses includes new criteria to open, and each category has its own long list.
Barbers, body art, cosmetologists, tanning, and more
This is the list of minimum criteria for Georgia body art studios, barbers, cosmetologists, hair designers, nail care artists, estheticians, their respective schools, massage therapists, and tanning facilities to open. It will remain in effect until midnight on May 13, 2020.
According to the executive order by Governor Kemp, bowling alleys have their own list of minimum criteria to reopen and will be in effect until May 13, 2020.
Gyms and fitness centers
Like bowling alleys, gyms and fitness centers across the peach state must meet certain minimum criteria to reopen, until midnight on May 13, 2020.
Movie theaters and cinemas
New for this executive order, Indoor movie theaters and cinemas are now allowed to reopen as long as they meet certain minimum criteria until midnight on May 13, 2020.
Dining rooms and restaurants
The rules get more specific for dining rooms and restaurants. No more than 10 patrons are allowed per 500 square feet of space, excluding hallways, bathrooms, and spaces closed to patrons. These places were allowed to resume dine-in service on April 27, 2020 if they meet minimum mandatory criteria. No end date was given for these places.
Bars, nightclubs, and more
The Georgia executive order specifically notes that bars, nightclubs, public swimming pools, live performance venues, and operators of amusement park rides must remain closed until midnight on May 13, 2020, unless extended.
All retail businesses
In this case the order puts retail businesses in the same group as retail and wholesale grocery stores, which must meet certain minimum criteria until midnight on May 13, 2020.
When it comes to gatherings of people, businesses, establishments, corporations, organizations, and local governments cannot allow more than 10 people to gather in a single location unless there is at least 6 feet between each person.
Specifically, a “single location” means a space where all persons gathered cannot maintain at least 6 feet between themselves and another person. Exceptions to the large gatherings ban include the following:
- Cohabitating persons, family units, or roommates
- Critical infrastructure
- Transitory or incidental grouping
- Dining rooms and restaurants – no more than 10 patrons per 500 square feet, excluding hallways, bathrooms, and spaces closed to patrons.
Watch Governor Kemp’s address
If you would like to view the executive order, you can see it here, and read the full press release here.
What do you think about the new rules, restrictions, and social distancing guidelines for Georgia? Share your thoughts in the comments.
Featured image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
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