Mayor issues ‘stay home mandate’ for New Orleans

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FILE - In this Thursday, March 19, 2020, file photo, a view of the nearly deserted Bourbon Street, which is normally bustling with tourists and revelers, is seen in the French Quarter of New Orleans. The old saying “Let the good times roll” has given way here to a new municipal maxim: “Wash your hands.” A month ago the city was awash in people and steeped in its annual tradition of communal joy — the Mardi Gras season. But now New Orleans has joined those places shutting down bars, eliminating restaurant dining and banning crowds. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)

Andrew Lang

Mayor Latoya Cantrell issued a “stay home mandate” for New Orleans as she referred to it in a press conference Friday, March 20 in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19.

The new mandate is in the form of guidelines from the health department on her previous proclamation to restrict public and private gatherings.

All non-essential businesses are instructed to “take all steps reasonably necessary to work from remotely from home.”

Individuals are prohibited from holding gatherings.

“Movement around the City should be restricted to only that necessary for travel to and from authorized work environments, accessing essential services, and for personal recreation (i.e. walking, hiking, and running), with strict adherence to social distancing guidelines,” the guidelines state.

Cantrell said the city has been doing this, but it will be more “aggressive” now.

Essential businesses include:

· restaurants, but only for carry out and delivery

· social services

· grocery stores

· food cultivation

· required construction and infrastructure projects

· media outlets

· gas stations

· automobile and bicycle repair and supply shops

· banks and financial institutions

· hardware stores

· safety and sanitation service provider (i.e. plumbers, electricians, security, exterminators)

· laundry services

· mailing and shipping services

· educational institutions

· stores that supply products needed to work from home

· businesses that provide other essential businesses to operate

· businesses that ship food to residents

· airlines, taxis, and other essential transportation services

· home care providers

· residential facilities and shelters

· professional services, like legal or accounting services, when necessary to assist in compliance with legally mandated activities

· childcare facilities, provided that social distancing is maintained

249 positive cases of COVID-19 have been identified in Orleans Parish resulting in eight deaths as of March 19 according to the guidelines issued.

“Don’t look for ways that the rules do not apply to you.” Cantrell said “Do not look for ways to be an exception. Stay home.”

Anyone not in compliance with these guidelines for the “stay home mandate” is subject to a fine up to $500 or arrest.

“The more people who stay home, the more lives that we will save,” Cantrell said

For the full guidelines click here.