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McMaster strengthens executive orders

• McMaster: ‘Work or stay home’

• Facemasks recommended in public

• Hospital systems prepare for more patients with National Guard, 3,500 beds to be added

• Churches not ordered to close, online services recommended

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster issued another executive order intended to combat the COVID-19 coronavirus Monday afternoon, this one requiring those who are not working or attending to essential needs to remain at home.

“Too many people are out on the roads. To many people are out on the water,” McMaster said. “Too many people are out in the stores and too many people are not complying with our requests (to remain at home).”

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control announced 183 new cases on Monday, bringing the total to 2,232 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across the state. Four more people in South Carolina died from COVID-19, bringing the total number of deaths attributed to the virus to 48.

Laurens County has six confirmed cases on Monday.

“Over the last week, we have seen an accelerated rate of new infections,” said Dr. Linda Bell, state epidemiologist and DHEC’s director of the Bureau of Communicable Disease Prevention and Control. “We have had an increase of an average of 90 new infections per day.”

McMaster said the time was right to draw a harder line. South Carolina was one of only eight states in the U.S. to not issue complete stay-at-home orders. The order restricts residents from leaving home unless they are recreating outdoors, obtaining an essential good or service, working or seeing family.

Violators can be fined or jailed for up to 30 days for violating the executive orders by law enforcement.

The order goes into effect Tuesday (April 7).

“We want to reduce the rate of infection and also reduce the rate of non-compliance and also reduce the number of people who are losing their jobs because of these necessary orders,” he said.

McMaster also said the state has had more than 200,000 new filings for unemployment benefits and expect another 200,000 this week.

“That’s just the tip of the iceberg,” he said. “Those 200,000 people likely represent 200,000 a family, and we know there will be more.”

Here is a list of businesses affected by McMaster’s series of executive orders concerning COVID-19 in chronological order:

1. Entertainment venues and activities

  • Night clubs
  • Bowling alleys
  • Arcades
  • Concert venues
  • Theaters, auditoriums and performing arts centers
  • Tourist attractions (including museums, aquariums and planetariums)
  • Racetracks
  • Indoor children’s play areas
  • Adult entertainment venues
  • Bingo halls
  • Venues operated by social clubs

2. Recreational and athletic facilities and activities

  • Fitness and exercise centers and commercial gyms
  • Spas and public or commercial swimming pools
  • Group exercise facilities (including yoga, barre and spin studios or facilities)
  • Spectator sports
  • Sports that involve interaction with another person in close proximity and within less than six (6) feet of another person
  • Activities that require the use of shared sporting apparatus and equipment
  • Activities on commercial or public playground equipment

3. Close-contact service providers

  • Barber shops
  • Hair salons
  • Waxing salons
  • Threading salons
  • Nail salons and spas
  • Body-art facilities and tattoo services
  • Tanning salons
  • Massage-therapy establishments and massage service
  1. Retail stores 
  • Furniture and home-furnishings stores
  • Clothing, shoe and clothing-accessory stores
  • Jewelry, luggage and leather goods stores
  • Department stores, with the exception of hardware and home-improvement stores
  • Sporting goods stores
  • Book, craft and music stores
  • Flea markets
  • Florists and flower stores
  • This does NOT prohibit the continued operation of retail stores, as set forth above, for the limited purpose of fulfilling online or telephone orders or providing alternate means of purchasing or delivering products or services – to include curbside purchase, pickup or delivery and home or off-site delivery – provided that such options or measures can be implemented in a manner that facilitates and maintains effective “social distancing” and is consistent with any applicable guidance issued by state and federal public health and safety officials.  



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