This morning Governor Charlie Baker issued a stay-at-home advisory, which is effective across the Commonwealth. It stipulates that all non-essential businesses should close until Tuesday, April 7th, and suggests residents minimize their time in social environments. The advisory goes into effect at noon on Tuesday.
“All non-essential businesses must close their physical locations,” Baker explained, “We urge people to avoid any unnecessary activities. This will help avoid any unneeded person-to-person interactions that will help spread the virus.”
Essential businesses include grocery stores, pharmacies, law enforcement services, and healthcare services. For more information, see the official list at COVID-19 ESSENTIAL SERVICES.
This announcement follows the closure of childcare facilities in MA, which goes into effect today.
These actions come in the face of growing COVID-19 concerns, which are becoming more prevalent in Massachusetts with the passing days. As of March 23rd, there were 646 confirmed cases in the state (with a concentration in Middlesex County) and 5 deaths from the virus.
Baker has taken these measures to ensure the safety of MA citizens, without interfering too greatly in their autonomy.
“I do not believe that I can or should order US citizens to be confined to their homes for days on end,” said Baker, “Everyone can still buy food at the grocery store, get what they need at the pharmacy, and of course, take a walk around the block or in the park.”
Find the official revised Gathering Order here.