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Gov. Reeves extends shelter-in-place order until April 27th

(WTOK)
Published: Apr. 17, 2020 at 7:49 AM CDT
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Governor Tate Reeves is extending the shelter-in-place order in Mississippi for another week.

The order is now set to expire on April 27.

“The burden is being shouldered by working-class Mississippians,” Reeves said."...those are the people without income for weeks. That’s not fair, and that’s not right."

Reeves says he wants the state to re-open as soon as possible, but the time is not right yet.

“I have to ask for you for one more week,” he said. “One more week of vigilance [...] and then we can reopen our state.”

He says after the week, the state should be over its peak use of medical resources and “break the back of our enemy.”

Reeves says he wants businesses to sell products safely--for instance, a hair salon selling their products by calling ahead--to keep people away from big box stores like Walmart. These non-essential businesses will be able to do curbside and delivery sales. This includes clothing, gift shops, and florists.

He also says lakes and beaches can reopen so people can fish and enjoy nature and relieve the stress from the quarantine.

“We are heading toward reopening. It’s coming soon. There’s light at the end of this tunnel, and we’re almost there.”

State health officials are reporting 169 new cases of the coronavirus as of Thursday night with 11 new deaths.

The total number of statewide cases stands at 3,793 cases with 140 deaths as of Thursday night.

Here's the entire press release put together by the governor's press team Friday morning:

Today, Governor Tate Reeves announced that he is extending the statewide shelter-in-place by 7 days, while providing some ability for “non-essential” businesses to safely make sales. The Governor’s new executive order extends the expiration date of his previous order to Monday, April 27th.

“I wanted to come here today and announce that we can all ease up and re-open, but we can’t. We can’t stay in this position for much longer. But we are still in the eye of the storm. I made a vow to protect the people of Mississippi. I have to do what the best information and wisdom I have tells me. Right now, it tells me I have to ask you to stay vigilant for one more week," said Governor Tate Reeves.

The Governor also announced two changes to the previous executive order to help Mississippians cope mentally and financially.

First, the Governor shared that he has been advised by state and local officials that they can safely enforce social distancing rules on Mississippi’s lakes and beaches. This executive order allows them to re-open for individual fishing and relaxing.

“It’s a small thing, but I hope it helps even a bit for people who need to safely get out in the sun for their own sanity. We need to do anything we can to help address the growing depression, isolation, and other mental health issues. That matters," said Governor Reeves.

Second, the Governor announced that “non-essential” businesses could start making curbside, delivery, or drive-thru sales.

“Clothing stores, florists, or athletic goods can do safe sales. If a salon or other business wants to safely sell their excess supplies to stay afloat, they can do that. Call ahead or order online, then safely pick it up. I wish I could open it all back up for everyone. I can’t do it without harming even more people. But we believe that we can safely do this," said Governor Reeves.

The Governor explained his reasoning for this move was twofold. It prevents people from crowding big-box retailers by encouraging them to safely patronize Mississippi small businesses. It allows more Mississippians to provide for their families, even in the face of this virus.

“No business is non-essential to those who rely on its paycheck for food, supplies, and shelter. I cannot sit by while Mississippians are driven into poverty, without doing everything in my power to give them some greater ability to take care of themselves. It’s not enough. But it’s a good faith step towards recovery, and I hope that you will take it as a lifeline and sign of hope," said Governor Reeves.

The Governor shared a message of joint resolve and courage with the people of Mississippi.

“Please stay strong. Stay smart. Stay home. Use common sense—that’s the single best thing you can do. If you are part of a vulnerable population, please stay home—please. This is the time to be the most vigilant. I’m asking all Mississippi: Stay in the fight for a little while longer, and we will come through this together," said Governor Reeves.