Missouri is 42nd state to issue stay at home order
By Tyler Schneider
As of Monday, April 6, Governor Mike Parson made Missouri the 42nd state to have issued official statewide stay at home orders. Parson issued the announcement on April 3, following some harsh criticism on his administration’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak.
The Show Me State is currently the last of six states (plus D.C.) that have held out issuing stay at home orders through April. Maine had theirs go into effect on April 2, while Mississippi, Georgia and Florida (April 3) and Alabama (April 4) fell in turn.
Of the eight remaining states without a statewide order, Missouri shares direct borders with four of them: Iowa, Nebraska, Arkansas and Oklahoma. The remaining holdouts are North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming and Utah.
The greater KC area has naturally been under these orders for much longer.
“This virus spreads quickly and knows no city, county, or state boundaries and, as such, all areas must take aggressive action to protect Missourians and Americans,” said Mayor Quinton Lucas in a statement applauding the governor’s order.
Grandview Mayor Leonard Jones stuck to his guns as he warned everyone to continue taking the outbreak seriously in the wake of the statewide order.
“If you think COVID-19 isn’t in Grandview, it is. At last count, more than a dozen people living in Grandview have tested positive, including Missouri State Representative Joe Runions who is blessed enough to now be recovering at home,” Jones said.
“I know staying at home and keeping our distance from each other is tough; but we all need to do this so the sick won’t overwhelm our hospitals in the coming weeks. If we continue what we’re doing, rest assured we will get there,” he added.
The west side of the state line has fared a bit better as Kansas Governor Laura Kelly’s stay at home order went into effect on March 30. On that same day, Johnson County Board of Commissioners allocated $400,000 to purchase thousands of tests.
Days later, Johnson County announced that they would be providing random testing (capped at one individual per household). The move was the latest in a series of actions that JoCo has taken to combat a growing list of confirmed cases.
The Missouri Order requires the following:
Individuals currently residing within the state of Missouri shall avoid leaving their homes or places of residence.
All individuals in the state of Missouri shall avoid social gatherings of more than ten (10) people.
All public and charter schools must remain closed for the duration of the Order.
Any entity that does not employ individuals to perform essential worker functions, as set forth in guidance provided by the federal government, shall adhere to the limitations on social gatherings and social distancing.
Any entity that employs individuals to perform essential worker functions, and that is engaged in retail sales to the public, shall limit the number of individuals in any particular retail location as follows:
Twenty-five (25) percent or less of the entity’s authorized fire or building code occupancy, as set by local authorities, for a retail location with square footage of less than ten thousand square feet (10,000 ft²);
Ten (10) percent or less of the entity’s authorized fire or building code occupancy, as set by local authorities, for a retail location with square footage of ten thousand square feet (10,000 ft²) or more.
The Order does not prohibit Missourians from accessing essential services, such as grocery stores, gas stations, and banks, or engaging in outdoor recreation, provided that necessary precautions are taken and maintained to reduce the transmission of COVID-19, including observing the social gathering and social distancing requirements set forth in the Order.