Salt Lake County Extends ‘Stay-At-Home’ Order To May 1
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson extended her “Stay-At-Home” order through May 1, keeping in line with Governor Herbert’s “Stay Safe, Stay Home” directive.
She said the “Stay Safe, Stay Home” directive issued by the Governor has been working throughout the county.
“I want to thank everyone for complying with ‘Stay Safe, Stay Home.’ It’s critical that we stay on that,” Mayor Wilson said in her weekly COVID-19 briefing Thursday.
The order was originally set to expire Monday, but county data presented at the briefing showed that social distancing has been helping to reduce the number of positive COVID-19 cases. The mayor urged all county residents to remain vigilant on that path.
“We have to stay at it,” Mayor Wilson said. “Any slip slows us down, and it’s important that we continue to move forward.”
No substantial changes were made in the “Stay Safe, Stay Home” order. All non-essential businesses remain closed, with restaurants operating under takeout restrictions.
“We will continue to allow businesses to run that are able to practice social distancing,” she said.
She encouraged everyone in the county to continue avoiding unnecessary travel, and wear cloth face masks when headed out on essential errands. She said the objectives are to save lives, preserve community health, protect our hospital systems from being overrun, and get the county running again as quickly as possible.
“I am proud of our state, and incredibly proud of our County residents for the work they are doing in this difficult time, and it is working. We know that,” Mayor Wilson said. “We’re seeing that news nationally as well.”
As of Wednesday, there were 832 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Salt Lake County. Experts said the county would have hit that number two weeks ago if social distancing measures weren’t put into place approximately three weeks ago, adding that the county could have had as many as 2,200 cases by today. A member of the county’s COVID-19 response team said that would have lead to more hospitalizations and fatalities.
“If we see a sustained decline of cases and hospitalizations, we will be in a better position to make tactical and concerted decisions that allow Salt Lake County to return to a new normal,” said David Schuld, intelligence section chief for Salt Lake County’s COVID-19 response team.
Another positive is that the positive test rate remains at less than 5% in Salt Lake County.
“That tells us that the virus is not spreading faster,” said Gary Edwards, executive director of the Salt Lake County Health Department. “We are just able to identify more positive cases, because there are more tests available.”
The “Stay Safe, Stay Home” directive, which went into effect March 30, directs county residents to stay home, except to engage in essential activities. Under the order, essential businesses that will remain open include grocery stores, charitable services, childcare centers, media and essential government, among others. Businesses that will remain temporarily closed include salons, body art facilities, swimming pools, playgrounds, gyms and theaters, among others.
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