‘Stay Home – Stay Healthy’ declaration goes into effect Saturday for Dare County

Published 1:16 pm Friday, March 27, 2020

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In North Carolina, there are currently 764 cases of COVID-19 in 61 counties. There have been three fatalities in the state associated with COVID-19 and there is now evidence of community wide spread in 31 of North Carolina’s 100 counties, according the latest bulletin released by Dare County.

The Dare County Control Group met Friday morning, March 27 to receive a briefing from public health officials and discuss further restrictions necessary to ensure the  public health and safety of our community. As part of their continued response to the COVID-19 pandemic, additional restrictions have been added to the state of emergency declaration that is currently in effect. The “Stay Home – Stay Healthy” declaration goes into effect on Saturday, March 28 at 5 p.m. and is being implemented to further minimize opportunities for exposure and transmission of COVID-19 in Dare County.  

The declaration directs residents to “Stay Home – Stay Healthy” by limiting nonessential movements outside of their homes and limits gatherings to no more than 10 people. These measures will be regularly reviewed and will remain in effect until it is determined they are no longer necessary to protect the public health and safety of our community, stated the press release.

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This is not a shelter in place declaration – shelter in place only permits emergency travel and emergency services. Dare County is not currently planning to enact a shelter in place order, according to the control group’s statement.

“Stay Home, Stay Healthy” guide with frequently asked questions, summaries of what citizens can do and should not do, and information on distinctions between essential and nonessential businesses, can be found here.

From the “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” guide:

Under the “Stay Home – Stay Healthy.” declaration,

Individuals authorized to be in Dare County may:
● Go to the grocery, convenience store, or gas stations
● Go to the pharmacy to pick up medications and healthcare necessities
● Visit a health care facility for medical services (Please call your healthcare provider first to see if services can be provided virtually prior to visiting.)
● Go to a restaurant for take-out or drive-thru service (delivery is allowed)
● Care for or support a friend, family member, or pet
● Go outside to take a walk, go to the beach, go for a bike ride, hike, jog (only if social distancing measures of 6 feet are maintained)
● Help others to get necessary supplies
● Receive deliveries

Individuals authorized to be in Dare County shall NOT:
● Go outside of their home if they are sick
● Travel, except for essential travel and activities
● Go to work, unless providing essential services as defined by this order
● Gather in groups of more than 10 people
● Be closer than 6 feet from others if out in public
● Visit friends and family if there is no specific, urgent need
● Visit loved ones in the hospital, nursing home, skilled nursing facilities, or other residential care facilities, except for limited exceptions as provided by the specific facility

Activities that are considered essential:

In general, activities that fall under these categories are considered essential. Further details can be found in the Declaration Imposing Additional Restrictions and Prohibitions For COVID-19.

● For health and safety
● To get necessary supplies and services
● For outdoor activities (walking, hiking, golfing, running, cycling, accessing the beach and parks that remain open)
● To work for essential businesses/operations
● To take care of others in need
Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between “Stay Home – Stay Healthy” and “Shelter in Place”?
Under a Stay Home declaration individuals can still perform essential services and conduct essential travel. Shelter in Place only permits emergency travel and emergency services, so it is fundamentally more restrictive than a Stay Home order. Dare County is not currently planning to enact a Shelter in Place order.

I live outside of Dare County. How does this affect me?
The entry restrictions for non-resident property owners and visitors remains in place.

What is considered essential travel for those authorized to be in Dare County?
● Any travel related to the provision of or access to essential activities, essential governmental functions, essential businesses and operations, or minimum basic operations
● Travel to care for elderly, minors, dependents, persons with disabilities, or other vulnerable persons
● Travel to or from education institutions for purposes of receiving materials for distance learning, for receiving meals, and other related services
● Travel to return to a place of residence from outside the jurisdiction
● Travel required by law enforcement or court order, including to transport children pursuant to a custody agreement
● There are no restrictions on leaving Dare County. Keep in mind restrictions on entry for visitors and non-resident property owners, if you plan to return. Details at darenc.com/entry.

Am I allowed to go outside to exercise?
Yes, but maintain social distancing of at least 6 feet from others AT ALL TIMES.

May I go to the beach?
Yes, but you MUST maintain social distancing. If you encounter others while outside,
A LWAYS maintain the minimum 6 feet of distance between you and others.
Can I get arrested for violating this order?
All law enforcement agencies in Dare County will enforce the order through education, dialogue, and seeking voluntary cooperation. If voluntary cooperation is not achieved, local law enforcement may enforce these restrictions through citations or misdemeanor charges. Any person violating any prohibition or restriction imposed by this order may be charged with a Class 2 misdemeanor.

I live in (Duck, Southern Shores, Kitty Hawk, Kill Devil Hills, Nags Head, Manteo, Hatteras Island, Colington, Roanoke Island, Dare Mainland) – does this order apply to me?
Yes, this order applies to all those authorized to be in Dare County.

How does the local order affect people who work outside of Dare County?
Dare County does not have the authority to regulate employment activities outside of Dare County. While we encourage everyone to stay home and stay healthy, residents of Dare County who are employed outside the county may travel to work regardless of the nature of their occupation or whether that would be defined as essential or not under the Dare County declaration.

Is there an evacuation order in place for Dare County?
No evacuation order has been issued for Dare County.

Is there a curfew?
No, there is not a curfew in effect at this time.

Can I still order the things I need online and have them delivered to my residence?
Yes. Businesses that deliver goods or services directly to residences may continue to operate. Be considerate of the delivery person by maintaining at least six feet distance from them at all times.

If I am authorized to be in Dare County, can I leave home to care for my elderly parents or friends who require assistance? Or a friend or family member who has disabilities?
Yes. Remember to protect yourself and them by following personal hygiene practices including washing hands often for at least 20 seconds, using hand sanitizer, maintaining at least 6 feet of distance when possible, and coughing or sneezing into a tissue.
Can restaurants still provide takeout and delivery?
Yes, you can still order food delivery and takeout. Restaurants should continue to follow standard food safety practices and keep dining rooms closed.

Essential businesses
Essential businesses or entities in Dare County, including any for profit, non-profit or charity, regardless of the nature of the service, the function they perform, or its corporate or entity structure, are not subject to these restrictions.
(Essential Businesses must continue to comply with the guidance and directives for maintaining a clean and safe work environment issued by the Department of Health i.e. social distancing and sanitation practices).

For purposes of this declaration, “Essential Business” for individuals authorized to be be in Dare County means:
1. Essential Health Care Operations, including:
● hospitals
● urgent care facilities
● emergency veterinary services
● elder care
● medical wholesale and distribution
● home health care workers or aides for the elderly
● Doctors and dentists
● nursing homes, or residential health care facilities or congregate care facilities
● medical supplies and equipment manufacturers and providers
● blood drive and blood collection sites

2. Essential Infrastructure, including:

● utilities including power generation, fuel supply and transmission
● public water and wastewater
● public works construction
● residential and commercial construction
● telecommunications and data centers
● airport
● transportation infrastructure such as roads, for-hire vehicles, garages
● hotels, and places of accommodation, when used by employees who work for a business or organization deemed essential can stay in any lodging.

3. Essential Retail, including:

● grocery stores, including all food and beverage stores
● pharmacies
● convenience stores
● farmer’s markets, tackle shops and nurseries
● gas stations, propane distributors
● restaurants/bars (take-out/delivery only)
● hardware and building material stores
● Businesses that supply products needed for people who work from home

4. Essential Services, including:

● trash and recycling collection, processing and disposal
● mail and shipping services
● laundromats
● building cleaning and maintenance
● child care services
● auto repair
● warehouse/distribution and fulfillment
● funeral homes, crematoriums and cemeteries
● storage for essential businesses
● animal shelters

5. News Media

6. Financial Institutions, including:

● banks
● insurance
● payroll
● accounting
● notary public
● services related to financial markets
7. Providers of Basic Necessities to Economically Disadvantaged Populations, Including:

● homeless shelters and congregate care facilities
● food banks
● human services providers whose function includes the direct care of patients in state-licensed or funded voluntary programs; the care, protection, custody and oversight of individuals both in the community and in state-licensed residential facilities; those operating community shelters and other critical human services agencies providing direct care or support
● Churches, non-profit organizations, charities, and schools

8. Construction, Including:

● skilled trades such as electricians, plumbers, carpenters, etc.
● other related construction firms and professionals for essential infrastructure, to include public works, roads and bridges, or for emergency repair and safety purposes

9. Defense

● defense and national security-related operations

10. Essential Services Necessary to Maintain the Safety, Sanitation and Essential Operations or Other Essential Businesses, including:

● law enforcement
● fire prevention and response
● building code enforcement
● security
● emergency management and response
● public health
● property management, contractors, subcontractors, landscapers
● professional services such as legal, engineering, architectural and accounting services
● building cleaners or janitors
● automotive repair
● disinfection

11. Vendors that Provide Essential Services or Products, Including Logistics and Technology Support, Child Care and Services:

● logistics
● technology support for online services
● child care programs and services
● government owned or leased buildings
● essential government services

If the function of your business is not covered above, but you believe that it is essential or it is an entity providing essential services or functions, you may request designation as an essential business from Dare County Government.

Dare County has a process to evaluate businesses and allow them the ability to continue operations as an essential business IF they are deemed to be essential by following this process. Businesses not explicitly covered in this guidance are assumed to be non-essential until they are confirmed as essential by Dare County Government.

Send email to covid19@darenc.com with the subject line Essential Business

1. In the email, provide the following:
a. Business Name
b. Point of Contact, including:
i. Name
ii. Email address
iii. Phone number
iv. Mailing address
c. Nature of their business and why they should be deemed essential
d. Business website address

Requests by businesses to be designated an essential function as described above, should only be made if they are NOT covered by the guidance. All requests will be processed as quickly as possible in the order they are received.



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