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  • Fairbury News staff

Order takes effect Saturday

The governor has announced a statewide stay at home order which goes into effect Saturday. Gov. JB Pritzker's office issued the following press release on Friday:

Following the advice of leading public health experts around the globe, Governor JB Pritzker announced today he has signed a statewide stay at home order, aiming to keep new cases of COVID-19 from rapidly increasing and ensure the state's health care system remains fully operational to treat patients in need of urgent care. The order takes effect 5 p.m. Saturday, March 21, 2020. In addition to the stay at home provisions, it also orders all local government units across the state to halt all evictions and bans gatherings of more than 10 people. "We are doing all that we can to maintain as much normalcy as possible while taking the steps we must to protect our residents," said Governor JB Pritzker. "I fully recognize that in some cases I am choosing between saving people's lives and saving their livelihoods. But ultimately, you can't have a livelihood without a life. This will not last forever, but it's what we must do to support the people on the front lines of this fight, and the people most vulnerable to its consequences." "This action underscores the seriousness of the situation and reinforces what many people all across Illinois are already doing to protect themselves, their neighbors and the community at large," said Senate President Don Harmon (D-Oak Park). "Please, take this seriously, stay inside, limit your travel and be responsible for not just your own health, but everyone else's, too."

"During these unprecedented times, it is important we do what we can to prevent the spread of this virus. Simply staying home and following these best practices will help ensure our families, our neighborhoods and our communities remain safe," said Senate Republican Leader Bill Brady (R-Bloomington). "It is also important that we not panic. Essential businesses and services will remain open and available. We will get through this if we all work together." "I commend Governor Pritzker and Mayor Lightfoot's leadership, and join them in urging people to adhere to this ‘stay at home' order to help flatten the curve and ultimately save lives," said House Speaker Michael J. Madigan (D-Chicago). "We should all rest assured that we will continue to have regular access to groceries, medication, gas and other essential services. We will get through this together by following the advice of experts and giving doctors, nurses and first responders a chance to fight this disease. I want to extend my full gratitude to the frontline medical personnel working hard to save lives. By adhering to this order and following best medical advice, we can stand with them in this fight." "This is a critical time for our state and our nation, and we must take any and all steps, including the governor's action today, to reduce the number of those affected by this virus so that we can return to our normal way of life as quickly as possible," said House Republican Leader Jim Durkin (R- Western Springs).

Essential Activities:

• For health and safety: seeking emergency services, obtaining medical supplies or medication or visiting a health care professional • For necessary supplies and services: obtaining groceries and food, household consumer products, supplies they need to work from home, and products necessary to maintain the safety, sanitation and essential operation of residences • For outdoor activity: walking, hiking, running or biking - including going to public parks and open outdoor recreation areas, except for playgrounds • For certain types of work: Providing essential products and services at Essential Businesses or Operations or otherwise carrying out activities specifically permitted in the order, including Minimum Basic Operations • To take care of others: Caring for or transporting a family member, friend or pet in another household

Essential Government Functions:

• All services provided by state and local governments needed to ensure the continuing operation of the government agencies and provide for the health, safety and welfare of the public • This Executive Order does not apply to the United States government

Essential Businesses and Operations:

• Healthcare and Public Health Operations: Working at or obtaining services from hospitals; clinics; dental offices; pharmacies; public health entities; healthcare manufacturers and suppliers; blood banks; medical cannabis facilities; reproductive health care providers; eye care centers; home healthcare services providers; mental health and substance use providers; ancillary healthcare services — including veterinary care and excluding fitness and exercise gyms, spas, salons, barber shops, tattoo parlors, and similar facilities • Human Services Operations: any provider funded by DHS, DCFS or Medicaid; long-term care facilities; home-based and residential settings for adults, seniors, children, and/or people with disabilities or mental illness; transitional facilities; field offices for food, cash assistance, medical coverage, child care, vocational services or rehabilitation services; developmental centers; adoption agencies; businesses that provide food, shelter, and social services and other necessities of life for needy individuals — excluding day care centers, day care homes, group day care homes and day care centers licensed as specified in Section 12(s) of the order • Essential Infrastructure: Working in food production, distribution and sale; construction; building management and maintenance; airport operations; operation and maintenance of utilities, including water, sewer, and gas; electrical; distribution centers; oil and biofuel refining; roads, highways, railroads, and public transportation; ports; cybersecurity operations; flood control; solid waste and recycling collection and removal; and internet, video, and telecommunications systems • Stores that sell groceries and medicine • Food, beverage and cannabis production and agriculture • Organizations that provide charitable and social services • Media • Gas stations and businesses needed for transportation • Financial institutions • Hardware and supply stores • Critical trades, including plumbers, electricians, exterminators, cleaning and janitorial staff for commercial and governmental properties, security staff, operating engineers, HVAC, painting, moving and relocation services, and other service providers that maintain the safety, sanitation and essential operation of residences, Essential Activities, and Essential Businesses and Operations • Mail, post, shipping, logistics, delivery and pick-up services • Educational institutions, for purposes of facilitating distance learning, performing critical research, or performing essential functions • Laundry services • Restaurants for consumption off-premises • Supplies to work from home • Supplies for Essential Businesses and Operations • Transportation, for purposes of Essential Travel • Home-based care and services • Residential facilities and shelters • Professional services • Day care centers for employees exempted by this Executive Order • Manufacture, distribution, and supply chain for critical products and industries • Critical labor union functions • Hotels and motels, to the extent used for lodging and delivery or carry-out food services • Funeral services

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