Effective immediately, all Californians have been ordered to stay home "until further notice," except when it's absolutely necessary. Governor Gavin Newsom made the announcement late Thursday in an address where he stated "This is a moment we need to make tough decisions," Newsom said. "This is a moment where we need some straight talk and we need to tell people the truth: We need to bend the curve in the state of California."
There are currently 675 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 16 deaths attributed to the virus.
The order provides exemptions for public safety and health care operations as well as other essential services, including laundromats, grocery stores, and restaurants that offer takeout or delivery. However, those essential businesses must adhere to social distancing practices — keeping 6 feet of space between individual employees and customers, officials said.
The governor said that while the order cannot be enforced legally, he believes Californians will do what is right and what needs to be done. Newsom said this is a moment when we have to make difficult decisions.
Newsom said that a state analysis of the situation shows that as many as 56 percent of people in California could become infected with the coronavirus during the next eight weeks.
He urged residents in the state to follow all advisories and directives including practicing social distancing and going to stories or pharmacies to get needed supplies when necessary.