Here are answers to common questions about Denver’s new order, which is similar to orders that some jurisdictions have called “shelter-in-place.”
When does Denver’s order take effect?
The stay-at-home order takes effect at 5 p.m. Tuesday. It will last until April 10, unless it’s extended by the mayor.
Who is affected by the stay-at-home order?
People, organizations and businesses within city limits, though employers deemed “essential” will be allowed to operate. Working from home is encouraged for workers of “nonessential” businesses.
What are the key exceptions for outside-the-home activities?
Going to the grocery store, health care appointments, the pharmacy or outside to exercise. People also can deliver food and necessary supplies to others, or visit others’ homes to provide care. People who are sick and those who are at high risk of severe illness should stay home as much as possible, except to seek medical care.
The mayor emphasized that people should maintain 6 feet of separation from other people when they are engaged in any activities outside home, including at work for essential employers.
What about take-out at restaurants?
Restaurants can continue offering takeout and delivery service for food and drinks, as previous orders by the mayor and governor have allowed. Residents can leave home to pick up food.
Where can people exercise outside?
In their neighborhoods and at Denver’s parks and mountain parks. Those will remain open for walking, running, cycling and hiking, but the new order says picnics, games and other group activities won’t be allowed. Golf courses and playgrounds will be closed.
Is this order mandatory?
For people within the city of Denver, yes. “This isn’t a recommendation anymore — people need to stay home,” Hancock said.
How will the order be enforced?
City officials are hoping for voluntary compliance. But Hancock said the city would “enforce, as necessary — whenever and however we have to,” with several city agencies on heightened alert. In many cases, people simply will be asked to go home.
What kinds of travel are allowed?
People in Denver are allowed to travel to work at essential employers and for allowed activities. Cabs, ride-hailing services and other kinds of transportation, including public transit, are exempt from the order, as are air travel and cargo operations.
Does the order allow friends to gather?
Public health experts are discouraging gatherings of people who don’t live together because of the potential to spread the coronavirus among people who don’t exhibit symptoms. The city’s new order allows some leeway for home visits, prohibiting only gatherings of “any number of people occurring outside a single household or living unit.”
What are essential employers?
A host of government, health care, infrastructure and business employers are considered essential and can remain open.
A partial list of business exemptions: the food industry, including convenience and pet supply stores; banks; hotels and motels; hardware stores, dry cleaners and laundromats; houses of worship and social services providers that assist the needy; telecom and internet service providers; oil and gas companies; the news media; skilled trades, including plumbers, electricians and others that provide home maintenance and repair; professional services providers whose assistance is necessary to comply with the law; and parts of the construction industry, including housing and public works projects, plus those necessary for essential businesses’ operations). Read the complete list in the order.
What about liquor stores, pot shops and breweries?
Liquor stores and recreational marijuana stores are not considered essential and can’t remain open, and neither can breweries, even for delivery. Grocery and convenience stores won’t face restrictions on alcohol sales, though few have licenses to sell more than beer. And medical marijuana dispensaries will be able to stay open.
How does this affect nonessential businesses?
Businesses that aren’t exempt will have to shut down all facilities within city limits, but their employees can continue to work from home. There are exceptions for on-site work, including for minimal administrative and security functions, as well as those that are necessary to process online orders and to provide support for employees who are working from home.
Can daycares stay open?
Child care providers are exempt under limitations that include keeping each child in the same group of 10 or fewer each day, with each group in a separate room. Each child care provider must be detailed to one group only.
Document: Denver stay-at-home order