On December 10, Governor Ralph Northam announced new public health protocols in response to an increase in cases of COVID-19 in Virginia. The new protocols begin at 12:01 a.m. on Monday, December 14, and will be in effect until January 31, 2021.
You can read Executive Order 72 here, but here are a few items that could impact you and your business:
- Virginia is enacting a modified Stay-At-Home Order that all Virginians should remain at their place of residence between the hours of 12:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m., with certain exceptions, such as traveling to and from work.
- Universal mask requirement: All Virginians aged five and over are required to wear face coverings in indoor settings shared with others and when outdoors within six feet of another person. This order expands the current statewide mask mandate, which has been in place since May 29, and requires all individuals aged five and over to wear face coverings in indoor and outdoor public settings outside of their own household. These changes are consistent with new CDC guidelines, released December 4, which recommend universal wearing of face coverings.
- There will be a reduction in gatherings from 25 to 10 people.
- Any non-essential brick and mortar retail business may continue to operate, provided such business complies with the Guidelines for All Business Sectors and the sector-specific guidance for brick and mortar retail expressly incorporated by reference herein. Such guidance includes, but is not limited to, the following requirements:
- Employees and patrons must maintain at least six feet of physical distancing between individuals who are not family members, as defined in Executive Order 72, at all times.
- Employees must wear face coverings over their nose and mouth while working at their place of employment.
- Patrons must wear face coverings over their nose and mouth according to Section III of Executive Order 72.
- If any such business cannot adhere to these requirements, it must close.