Jeramey Jannene

Evers Extends “Safer at Home” Until May 26th, Loosens Restrictions

Golf courses can open, but the school year is canceled.

By - Apr 16th, 2020 01:17 pm
Wisconsin State Capitol. Photo by Dave Reid.

Wisconsin State Capitol. Photo by Dave Reid.

Wisconsin’s shutdown could last until at least May 26th, but it will soon look different.

Governor Tony Evers directed the Wisconsin Department of Health Services Secretary-designee Andrea Palm to extend the existing order past the April 24th expiration to May 26th or until a superseding order is issued.

But changes are planned. Golf courses can open, but their clubhouses may not. Public libraries can provide curbside pickup. Arts and craft stores can provide curbside pickup for materials to make face masks and personal protective equipment (PPE). Non-essential businesses may now offer deliveries, mailings and curbside pickups and must notify their employees if they are necessary for such operation. Aesthetic lawn care or optional exterior work on properties is now allowed, provided it can be done by one person.

The original “Safer at Home” order went into effect on March 25th.

The move comes as a growing number of people are calling for the state to return to normal. A protest is planned for outside the Wisconsin State Capitol on April 24th. A similar protest in Michigan, a state where over 1,900 people have died from the virus, was held on Wednesday and drew a couple thousand people to block streets near the capitol.

The number of new COVID-19 cases continues to rise in Wisconsin, but is no longer growing exponentially.

“A few weeks ago, we had a pretty grim outlook for what COVID-19 could mean for our state, but because of the efforts of all of you, Safer at Home is working. That said, we aren’t out of the woods just yet,” said Evers in a press release announcing the changes.

As part of the order, Evers confirmed that the 2019-2020 school year was canceled.

“Before we lift Safer at Home, the steps of testing and more robust public health measures must be in place,” said Palm. “These steps will help us reduce the risk of a second wave of the virus. If we open up too soon, we risk overwhelming our hospitals and requiring more drastic physical distancing measures again.”

The state reported 3,721 total cases of COVID-19 yesterday, including 166 new cases in the last 24 hours.

The death toll from the disease rose to 182 yesterday according to state figures, including 105 people in Milwaukee County.

Over half of the state’s confirmed COVID-19 cases have been recorded in Milwaukee County.

Evers and Palm are scheduled to brief the media at 1:30 p.m.

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