Gov. Edwards keeps Louisiana in Phase 2
Published 8:41 am Wednesday, June 24, 2020
BATON ROUGE — Governor John Bel Edwards announced Monday afternoon that Louisiana will stay in Phase Two of reopening, as the number of COVID-19 cases and related hospitalizations have started to rise in several regions across the state. The Governor will extend his Phase Two order for another 28 days, keeping in place occupancy limits and other restrictions.
From Sunday, June 14 to Sunday, June 21, the number of COVID-19 cases in St. John the Baptist Parish rose from 891 cases to 924 cases. There were two additional deaths last week, bringing the total number of COVID-19 fatalities in St. John Parish to 85.
As of Monday, Louisiana ranked seventh out of 23 states across the country experiencing an increase in COVID-19 positive cases. Those include the neighboring states of Texas, Arkansas, Alabama, Florida and Georgia.
“Louisiana reached two sad milestones today as we surpassed 3,000 deaths and 50,000 positive tests in our state. Each of these Louisianans is someone’s child, sibling, parent or friend, and we mourn every one of these losses,” Gov. Edwards said. “It is clear that COVID is alive and well in Louisiana, and as we see more people testing positive and admitted to hospitals, we simply are not ready to move to the next phase, and ease restrictions further as businesses open widely. Many of you are doing the right thing and I thank you for it. It’s incredibly disappointing to hear that there are still some people who refuse to wear masks in public, which puts all of us at greater risk of becoming sick.”
Edwards implored Louisianans to be good neighbors, to stay at home when they are experiencing symptoms, to avoid crowds, physically distance and to wear a mask when not around their immediate household whether inside or outside. He said these are simple things individuals can do to protect themselves and others.
“While we know that increasing testing means that we will see more positive cases, we are still troubled by the rising case counts across the state, especially since around 90 percent of these new cases are coming from the community and not from congregate settings like nursing homes,” Gov. Edwards said. “It is up to all of us to check our own behaviors and to take responsibility for slowing the spread of COVID. We do not want to have to go back to a time of increased restrictions where fewer businesses could operate. It is my hope that all of us – from government officials to business owners to students – will do the right thing.”
Louisianans should wear facemasks whenever they are in public, practice social distancing, wash their hands frequently and avoid going out in public when they are experiencing any symptoms.
As a reminder, the following businesses can operate at 50 percent capacity during Phase Two:
- Restaurants, cafes and coffee shops
- Gyms and fitness centers
- Barber and beauty shops and nail salons
- Bars and breweries with LDH food permits (without LDH food permits can operate at 25 percent occupancy)
- Massage establishments, spas and tattoo establishments and esthetician services
- Event centers and wedding venues
- Outdoor playgrounds and play centers
- Casinos and video poker establishments
Businesses that will remain closed during Phase Two include:
- Contact sports, children’s indoor play centers and theme parks
- Concert and music halls, and other similar businesses