Governor Edwards Says Louisiana Will Stay in Phase Two
At today's press conference Governor John Bel Edwards says Louisiana is not moving to Phase 3 on Friday, June 26.
Gov. Edwards says he will extend his Phase Two order for another 28 days. The Governor announced that he will reevaluate the situation in two weeks.
“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. I implore 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. These are simple things we can do to protect ourselves and each other.”
“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.”
WAFB in Baton Rouge says "a source familiar with the situation" is telling them that Governor John Bel Edwards will make it official during his 2:30 p.m. press conference today, keeping Louisiana in Phase 2.
I've reached out to two state lawmakers as well and, with the numbers trending upward, they are expecting this announcement as well.
We don't know yet how long we will stay in Phase 2.
Monday's announcement that the state added 41 new COVID-19 hospitalizations today - the largest jump since April - as well as the total case count surpassing 50,000 and total deaths surpassing 3,000 did not help the case for the state to move past Phase 2, which the state has been in for the last two weeks.
In Phase 2, Bars, spas, and tattoo parlors were allowed to reopen, with restrictions and at 25% capacity. Arcades and trampoline parks, and Summer camps (not Sleep-away camps) were allowed to open as well.
Businesses that have been operating at 25% capacity have been able to do so at 50% capacity. That includes the following:
- Restaurants, cafes and coffee shops
- Shopping malls (including food courts, following restaurant guidance)
- Gyms and fitness centers
- Barber and beauty shops and nail salons
- Movie theaters
- Racetracks (not open to spectators)
- Museums (including children’s museums), zoos, aquariums (no tactile exhibits)
- Bars and breweries with LDH food permits
- Massage establishments, spas, and tattoo establishments (under strict guidance from LDH), esthetician services (under strict guidance from the Cosmetology Board)
- Pool halls, bowling alleys and skating rinks (children must be accompanied by an adult)
- Event Centers and wedding venues
- Outdoor playgrounds and play centers (children must be accompanied by an adult)
- Indoor Funerals and Weddings, who may also continue outdoor services with no crowd size limitation as long as social distancing is practiced.
- Casinos and Video Poker Establishments (but limited to 75 percent of their gaming positions, with spacing to allow for social distancing and with enhanced sanitation).
Children's Museums will be allowed to reopen, but with restrictions.
Live music venues, though, will remain closed, as well as the following businesses:
- Amusement Parks
- Water Parks
- Contact Sports
- Children’s Indoor Play Centers
- Theme Parks
- Concert and Music Halls
- Other similar businesses
You can watch the Governor's announcement by CLICKING BELOW: