• 77°

Taking the next steps: Gov. Ivey updates Safer-at-Home order

Sports and entertainment venues will be part of the next phase of Alabama’s reopening in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Gov. Kay Ivey released revisions to the Safer-at-Home order that are set to begin at 5 p.m. tomorrow, Friday, May 22. The order issues guidelines for the reopening of various venues and businesses and is slated to be in effect until 5 p.m. on July 3.

The revisions come as many states across the country enter into their next phases after being shut down for more than two months in some cases. As of Thursday afternoon, the Alabama Department of Public Health reported 13,119 COVID-19 cases out of 172,934 tests performed. Of those tested, 7.58 percent test positive for the virus. So far the state has had 529 deaths – a mortality rate of 4.03 percent statewide. In the past 14 days, Alabama has registered 4,177 new cases.

In Butler County, current numbers on the ALDPH web site show 312 cases with 1,185 tests and 11 deaths. Lowndes County has had 10 deaths and 156 cases out of 454 tests. Lowndes and Butler counties remain among the top numbers of cases per capita in Alabama, and according to a “New York Times” graphic, the nation. In Crenshaw County, the number of deaths stands at two after being revised down from three on Thursday. Crenshaw County has seen 52 cases of COVID-19 out of 585 tests performed.

Under the new regulations, set to take affect Friday:

  • Entertainment venues, such as arcades, theaters and bowling alleys can open subject to social-distancing and sanitation rules and guidelines;
  • Athletic activities are open subject to social-distancing and sanitation rules and guidelines;
  • Educational institutions are open subject to social-distancing and sanitation rules and guidelines;
  • Child daycare facilities open subject to social distancing and sanitation rules and guidelines; and,
  • Summer camp remain open with rules and guidelines available.

Individuals are still encouraged to stay at home and follow good sanitation processes. Many businesses have reopened with 50 percent occupancy rules in place, however, some “high-risk” businesses remain closed.

In addition, these items remain the same since the earlier updated order:

  • Medical procedures – Allowed unless prohibited in the future by the state health officer to preserve resources necessary to diagnose and treat COVID-19, providers must follow COVID-19 related rules and guidance from state regulatory boards or public health authorities;
  • Senior citizen centers – Regular programming still suspended except meals still available through curbside pick up or delivery;
  • Hospitals and nursing homes – Still must implement policies to restrict visitation;
  • Restaurants, bars and breweries – May open with limited table seating, 6-feet between tables and subject to additional sanitation rules and guidelines;
  • Beaches – Open with no limit on gatherings. Participants must maintain 6-feet of separation.
  • Close-contact service providers – Close-contact providers such as barber shops, hair salons, nail salons, tattoo services may open subject to social distancing and sanitation rules and guidelines;
  • Athletic facilities, such as fitness centers and commercial gyms – Athletic facilities may open subject to social-distancing and sanitation rules and guidelines. Specified athletic activities are still not allowed

To read Gov. Ivey’s releases, click the links below:

Safer-at-Home Reference Guide

COVID-19 Health Order

Proceeding with Caution

Safer-at-Home Order

COVID-19 Proclamation