HARRIS COUNTY, Texas- Harris County residents are now under a ‘Stay Home, Work Safe’ order. Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo made the announcement Tuesday morning.
Bottom line, the order means that people should stay home except for essential needs. Officials are making sure everyone understands this is not a lockdown. Grocery stores, pharmacies, and gas stations are all still open. Restaurants can still serve customers take out, delivery and drive through options.
Another question many people have is 'Who can still work under this order?' The answer is essential employees. There are sixteen sectors of the workforce that are considered essential which includes people in the transportation industry, health care, communication and the food industry to name a few.
If you're wondering how the order will be enforced, Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo explains his approach here.
“We’re going to use common sense. We’re going to use courtesy and we are going to ask people when we think they are doing something in violation of this order, we are going to ask people to comply and we believe by using some compassion and quite frankly some common courtesy that we will be able to be just fine," explained Acevedo.
Houston Fire Chief Peña is asking for people to only call 9-1-1 for true emergencies and if someone is experiencing flu-like symptoms to let the call taker know so the fire fighters can be prepared.
As of now, there are 284 total cases of COVID-19 in the Houston area.