Stay At Home Order Provisions
In response to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), Mayor Allen Joines has issued a Stay At Home order affecting all residents and nonessential businesses in the City of Winston-Salem.
The order is valid from 5 p.m. Friday, March 27, 2020 through 12:01 a.m. Thursday, April 16, 2020. This order may be revised as the situation warrants.
This page summarizes the most important parts of the 14-page order. Please read the full order (PDF) and Frequently Asked Questions for complete guidance. Mira en español: "Orden de permanecer en casa" (PDF)
Stay At Home
All people currently living within the City of Winston-Salem are restricted to stay at their places of residence. People may leave their residences only for:
- Essential Activities (jump to section)
- Essential Governmental Functions (jump to section)
- Operations of Essential Businesses (jump to section)
- Other items defined in this declaration.
All Essential Businesses are strongly encouraged to remain open. To the greatest extent feasible, Essential Businesses shall comply with Social Distancing requirements as defined below.
Nonessential Business and Operations Must Cease
All businesses and operations in the city are to cease all activities except for:
- Exempted Essential Businesses and Operations (jump to section)
- Minimum Basic Operations (applies to all businesses - jump to section)
- Working from home
Restrictions on Gatherings
All public and private gatherings of more than 10 people are prohibited. The gathering of members of a household or residence is permitted.
All indoor and outdoor places of public amusement where people may gather, including but not limited to, locations with amusement rides, carnivals, amusement parks, water parks, aquariums, zoos, museums, arcades, fairs, children’s play centers, playgrounds, recreation centers, funplexes, theme parks, bowling alleys, movie and other theaters, concert and music halls, and country clubs or social clubs shall be closed to the public.
Social Distancing Requirements
- Maintain at least a six-foot social distance from other people.
- Wash hands with soap and water for at least twenty seconds as frequently as possible or use hand sanitizer.
- Cover coughs or sneezes into your sleeve or elbow, not your hands.
- Regularly clean high-touch surfaces.
- Do not shake hands with others.
Provisions for Elderly & Vulnerable
Those who are vulnerable because of illness should take additional precautions. People at high risk of severe illness from COVID-19, including elderly people and those who are sick, are urged to stay in their residence to the extent possible except as necessary to seek medical care. Nothing in this declaration prevents the Forsyth County Public Health director from issuing and enforcing isolation and quarantine orders or executing other duties as required pursuant to North Carolina General Statue 130A.
Nursing home, long-term care and assisted living facilities
Residents of nursing homes, long-term care and assisted living facilities can have only one adult visitor per day. Before entering, visitors must be screened for signs and symptoms of COVID-19. Visitors must show identification and sign into a visitor log with contact information. Visitors will be restricted to the resident’s room and must follow social distancing requirements.
Essential Activities Still Allowed
- Health & Safety
- Necessary Supplies & Services
- Outdoor Activity
- Certain Types of Work
- Taking Care of Others
- Essential Travel
To engage in activities or perform tasks essential to their health and safety, or to the health and safety of their family or household members (including, but not limited to, pets), such as, by way of example only and without limitation, seeking emergency services, obtaining medical supplies or medication, or visiting a health care professional for medical services that cannot be provided virtually.
To obtain necessary services or supplies for themselves and their family or household members, or to deliver those services or supplies to others, such as, by way of example only and without limitation, groceries and food, household consumer products, supplies they need to work from home, and products necessary to maintain the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences.
To engage in outdoor activity, provided the individuals comply with Social Distancing Requirements, such as, by way of example and without limitation, walking, hiking, golfing, running, cycling, or using the greenways. Individuals may go to public parks and open outdoor recreation areas. However, playgrounds may increase spread of COVID-19 and, therefore, shall be closed.
To perform work providing essential products and services at Essential Businesses or Operations (which includes Healthcare and Public Health Operations, Human Services Operations, Essential Governmental Functions, and Essential Infrastructure) or to otherwise carry out activities specifically permitted in this declaration, including Minimum Basic Operations. All categories will be defined in the next section.
Guidelines for Business Operations Allowed to Continue
Exempted Essential Businesses and Operations and all businesses engaged in Minimum Basic Operations must take proactive measures to ensure compliance with Social Distancing Requirements, including where possible:
- Six-foot distances: Designate with signage, tape, or by other means, six-foot spacing for employees and customers in line to maintain appropriate distance.
- Sanitizer: Have hand sanitizer and sanitizing products readily available for employees and customers.
- Separate operating hours: Implement separate operating hours for elderly and vulnerable customers.
- Remote access: Post online whether a facility is open and how best to reach the facility and continue services by phone or remotely.
To care for a family member, friend, or pet in another household, and to transport family members, friends, or pets.
Essential Travel includes travel for any of the following purposes. Individuals engaged in any Essential Travel must comply with all Social Distancing Requirements mentioned above.
- Any travel related to the provision of or access to Essential Activities, Essential Governmental Functions, Essential Businesses and Operations, or Minimum Basic Operations. (Definitions in next section.)
- Travel to care for elderly, minors, dependents, persons with disabilities, or other vulnerable persons.
- Travel to or from educational institutions for purposes of receiving materials for distance learning, for receiving meals, and any other related services.
- Travel to return to a place of residence from outside the jurisdiction.
- Travel required by law enforcement or court order, including to transport children pursuant to a custody agreement.
- Travel required for non-residents to return to their place of residence outside the City. Individuals are strongly encouraged to verify that their transportation out of the City remains available and functional prior to commencing such travel.
- Minimum Basic Operations (All Businesses)
- Essential Businesses & Operations
- Essential Infrastructure
- Essential Governmental Functions
- Health Care & Public Health Operations
- Human Service Operations
Minimum Basic Operations include the following, provided that employees comply with Social Distancing Requirements, to the extent possible, while carrying out such operations:
- The minimum necessary activities to maintain the value of the business’s inventory, preserve the condition of the business’s physical plant and equipment, ensure security, process payroll and employee benefits, or for related functions.
- The minimum necessary activities to facilitate employees of the business being able to continue to work remotely from their residences.
- Stores that sell groceries and medicine
- Food, beverage, and agriculture (also includes animal shelters and rescues)
- Organizations that provide charitable and social services
- Media (newspapers, television, radio, and other media services)
- Gas stations and businesses needed for transportation (includes repair facilities and auto sales/dealerships).
- Financial institutions
- Hardware and supply stores
- Critical trades. Building and Construction Tradesmen and Tradeswomen, and other trades including but not limited to plumbers, electricians, exterminators, cleaning and janitorial staff for commercial and governmental properties, security staff, operating engineers, HVAC, painting, moving and relocation services, and other service providers who provide services that are necessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences, Essential Activities, and Essential Businesses and Operations.
- Mail, post, shipping, logistics, delivery, and pick-up services.
- Educational institutions—including public and private pre-K-12 schools, colleges, and universities—for purposes of facilitating distance learning, performing critical research related to COVID-19, or performing essential functions, provided that social distancing of six-feet per person is maintained to the greatest extent possible. (This declaration is consistent with, and does not amend or supersede, the Governor’s March 10, 2020 Executive Order, except that affected schools are ordered closed through May 15, 2020; the Winston-Salem-Forsyth County School System remains under the command and control of the superintendent of schools.)
- Laundry services
- Restaurants for consumption off-premises (includes schools and other typical food service entities)
- Supplies to work from home
- Supplies for Essential Businesses and Operations. Includes computers; audio and video electronics; household appliances; IT and telecommunication equipment; hardware, paint, flat glass; electrical, plumbing and heating material; sanitary equipment; personal hygiene products; food, food additives, ingredients and components; medical and orthopedic equipment; optics and photography equipment; diagnostics, food and beverages, chemicals, soaps and detergent; and firearm and ammunition suppliers and retailers for purposes of safety and security.
- Transportation. Airlines, taxis, public transportation, transportation network providers (such as Uber and Lyft), vehicle rental services, paratransit, and other private, and commercial transportation and logistics providers necessary for Essential Activities and other purposes expressly authorized herein.
- Home-based care for adults, seniors, children, and/or people with developmental disabilities, intellectual disabilities, substance use disorders, and/or mental illness, including caregivers such as nannies who may travel to the child’s home to provide care, and other in-home services including meal delivery.
- Residential facilities and shelters for adults, seniors, children, and/or people with developmental disabilities, intellectual disabilities, substance use disorders, and/or mental illness.
- Professional services, such as legal services, accounting services, insurance services, real estate transactions and services including, but not limited to, appraisal and title services.
- Childcare centers for specific employees exempted by this declaration
- Manufacture, distribution, and supply chain for critical products and industries. Includes industries such as pharmaceutical, technology, biotechnology, healthcare, chemicals and sanitization, waste pickup and disposal, agriculture, food and beverage, transportation, energy, steel and steel products, petroleum and fuel, mining, construction, national defense, communications and clothing, as well as products used by other Essential Businesses and Operations.
- Hotels and motels
- Funeral services. Funeral, mortuary, cremation, burial, cemetery, and related services.
- Additional Manufacturers. Manufacturers of pharmaceuticals, biologics, medical devices, diagnostic devices, imaging equipment, and durable medical equipment; clinical laboratories; and other providers of diagnostic services (collectively, “Healthcare Products”); and entities supporting the manufacture or provision of Healthcare Products; Manufacturers of biological products critical in the production of food, transportation fuels, agriculture, animal feed and hygiene agents, (collectively, Essential Products) to include (by way of example and not limitation) the production of enzymes and microbes, and entities supporting the manufacture of Essential Products. Entities conducting research, testing, or clinical trials used or useful in the development of Healthcare Products and Essential Products, (collectively, “Life Science Research”), and entities supporting Life Science Research.
- Additional Entities. Entities engaged in the physical construction of the built environment and its infrastructure of manufacturers or other producers of Healthcare Products and Essential Products (collectively, “Facilities”), and entities supporting the construction of Facilities; Wholesalers, distributors, warehousers, retailers and similar entities engaged in the delivery of Healthcare Products or Essential Products, or supporting the production of Healthcare Products or Essential Products, or the conduct of Life Science Research, and Suppliers of materials, components, services, or other products or services (“Inputs”) required to supply or maintain the supply of Inputs used or useful to entities described above. Inputs include (by way of example and not limitation), validation, calibration, maintenance and repair services, veterinary services, and information technology services.
- Activities necessary to maintain continuity of the federal critical infrastructure sectors, as defined by the federal Cybersecurity Infrastructure & Security Agency. Also read Identifying Critical Infrastructure During COVID-19.
- Common areas of a mall
People may leave their residence to provide any services or perform any work necessary to offer, provision, operate, maintain and repair Essential Infrastructure.
Essential Infrastructure includes, but is not limited to:
- food production, distribution, and sale
- construction (including, but not limited to, construction required in response to this public health emergency, hospital construction, construction of long-term care facilities, public works construction, and housing construction);
- building management and maintenance;
- airport operations;
- operation and maintenance of utilities, including water, sewer, and gas; electrical (including power generation, distribution, and production of raw materials);
- distribution centers;
- security system operation and maintenance;
- oil and biofuel refining;
- roads, highways, railroads, and public transportation;
- cybersecurity operations;
- flood control;
- solid waste and recycling collection and removal; and
- internet, video, and telecommunications systems (including the provision of essential global, national, and local infrastructure for computing services, business infrastructure, communications, and web-based services).
Essential Infrastructure shall be construed broadly to avoid any impacts to essential infrastructure, broadly defined.
All first responders, emergency management personnel, emergency dispatchers, court personnel, law enforcement and corrections personnel, hazardous materials responders, child protection and child welfare personnel, adult protection services, housing and shelter personnel, military, and other governmental employees working for or to support Essential Businesses and Operations are categorically exempt.
Essential Government Functions means all services provided by the City, the County or any municipality, township, subdivision or agency of government and needed to ensure the continuing operation of the government agencies or to provide for or support the health, safety and welfare of the public, and including contractors performing Essential Government Functions. Each County, City or Town Manager shall determine its Essential Governmental Functions and identify employees and/or contractors necessary to the performance of those functions.
This declaration does not apply to Forsyth County, or any other municipality in Forsyth County.
Healthcare and Public Health Operations includes, but is not limited to:
- clinics when medical/dental care cannot be provided virtually;
- public health entities, including those that compile, model, analyze and communicate public health information;
- pharmaceutical, pharmacy, medical device and equipment, and biotechnology companies (including operations, research and development, manufacture, and supply chain);
- organizations collecting blood, platelets, plasma, and other necessary materials;
- reproductive health care providers;
- home healthcare services providers;
- mental health and substance use providers;
- other healthcare facilities and suppliers and providers of any related and/or ancillary healthcare services; and
- entities that transport and dispose of medical materials and remains.
Specifically included in Healthcare and Public Health Operations are manufacturers, technicians, logistics, and warehouse operators and distributors of medical equipment, personal protective equipment (PPE), medical gases, pharmaceuticals, blood and blood products, vaccines, testing materials, laboratory supplies, cleaning, sanitizing, disinfecting or sterilization supplies, and tissue and paper towel products.
Healthcare and Public Health Operations also includes veterinary care and all urgent healthcare services provided to animals.
Healthcare and Public Health Operations shall be construed broadly to avoid any impacts to the delivery of healthcare, broadly defined. Healthcare and Public Health Operations does not include fitness and exercise gyms, spas, salons, barbershops, tattoo parlors, and similar facilities.
Individuals may leave their residence to work for or obtain services that are not available via online or mail-in applications, and telephone interviews at any Human Services Operations, or Medicaid providers that are providing services to the public and including state-operated, institutional, or community-based settings providing human services to the public.
Human Services Operations include, but are not limited to:
- long-term care facilities;
- residential settings and shelters for adults, seniors, children, and/or people with developmental disabilities, intellectual disabilities, substance use disorders, and/or mental illness;
- transitional facilities;
- home-based settings to provide services to individuals with physical, intellectual, and/or developmental disabilities, seniors, adults, and children;
- field offices that provide and help to determine eligibility for basic needs including food, cash assistance, medical coverage, child care, vocational services, rehabilitation services;
- developmental centers;
- adoption agencies; and
- businesses that provide food, shelter, and social services, and other necessities of life for economically disadvantaged individuals, individuals with physical, intellectual, and/or developmental disabilities, or otherwise needy individuals.
Human Services Operations shall be construed broadly to avoid any impacts to the delivery of human services, broadly defined.
Enforcement of Provisions
The order specifically states that anyone found violating this declaration "shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor in accordance with North Carolina General Statue 14-288.20A." However, in practice, only in the case of egregious noncompliance will law enforcement resort to fining someone. Law enforcement may ask groups of 10 to more to distance themselves, but law enforcement will not pull people over and ask where they are going.