COLUMBUS, Ohio (WDTN) – Ohio’s “stay at home” order has been extended through May 1 with new rules for some businesses staying open.
The new order, which goes into effect Monday night, requires retail businesses to limit the number of people inside at a time, and that limit must be decided by each store, state officials announced at a news conference Thursday.
The businesses must make sure people waiting outside are practicing social distancing, Gov. Mike DeWine said.
Travelers who are returning to Ohio after being out of state for some time are asked to self-quarantine for two weeks, DeWine added.
“My biggest worry is that in the quiet before the storm, we forget how important every one of our choices is,” said Dr. Amy Acton, Ohio Department of Health director.
Gov. DeWine acknowledged the economic strain of extending the stay at home order but said the restrictions are saving lives.
“We would not make these decisions, I would not make this decision, if it wasn’t a matter of life and death,” he said.
Under the “stay at home” order, restaurants are still allowed to stay open for carryout and delivery, though some in the Miami Valley have chosen to shut down temporarily. Others have gone out of business permanently.
“Very tough,” said Meef Demnika, who opened Tuscany’s Grill and Market in Centerville two months ago. “We’re not making money. We’re losing money.”
Demnika, a restaurant owner in the Miami Valley for 20 years, told 2 NEWS he plans to keep the business open for carryout and delivery orders to help his employees and the community.
His staff is regularly cleaning doors, windows and other surfaces to keep people safe, he added.
“We’re not here right now to make money,” Demnika said. “Right now, it’s just to support each other.”
The new order also creates a dispute resolution panel to make enforcement decisions when similar businesses are treated differently by different health departments, DeWine said.
You can read the full stay at home order below: