Colorado moves into “Safer at Home” phase
Citing a slight downward trend in the statewide hospitalization rate, Colorado Gov. Jared Polis announced on Monday that the state’s strict “Stay at Home” order will expire on Monday, April 27 and the state will begin using “Safer at Home” guidelines.
Denver’s “Stay at Home” order issued by Mayor Michael B. Hancock won’t be lifted until at least April 30.
Gov. Polis warned that recovery from COVID-19 would be a marathon, not a sprint. He said that even after the new rules go into effect Colorado residents should maintain 60-65% of the physical distancing requirements they have been practicing, and the orders are subject to change on a regional basis as new information becomes available.
“We need to make sure we live not with anxiety, not with fear, but with extreme caution,” Gov. Polis said. “That extreme caution is driven by the data.”
Many sectors of the workforce will be allowed to return to their jobs, though telecommuting is still encouraged whenever possible.
There have been more than 10,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Colorado and 450 deaths. More than 1,000 people with confirmed cases are currently in the hospital.
New guidelines will be forthcoming for how businesses, including retail, bars, restaurants, personal care, and others will reopen.
What changes in new “Safer at Home” phase?
- The stay at home “order” is changed to an “encouragement,” and still applies to everyone except when absolutely necessary.
- Vulnerable people and seniors should still remain at home unless absolutely necessary.
- Retail businesses are allowed to open for curbside delivery on April 27, and slowly phase in regular operations under strict precautions beginning May 1.
- Offices may open to 50% capacity with strict precautions on May 4, and large employers are asked to have symptom and temperature checks before entry. Telecommuting is encouraged whenever possible.
- Elective medical and dental services may open with strict precautions and adequate personal protective equipment.
- Bars and restaurants must allow takeout and delivery only, but reduced capacity in-house dining may be phased in later.
- Personal services like salons, tattoo parlors, and personal trainers may open with strict precautions.
- Real estate may resume showings, but no open houses.
- Childcare may open for everyone (not just essential workers), but with strict precautions.
- Public schools remain closed.