JONESBORO—Clayton County Chairman Jeffrey Turner has issued a shelter in place order, effective at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, April 1 until at least 11:59 p.m. April 12. All public and private gatherings are prohibited within the county, "including but...not limited to weddings, religious gatherings, parties, funerals, sporting events, social events, conferences and other gatherings." People in the same household or living unit can gather.
All non-essential businesses "are required to cease all activities at facilities located within the county except Minimum Basic Operations." Businesses whose employees or contractors are working from home may keep working.
The order applies to unincorporated areas of Clayton County that have not come under any of the similar municipal emergency orders.
People who are maintaining "Essential Infrastructure," like public roads, communications infrastructure, public transportation, water, sewer, gas, electricity and so on may leave their homes to do that work but must obey social distancing.
The same applies to people performing "Essential Government Functions," including "all first responders, emergency management personnel, emergency dispatchers, court personnel, and law enforcement personnel, and others who need to perform essential services....Further, nothing in this Order shall prohibit any individual from performing or accessing 'Essential Government Functions,' as determined by the governmental entity performing those functions."
Under the Clayton County order, residents can only leave their homes for essential services, like going to the doctor, pharmacy or grocery store, or because they work in essential jobs like healthcare, public transportation, or solid waste collection and removal.
"(P)eople at high risk of severe illness from COVID-19 and people who are sick are urged to stay in their residence to the extent possible except as necessary to seek medical care," the order reads. People who have tested positive for COVID-19, show symptoms or who have been in close contact with someone known to have COVID-19 "are required by the Georgia Department of Public Health to isolate or quarantine themselves at home."
"Essential activities" include activities or tasks "essential to (one's) health and safety, or to the health and safety of (one's) family or household members or partners or significant others (including, but not limited to, pets). Examples include, but are not limited to:
- getting medical supplies or medication, visiting a healthcare professional, getting supplies needed to work from home (you can take your pet to the veterinarian if needed)
- getting "necessary services, supplies, or food" for yourself and family or household members or delivering things like canned food; dry goods; fresh fruits, vegetables, fish, meat and poultry; pet supplies; other household items; and "products necessary to maintain the safety, sanitation and essential operation of residences."
- exercise like walking, hiking, running, or bicycling as long as people stay 6 feet apart and do not gather in groups (gyms and health clubs are closed)
- to care for a family member or pet in another household
People also can leave home "to perform work providing essential products and services at an Essential Business or to otherwise carry out activities specifically permitted in this Order, including Minimum Basic Operations."
Minimum Basic Operations means "the minimum necessary activities to maintain the value of the business's inventory, ensure security, process payroll and employee benefits, or for related functions." For example, if one person needs to get into the office to cut checks for employees, that would be allowed under the order.
Check the county's official map. Red lines indicate city boundaries. Colors indicate County Commission districts. Everything outside the red lines falls under the order. You can zoom in to see where you live: