CHICAGO — Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker has ordered all Illinois residents to “stay-at-home” starting Saturday at 5:00 p.m. until April 7th. All non-essential employees must work from home if they must. The “shelter-in-place” will allow the state’s 12.6 million residents to seek essentials including groceries and medicine. This order comes as the state announces 585 confirmed cases and 5 deaths in the state.
The basics of a “stay-at-home” order during the coronavirus pandemic are fairly clear: Stay at home. That order, though, has plenty of exemptions for “essential” activities. And it is far from the shelter-in-place of acute emergencies, like for active shootings or tornadoes.
As cities, states and the federal government take increasingly aggressive moves to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus, the precise details of a shelter-in-place order and its many exceptions for “essential” activities may soon become familiar to millions of Americans across the country.
The purpose of such an order is to enforce social distancing or to keep people away from each other to limit the spread of the virus. There is nothing inherently dangerous about going outside. The danger is in being close to other people who are infected, whether they know it or not.