Raimondo announces stay-at-home order, new sports restrictions
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) — As Rhode Island sets a single-day new COVID case record, Governor Raimondo is announcing another round of restrictions.
The governor says she coordinated with neighboring states for these regulations, which she aims to keep targeted and with a limited impact on jobs and commerce.
One is a stay-at-home advisory, asking people to not to leave their homes between 10 PM and 5 AM on weeknights, and between 10:30 PM and 5 AM on weekends.
Restaurants, bars, gyms, and recreation facilities will also have to keep to those hours.
“The more time you spend someplace, the more likely the virus is to spread,” Raimondo said. “And we also know from our inspectors that the later the night goes on, the more people put their guard down.”
Indoor events like religious services must reduce their capacity to a maximum of 125 people.
Catered events like weddings must also reduce capacity to 25 people indoors or 75 people outdoors.
Capacity at malls and big box stores also reduced to one person every 150 square feet.
The governor is asking businesses to postpone non-essential work travel.
And masks are required at all times when around people who don’t live with you.
Masks are also now required for spectators and athletes during youth sports practices and games, and out-of-state travel for sports tournaments is banned starting Monday.
“Sports cases, they increased, 68 percent of the cases were in the month of October,” said Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management Director Janet Coit. “So as we were moving people indoors sports, the idea the that we should take stock and put stricter requirements in place is intended to make sure we can have a smooth season.”
Raimondo says not following these restrictions could worsen the situation to the point where she’s forced to implement a shutdown.
“If we don’t see changes in behavior, then very likely in a couple weeks I’ll have to do even more,” the governor said.
Most of the guidelines begin Sunday and last for two weeks.