Gov. Tony Evers issued an order Tuesday, March 24 closing businesses deemed to be nonessential, ordered no gatherings of any size and placed restrictions on travel across Wisconsin for a month in an attempt to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
Evers' order has numerous exceptions, including for hospitals and other health care facilities, grocery stores, bars and restaurants offering delivery and carry out food, airports and other businesses offering essential services. Newspapers, print and online media companies are also exempt from Evers' order.
The order takes effect at 8 a.m. Wednesday and is to run through April 24, but could be altered, ended or extended.
Evers said he didn't want to have to issue such an order, but "folks need to start taking this seriously." The goal of the order, which many other states have also issued, is to slow the spread of the COVID-19 outbreak so doctors and nurses are not overwhelmed with patients.
Under the order, Wisconsin residents will be able to go to the doctor and obtain medicine, leave home to care for family members and obtain necessary food and supplies, including pet food.
Other businesses allowed to remain open include pharmacies, gas stations, banks, laundries and dry cleaners, hardware stores, churches, funeral homes and media outlets.