Let's Talk Coronavirus: Who Stays Home?
Let's Talk New Mexico 3/24, 8a: Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham went live before tens of thousands of New Mexicans on Monday afternoon with a new public health order in response to the coronavirus outbreak: close all "non-essential businesses," limit public outings to groups of five, and stay at home as much as possible. The order says violators "could lose licenses to operate and face civil or criminal penalties." How does this change life for you and your loved ones? What worries you most about the pandemic in your town, and what kinds of things do you want to hear from your elected leaders? We're continuing our daily call-in shows about COVID-19 in New Mexico, and we want to hear from you. Email firstname.lastname@example.org anytime or call in live during the show at (505) 277-5866 or 1-877-899-5866.
- U.S. Rep. Deb Haaland
- CABQ Family and Community Services Director Carol Pierce
Wondering if your job is exempt or not? Here's the Governor's March 23 order, in full:
State enacts further restrictions to stop spread, including stay-at-home instruction
SANTA FE – Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on Monday announced additional restrictions to disrupt the spread of the COVID-19 virus in New Mexico and instructed New Mexicans to remain in their homes or places of residence except for outings absolutely necessary for health, safety and welfare.
The order – to be issued by Secretary of Health Kathy Kunkel and effective 8 a.m. Tuesday, March 24 – closes all non-essential businesses, requiring 100 percent of the state’s non-essential workforce to work from home. As in other states that have enacted similar measures, there are exceptions pertaining to essential services for the preservation of health, safety and well-being.
“The only way for us to stop the spread of this virus is for New Mexicans to stop interacting with each other,” said Gov. Lujan Grisham. “New Mexicans must be crystal-clear on this point: Right now, every time you leave your house, you are putting yourself, your family and your community at risk. Only by distancing from one another, by remaining home except for essential or emergency travel, can we limit the spread of this virus to the point that it does not overwhelm New Mexico.
“This clearly exempts people who are part of the essential functions that must continue: The individuals providing meals for kids at our schools; the individuals working at health care facilities, child care facilities, public safety entities and many more. Those individuals are helping keep us operating — in a new and limited way. They deserve our profound gratitude.
“As we wait for the federal government to get states the help we need in expanding capacity and testing materials and financial assistance, staying home is the one action all of us, individually and as a group, can control,” the governor added. “Please stay home. Help protect New Mexico.”
Intended to aggressively limit person-to-person contact in the state, the amended emergency public health order closes all non-essential businesses except for remote work. The order advises that New Mexicans “must stay at home and undertake only those outings absolutely necessary for their health, safety or welfare” and further restricts “mass gatherings” of five or more individuals in outdoor spaces.
“Does this order mean you cannot walk your dog? No. Does it mean you can’t go for a jog? No. But you should not do those things in a group — and you should be home as soon as possible,” the governor said. “This social isolation strategy will only work if we all undertake it to the greatest extent we can. That boils down to one thing: Stay home.” The amended public health emergency order is attached to this news release.
The amended public health emergency order can be found HERE.
Businesses deemed essential that may remain open are:
The order is in effect until April 10.
ON ENFORCEMENT: The state has ramped up surveillance of businesses to ensure compliance. Violators of the public health order could lose their licenses to operate and face civil or criminal penalties. New Mexicans wishing to report a violation will soon be able to call the non-emergency COVID-19 state hotline, 1-833-551-0518.
ON HOARDING: In a previously issued public health order, the state, in an effort to limit hoarding, directed grocery stores and other retailers to limit the sale of over-the-counter medications, durable medical equipment, baby formula, diapers, sanitary care products and hygiene products to three packaged items per individual. Individual New Mexicans are further urged to limit hoarding in order to ensure community members have the supplies they need.
ON ILLNESSES AND TESTING: New Mexicans who develop symptoms of COVID-19 infection – fever, cough or shortness of breath – should call their health care provider or the NMDOH COVID-19 hotline immediately (1-855-600-3453).
Testing is presently prioritized for those with symptoms. New Mexicans are asked to widely distribute this information about testing and travel guidelines.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: New Mexicans who have non-health-related questions or concerns can also call 833-551-0518 or visit newmexico.gov, which is being updated as a one-stop source for information.