As Lincoln County and the City of Lincolnton move into Phase 1 Reopening starting May 8, the Lincoln County Health Department, along with the county and the city, wants to remind citizens about steps they can take to protect themselves and their neighbors. The Stay at Home Order remains in place with some modifications. Residents should still continue to stay home when possible, especially anyone who is feeling sick. Additionally, individuals with health conditions that make them more vulnerable to COVID-19 complications should evaluate their risk and act accordingly.
In order to easily remember the best way to practice precautions and reduce risk of exposure, follow the guidance for the “Three W’s.”
- Wear a mask or cloth face covering
- Wait 6 feet apart. Avoid close contact. Maintain social distancing.
- Wash hands often or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol content.
Covering your face is about helping others. By covering your face when you go out, you are being a good neighbor and community member. Wearing a cloth face covering correctly can help prevent the spread of COVID-19 to others.
Staying apart brings us together. Protect your family and neighbors.
What is different about Phase 1? This Phase 1 Executive Order does the following:
- Eliminates the distinction between essential and non-essential businesses;
- Allows most retail businesses (with exceptions) that can comply with specific requirements to open at 50 percent capacity;
- Allows people to leave home for non-essential goods or services;
- Encourages state parks and trails to reopen;
- Specifically allows people to gather outdoors, but keep groups to less than ten people, while following the recommendations to promote social distancing and reduce transmission;
- Opens child care to working families; and
Phase 1 allows more businesses to reopen with some restrictions. Businesses should take precautions to minimize the opportunity for COVID-19 transmission at their facility. For a checklist designed to help retail businesses and agencies reduce the spread of COVID-19 in their communities, visit https://bit.ly/2SKgONU.
What requirements do retail businesses need to follow? All retail businesses open to the public must:
- Encourages North Carolinians to wear cloth face coverings when outside the home in order to protect others.
- Direct customers and staff to stay at least six feet apart except at point of sale if applicable;
- Limit occupancy to not more than 50 percent of stated fire capacity and ensure that social distancing of six feet apart is possible;
- Mark six feet of spacing in lines at point of sale and in other high-traffic customer areas;
- Perform frequent and routine environmental cleaning and disinfection of high touch areas with an EPA-approved disinfectant for COVID-19;
- Provide, whenever available, hand sanitizer stations, and ensure soap and hand drying materials are available at sinks;
- Conduct daily symptom screening of employees before entering the workplace and immediately send symptomatic workers home;
- Have a plan in place to immediately isolate an employee from work if symptoms develop; and;
- Post signage at the main entrances to remind people about Recommendations to Promote Social Distancing and Reduce Transmission, to request people who are, or have recently been, symptomatic not to enter and to notify customers of the reduced store capacity.
During this challenging time, it is important to remember that we are all in this together. Please be respectful of others, take precautions as appropriate for you and your family, and above all, be patient and kind. Public health experts suggest that if restrictions are eased gradually with safety practices still in place, North Carolina can benefit from increased economic activity while still minimizing new cases.
To read FAQ’s regarding Phase 1, visit: https://bit.ly/2Wdd8q4
To read FAQ’s regarding Cloth Face Coverings, visit: https://bit.ly/2WBJREo
For instructions on how to make a Cloth Face Cover, visit: https://bit.ly/2zjTQpJ
For Guidance for Owners, Staff, and Patron of Businesses, visit: https://bit.ly/3baeaHh
PRESS RELEASE ENGLISH
PRESS RELEASE SPANISH