The Stay-At-Home Order is being extended until May 15.

That was the announcement made today by Governor John Bel Edwards, whose Stay-At-Home Order took effect on Monday, March 23. The order was set to expire on April 30. The extended order will be issued on May 1.

“Thanks to the commitment of the people of Louisiana, our state has made progress in flattening the curve and reducing the spread of the novel coronavirus," says Governor Edwards in a press release. "Unfortunately, we still have a little work to do before we meet the criteria to safely move to the next phase of reopening, so I will extend the state’s Stay at Home order until May 15, with a few minor changes. While this is not the announcement I want to make, I am hopeful, and all of Louisiana should be hopeful, that we will enter into the next phase of reopening soon, in mid-May. I am anxious to get all areas of our economy reopened, but if we accelerate too quickly, we may have to slam on the brakes. That will be bad for public health and for businesses, bad for our people and bad for our state.”

Three major changes outlined by the Governor in the new Stay at Home order include:

  • Malls will remain closed to the public, but stores may open for curbside delivery.
  • Restaurants will be allowed to open their outside areas for patrons to eat meals only, without tableside service.
  • All employees of a business who have contact with the public must wear a mask.

Salons, barber shops, bars and casinos, among other businesses, will remain closed under the extended order. But, "essential" businesses according to the third phase of federal CISA guidance are allowed to stay open. And retail businesses that are considered non-essential must have fewer than 10 people inside if they are too stay open.

“Wearing cloth masks or protective face coverings is part of the new normal,” says Gov. Edwards, who joins in a strong urging by the CDC and the Louisiana Department of Health. “Wearing a mask is being a good neighbor and in Louisiana, we pride ourselves on being good neighbors. Your mask protects me and other people and my mask protects you.”

Currently, he's given the approval for dental procedures to begin today, as well as other elective medical procedures and surgeries.

WATCH his press conference by CLICKING BELOW: