Coronavirus, News

Governor McMaster issues mandatory “home or work” order for South Carolina

South Carolina State House
The South Carolina State House. Photo credit: Wikiemedia Commons

Yesterday afternoon, Governor Henry McMaster issued a mandatory “home or work” order to take effect across the state of South Carolina tomorrow at 5:00 p.m. You can view the full executive order from the governor’s office here. “Call it what you want,” Governor McMaster said, “but this is a stay-at-home order . . . work and home; home and work.” The governor also said more serious actions and penalties could be implemented if the public does not adhere to the state’s new “home or work” order.

Tweet from the Twitter account of S.C. Governor Henry McMaster explaining new "Home or Work" Order
Photo from @henrymcmaster

South Carolinians must stay at home unless they are:

  • Going to work, for employers operating within the limits of the order.
  • Caring for or visiting a family member at their home, with adherence to ‘social distancing’ guidelines.
  • Visiting a business that is considered essential. You can obtain supplies and services that are necessary for your household.
  • Seeking medical, behavioral health, or emergency care for yourself or someone in your immediate family or household.
  • Going outside, as long as the only people you’re with live in your household and you are keeping at least six feet of distance from those around you who are not in your household.
  • Attending religious services, though Gov. McMaster encourages everyone to attend services – including Easter services – online.
  • Traveling to court proceedings, or transporting children as required by court order or custody agreement.
  • Caring for pets, as long as you are abiding by social distancing guidelines.

Any violations of this order will be considered a misdemeanor + can be enforced by any law enforcement officer of the state. Individuals can face 30 days in jail or be fined $100 if they are found to be in violation of Governor McMaster’s order. This order and the penalties outlined by state officials are also applicable to South Carolina’s waterways.

The governor also placed limitations on the total number of customers allowed in businesses. Businesses can have no more than five people per 1,000 square feet or 20 percent of capacity according to the fire code, whichever is lower. However, he did not make changes to the list of non-essential businesses.

In addition, SCDHEC reported during the press conference that we are currently at 51.1% capacity in hospitals around the state. As of yesterday at 4:45 p.m, 48 individuals have died of COVID-19 in South Carolina and over 2,200 have tested positive for the virus. In Greenville County, 204 people have tested positive for the virus. Click here to view an interactive map of COVID-19 cases in South Carolina updated daily by SCDHEC.

During the press conference, McMaster said: “It is now time to make these recommended actions required . . . Too many people are not complying with our requests for social distancing.”