‘Hunker down, stay at home’
“Hunker down. Stay at home” is a direct quote and command from Governor Eric Holcomb, as he doubles down on the spread of COVID-19.
That mandate was put into place Tuesday, March 24 at midnight and still remains in full force until midnight on April 6, unless he gets information to do differently. The Coronavirus is an ever-changing situation that surrounds the globe. Countries and now North America join the notice that people are contracting the disease at an alarming rate, and for some, the virus is fatal.
The Governor is trying to mitigate the situation as much as possible as he works closely with the Indiana State Health Department and local health departments as well. Mandating people to stay home was done with the intent to get the most people to self-isolate while enabling essential services to continue, in order to slow the spread of COVID-19.
All individuals living in the State of Indiana are ordered to stay home or their place of residency until the order is lifted. If you are sharing outdoor spaces, such as taking a walk, etc., maintain social distancing of at least six feet from any other person.
The Governor ordered all non-essential business and operations to cease. An excerpt from his decree reads, “All places of amusement, whether indoors or outdoors, including, but not limited to, locations with amusement rides, carnivals, amusement parks, water parks, aquariums, zoos, bowling alleys, movie and other theaters, concert and music halls, and country clubs or social clubs, shall be closed.”
Hoosiers can still obtain necessary services or supplies for themselves and their family or household members, or someone who can’t get out that they are delivering essential items to. Food stores will remain open and many restaurants now have carry out, but no dining is allowed inside.
Bureau of Motor Vehicles
Per the Governor’s order, all BMV branches will be closed during this period of time. An executive order signed by Governor Holcomb fully orders an automatic extension of all state-issued licenses and says he will advise law enforcement to refrain from issuing citations for a driver’s license or registration that expires during this emergency.
You can still access options by going online transactions through IN.gov/BMV.
Food pantries asked to stay open
The Indiana Family and Social Services Administration has asked that the state’s network of food pantries remain open. “ Now is the time for us as Hoosiers to double down on our best quality – serving each other,” said Jennifer Sullivan, M.D., M.P.H., FSSA Secretary. “Food pantries are critical harbors of hope in many local communities, and with them facing difficulties operating and possibly reducing the food suppy to our neighbors in need, it’s time to sound a loud call for help across the state.”
Sullivan urged anyone who is not in a vulnerable population or demographic to answer the call to help at a local food pantry. Hoosiers can call 2-1-1 and ask for a list of nearby food pantries.
The Ripley County Food Pantry, located at the Fairground Park in Osgood, will be getting a shipment of groceries on April 7 from 4-6 p.m. This will be a drive-thru with everyone staying in their vehicles. They are bringing enough food for over 600 families, according to Bill Warren, who has worked with the food pantry for a number of years.
Indiana 211 is a free service that connects Hoosiers with help and answer from thousands of health and human services agencies in their local communities – quickly, easily and confidentially. This includes needs such as food, utility, health care, childcare assistance, etc.
A new website for COVID-19 related information is: in211.communityos.org/COVID-19. You can dial 2-1-1 or 1-866-211-9966.