Today, April 07, 2020, more than a month after Florida reported that 2 Floridians had tested positive for Covid-19, said number has already risen to 14,504. Moreover, the increased number, which is still on the rise, now includes a count of 283 fatalities.
Timeline of Gov. DeSantis’ Actions Over Florida’s Covid-19 Cases
Actually,Florida was one of the first of the U.S. states to have reported a person-to-person case of Covid-19 transmission.The report came soon after the CDC gave warning that occurrences of community transmission strongly indicate the imminent spread of the disease throughout the country.
Also on March 01, Gov. Ron DeSantis immediately declared Florida to be under a state public health emergency. He also announced he remains confident that the county medical professionals and health system are well-equipped to handle the first two (2) Covid-19 cases and those of future cases as well.
At that time, the state’s Surgeon General Dr. Scott Rivkees had assured the Florida governor that
”We have been taking decisive and appropriate actions to help achieve the best possible medical outcomes.”
Governor DeSantis even declared in March 04 that the risk of contracting the infectious disease was low for Floridians.
On March 18, notwithstanding that many Floridians were already voicing concerns over the rapidly rising number of Covid-19 infections, Governor Desantis still refused to order the closure of Florida’s beaches.
He said that after speaking to the mayors, he said mayors are under advice to have the freedom to allow the beach to remain open, or to do otherwise if they deemed it necessary. That is because many had argued that the size of the crowds that gathered in Florida’s beaches was not uniform. Still, Gov. DeSantis gave instructions to apply the CDC’s guideline of not having a group of 10 or more gather together on beaches, whilst observing social distancing.
A day before though (March 17), Gov. Desantis ordered the statewide closure of all bars and nightclubs, after learning that many university students out on a spring break, are vacationing in the region. That also explains why about more than a thousand of Florida’s reported cases of Covid-19 infections include non-Florida residents.
Gov. DeSantis Finally Makes Staying at Home Mandatory
Finally, on April 03, 2020, Florida’s Governor gave the order for people across Florida to stay at home, and that they can leave the house only for essential purposes. The mandate takes effect up to April 30, 2020, including the temporary closure of non-essential businesses like arcades, bowling alleys, concert venues, gyms, malls, movie theaters, museums, playgrounds and parks, including theme parks.
Still, unlike in other U.S. states where stay-at-home and business closure orders are strict, Governor Ron DeSantis said participating in some recreational activities like exercising, biking, playing golf, fishing or hunting, are allowed; but subject to conditions described under the CDC’s social distancing guidelines.
Businesses other than those mentioned above as non-essential, can still operate and give employees the option to report for work. That is in case some employees do not have the ability or capability to perform work at home. Those reporting for work are also allowed to use their vehicle as means of transportation, if they so choose.
Nonetheless, based on the extensive list of essential businesses allowed to operate during Florida’s statewide stay-at-home order, public transport and related businesses providing support to the transport industry will continue. This denotes that in cases where vehicle drivers get into situations that require roadside assistance, they can still summon any of the closest towing service providers operating in the region.