Alabama hasn’t yet been overwhelmed by the novel coronavirus in terms of hospitalizations, but things are far from back to normal, Gov. Kay Ivey said.
On Tuesday, June 30, Ivey announced she would be extending the current safer-at-home order through July 31 at 5 p.m. The current order was set to expire Friday.
“Folks, in a couple of weeks, it'll mark four months that our state has responded to COVID-19,” she stated. “I’m fully aware of the physical, mental and emotional toll this has taken on Alabama. This is indeed an unprecedented year for not only our state, but the entire country and world.
“In the last few weeks, the COVID-19 cases have continued to rise, and currently there are over 33,000 Alabamians who’ve contracted this disease today,” Ivey continued. “Over 800 have died. The fact is, folks, we are still in the thick of it...
“I urge you, in the strongest way I know how, to incorporate COVID-19 precautions into your daily routine. You are strongly encouraged to maintain a 6-foot distance & to wear a mask when out in public.
“Personal responsibility means it is everyone’s responsibility. If we continue going in the wrong direction, and our hospitals are not able to handle the capacity of patients, then we’re going to reserve the right to come back in & reverse course.”
Ivey and State Health Officer Scott Harris encouraged everyone to take the virus seriously and to not let their guards down. While they could make wearing a mask in public mandatory, they said it would be nearly impossible to enforce.
“For goodness sake, wear a mask,” Ivey said.
Harris echoed her sentiments saying to wear a mask to protect others. He also said the Alabama Department of Health will be rolling-out a program to better display and clarify COVID-19 case data to include a color-coded map showing each county's infection levels.