An order to shelter in place in west suburban Oak Park took effect Friday as the village's mayor and health officials try to stop the spread of the deadly coronavirus amid a global outbreak.
Mayor Anan Abu-Taleb declared a local state of emergency under the Illinois Municipal Code Wednesday and Public Health Director Mike Charley issued a public order directing residents to shelter in place from 12:01 a.m. March 20 through 11:59 p.m. on April 3.
"All individuals currently living within the Village of Oak Park are ordered to shelter at their place of residence," the order reads. "To the extent individuals are using shared or outdoor spaces, they must at all times as reasonably possible maintain social distancing of at least six (6) feet from any other person when they are outside their residence."
But there are exceptions. Here's a breakdown of when you are allowed to leave your house:
- to engage in activities or perform tasks essential to your health and safety or the health and safety of your family and members of your household, including pets. This includes getting medical supplies or medication, visiting a health care professional or getting supplies to work from home.
- to obtain necessary services or supplies like food, pet supplies, household products for themselves or to deliver them to others.
- to engage in outdoor activities like walking, hiking, or running
- to care for a family member or pet in another household
- to work at or obtain services at any healthcare operation including but not limited to hospitals, clinics, dentists, pharmacies, pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, other healthcare facilities or suppliers, home healthcare providers, mental health providers, medical cannabis dispensaries and more. This also includes veterinary care and all healthcare services provided to animals but does not include fitness and exercise gyms or similar facilities.
- to work at "Essential Businesses," which include but are not limited to:
- healthcare operations and essential infrastructure
- grocery stores, supermarkets, food banks, convenience stores and other establishments engaged in the retail sale of canned food, dry goods, fresh fruits and vegetables, pet supply, fresh meats, fish, poultry and any other household consumer products (such as cleaning and personal care products)
- food cultivation including farming, livestock and fishing
- businesses that provide food, shelter, and social services and other necessities for economically disadvantaged or otherwise needy individuals
- newspapers, television, radio and other media services
- gas stations and auto-supply, auto-repair and related facilities
- banks and related financial institutions
- hardware stores
- plumbers, electricians, exterminators and others who provide services necessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation and essential operation of residences, essential activities, and essential businesses
- businesses providing mailing and shipping services, including post office boxes
- educational institutions—including public and private k-12 schools, colleges and universities—for purposes of facilitating distance learning or performing essential functions
- laundromats, dry cleaners, and laundry service providers
- restaurants and other facilities that prepare and serve food, but only for delivery or carry out. Schools and other entities that typically provide free food services to students or members of the public may continue to do so on the condition that the food is provided to students or members of the public on a pick-up and takeaway basis only. Schools and other entities that provide food services under this exemption shall not permit the food to be eaten at the site where it is provided, or at any other gathering site.
- businesses that supply products needed for people to work from home
- businesses that supply other essential businesses with the support or supplies necessary to operate
- businesses that ship or deliver groceries, food, goods or services directly to residences
- airlines, taxis and other private transportation providers providing transportation services necessary for essential activities and other authorized purposes
- home-based care for seniors, adults or children;
- residential facilities and shelters for seniors, adults and children
- professional services, such as legal or accounting services, when necessary to assist in compliance with legally mandated activities
- childcare facilities providing services that enable employees exempted in this order to work as permitted. To the extent possible, childcare facilities must have groups of the same 12 or fewer children ever day, without changing from one group to another. Multiple groups of children at the same facility must be in separate rooms and cannot mix. Childcare providers have to stay with their same, single group.
- to provide any services or perform any work necessary to the operations and maintenance of “Essential Infrastructure,” including but not limited to public works construction, construction of housing (in particular affordable housing or housing for individuals experiencing homelessness), airport operations, water, sewer, gas, electrical, oil refining, roads and highways, public transportation, solid waste collection and removal, internet and telecommunications systems. Some private construction activity may be authorized as well.
- to work in your role as sworn police department and fire department personnel (first responders), emergency management personnel, emergency dispatchers, court personnel, and law enforcement personnel, and others working for or to support "Essential Businesses"
- to perform or access any "Essential Governmental Functions," meaning all services needed to ensure the continuing operation of the government agencies and provide for the health, safety and welfare of the public and all agencies that provide for the health, safety and welfare of the public
All travel, whether it's on foot, bicycle, scooter, motorcycle, car or public transit is prohibited except for "Essential Travel," which is defined as:
- any travel related to the provision of or access to essential activities, essential governmental functions, essential businesses or minimum basic operations
- travel to care for elderly, minors, dependents, persons with disabilities or other vulnerable persons
- travel to or from educational institutions for purposes of receiving materials for distance learning, for receiving meals and any other related services
- travel to return to a place of residence from outside the jurisdiction
- travel required by law enforcement or court order
- travel required for non-residents to return to their place of residence outside the village
Full details on the order can be found on the village’s coronavirus response website here.