After weeks of resistance, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) changed course on Wednesday and announced a stay-at-home order for Floridians.
DeSantis, who came under fire for not shutting down Florida beaches or public spaces during spring break, had previously indicated he’d be more likely to issue the order if the White House recommended it.
The order goes into effect on Thursday at midnight and will last for at least 30 days, DeSantis said.
Gov. DeSantis said “it makes sense to do this now” after the president extended social distancing guidelines nationally for another 30 days.
Better late than never? Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced a 30-day stay-at-home order. Tells nearly 21 million residents to stay indoors unless they are pursuing “essential services or activities.” https://t.co/J5DRk1F4ox— Tim O'Brien (@TimOBrien) April 1, 2020
Coronavirus cases in Florida have already surged to nearly 7,000 as of Wednesday morning. Some are questioning why the governor’s decision took so long despite the data.
This was inevitable. There’s a whole batch of unanswered questions now about why it took so long. https://t.co/iAyHaTk4Oa— andrew kaczynski🤔 (@KFILE) April 1, 2020
“There are some businesses that are non-essential, which won’t be able to have people congregate inside,” DeSantis said. “But they will be able to deliver.”
DeSantis didn’t say whether there will be penalties or not for people who don’t obey the stay-at-home guidelines.
“We don’t know how all these measures are going to work,” DeSantis said. “But we’ll figure out on the back end how this will work out.”