November 2, 2020 by Carol Britton Meyer
In response to the surge in the number of new COVID-19 cases in Massachusetts, Gov. Charlie Baker announced several executive orders today during a press conference, effective 12:01 a.m. Friday.
In addition, according to published reports, the state plans to send high-coronavirus-risk emergency text alerts to 20 communities tonight -- including Hingham, Hanover, Abington, Hanson, Marshfield, Rockland, Weymouth, and Pembroke. Due to cell tower locations, residents of nearby communities or those who are just passing through may also receive alerts.
The messages will tell those who receive them to wash their hands, social distance, wear face masks, get a free COVID-19 test, stop gathering with family and friends, and other directives. For more information, visit: https://www.mass.gov/you-have-the-power-to-save-a-life
The new orders include:
* a requirement that masks must be worn in any indoor or outdoor public space, even when social distancing can be maintained.
* an overnight stay-at-home advisory from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. other than commuting to or from work, taking a walk, or doing essential errands such as grocery shopping and addressing health needs.
* Gatherings at private residences are now limited to 10 people, and outdoor events at private residences to 25.
The amount of people allowed to gather at public spaces and event venues remains unchanged, but all gatherings in private and public spaces are required to end at 9:30 p.m. with the exception of political or religious events.
* In-person restaurant dining must end by 9:30 p.m., not including takeout and deliveries.
* Places selling liquor must stop doing so by 9:30 p.m.
*Other establishments required to wrap up operations by 9:30 p.m. include indoor and outdoor events; golf facilities; casinos; personal services involving close contact such as hair and nail salons; recreational boating and boating businesses; museums; gyms, fitness centers, and health clubs; indoor and outdoor swimming pools; arcades; drive-in movies, theaters, and performance venues, whether indoor or outdoor; and youth and amateur adult sports activities.
The goal, Baker said is to keep schools open, the healthcare system fully functioning, and the economy operating.