EXPLAINED: Here’s what the stay-home-work-safe order issued for Harris County and Houston means for you

Coronavirus. (CDC via AP, File)

HOUSTON – Officials issued a stay-home-work-safe order Tuesday for Harris County and Houston as leaders work to slow the spread of coronavirus through the Houston area, where more than 190 cases of the virus have been reported.

The order goes into effect at 11:59 p.m. Tuesday and will remain in effect through the month of April.

Here’s a closer look at what the order means for you:

  • Everyone must remain at home unless they are conducting essential business such as grocery shopping, picking up food or going to work at businesses that are deemed essential.
  • Public and private gatherings outside of a household or single living unit are prohibited.
  • Parks will remain open, but the use of benches, playgrounds and workout equipment is prohibited.
  • Everyone must maintain social distancing of at least six feet.
  • Grocery stores and gas stations remain open.
  • Restaurants can operate, but only as a take-out option.
  • Violators could face a fine and up to 180 days in jail, but officials said they will use common sense and courtesy when deciding whether someone will be charged with a crime.


Officials talk about issuing a stay-home-work-safe order for Harris County and Houston.

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