At a 2 p.m. news conference today, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam updated statewide executive actions related to reducing the spread of COVID-19 by limiting interactions at some nonessential businesses.
It does not appear that legal offices or law firms will be affected by Executive Order 53. However, professional businesses that are nonessential must use telework as much as possible.
"Where telework is not feasible, such businesses must adhere to social distancing recommendations, enhanced sanitizing procedures, and apply relevant workplace guidance from state and federal authorities, including CDC, OSHA, and the Virginia Department of Labor and Industry,"according to a news release from the governor's office.
The order shuts down recreation, entertainment and sports venues, and limits restaurants to carry-out, curbside pick-up or delivery service only. No eat-in dining will be permitted.
Nonessential bricks and mortar retail businesses can remain open, but must limit patrons to 10 or less and step up sanitizing procedures. Social distancing must be maintained.
The order takes effect at 11:50 p.m. Tuesday and will remain in effect for at least 30 days, April 23.
Essential businesses, such as hospitals, grocery stores, banks and businesses required in the supply chain, will continue operating and must maintain social distancing and increase sanitizing procedures.
"Social distancing is the only path forward," Northam said. "Our priority is to save lives."
Schools will be closed through the remainder of this academic year. Northam called on volunteers to help provide day care for approximately 80,000 children of essential workers in Virginia.
This week the VBA invites you to attend one or both free webinars to help you work safely from home. Sample a free ethics MCLE recording on VBA Online CLE. Join Friday's discussion with your colleagues on how Virginia lawyers move forward in this environment. It's all part of how the VBA can safely serve you in the current environment. See vba.org/events.