Gov. Edwards Eases Some COVID-19 Restrictions, Keeps Statewide Mask Mandate

Some restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of COVID-19 in Louisiana, including strict occupancy restrictions for bars and restaurants, will be eased this week following sustained improvements in COVID-19 hospitalizations and vaccinations, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced on March 30. Social distancing of six feet will still be required in businesses and Louisiana’s statewide mask mandate remains in place.

“At this point in the pandemic, our three best tools for slowing the spread of COVID-19 and keeping our hospitals operational are vaccinations, masks and distance,” Gov. Edwards said. “Right now, we have fewer people hospitalized with COVID-19 than we did this time last year, and we have a greatly improved supply of three highly effective and safe COVID-19 vaccines, which are available to everyone 16 and older in Louisiana. While COVID-19 and its variants remain a major public health risk, using the tools of vaccination, masking and distancing, we can keep ourselves and our loved ones safe. At least 20 states and one region of Louisiana are experiencing an increase in cases and hospitalizations, likely because of the U.K. variant. We aren’t yet out of the woods.

“Vaccination is the best way we have to put this pandemic in our rearview mirror. While we work to vaccinate even more of our neighbors, now more than ever it is critical that people wear facemasks when they are in public and keep six feet of social distance between them and anyone who isn’t in their immediate household,” Gov. Edwards said. “Today we are taking an important step forward, but all of us play a role in making sure our cases don’t spike again. Get your vaccine now that it’s your turn and help your friends and family members get their shots as well. Working together, we can bring back Louisiana.”

The Governor’s updated public health emergency order keeps requirements for six feet of social distancing in all businesses, as well as other mitigation measures deemed necessary by the Louisiana Department of Health and the State Fire Marshal.  The order runs for 28 days and expires on April 28, 2021.

The Governor’s updated order removes the limitations on when bars and restaurants may serve alcohol, defaulting to local ordinances. People younger than 21 are still not allowed inside bars and bars are only allowed to provide patrons with socially distanced seated service, under the new order.

Salons and beauty shops, gyms and fitness centers, malls and casinos also will not have capacity limits, though social distancing and the mask mandate remain in place along with any other additional measures that may be required by the State Fire Marshal.

Businesses and venues that host larger gatherings, like reception halls, will remain capped at 50 percent of their capacity, with a maximum gathering size of not more than 500 people indoors and strict social distancing. Outdoor events will be capped at 50 percent capacity and social distancing is also required. Some events may require prior approval by the State Fire Marshal. 

Indoor and outdoor sporting events will be limited to 50 percent of their capacity, with social distancing. Masks are required under all circumstances.

7 thoughts on “Gov. Edwards Eases Some COVID-19 Restrictions, Keeps Statewide Mask Mandate

  1. These strict guidelines for COVID are getting old and we are all so very tired of them. I have had my shots, so am I protected or not? If I’m protected, why must I wear a mask and continue to stay in? Our lives have changed so much that we are different people. A lot of older people are so lonely they begin to wonder why they are still here, life is no longer worth living for them. Government policies are so confusing and most of us are getting angry at them, because we don’t know who is lying to us. One group says wear the mask or even a double mask so you don’t get COVID or you don’t give anyone else COVID. Another group says, if you have had the shots, it’s safe for you to go out in public without a mask, you are protected about 2 months after the second shot.

    What do we do? Who do we believe? I do know one thing, I know that I don’t do what Biden says and I know I don’t believe what he says. This nation is in a mess. The longer Biden is in office, the more former President Trump looks like one of the best Presidents to ever serve in the White House.

    I believe what I have believed since the elections, and Joe proves me right every day in office. One more thing, he wants the highest tax hike IN HISTORY in place to cover his billions going to foreign country, to pay for illegals coming into the country, and they are coming in with COVID and other diseases. So COVID is not the only problem facing our country, and we have almost four more years of this mess if he can keep it together for that long. But we will still have Harris, and it will still be a mess.

    That is my take on things. If your take is different, you are entitled to have a different opinion. This is still the United States of America. Have a great day.

    • MEWHP: from what we were told before the vaccine was released, was that the data showed the vaccines (Moderna and Pfizer) were very effective. It was touted as an end to the covid crisis.

      Then after the release, we were told no, you may still be contagious for 2 months after, and then if you are fully vaccinated you may get a milder case. Confusion. So, when people do not trust because of contradictions, then they are more likely not to receive these shots.

      I have watched Rand Paul asking Fauci why the mask, and social distancing after being immunized. Paul said he saw the results of the post trail studies and the data shows the vaccine was shown to be very effective.

      Now a vaccinated Fauci on video puts forth the ridiculous image, sitting in a closed room, all alone wearing 2 masks. A very entertaining political cartoon.

      It is time to forget what Fauci says. He is not reliable. I think maybe if he can keep the fear of the pandemic alive and well, then his political career will be alive and well. Suck up to Trump when he is president, then suck up to Biden who is also vaccinated and walking around looking just as ridiculous with his mask on even when outside. It is all political posturing so Biden can show everyone he is better than Trump even at the cost of our loved ones in nursing homes. And continued restrictions to small businesses who are hurting and the economy which is still hurting.

      Let it go Biden!!

      So pitiful.

  2. What about nursing homes opening back up so we can see our loved ones? It has been over a year since we have been allowed inside the facility. We have done as the state has requested and gotten vaccinated as well as our loved ones being vaccinated. We would still wear our mask while visiting with them. If bars and casinos can open back up, I think nursing home facilities should be allowed to open back up!

        • Yes, they are. My daddy passed away on December 20, 2020 alone with only my momma in the room with him. Because of all the restrictions placed on us, as citizens, and nursing homes, I missed my daddy’s last Easter, Father’s Day, his 92nd birthday, and Thanksgiving. We were able to get my momma out of the nursing home long enough to take her to my daddy’s graveside service but could not let anyone hug her or get close to her but me and my siblings. We had to take her and drop her off back at the nursing home as soon as it was over. We didn’t get to go in and spend any time with her to make sure she was okay. The next morning she was moved out of the room she had been sharing with my daddy into a private room. We were not allowed to go in and help her pack up any of her things or my daddy’s things thanks to all of the restrictions placed on the nursing homes per our governor.

          I was on the fence about getting vaccinated, but decided to go ahead and do it in hopes that it would allow me to get in to see my mom faster, but once again thanks to our governor the nursing homes are still restricted on allowing visitation in the rooms with our loved ones. I wonder if his decision regarding this would be different if his parents were in a nursing home and someone with authority was telling him he wasn’t allowed to see them for over a year now and had to live with the knowledge that one of his parents died alone in their room with just their spouse with them.

          • Joy, so sorry for you and your family.
            I am glad you got the vaccination, because it does work according to everyone except Dr. Fauci and the governor.
            I have 2 very good friends in a nursing home and I have not been able to visit. They both have been sick and the weather has made it almost impossible to visit outside. Maybe one day, this will be over.

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