MONTGOMERY (AP) — Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey is not ready to issue a shelter-in-place order as other governors have, a spokeswoman said Wednesday, arguing the state has already taken aggressive action to curb the spread of coronavirus.
Republican governors in Florida, Mississippi and Georgia on Wednesday reversed course and issued stay-home directives after previously resisting such a statewide order.
But Ivey’s office said Wednesday that the governor is not ready to follow suit.
A spokeswoman for Ivey said the governor has not ruled anything out, but hopes the state will not have to issue a statewide shelter-in-place order.
“The governor’s priority is protecting the health, safety and well-being of all Alabamians, and their well-being also relies on being able to have a job and provide for themselves and their families,” spokeswoman Gina Maiola said. “Many factors surround a statewide shelter-in-place, and Alabama is not at a place where we are ready to make this call.”
Alabama last week announced the closure of non-essential businesses, such as salons, gyms and many retail stores and a prohibition of gatherings of 10 people or more that are not work-related where people can’t stay at least 6 feet (2 meters) apart. The previous limit had been 25.
The state had earlier announced the closure of public and private beaches, on-site restaurant dining and that students would finish the school year by doing distance learning at home.
Alabama’s “safer at home” policy urges people to stay home but does not order them to do so.