Alexander County Health Department received notification of two new confirmed cases of COVID-19, bringing Alexander County’s cumulative total number of confirmed cases to six, said County Public Information Officer Gary Herman during a Code Red phone tree call on May 5th.
The new confirmed cases work at Tyson Foods in Wilkes County where numerous employees have contracted the virus. The individuals are doing well, but remain in quarantine. The other four confirmed cases have fully recovered. At their May 4th meeting, the Alexander County Board of Commissioners approved a proclamation requesting Governor Cooper to allow Alexander County and other rural counties to reopen businesses in a safe and responsible manner. The proclamation states that Alexander County has a low number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 and has not experienced the same effect from the pandemic as the state’s urban counties. The proclamation will be sent to the Governor’s office.
At a news conference Tuesday at 5:00 p.m., Governor Cooper announced that he will sign an Executive Order to enter Phase 1 of the state’s easing of restrictions on travel, business operations, and mass gatherings. Phase 1 begins Friday, May 8th at 5:00 p.m. and could end on May 22nd.
Phase 1 modifies the “Stay at Home” order to allow people to leave home for commercial activity at more retailers. Those stores can open with 50 percent capacity with frequent cleaning and social distancing. Gatherings will still be limited to no more than 10 people, but gathering outside with friends is allowed with social distancing. Worship services can now have more than 10 people if held outdoors while maintaining social distance. Parks can be reopened. Teleworking is encouraged when possible. Face coverings are recommended in public to protect others. Personal care businesses, entertainment venues, gyms, and other businesses will remain closed.
Phase 2 could start on May 22nd if trends continue to improve, and Phase 3 could start 4-6 weeks after Phase 2 began. Learn more about the phases at www.nc.gov/covid19.
The state encourages the public to please practice the three W’s: wear a face covering, wait six (6) feet apart, and wash your hands.
For local updates, visit the county’s website at alexandercountync.gov/news. The Alexander County Coronavirus Hotline is available at (828) 352-7804.
For information about small business assistance, unemployment insurance, and more, visit online at alexanderedc.org/news.