Metro leaders stress social distancing when going out for essential business during stay-at-home order

Johnson County Chair Ed Eilert was among the metro leaders to answer questions about the stay-at-home order during a press conference at Union Station Sunday where reporters and speakers maintained a six foot separation. Photo credit Johnson County Government.

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Appearing with other metro area government leaders in a joint press conference Sunday, Johnson County Chair Ed Eilert explained the thinking behind the CORE 4 partners’ decision to issue a 30-day stay-at-home order that goes into effect Tuesday.

Eilert noted that with so much movement and commerce across county lines each day, the governments of Johnson County, Wyandotte County, Kansas City, Mo., and Jackson County determined that collective action was needed to address the spread of the coronavirus. He encouraged Johnson County residents to stay-at-home whenever possible, and to take social distancing guidelines — maintaining six feet of space between individuals — seriously when leaving the house is necessary for essential business.

“These kind of decisions are never easy and are very difficult,” Eilert said. “But the objective of these decisions is to protect the health of our total community.”

Eilert said the decision to implement the order had been made after consultation with the CEOs of metro hospitals, who are trying to ensure they maintain the capacity to deliver life-saving care to people suffering from lung failure as a result of the infection.

“This is not a minor issue,” Eilert said. “I think we’ve all seen what has happened across this country and across this globe. This is serious, and it’s only with the total cooperation of our community taking appropriate actions that have been identified by the CDC and our local health officials that we can be successful in mitigating the spread.”

You can find details about the stay-at-home order that begins March 24 and lasts through at least April 23 here.

On Sunday, Douglas County, Kan., joined the metro-area governments in putting a similar order in place.