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Brookhaven mayor: Governor’s order is right course

Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves announced Wednesday that he is ordering people statewide to stay at home to slow the spread of the new coronavirus, COVID-19.

The order will take effect at 5 p.m. Friday and last until 8 a.m. April 20.

Brookhaven Mayor Joe Cox said this order will not be easy for residents and businesses in the city and Lincoln County, but agrees with Gov. Reeves that it is the right course of action.

“Because testing remains limited as this outbreak grows, many people moving around their communities may not know they’ve contracted the virus until well after they’ve infected others,” he said. “Most infected people experience mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks, but a fraction of people suffering more severe illnesses can require respirators to survive, and as the caseload rapidly grows, hospital space and supplies to treat these patients will become difficult to find.”

A complete list of essential businesses is available by searching “MEMA essential business” in your web browser.

“I thank those citizens who have taken proper precaution, who have taken this circumstance seriously,” Mayor Cox said. “Please continue to avoid social and non-essential gatherings in groups of more than 10 people or gatherings in a single space where individuals are closer than 6-feet apart.

“Unfortunately, for the safety of others and to slow the spread of this virus, that means funerals, weddings, church services and parties are not allowed to be attended in person at this time by the Governor’s order,” he said. “We also encourage individuals to avoid gatherings that are not necessary. Do not bring unnecessary family members to outings such as grocery stores, post office or banks. Do what needs to be done and get home to avoid unnecessary exposure.”

Mayor Cox urged individuals to continue following guidelines from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the Mississippi State Department of Health such as hand washing for 20 seconds.

City offices remain open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., but individuals are urged to call 601-833-2362 or visit www.brookhaven-ms.gov for assistance while the stay-at-home order is in effect.