With Coronavirus sweeping the globe, it’s definitely a scary time for all of us. Families are preparing for the worst, everyone seems to be analyzing everyone else’s coughs and sneezes, and schools and events are shutting down across the country in an effort to control the spread of the virus. President Trump has already announced that America is under a national state of emergency until the virus has been controlled and possibly eradicated. At least 4,118 people in 49 states, plus Washington, D.C., and three U.S. territories, have tested positive for the coronavirus and at least 73 patients with the virus have died. The top 3 states with the most reported cases are New York, Washington, and California. Stores across the country are limiting the purchases of paper products, such as paper towels and toilet paper, as well as cases of water so that more customers will have the opportunity to stock up. The Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, recently released a list of approved coronavirus disinfectants that will help citizens remain as healthy as possible. The list includes Clorox Multi Surface Cleaner + Bleach, Clorox Disinfection Bathroom Cleaner, Clorox Disinfecting Wipes, Lysol Clean & Fresh Multi-Surface Cleaner, Lysol Disinfectant Max Cover Mist, and Purell Professional Surface Disinfectant Wipes. Some tips for staying healthy during this time are washing your hands regularly with soap and warm water, staying away from others that are sick, coughing/sneezing into your arm or elbow, and keeping your hands/fingers out of your mouth, face, nose, and eyes.
As for our home state of Louisiana, there have been 114 reported cases and 2 deaths with the majority of these cases coming from South Louisiana. Gov. John Bel Edwards has declared that all public schools K-12 and daycares are to be closed until April 13th and public gatherings of 50 people or more will also be postponed until April 13th. He’s ordered bars and movie theaters to close and requests that restaurants switch to delivery and takeout only in hopes of slowing the spread of the virus. Also, all Louisiana casinos are ordered to close at midnight each night and no one will be allowed to eat onsite at a restaurant for the next 14 days. Gov. Edwards said the situation will be reevaulated a week before business operations are to resume to determine if the restrictions should be continued. As far as the court systems, judicial orders were issued for all Caddo, Bossier, and Webster courts to be closed to the public until April 10th. Caddo’s orders have already gone into effect while Bossier and Webster will close beginning at 8am on March 19th. In both orders, all jury trials (civil and criminal), grand jury proceedings, hearings, and court appearances will be rescheduled. However, initial criminal appearances, inmate arraignments, and bond hearings will still be held. Judges will also hold hearings for protective orders and emergency custody proceedings.