MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - The City of Miami Beach has issued a stay-at-home order amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The order, which went into effect at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, requires all Miami Beach city residents to remain at home.
“Now is the time to send a strong message to our residents. We’ve closed the restaurants. We’ve closed this. You need to now stay home unless you really have to go outside,” Miami Beach City Manager Jimmy Morales said an hour after the order was signed. “Obviously, people have to carry on their critical aspects of their life, getting food, going to work, getting your medical care. Go outside to get some exercise as long as you exercise social distancing.”
According to the order, all public and private gatherings of any number of people occurring outside a residence are prohibited, and all non-essential travel is prohibited.
“It is a little scary,” a passerby said. “It kind of makes it set in how serious it is.”
“I have family members out in Europe, and that’s pretty much what they’re living right now,” a second passerby said. “They’re not really allowed to leave their home unless they have some kind of job or something that really is forcing them to have to leave.”
Ocean Drive residents spoke with 7News about how they feel after being told to stay home.
“Very different, very unique. It’s a little bit sad,” said Catherine Cochaud. “I really appreciate people respecting each other, you know, one another, and really keeping distances.”
Officials said there are exceptions to the order. Residents will still be allowed to go to work, visit essential retail locations — like grocery stores and hardware stores, visit banks, pharmacies, post offices, restaurants (for delivery and take out services only), doctors offices and other locations that remain open.
“You’re ordered to stay in, take care of yourselves, and don’t expose yourself unnecessarily, particularly now, when the curve is going to start spiking,” said Morales. “We have all our professionals across the world telling us: it’s going to get a lot worse before it gets better.”
Although there is no stay-at-home order for Miami-Dade County, Mayor Carlos Gimenez had similar advice for county residents.
“It’s the same message that I’ve been giving for two weeks,” Gimenez said. “At the end of the day, it’s up to us to stop this virus. Government can do a lot, but it can’t do it all. As a matter of fact, at the end, it’s going to be the American people that decide, ‘Yes, we’re going to self-sacrifice. We’re going to self-isolate. We’re going to practice social distancing. We’re going to take common step approaches to assume that everybody is positive.'”
Residents did not disagree with the terms of the order put forth.
“I do agree,” said one resident. “We have to take this seriously.”
“If you don’t have strong orders coming from the head. I mean, people just carry on, so I find it very, very good. Excellent.” said Cochaud. “We’ll be remembering next year when we can walk again, and enjoy, you know, being together. I know you’ll remember it was tough, but that’s the price to pay, I think, to maintain the healthy people around.”
7SkyForce HD hovered over a police checkpoint in Key Biscayne where people driving in their cars were asked if they were residents of the city.
Monday night, the Town of Golden Beach issued a stay-at-home order for all of its residents until further notice.
The stay-at-home order for Miami Beach has been ordered for two days. The city commission will meet Wednesday with intentions of extending it for another week.
For more information explaining the stay-at-home order, click here.
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