ILLINOIS (WFIE) - Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced during his coronavirus update Thursday that he intends to sign a modified version of the state’s stay-at-home order, which effectively extends the order through Saturday, May 30.
The Governor says he made this decision after consulting with doctors, scientists and experts in Illinois and across the world. The modified stay-at-home order will go into effect on Friday, May 1.
According to Gov. Pritzker, the modified order will enhance the current social distancing requirements already set in Illinois. Meanwhile, the modified order will give residents more flexibility and provide measured relief to non-essential businesses in the safest way possible.
Gov. Pritzker issued a strong warning after announcing the modified stay-at-home order.
“If we start to see crowds and people violating the order or breaking the rules, I will need to bring back these restrictions," Gov. Pritzker said.
The new executive order includes numerous modifications to the previous stay-at-home order.
For instance, state parks will start a phased re-opening under guidance from the Illinois State Department of Natural Resources. Outdoor recreational activities such as boating, fishing and golf are now allowed under strict safety guidelines.
In addition to the newly added outdoor recreation provisions, greenhouses, garden centers and nurseries may reopen as essential businesses. Animal grooming services are allowed to reopen as well,
Retail stores considered as non-essential businesses and operations may also reopen to carry out telephone and online orders through pick-ups outside the store or delivery services.
Gov. Pritzker and his team also confirmed 1,826 new COVID-19 cases, which increases the statewide total to 36,844 positive cases.
Meanwhile, health officials revealed that another 123 people died from COVID-19
Overall, 1,688 people in Illinois have lost their lives so far due to complications with COVID-19.
“There is a parent, child, a friend who would give anything for their greatest strain to be the difficulties of staying home, and not the unimaginable pain of a life lost too soon," Gov. Pritzker said.
You can watch Gov. Pritzker’s full Thursday press conference in the video below:
On Wednesday, Gov. Pritzker and his team announced 2,049 newly confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 98 additional deaths.
Meanwhile, Gov. Pritzker announced that two additional state-run testing sites have opened. He says anyone experiencing COVID-19 symptoms can get tested, even people who do not have a doctor’s note.