Safer At Home Directive
The Safer at Home Directive is no longer in place. The City is now following guidance from the Governor's Office regarding re-starting the economy. For more information, see Governor Lee's Tennessee Pledge page.
To further combat the spread of COVID-19, the City of Elizabethton has issued a Safer at Home Directive — requiring all residents of Elizabethton to stay inside their homes, and immediately limit all movement outside of their homes beyond what is absolutely necessary to take care of essential needs.
Read the full Civil Emergency Proclamation and Safer at Home Directive here. In summary, the Safer at Home Directive says:
Residents of Elizabethton are required to stay inside their homes unless they are engaged in certain “essential activities” or “essential travel”. On those occasions when you are out of your home for necessary tasks, stay at least six feet away from others. Businesses defined as essential will be allowed to remain open, but are required to comply with Social Distancing Requirements.
Please reference the below FAQs for all questions regarding the Safer at Home Directive.
What are "Essential Activities"?
Essential Activities are those activities or tasks that are essential to your health and safety, including:
- Performing work to provide products or services to an Essential Business
- Outdoor activities, such as walking your dog
- Performing administrative functions for a business, such as payroll or other tasks needed for the safety of the employees or the building, such as maintenance
What is "Essential Travel"?
Essential travel includes:
- Any travel related to Essential Activities and Essential Businesses.
- Travel to care for elderly, children, or other persons needing care.
- Travel to and from your home.
What are the businesses that will stay open?
- Grocery and beverage stores (including stores that sale grocery and non-grocery items necessary for maintaining the safety, sanitation and essential operations of residents)
- Restaurants/bars (only for take-out/delivery)
- Convenience stores
- Farmer's markets
- Food banks
- Food cultivation, including farming, livestock and fishing
- Research and laboratory services
- Walk-in-care health facilities
- Emergency veterinary and livestock services
- Elder care
- Home health care workers or aides for the elderly, children and people with disabilities
- Dental services
- Nursing homes or residential health care facilities
- Blood banks
- Veterinarian & pet grooming services
- Gas stations
- Private transportation providers (Uber and Lyft)
- Mail and shipping services
- Auto repair shops
- Auto Dealers/Retail
- Auto Parts Retailer
- Warehouse/distribution and fulfillment
- Ride Share
- Bicycle retail/repair
- Property management company (Residential and Commercial)
- Commercial and residential construction
- Planning, surveying, engineering, design firms
- Real estate agents/services
- Home or building cleaning and maintenance
- Skilled trades such as electricians, HVAC, and plumbers
- Hardware stores
- Daycare and childcare services
- Waste disposal and recycling
- Laundromats, dry cleaners and laundry services
- Funeral homes, crematoriums and cemeteries
- Lawn care
- Pest control
- Legal services
- Alarm and security companies
- Businesses that provide services that are necessary to maintain the sanitation, safety, and essential operation of residences and businesses, such as maintenance on HVAC
- Child care services
- Homeless shelters
- Businesses that provide food, shelter, social services and other necessities for those in need
- Services that provide drug/alcohol/mental health counseling and support
- Medical wholesale and distribution
- Hardware and building material stores
- Medical equipment/instruments
- Food processing, manufacturing agents
- Chemical plants
- Paper goods/cardboard
- Sanitary products
- Federal and state offices and services, including post offices and airports.
- Essential city and county government functions including law enforcement, transportation, and businesses that provide government programs and services.
- Banks and other Financial institutions
- Cell Phone and electronic stores
- Office supply stores
- Businesses that provide goods and services exclusively deliver through curb side pickup, drive-thru, shipment or delivery. (This includes any business that did not previously provide goods and services as described but now developed and implemented these delivery methods.)
- Businesses selling firearms
What businesses are required to close?
This is a list of examples of businesses that must close. This is not an exhaustive list:
- Personal appearance businesses (hair salons, eyelash salons, barber shop, tattoo shop, body piercing shop, day spas)
- Retail with no exclusive delivery or curb-side pick-up
- Entertainment and recreation facilities (bowling alleys, trampoline parks)
- Indoor rock climbing
- Craft/Art Business
- Gyms, including yoga, barre and spin facilities
- Concert venues
- Movie theaters
- Shopping malls
- Sporting event venues
- Skating rink
- Dance Schools
- Private Clubs (except for the provision of food for take-out)
What about churches or places of worship?
Churches, synagogues, and all other places of worship are not allowed to have gatherings of more than 10 people. Places of worship may operate for the purposes of providing food, shelter and other necessities for individuals in need, such as victims of domestic violence and the homeless.
Are non-profit organizations allowed to continue operating?
Yes, but only if they provide essential services as described in the directive. This would include non-profit operating food pantries, providing housing and services for homeless residents and many other critical services.
What about government employees?
This directive does not apply to employees of government agencies working within the course and scope of their public service employment. Employees of the City of Elizabethton or Carter County shall follow any current or future directives issued by the City Manager or County Mayor (respectively).
What about infrastructure and construction employees?
Individuals may leave their residences to provide any services or goods or perform any work necessary to the operations, maintenance and manufacturing of essential infrastructure, including without limitation:
- Construction of commercial and institutional buildings, and residential buildings and housing.
- Airport operations, food supply, concessions, and construction.
- Water, sewer, gas, electrical, oil extraction and refining.
- Roads, highways, public transportation and rail.
- Solid waste collection and removal.
- Flood control and watershed protection.
- Internet and telecommunications systems (including the provision of essential global, national, and local infrastructure for computing services, business infrastructure, communications, and web-based services).
- And manufacturing and distribution companies deemed essential to the supply chains of the above industries.
What if I need to visit a health care provider for an appointment or emergency?
Do not go to the emergency room unless you have an actual emergency. If you feel sick, please first call your doctor, an urgent care center, or the Ballad Health nurse hotline at 833-822-5523.
For purposes of this directive, individuals may leave their residence to work for or obtain services at any health care provider, including hospitals, clinics, dentists, mental health providers, physical therapists and chiropractors or any related and/or ancillary healthcare services, manufacturers and suppliers.
Please contact your healthcare provider to determine which visits or procedures you should attend. Individual health care providers in Elizabethton are providing guidance about medical care and doctor’s appointments.
Can I still get deliveries?
Yes. The mail and other delivery services to your home can continue to function, as can food delivery services. Businesses that deliver goods or services directly to residences may continue to operate. Just keep six feet between you and the person delivering the item.
Are landlords required to maintain property during this Directive?
Yes. Property owners, property management companies and landlords are required to maintain the premises they oversee.
I am currently on vacation outside of Elizabethton. Does the Directive allow me to return home?
Yes. You should maintain social distancing on your way home, and then you will be subject to the limitations in this Directive. If you prefer to stay indoors at your current location, you are encouraged to follow this Directive while outside of Elizabethton in order to protect yourself and others.
What happens if I leave Elizabethton to go on a planned vacation?
The Directive requires that you stay in your place of residence. Traveling runs the risk of spreading the virus to other areas and exposing new populations. As explained above, if you live outside of Elizabethton, you are allowed to travel to and from work if your work is essential business, or if you need to travel to Elizabethton, for another essential service like medical appointment.
What do I do about my kids? I have to work.
The Directive allows you to take steps necessary to take your children to authorized childcare. Otherwise, you should address childcare needs as you are able given the constraints of the situation.
Can I leave home to exercise?
If you will be both outdoors and not in close contact with people, yes. Otherwise, no, because fitness and exercise gyms and similar facilities will be closed.
Can I go out for things other than food/groceries?
Yes. You can shop for anything that is related to health care, office supplies, hardware supplies, banks, laundry, and at businesses listed as essential in the Directive. You should minimize unnecessary trips.
Can I walk my dog/pet or go to a vet or pet hospital if my pet is sick?
Yes. Be sure that you distance yourself at least six feet from other pets and owners. Please call the vet first to determine if there are any restrictions in place.
What if I want to go to work and I'm not sick?
Unless your work includes an essential function, you cannot go to work. Your employer may require you to work from home.
Is there a curfew or do I need a letter or voucher to travel on City streets and highways?
No. A letter or voucher is not required to travel. A letter from your employer is not required to travel to and from work.
What is the difference between "Safer at Home" and "social distancing"?
Safer at home is a stricter form of social distancing. There are some differences. Safer at Home means:
- Stay home (stay unexposed and do not expose others)
- Only go out for essential services
- Don’t gather in groups
Social Distancing is the practice of staying at least six feet away from others when you are in public, and not going out in public if you feel sick. Whether in public or at home, everyone should regularly wash hands, use hand sanitizer, and disinfect surfaces.