Synopsis of the New Health Order

| April 28, 2020 | Media Contact: Melissa Sizemore, EMA,, 205.254.2039
Chris Osborne, JCDH,, 205.215.2877

Birmingham, AL – The Jefferson County Unified Command Center (JCUC) and its partner agencies continued to help provide information, goods and services to the people of Jefferson County throughout the COVID-19 pandemic response. Dr. Mark Wilson, Jefferson County Health Officer, and Jim Coker, Director of Jefferson County Emergency Management Agency serve as the co- leaders of the Unified Command Center.

State of Alabama Safer at Home Order to Go in Effect at 5:00 PM on April 30, 2020:
On April 28th, Governor Ivey announced the new health order that will go into effect on Thursday at 5:00 PM. This order relaxes a previous health order regarding individuals, employers, retailers, beaches and medical procedures. The order remains in effect until 5 p.m. on May 15. The order and fact sheets describing the “safer at home” order may be viewed at

Under the new health order, individuals are encouraged to exercise personal responsibility but are not ordered to stay home to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Public places are to take reasonable steps to avoid gatherings of 10 persons or more, maintain six feet of separation between persons, and disinfect frequently used items and surfaces.

All non-work-related gatherings of 10 persons or more, or non-work-related gatherings of any size that cannot maintain a consistent six-foot distance between persons from different households are prohibited. But “drive-in” gatherings of any size are permitted if the participants adhere to rules that include participants remaining in their vehicles for the entire event, all vehicle occupants must be from the same household, and people are not to come within six feet of participants in other vehicles. Non-work-related gatherings include church services, weddings, funeral services, social gatherings, concerts, festivals, sporting and similar events.

Employers are also to maintain six feet of separation between persons as work duties permit, consistent with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Employers are to facilitate remote working arrangements where practicable, minimize employee travel, and otherwise follow guidance from the CDC concerning ways to reduce transmission among employees to maintain healthy business operations, and to maintain a healthy work environment. All retail stores may open with the following rules:

• Occupancy is limited to no more than 50 percent of normal occupancy as determined by the fire marshal. Staff is to be posted at entrances and exits for enforcement.
• Employees may not knowingly allow customers or patrons to congregate within 6 feet of one another.
• Retailers must comply with sanitation guidelines.

Effective with the new order, dental, medical or surgical procedures are allowed unless the State Health Officer or his designee determines that performing such procedures would unacceptably reduce access to personal protective equipment or other resources needed to diagnose and treat COVID-19.

~Mayor David Miller