RALEIGH, N.C. (WECT) - North Carolina will move into Safer At Home Phase 2.5 beginning this Friday, Sept. 4 at 5 p.m., Gov. Roy Cooper announced Tuesday.
“Because of our stable numbers, today we are ready to take a careful step forward,” Cooper said.
As part of Safer at Home Phase 2.5:
- The limits on mass gatherings will increase to 25 people indoors and 50 people outdoors
- Playgrounds will be allowed to open
- Museums and aquariums can open at 50 percent capacity
- Gyms and indoor exercise facilities, such as yoga studios, martial arts, and rock climbing, as well as skating rinks, bowling alleys, indoor basketball, volleyball etc., may open at 30 percent capacity.
- The age requirement for mask wearing will include children down to age 5.
- Capacity limits at restaurants and personal care businesses like hair and nail salons will stay the same
- Bars, nightclubs, movie theaters, indoor entertainment and amusement parks will remain closed.
“I want to be clear — we can do this safely only if we keep doing what we know works — wearing masks and social distancing. Moving to Phase 2.5 means we can safely do a few more things while still fighting the virus as vigorously as ever,” Cooper said. “In fact, a new phase is exactly when we need to take this virus even more seriously. Wearing a face mask, washing your hands, waiting 6 feet apart. These things have never been more important.
“So let’s keep doing what we know works. Let’s stay strong, and let’s beat this virus. I know we can, and I know we can come out stronger on the other side.”
NCDHHS Secretary Mandy Cohen also issued a Secretarial Order allowing for outdoor visitation at nursing homes or skilled nursing facilities.
“To participate, nursing homes must meet several requirements, including, but not limited, not having a current outbreak, having a testing plan and updated written Infection Control or Preparedness plan for COVID-19, and having adequate personal protective equipment,” a news release from the governor’s office states.
The Secretarial Order goes into effect at 5 p.m. on Sept. 4 and remains in effect through Sept. 22.