Stay At Home Order

On March 27, Governor Roy Cooper issued Executive Order 121, a statewide Stay at Home Order beginning Monday, March 30, 2020 at 5 p.m. until April 29, 2020. This order directs people to stay at home except to visit essential businesses, to exercise outdoors or to help a family member. Specifically, the order bans gatherings of more than 10 people and directs everyone to physically stay at least six feet apart from others. For more information about Executive Order 121, read the FAQsOpen PDF. Executive Order 121 permits essential businesses to remain open. These include: 

  • Restaurants that provide take-out, drive-thru, or delivery 
  • Grocery stores 
  • ABC stores and beer and wine stores 
  • Doctors and other healthcare providers 
  • Pharmacies 
  • Hardware stores 
  • Post offices 
  • Office supply stores 
  • Gas stations and convenience stores 
  • Veterinarians and pet supply stores 
  • Hotels, airports, buses, taxis, and rideshare services 
  • Places of worship 
  • Child care providers (that are following the required NCDHHS procedures) 

For a full list of essential businesses, please see the Executive Order 121Open PDF. Governor Cooper reminded North Carolinians to show restraint in buying groceries and supplies.

Community Events and Mass Gatherings

NCDHHS also recommends that organizers (whether groups or individuals) cancel or postpone in-person events throughout North Carolina. These events may include but are not limited to conferences, sporting events, faith-based organizations, and concerts.

Learn more from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) about planning mass gatherings or large community events.

Community and Faith-Based Organizations

Community- and faith-based organizations, whose members may include high-risk populations, should plan for the possibility of a COVID-19 outbreak in their local communities.

While regular faith-based gatherings are an important part of many North Carolinians’ lives, it is important to protect high-risk individuals from potential exposure to COVID-19.

Religious organizations can consider alternatives to mass gatherings to support their congregations’ social and spiritual well-being. Consider options like connecting by phone, using other technologies that support social distancing and/or facilitating small group meetings to ensure that people at high risk of complications from COVID-19 are less likely to be exposed to the virus.

Mass Transit

Mass transit operators should maximize opportunities for cleaning and disinfection of frequently touched surfaces. People should avoid using mass transit (e.g. buses, trains) while sick.


Read the guidance for community events and mass gatherings

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