Harris County issues stay at home order to go into effect at 11:59 tonight

As expected, Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo has issued a stay at home order that goes into effect tonight. This includes the city of Houston, and runs through April 3rd.

Under the order, everyone is to remain at home unless they are conducting essential business such as grocery shopping, picking up food or going to work at businesses that are deemed essential.

Public gatherings are prohibited. Parks remain open, but the use of benches, playgrounds and workout equipment is prohibited. Outdoor exercise like running is allowed, but you must practice social distancing.

Grocery stores and gas stations remain open. Restaurants can operate, but only as a take-out option. You will be able to go to the doctor, and you will be able to refill prescriptions. Hidalgo says they had no choice.

"We are taking steps to prioritize human life," Hidalgo said.

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said he agrees with Hidalgo's decision.

"The best way to reduce the spread and stop the pandemic is through strict social distancing," Turner said.

The order in Harris County comes after Galveston County issued a similar order last night. Fort Bend County has not yet made that decision, but that is expected to change later today.

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