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Rhode Island Gov. Raimondo issues 'stay-at-home' order amid coronavirus pandemic

Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo (D) on Saturday issued an executive order mandating that residents of the state stay at home amid the coronavirus outbreak. 

The order, which will extend until April 13, comes after two Rhode Islanders died from the highly infectious virus. It also bans gatherings of more than five people, mandates that people entering Rhode Island from other states for a nonwork-related purpose self-quarantine for two weeks and shutters all nonessential businesses starting Monday. 

“Today, I’m issuing a stay at home order that will be in place until April 13. This means unless you’re getting food, medicine, gas or going to work, you need to stay home,” Raimondo said. “You can go outside to get some fresh air, but if you leave your home, keep the time out to a minimum and always keep 6 feet away from others.” 

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Raimondo also recognized the economic impact the order will have on the state, particularly due to the business closures, but noted that she had heard several reports of crowding at local shops.

"I don’t make this decision lightly, but I’m hearing too many reports of crowded stores," she said. "So for now, we need you to shop online to support your local retailers."

Rhode Island joins several other states that have issued stay-at-home or shelter-in-place orders as the pandemic spreads. More than 200 people have been infected with the virus in Rhode Island.