• Kierstin Tonic

The Important Difference Between a Lockdown & a Stay at Home Order




We as a nation are currently battling the COVID-19 or Coronavirus. Every day the number of those who tested positive and unfortunately those who did not survive it goes up. Although the dangers of this virus are explained to us daily, there are those who do not believe in it’s severity. Because of this, governing bodies in each state are taking measures to contain the virus and flatten the curve. The terminology used to describe these measures varies from state to state. The number of states and cities placing lockdown and/or shelter in place orders are on the rise. Here is how to know the difference between the two in order to play your part in getting this pandemic under control:




A ‘’stay at home” order is issued by the state or local government strongly suggesting that residents keep themselves and loved ones at home, apart from essential activities or employment. Essential activities include trips to the grocery store, pharmacy, doctor or hospital visits, gas station, and in some states the liquor store. Essential personnel include hospital and medical staff, law enforcement, and essential retail workers.

Restaurants are limited to take out and delivery only. Schools, malls, movie theatres, recreation centers, and amusement attractions are closed. Events which draw large groups are asked to be canceled. Businesses with the ability to have employees work from home are encouraged to do so unless they are deemed essential.


In a “lockdown” or “shelter in place”, the basic concept is the same, however the consequences are far greater. This is a mandatory order and not a strong suggestion. Penalties and fines are issued if residents are found to be in violation of the stay order to enforce the importance of limiting contact and practicing social distancing. Curfews may be mandated if residents continue to be noncompliant. A lockdown may also be restricted to a certain area and not the entire state. Domestic travel could be restricted to keep potentially infected persons from traveling state to state or even city to city.



The measures the U.S. has taken with their version of the lockdown or stay-at-home order pales in comparison to the actual lockdown measures taken in China. China, just as here in the States, shut down shops, restaurants, bars, theatres, and tourist attractions. However, they took more drastic actions. It was mandatory to give government employees your cell phone number when taking the train. Your memorized passport number had to be recited in order to eat at one of the very few restaurants that were open. As time went on, efforts to slow the rate of the virus increased. In Beijing for instance, checkpoints were placed at every intersection where travel permits were checked. If you were found to just be entering or new to the neighborhood, you were placed on a monitored 14-day quarantine. Neighborhood watch programs enlisted volunteers to patrol streets, check temperatures, and make sure you were not in violation of quarantine and lockdown orders. Furthermore, the government issued an app which sent notifications and reminders to report your temperature daily. 10 pm curfews were set in place to completely shut down the city. Residents were no longer able to go into a store to shop for their essentials. Orders had to be placed to suppliers and items were delivered to you. These and other drastic measures were in place for close to two months and had seemed to flatten their curve. However, in recent reports China has had to reinforce some business closings after a brief spike in infections.



Because each state in the U.S. makes their own rules and regulations on their stay orders, it is advised that you refer to your individual state and local government to find out exactly what is required or allowed. Your state representatives will be holding press conferences daily to keep residents briefed on changes to the order, as well as statistics on those who have tested positive and survival rates.


It is imperative that at this time we do what we can to eradicate this deadly virus. Please refer to your states measures to aid in the process of keeping us all safe as a nation.



Author: Kierstin Tonic

Freelance Writer, Mompreneur,

Novice Cigar Aficionado,

Classy Curser

Located in Willingboro, NJ

IG: @justme_8, @smoke_n_whiskey8




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