McMaster Orders Closure of Non-Essential Businesses

"Biggest Impact with Least Disruption"

Emily Gill
March 31, 2020 - 5:04 pm
Governor Henry McMaster


Governor Henry McMaster has issued an order for non-essential businesses to close for the next 15 days at least.

​​Essential businesses include grocery stores, big box stores, drug stores and pharmacies, day cares, gas stations, and banks.

Restaurants will still be allowed to provide take-out orders and drive-through orders.

Gov. McMaster reported the order will go into effect on April 1st in the afternoon.

According to a press release, the order includes the closures of entertainment, sports venues, and close-contact service providers.

"(We believe) this can have the biggest impact with the least disruption," McMaster said.

The entertainment category includes:

  • Night clubs
  • Bowling alleys
  • Arcades
  • Concert venues
  • Theaters, auditoriums, and performing arts centers
  • Tourist attractions (including museums, aquariums, and planetariums)
  • Racetracks
  • Indoor children’s play areas (excluding daycare facilities)
  • Adult entertainment venues
  • Bingo halls
  • Venues operated by social clubs

Day cares are not included in the entertainment category; day case is considered essential.

"People depend on daycare centers and can't work without them," McMaster said.

The recreational category includes:

  • Fitness and exercise centers and commercial gyms
  • Spas and public or commercial swimming pools
  • Group exercise facilities, to include yoga, barre, and spin studios or facilities
  • Spectator sports
  • Sports that involve interaction with another person in close proximity and within less than six (6) feet of another person
  • Activities that require the use of shared sporting apparatus and equipment
  • Activities on commercial or public playground equipmen

The close-contact service providers category includes:

  • Barber shops
  • Hair salons
  • Waxing salons
  • Threading salons
  • Nail salons and spas
  • Body-art facilities and tattoo services
  • Tanning salons
  • Massage-therapy establishments and massage services

Any businesses which are unsure if this order applies to them should contact

Gov. McMaster said the previous orders have had a positive effect in preventing the spread of COVID-19 and expects this one will too.

He also explicitly stated this is not a stay-at-home order, but that all people should stay at home as much as possible to prevent the further spreading of COVID-19.

"I have great faith in the people of South Carolina," McMaster said.​​

The order will be re-evaluated continuously, McMaster said, as more information comes.



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