Throughout the COVID-19 “Stay at Home” period established through executive order by Gov. John Bel Edwards, there has been some confusion regarding whether certain types of businesses deemed “non-essential” could open, and if so, under what guidelines.

The President of the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury, along with the mayors of all six parish municipalities (DeQuincy, Iowa, Lake Charles, Sulphur, Vinton and Westlake) and the Sheriff, form the Executive Policy Group, which has met regularly throughout the COVID-19 event. The Executive Policy Group wants to help local businesses with clarification of the Governor’s guidelines, specifically as the guidelines apply to non-essential businesses that are not expressly closed by the Governor’s proclamations.

Examples of the “non-essential” category of businesses that can remain open with certain conditions include services such as clothing, jewelry, bookstores, and furniture stores. This also applies to faith-based organizations. The conditions for these businesses to remain open include: (1) Must maintain a 10-person limit, (2) Public facing workers must wear masks, and (3) Must abide by established social distancing guidelines.

“It is important to understand that local officials are not making any changes to the guidelines, but we are simply helping to clarify what is included in the Governor’s proclamations regarding non-essential businesses” said Tony Guillory, Calcasieu Parish Police Jury President. “We want local businesses to have good information to help them with making decisions as to whether to open or not” he said.

Complete information regarding the Governor’s proclamations pertaining to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) can be accessed at gov.louisiana.gov.