Public Forums | General | COVID19 Lockdowns



I know some countries have gone into lockdown in order to attempt to limit the spread of the virus. I just thought that, since this is probably the first time that the whole world has come together, we could share some of what our specific countries have done.

Here in South Africa, a speech was made by our president (Cyril Ramaphosa; I'm really happy he's president - he's the right person for the job) introducing certain limits.. like various places (mainly restaurants etc) to  close by 6PM; then over the weekend, access to beaches closed. Last week the schools closed on wednesday and will remain shut till after Easter. The universities closed (the one in Cape Town shut a week earlier than planned because a staff member got ill; two of them now).

Tonight, a follow up speech was made. It was initially going to be last night. Then it was moved to this morning. And finally it was on at 7.30PM tonight.

South Africa has seen a spike from 3 cases last week Sunday to currently 402 (went up by 130 in a day between yesterday morning and this afternoon). While the president had said a shutdown would be a last resort, and he considered mobilising the army to patrol streets and maintain order, a lockdown was announced tonight. It will come into effect on Thursday evening at midnight and last for three weeks. It seems banks, shops and post offices will be open as necessities, thankfully. I am waiting for a parcel.

But since I live in a flat, it seems I may still have a bit of movement within the property... although the only place I really went was the university, and with it shut...

What has been implemented in your countries?



Katie Wanta
Orange, CT, US

USA is more of a state by state basis. In CT, as of 8pm tonight all non-essential businesses will have to close. Mine is essential, but I am able to work from home.  Grocery stores, gas stations, restaurants offering take out food only (no dine in), pharmacies, etc are able to stay open. Schools are trying to move classes online.



We're on a "Stay at Home" mandate. We can go to the store if we need to, we can still support businesses by getting food/coffee to go. I'm only leaving the house to jog and take care of my goats.



Emma Willis
Christchurch, Canterbury, NZ

NZ is working on an alert level. 1 - 4. We started at level 2 on Saturday, jumped to level 3 Monday and are at level 4 after 11:59pm tomorrow. The government wanted to allow businesses and people the chance to prepare before we went to level 4. Four means all non essential businesses must close and everyone must isolate. Supermarkets, petrol stations, medical centres and chemists remain open throughout. There are a few other places that will be deemed essential. Schools/universities/day care etc are all closed. This will last for a minimum of 4 weeks.

My work is classed as essential (government department directly involved in covid response). A lot of our workers can and are working from home. This has allowed us to ensure everyone not able to work from home can be distanced at least 2 metres apart. I could work from home howeverI will continue to go to the office each day as I lead a team of people so want to be there to support them! 

During level 4 you can only spend time with people in "your bubble." So I can go to work but can't go and visit friends or family - only those in my household. You can take a walk but only with people in your bubble. You must stay 2 metres away from anyone else out walking and should limit your outdoor activity to your neighbourhood only. 

And just in case anyone is picturing a bunch of Kiwis inside bubbles, sorry it's a metaphorical bubble! Though Zorbs were invented by a couple of New Zealanders so perhaps we could start running around in inflatable bubbles... Hmm...



Kaitlin Walbright
Columbus, OH, US

In ohio, its now a 2nd degree misdemeanor to be out on “non-essential” reasons. So food / grocery / doctor. THASSIT. 



Kaitlin, that is the exact mants, easure being taken in South Africa as from Friday. I was confused, as was the whole country it seems, as to what was meant by Thursday at midnight. My money only comes through on Thursday this week, so it's good that it meant 23.59 and 59.99 seconds. I should be okay - I am in a block of flats, so there are people around, and being allowed to walk to the banks and shops and possibly post office which some people say need to be open for social grants, I should be all right. No satellite signal, but there's an internet and a host of DVDs.

Plus, it's amazing how churches can meet online. Our midweek group did it on Whatsapp last week, but we used a site called Zoom last night



Here in the UK we are on lock down unless your a key worker. You can go to the shops for essentials and your allowed out once a day for exercise with members of your household but not other house holds! Someone in the next street to me has Coronavirus. I’m a health care worker so I’m out the house more than I’m in as I’m working double shifts due to staff shortage. Stay safe everyone x 



So we go on lockdown in 17 hours and 15 minutes. It's going to be very different. Sure, I don't work, and my only area of experiencing effects is going to be ... well, no traffic on the road (I need that constant buzz more than you know), and only walking to the shop for what is being termed "essentials" (there was a press conference last night asking how this all works and a government Minister had to say that cigarettes is not an essential.. I will do month shopping today and probably only need bread and milk and maybe bananas. But I think none of us here have any idea what it's going to be like. We have had church online for one week, and our midweek group met online. My concern is.... I'm a chronic medication patient and although I treat at home, if something extraordinary happens and I need to go to hospital, how does that work?



Oh no. I'm sure this is effecting someone that everyone knows. It is a difficult time. But... bright side -- it is bringing the world together like never before



Ivory Walker
Toledo, OH, US

Schools have been closed in Ohio since March 12th and from there all non-essential business have been ordered closed. They are, or last I checked were, allowing outings for exercise although due to people not following the distancing rules park trails might soon be made unavailable for walking. Currently due to overcrowding at the park I just do a once around my block whenever the weather permits. It's not so bad but I do wish people would take this more seriously.



Here in South Africa, the president announced last night in a televised speech that during this lockdown period (symptoms take two weeks to show) of three weeks (we are now on day five), a door to door campaign of testing for symptoms is going to be done. That way, by the end of three weeks, whoever is not sick will have been identified, and those showing symptoms will be referred to a clinic for testing. Those who clinic test positive will then be: a) either told to home isolate if their case is minor; or b) referred to a government identified quarantine place for treatment (here 16 people recovered and sadly three died). Those who already have the virus will be taken to hospital.

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