Washington, D.C. issues stay-at-home order amid growing number of positive COVID-19 cases

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A sign about COVID-19 safely is posted at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, Monday, March 23, 2020. As Washington, D.C. continues to work to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), Mayor Muriel Bowser extended road closures and other measures to restrict access to the Tidal Basin the the cherry blossoms and other tourist attractions. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The District of Columbia has issued a stay-home order for all residents as the number of positive infections from the new coronavirus continue to rise.

Mayor Muriel Bowser’s government ordered Washington’s approximately 7,000,000 residents to only leave home for essential shopping or medical care or work at businesses classified as essential. The order permits “allowable recreational activities” — essentially walking or bike riding alone or with your family while maintaining social distancing with others.

Any violators may be charged with a misdemeanor.

A Washington D.C. Metropolitan Police vehicle is parked on the other side of a tape police line along the Tidal Basin as cherry blossoms cover the trees, in Washington, Monday, March 23, 2020. As Washington, D.C. continues to work to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), Mayor Muriel Bowser extended road closures and other measures to restrict access to the Tidal Basin, a main tourist attraction. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Although Washington, D.C., is not a state, Mayor Muriel Bowser essentially functions as a governor and issued the order in coordination with identical moves from Virginia Governor Ralph Northam and Maryland Governor Larry Hogan.

Washington’s infection numbers have climbed steadily for the past week to 401. Nine people have died, including a senior member of Bowser’s staff.

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