Governor Henry McMaster announced Friday a new executive order to help combat the spread of COVID-19. In Friday’s press conference McMaster said the “last call” order will prohibit restaurants and bars from serving alcohol after 11:00 pm. This order will go into effect Saturday (Jul. 11) at 11:00 pm and will be in place until further notice. McMaster said, “bars are a very productive place for the virus to spread,” which led to the passing of the order.
Off-premise alcohol services will not be affected by this order. Off-premise alcohol servers include, grocery stores, alcoholic beverage specialty stores and convenient stores.
McMaster said that many of South Carolina’s young people have not taken the virus seriously which has led to a spike in COVID-19 cases throughout the state. He said in turn, the older population of South Carolina has been impacted by the choices of the state’s youth. “Although our younger people may feel just fine, they might be carrying that virus and unintentionally inflict damage on others,” McMaster said.
He added that the state’s older population is being drastically affected by the isolation many of them are facing as numbers of virus cases rise. “The older people are isolated from their loved ones and separated from their companions, causing loneliness, stress, depression and anxiety,” McMaster said.
The Governor also made mention of the “valuable learning time” students have lost due to school closures. He looks forward to taking precautionary steps now so that schools can reopen for in-person learning in the fall. He explained that passing orders like this can help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and will in turn help the state return to safe operations.