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Why Hasn't Gov. Reynolds Issued A Shelter-In-Place Order To Slow COVID-19 Spread?

kim reynolds
John Pemble
IPR file
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds and state epidemiologist, Dr. Caitlin Pedati.

“Shelter-in-place” is not a legal term and different states use different terms. It generally means that people are ordered to stay home from work except those deemed essential by the state, and those going to grocery store, pharmacy and doctor, or to get fresh air at safe distance from others. 

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds says people should continue to stay home if they can although she is not making a shelter-in-place order as some governors have. 

"I think we have to be responsible, we are Iowans," Reynolds said at a Thursday press confrence. "I shouldn't have to issue an order to say that you need to be responsible and stay home if you're sick."

Some local officials, notably the mayor of Iowa City, in Johnson County, which has the most confirmed cases in the state, have called on the governor to issue a shelter-in-place order.

Clay Masters is Iowa Public Radio’s Morning Edition host and lead political reporter.
Katarina Sostaric is IPR's State Government Reporter