Phase 3 Safety Reminders

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CHARLOTTE – On October 2, North Carolina was moved into Phase 3 of easing restrictions in efforts to limit the spread of COVID-19.  This phase will last until at least 5:00 pm on November 13.

About 300,000 to 400,000 households in the state are currently unable to pay rent.  As a result, Governor Cooper signed an executive order to prevent evictions for those without means to pay rent.  The NC HOPE program, which provides assistance to low- and moderate-income renters, was recently launched.  Dial 2-2-1-1 or visit to obtain free and confidential information.

The Mass Gathering limit remains at 25 people indoors and 50 outdoors.  Indoor seating areas in bars and indoor rides at amusement parks remain closed.  Subject to reduced capacity limits, fitness and exercise facilities remain open.  Businesses such as hair salons, nail salons, and barbershops are also open but subject to capacity limits.  It is recommended to hold outdoor activities over indoor ones.  Practicing the 3 Ws is the recommended way of remaining safe during Phase 3:  wear a face covering, wait six feet apart from others, and wash your hands regularly.

Currently, there are cluster cases of COVID-19 in religious and social gatherings.  Individuals are advised against hosting or attending a private social gatherings if they have been diagnosed with COVID, are waiting for COVID test results, are experiencing symptoms of COVID, have been told by the local health department to quarantine, or have been exposed to someone with COVID.

Regarding this year’s Halloween events, a list of lower risk to higher risk activities is provided online.  Alternatives to traditional door-to-door trick-or-treating, such as virtual Halloween parties via Zoom, are recommended.

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Brodie Lowe
Brodie was awarded the Elizabeth Boatwright Coker Fellowship in Fiction. He was a finalist of The Broad River Review's Ron Rash Award in Fiction and Still: The Journal's Literary Contest in Fiction. His stories have appeared in The Broad River Review, Mystery Tribune, The Bark Magazine, Eastern Iowa Review, The Mark Literary Review, The Windhover, and elsewhere.