Following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Williamson County Judge Bill Gravell has issued an order stating community gatherings of 50 people or more anywhere in Williamson County have been prohibited for the next eight weeks to slow the transmission of COVID-19. View order here.
The COVID-19 virus is contagious and spreads through person-to-person contact, especially in group settings, and the CDC recommends a community-wide approach using “social distancing” to reduce illness and death, while minimizing social and economic impacts.
The ban on public or private gatherings, part of Orders adopted by Williamson County Judge Bill Gravell, take effect 6 p.m. Monday, March 16, and will continue until Monday, May 11, 2020, unless otherwise extended or terminated by the Williamson County Judge or by action of the Williamson County Commissioners Court. View the Williamson County Order here.
“Williamson County is dedicated to keeping all of our people safe and healthy. Extraordinary measures had to be taken in order to limit the possible spread of the Coronavirus in Williamson County, potentially overwhelming our healthcare system,” said County Judge Bill Gravell. “In Williamson County, we are dedicated to being prepared, not scared.
The order specifically states there will be no large events or mass gatherings such as conferences, festivals, parades, concerts, sporting events, weddings and other types of assemblies of 50 people or more held in Williamson County, Texas. In addition, organizers should cancel or postpone in-person large events or mass gatherings that consist of 50 people or more. Events of any size can only be continued if they can be carried out with adherence to guidelines for protecting vulnerable populations, hand hygiene, and social distancing.
This Order does not apply to the day to day operations of organizations such as daycare facilities, schools, institutes of higher learning, private sector businesses, and public sector business.
"The Williamson County and Cities Health District consistently follows CDC guidance with regard to COVID-19, including their recommendations for limiting mass gatherings to less than 50 people,” said Dr. Lori Palazzo, Williamson County Health Authority. “Social distancing is an important method for reducing the spread of disease, including COVID-19. You can empower yourself by practicing social distancing and these basic prevention methods:”
- Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.
- Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- When you can't wash your hands with soap and water, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects daily.
- Practice social distancing: keep a space of 6 feet between you and others; consider tele- or remote options for gatherings, whenever feasible.
Individuals who are at the highest risk from COVID-19, including elderly people or those with underlying health conditions, are told to avoid community gatherings or events that will likely have 10 or more people.
Workplaces are urged to consider use of telecommuting options, suspend non-essential employee travel, minimize the number of employees working within arm’s length of one another, and encourage employees to stay home when they are sick. Anyone who is feeling ill - even if they are not aware of any contact with a COVID-19 case - should stay at home.
A copy of the order is attached.