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Wisconsin governor restricts public indoor gatherings

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MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Gov. Tony Evers' administration has issued a new order limiting the size of public indoor gatherings to stem the spread of COVID-19.  

“We’re in a crisis right now and need to immediately change our behavior to save lives,” said Gov. Evers. “We are continuing to experience a surge in cases and many of our hospitals are overwhelmed, and I believe limiting indoor public gatherings will help slow the spread of this virus. Folks, we need your help and we need all Wisconsinites to work together during this difficult time. The sooner we get control of this virus, the sooner our economy, communities, and state can bounce back.”

The order limits public gatherings to no more than 25% of a room or building's total occupancy, and gatherings in indoor spaces without an occupancy limit is limited to 10 people.

The order takes effect Thursday morning at 8 and runs through Nov. 6.

Wisconsin has become one of the worst hot spots for the disease over the last month as colleges and schools reopened and fatigue over wearing masks and social distancing has grown.  

“The unfortunate reality is this: the disease activity level of COVID-19 in Wisconsin is so high that going to a gathering puts you at very high risk of exposure,” said DHS Secretary-designee Palm. “We know gatherings are a key way this virus spreads, so we must act to limit indoor gatherings to stop the spread, reduce illness, and save lives.”

On Tuesday, DHS reported an increase of 2,020 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 18 new deaths. The seven day average of new daily COVID-19 cases is at 2,346; one month ago the average was at 836.

Click here to read the full order and list of exemptions.

Click here to read a frequently asked questions document

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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