Safer at Home

Updated May 1, 2020


Florida Governor's "Safer at Home Order": What You Need to Know

On April 1st, 2020, Governor DeSantis issued Executive Order 20-91 (“Safer at Home Order”) ordering all persons in Florida to limit their movements and personal interactions outside of their home to only those necessary to obtain or provide essential services or conduct essential activities. The Safer at Home Order was amended pursuant to Executive Order 20-92 clarifying that the Safer at Home Order supersedes any conflicting official action or order issued by local officials in response to COVID-19.


The Bottom Line

Citizens of the City of Tampa and throughout Hillsborough County are “Safer At Home” and ordered to limit their movements and personal interactions outside of their home to only those necessary to obtain or provide essential services or conduct essential activities.


UNDER THE EXECUTIVE ORDER, YOU CAN CONTINUE TO...
  • Go to the grocery, convenience or warehouse store
  • Go to the pharmacy or other medical establishments to pick up medications and other healthcare necessities
  • Go to medical appointments (but first, check with your doctor or medical provider)
  • Go to a restaurant for take-out, drive-thru or curb-side service
  • Care for or support a friend or family member
  • Take a walk, ride your bike, hike, jog and be in nature for exercise — just keep at least six (6) feet between you and others in the community
  • Walk your pets and, if necessary, take them to the veterinarian
  • Help someone to get necessary supplies

YOU ARE PROHIBITED FROM...
  • Going to work unless you are performing an Essential Service as defined below.
  • Visiting friends and family if there is no urgent need
  • Visiting loved ones in the hospital, nursing home, skilled nursing facility, or other residential care facility

Expand All Answers

Frequently Asked Questions



The Executive Order goes into effect 12:01 am on April 3, 2020 and shall expire on April 30, 2020 unless extended by subsequent order.

Yes. Executive Order 20-92 made it clear that a local order may not be more lenient, nor more restrictive, than the Governor’s Safer at Home Order.

Yes. A violation of the Executive Order may be prosecuted as a second degree misdemeanor punishable by a fine up to $500.00 and/or imprisonment up to 60 days./p>

Follow updates at tampagov.net/covid-19, text TAMPAREADY or TAMPALISTA to 888-777. We will also share new updates with the media.

Safer At Home is mandatory and a stricter form of social distancing. There are some differences. Safer At Home means:

  1. You are Safer At Home by staying unexposed and not exposing others to the virus
  2. You should only go out to obtain or perform “Essential Services” or conduct “Essential Activities”
  3. Stay six (6) feet or more away from others
  4. Don’t gather in groups larger than 10 people

The City urges its residents to continue to follow other concepts of social distancing when out shopping or walking or going to the doctor. These include washing hands, using hand sanitizer, disinfecting surfaces, not going out if sick, staying at least six (6) feet away from others at all times, and limiting public and private gatherings to 10 or less people.

Yes. The Safer at Home Order recognizes the state’s vulnerable population including senior citizens and individuals with a significant underlying medical condition (such as chronic lung disease, moderate-to-severe asthma, serious heart conditions, immunocompromised status, cancer, diabetes, severe obesity, renal failure, and liver disease). As with all individual, senior citizens and individuals with significant medical conditions may leave their homes when necessary to obtain or provide essential services or conduct essential activities.

All persons in Florida are ordered to limit their movements and personal interactions outside of their home to only those necessary to obtain or provide essential services or conduct essential activities.


  1. Essential services are detailed in an advisory list published by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in its Guidance on the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce, v. 2 (March 28, 2020) and any subsequent lists published.
  2. Essential services also include those businesses and activities designated by Executive Order 20-89 and its attachment which consists of a list propounded by Miami-Dade County in multiple orders.

Yes. Other essential services may be added under the Governor’s Executive Order with the approval of the State Coordinating Officer, in close coordination with the State Health Officer. The State Coordinating Officer is required to maintain an online list of essential services, as specified in the Executive Order along with any approved additions.

The list is available on the Division of Emergency Management’s website at www.floridadisaster.org and the Florida Department of Health’s website at www.floridahealth.gov.

The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) executes the Secretary of Homeland Security’s authorities to secure critical infrastructure. As of March 28, 2020, CISA has developed the following “Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce” advisory list:

  1. Healthcare/Public Health
  2. Law Enforcement, Public Safety, and Other First Responders
  3. Food and Agriculture
  4. Energy
  5. Water and Wastewater
  6. Transportation and Logistics
  7. Public Works and Infrastructure Support Services
  8. Communications and Information Technology
  9. Other Community - or Government-Based Operations and Essential Functions
  10. Critical Manufacturing
  11. Hazardous Materials
  12. Financial Services
  13. Chemical
  14. Defense Industrial Base
  15. Commercial Facilities
  16. Residential/Shelter Facilities and Services
  17. Hygiene Products and Services

This includes necessary travel as may be required to perform work in one of the above critical infrastructure sectors.

  1. Healthcare providers including but not limited to: hospitals; doctors' and dentists' offices, urgent care centers, clinics, rehabilitation facilities, physical therapists, mental health professionals, psychiatrists, therapists, and pharmacies.
  2. Grocery stores, farmers markets, farm and produce stands, supermarkets, food banks, convenience stores, and other establishments primarily engaged in the retail sale of canned food, dry goods, fresh fruits and vegetables, baby products, pet supply, liquor, fresh or frozen meats, fish, and poultry, and any other household consumer products (such as cleaning and personal care products). This includes stores that sell groceries and also sell other non-grocery products, and products necessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation, and essential operations of residences.
  3. Food cultivation, including farming, livestock, and fishing.
  4. Businesses that provide food, shelter, social services, and other necessities of life for economically disadvantaged or otherwise needy individuals.
  5. Newspapers, television, radio, delivery, and other media services.
  6. Gas stations, auto supply, auto repair, and related facilities.
  7. Banks and related financial institutions.
  8. Hardware stores.
  9. Contractors and other tradesmen, appliance repair personnel, exterminators, and other service providers who provide services that are necessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences and other structures.
  10. Businesses providing mailing and shipping services, including post office boxes;
  11. Private colleges, trade schools, and technical colleges, but only as needed to facilitate online or distance learning. /li>
  12. Laundromats, dry cleaners, and laundry service providers.
  13. Restaurants and other facilities that prepare and serve food, as long as food service is limited to delivery, carry-out or curbside service. Dine-in service is prohibited.
  14. Businesses that supply office products needed for people to work from home.
  15. Businesses that supply other essential businesses with the support or supplies necessary to operate, and which do not interact with the general public.
  16. Businesses that ship or deliver groceries, food, goods, or services directly to residences.
  17. Airlines, taxis, and other private transportation providers providing transportation services via automobile, truck, bus, or train.
  18. Home-based care for seniors, adults, or children.
  19. Assisted living facilities, nursing homes, and adult day care centers, and senior residential facilities.
  20. Professional services, such as legal and accounting services, when necessary to assist in compliance with legally mandated activities.
  21. Landscape and pool care businesses, including residential landscape and pool care services.
  22. Childcare facilities providing services that enable employees performing essential services to work as permitted. To the extent possible, childcare facilities should operate under the following conditions:
    • Childcare must be carried out in stable groups of 10 or fewer (inclusive of childcare providers for the group);
    • Children and child care providers shall not change from one group to another;
    • If more than one group of children is cared for at one facility, each group shall be in a separate room. Groups shall not mix or interact with each other.
  23. Businesses operating at any airport, seaport, or other government facility, including parks and government offices.
  24. Pet supply stores.
  25. Logistics providers, including warehouses, trucking, consolidators, fumigators, and handlers.
  26. Telecommunication providers, including sales of computer or telecommunications devices and the provision of home telecommunications.
  27. Provision of propane and natural gas.
  28. Office space and administrative support necessary to perform any of the above-listed activities.
  29. Open construction sites, irrespective of the type of building.
  30. Architectural, engineering, or land surveying services.
  31. Factories, manufacturing facilities, bottling plants, or other industrial uses.
  32. Waste management services, including collection and disposal of waste.
  33. Any business that is interacting with customers solely through electronic or telephonic means, and delivering products via mailing, shipping, or delivery services.

Yes.

Yes. The Safer at Home Order encourages individuals to work from home.

Yes. To the greatest extent possible, all businesses and organizations are encouraged to provide delivery, carry-out, or curbside service outside of the businesses or organization of orders placed online or via telephone

No.

The Safer at Home Order defines “Essential Activities” to include the following:

  1. Attending religious services conducted in churches, synagogues, and houses of worship.
  2. Participating in recreational activities (consistent with social distancing guidelines) such as walking, biking, hiking, fishing, hunting, running, or swimming.
  3. Taking care of pets.
  4. Caring for otherwise assisting a loved one or friend.

Yes. Other essential activities may be added to the list with the approval of the State Coordinating Officer, in close coordination with the State Health Officer. The State Coordinating Officer is required to maintain an online list of essential activities, as specified in the Executive Order along with any approved additions.

No.

Yes. Attending religious services conducted in churches, synagogues, and houses of worship is an essential activity. Notwithstanding, the City strongly urges that you continue to practice social distancing measures including staying six (6) feet or more away from other individuals and limiting gatherings to no more than ten (10) people.

Yes. A social gathering in a public space is NOT an essential activity. The City of Tampa is responsible for ensuring that groups of people greater than ten (10) do not congregate in any public space.

No. The Safer at Home Order limits an individual’s movement and personal interaction outside of one’s home to only those necessary to obtain or provide essential services or conduct essential activities.

Businesses that (1) do not provide an essential service under the CISA advisory list of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce, or (2) are not designated by Executive Order 20-89 and the list propounded by Miami-Dade County.

Although not addressed in the Safer at Home Order, the City encourages businesses that provide essential services to continue to:
  1. Ensure employees are adhering to social distancing and other health care guidelines as established by the Florida Department of Health.
  2. Continue using best practices, as set forth by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA), to reduce the risk of worker exposure to coronavirus or COVID-19 in workplaces and prevent widespread transmission in communities, including, but not limited to:
    • Promoting frequent and thorough hand washing, including by providing a place to wash their hands or providing alcohol-based hand rubs containing at least 60% alcohol.
    • Maintaining regular housekeeping practices, including routine cleaning and disinfecting of surfaces, equipment, and other elements of the work environment, including providing trash receptacles, as needed.
    • Exploring creative and flexible policies and practices for flexible worksites and flexible work hours to increase the physical distance among employees and others in the workplace;
    • Promoting social distancing requirements (6 feet or 2 meters).
    • Discouraging workers from using other workers’ phones, desks, offices, or other work tools and equipment, when possible.
    • Taking employees’ temperatures with a thermometer to try and ward off the spread of the coronavirus.
    • Encouraging employees to stay home if they are sick.
    • Encouraging respiratory etiquette, including covering coughs and sneezes.
    • Considering requiring employees to complete a travel questionnaire to assess risks of contamination in the workplace.
  3. Direct workers to telecommute when that is feasible.

No. The restrictions in the County’s Safer at Home order on hotels, motels, and other commercial lodging establishments which required that the facilities give reservation priority to Essential Lodgers were not adopted into the Governor’s Safer at Home Order. As noted previously, a city or county order may not be more lenient, nor more restrictive, than the Governor’s Safer at Home Order.

No. The restrictions in the County’s Safer at Home order on local businesses that produce and provide essential necessities – such as food, medicines, medical equipment and supplies – were not adopted into the Governor’s Safer at Home Order. As noted previously, a city or county order may not be more lenient, nor more restrictive, than the Governor’s Safer at Home Order.

The best way to reduce the risk of getting sick, as with seasonal colds or the flu, still applies to prevent COVID-19:

  1. Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  2. Cover your cough or sneeze.
  3. Stay home if you are sick.
  4. Avoid touching your face.
  5. Stay at least six (6) feet away from others.
  6. Reduce the time you are around others outside the home, even when at least six feet away.
  7. Limit public and private gatherings to ten (10) or less people

At least six (6) feet, which is approximately two (2) to three (3) steps away.

  1. Police stations
  2. Fire stations
  3. Jails
  4. Courts
  5. Garbage/sanitation
  6. Public Transportation
  7. Water, wastewater, power, and gas utilities
  8. Construction
  9. Airport and Port operations

Yes. Infrastructure and construction are essential and may continue to operate. Individuals may travel as necessary to perform work in one of the listed critical infrastructure sectors. For example,

  1. Construction of new, and renovation/repair of existing, public works projects and private commercial, institutional, retail, and residential buildings and housing
  2. Airport operations, food supply, concessions, and construction
  3. Port operations and construction
  4. Water, wastewater, gas, electrical, oil extraction and refining
  5. Roads, highways, public transportation and rail
  6. Solid waste collection and removal
  7. Flood control and watershed protection
  8. Internet and telecommunications systems (including the provision of essential global, national, and local infrastructure for computing services, business infrastructure, communications, and web-based services)
  9. Manufacturing and distribution companies deemed essential to the supply chains of the above industries

Yes, the following providers of food and other products are essential and may continue to operate:

  1. Restaurants offering take-out, delivery or drive-thru. No dine-in service.
  2. Grocery stores
  3. Water retailers
  4. Farm and produce stands
  5. Supermarkets
  6. Convenience stores
  7. Warehouse stores
  8. Food banks
  9. Liquor stores
  10. Pet supply stores
  11. Food cultivation, including farming, livestock, and fishing

No. You will continue to be able to purchase these items whenever you need them. Stores selling necessary items like grocery stores, pharmacies, and hardware stores will remain open and are frequently restocking. Please continue to buy normal quantities of these items on the same schedule you normally do. This will ensure that there is enough for everyone.

Yes. You can go to the store to buy food, drinks and goods for yourself, for those in your home, and for anyone else that needs help. This also includes medical supplies at a pharmacy or other medical establishment and supplies at a hardware store. When visiting these establishments, please help retailers maintain at least six (6) feet minimum distance between patrons, including by providing ample space while shopping and waiting in line.

You should still try to maintain a least six (6) feet between you and others. When that isn’t possible for short periods, do your best to keep the duration short. Be sure when you are in line that you don’t sneeze or cough onto people. If needed, cough or sneeze into your shirt or into an elbow with clothing on.

Yes, but only for takeout. Restaurants and other facilities that prepare and serve food to the public are encouraged to stay open, but only to provide delivery and carry out. Patrons will not be permitted to dine or congregate in restaurants, bars, and similar establishments.

Schools, soup kitchens, food banks, and other entities that provide free or reduced priced food goods or meals to students or other members of the public are encouraged to continue providing these services. However, food provided by these establishments to the public may not be eaten on the premises but must instead be delivered or taken away for consumption.

Yes.

Yes. The mail and other delivery services to your home can continue to function, as can food delivery services. But keep your social distance by staying six (6) feet from the person delivering the item.

You should first contact your health care provider in case appointments have been cancelled, rescheduled or can be done remotely.

Individuals may continue to obtain services at any health care provider, including hospitals, doctors, clinics, dentists, pharmacies, urgent care centers, rehabilitation facilities, physical therapists, mental health professionals, psychiatrists, and therapists. Health care providers do not include exercise gyms and similar facilities.

If you are feeling sick with flu-like symptoms, please first call your primary care doctor, a nurse hotline, or an urgent care center before going to the hospital. Check online resources like the CDC website if you are worried that you or a loved one has the COVID-19 virus.
If you need to go to the hospital, call ahead so they can prepare for your arrival. If you need to call 911, tell the 911 operator the exact symptoms you are experiencing so the ambulance provider can prepare to treat you safely.
If you have Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) like a surgical mask or N-95 mask, you can wear that to prevent exposing others.

Yes. Be sure that you protect them and yourself by following social distancing measures such as washing hands before and after, using hand sanitizer, maintaining at least six (6) feet of distance when possible, and coughing or sneezing into a tissue or elbow and then washing your hands. If you have early signs of a cold, please stay away from your older loved ones.

A family member includes anyone you live with, anyone who is a legal relative of yours, or anyone you treat as a family member.

If you have been diagnosed with the COVID-19 virus, you will need to be isolated to protect those around you. If you were exposed to someone who was diagnosed with the COVID-19 virus, you should quarantine for the recommended time in order to not expose others if you happen to have the virus yourself. Contact your healthcare provider if you have additional questions, or go to the City’s website at tampagov.net/covid-19.
Generally no. There are limited exceptions, such as if you are going to the hospital with a minor who is under 18 or someone who is developmentally disabled and needs assistance. If you need more information, please contact the facility directly by phone as most facilities have established their own protocols.
If you work for a business that performs an essential service, you can leave your children in a childcare facility. To the extent possible, the facility should:
  • Limit care to groups of ten (10) or fewer (inclusive of childcare providers).
  • Children and child care providers shall not change from one group to another.
  • If more than one group of children is cared for at the facility, each group shall be in a separate room.
  • Groups shall not mix or interact with each other.
  • Any child exhibiting symptoms consistent with COVID-19 illness shall not be allowed to stay in the facility.
Non-profit organizations that provide food, shelter, social services, and other necessities of life for economically disadvantaged or otherwise needy individual may continue operating. This would include non-profit operating food pantries, providing housing and services for homeless residents, animal shelters, and many other critical services.
Yes. Please keep in mind the Florida Governor’s Executive Order 20-80 which directs all persons travelling from New York, New Jersey or Connecticut and entering Florida through airports to isolate or quarantine for a period of 14 days from the time of entry to Florida.
Traveling for a planned vacation is not an essential activity.
All visitors to the City should stay at their hotel, motel or rental unit until returning to their primary residence. If you have a car and can return home, you are encouraged to do so if you are following social distancing protocols. If you have a flight or other travel, you should check first with the carrier to see if they are still operating and what protocols they recommend.

If you need to stay longer, coordinate with your accommodations as best you can.
Yes. The Executive Order identifies recreational activity as an essential activity as long as you continue to practice social distancing measures
No. Pursuant to the Florida Governor’s Executive Order No. 2020-71, gyms or health clubs are ordered closed.
Yes. Banks and related financial institutions are designated as an essential business under Executive Order 20-89.
Do your best to entertain your children with games, reading, puzzles, and TV/videos at home. Engage them in educational online tools. However, you should not take them to the playground or arrange playdates because children are not able to maintain social distance. It is essential that we stop the spread of the virus by not having in-person social interactions.
Yes. Laundromats and other similar establishments are an Essential Service.
No. Pursuant to Florida Governor’s Executive Order No. 2020-68 bars and nightclubs that derive more than 50% of gross revenue from the sale of alcohol were required to suspend all sale of alcoholic beverages for 30 days commencing March 17, 2020.
Yes. Be sure that you distance yourself at least six (6) feet from other pets and owners.
Yes. Please call first to determine if there are any restrictions in place.
Call your plumber or building manager. The Executive Order recognizes the need for service providers like plumbers, electricians, carpenters, exterminators, pool and yard maintenance, and building managers to keep working and providing their services to the public. To obtain supplies for a DIY solution, you can also visit hardware stores.
Yes. Working from home is encouraged under the Safer at Home Order.