BOSTON (CBS) — New statewide coronavirus restrictions take effect in Massachusetts Saturday and will stay in place for at least two weeks. Restaurants, stores, theaters, casinos, offices, places of worship, gyms, arcades, and museums all have to drop capacity limits from the current 40% to 25%.
Also starting Saturday, all indoor gatherings will be limited to 10 people. Outdoor gatherings cannot exceed 25 people. And hospitals will postpone all non-essential, inpatient, elective and invasive procedures, unless a postponement would have a severely negative impact on an individual’s health.
Gov. Charlie Baker said in announcing the new restrictions earlier this week that he’s aware of the “very negative ramifications” of the impact to people’s livelihoods, but they are necessary to prevent hospitals from being overwhelmed and to get kids back in classrooms.
After Thanksgiving, the intergenerational coronavirus spread was clear based on the people being admitted to hospital, according to Baker.
“This is part of what we must do during this critical period,” Baker said.
“It is our goal to keep these measures temporary,” Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito said.
Michelle Shaw, the co-owner of Public Kitchen in Wakefield, says the new restrictions will affect her business.
“It just changes constantly so once you get settled into your new routine, whatever that may be, something else rolls out,” Shaw said. “You’re starting to count heads in your restaurant and that’s something you’ve never had to do. You’re trying to run a business and be successful yet you’re telling people they can’t come in.”
Still, Shaw says they continue to do all they can, and the community has been very supportive.
“Our community really has supported us during the holidays. Even before, through gift cards, even stopping by to make sure …’hey do we need anything?’ so that means a lot.”