Cabinet Member Calls For DeSantis To Issue Statewide ‘Stay At Home’ Order

March 21, 2020

Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried is asking Governor Ron DeSantis to implement a statewide “stay-at-home” order in response to the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in the state.

“I want to recognize the difficult choices the Governor has had to make in this public health crisis. No Governor in recent history would have expected to have to make a decision like California, New York, or Illinois have made in the past 72 hours,” Fried, the only Democrat holding an elected statewide office, said in an email.

“Shutting down one of the nation’s largest states is a decision that will have an economic impact — but it is a decision that will save lives. Based on the data, we know we are a week behind California’s vast increase in COVID-19 cases. The individuals and businesses I’ve spoken with are growing more anxious by the day. As the nation’s third largest state, we need to go further, and we cannot afford to lose another week.”

She said a single order would be more effective than the “piecemeal approach” of increasing closures.

Early in the week, the governor ordered bars to close for 30 days and cut the seating area of restaurants by half. On Friday, he completely closed restaurant dinings rooms, along with gyms and fitness centers until the current state of emergency ends.


32 Responses to “Cabinet Member Calls For DeSantis To Issue Statewide ‘Stay At Home’ Order”

  1. Concerned Worker on March 22nd, 2020 8:08 pm

    As someone who works in a call center I agree with the stay at home idea. We are squished in like sardines and all they have done was post hand washing signs. I know they won’t close and keep their employees healthy unless the government steps up and actually does something.

  2. TOM on March 22nd, 2020 3:26 pm

    I truly believe the Gov wants to do a “stay at home” but i don’t think he wants to be the first republican Governor to go against republican President Trump. However it needs to be done! All the people who think the streets wont be safe, do they not realize that all essential folks will still be available, like the police! also the essential business like grocery’s and pharmacy’s. Google the Spanish flu and see how the world was affected by that, and how the deaths varied by areas that didn’t abide by the stay at home theory. I knew it was serious when Disney World shut down! who do you think had their ear? This is serious people and it time we pay more attention to how we can save lives!!!!

  3. some are clueless on March 22nd, 2020 2:50 pm

    @Barbara. How clueless are you? Do you honestly believe a stay at home order would stop emergency services and police officers from being on duty? Good grief. Apply just an ounce of common sense if you have any. All you have to do is turn on the news and see live feeds of areas that have already shut down and you will see police all over the place. Staying at home IS absolutely practical and its the necessary thing to do to stop the spread of this thing.

  4. Lee on March 22nd, 2020 8:40 am

    John, it’s the Commerce Clause of The Constitution.

  5. Lee on March 22nd, 2020 8:35 am

    We need to stay home as much as we can now, even if we feel well, or this will just be prolonged.. Listen to medical experts and follow their guidelines. They have already told us that we can expect this virus to subside, then reemerge, possibly several times. Since other countries have been dealing with this longer, at least we have the advantage of learning from their actions. Be responsible and keep one another safe.

  6. disagree on March 21st, 2020 10:56 pm

    we don’t need to stay at home. neither do ag workers. they need to get out and plant so all will have necessary items.

  7. Just saying on March 21st, 2020 5:44 pm

    Hey John,

    Your probably right, it’s probably unconstitutional even if it does make sense.

    You’ve got a right to test it in court.

    Oh wait. Good luck with that. Courts are shutting down.

  8. ConcernedHotelier on March 21st, 2020 3:02 pm

    Pensacola is still allowing hotels to remain open. Most employees have been laid off, but for us remaining it is scary. Everyday we have to interact with travelers from all over the place. Forced to risk our health and it is getting harder and harder for hotels to get the cleaning resources needed to stay safe. We need something to be done. This virus is going to continue to spread unless we act. A stay at home order would be wise.

  9. JOHN on March 21st, 2020 2:54 pm

    Stay at home order? Where’s that in the constitution?

  10. Barbara on March 21st, 2020 2:38 pm

    Let me start by saying that staying at home is not a bad idea. However, it is not practical. To mandate 100%, would stop all emergency services. I have had to dial 911. I have need an ambulance and a fire truck on several occasions. There is a good possibility that if things worsen so will crime. We are asking for trouble to tell everyone to stay at home. The honest people probably will try to obey. The not-so-honest people will probably have a good time because they will know that there will not be a police officer to come after them.

  11. Terry on March 21st, 2020 1:01 pm

    As one of the “government workers” mentioned in another persons comment, I can assure you that those of us who work for the government here in this County and in this State do not have big bank accounts. Don’t demean those you know nothing about, please.

  12. Bob on March 21st, 2020 12:37 pm



  13. David Huie Green on March 21st, 2020 12:11 pm

    For those who think she should shut up and let the menfolks do the talking:

    “Mission Statement
    The mission of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is to safeguard the public
    and support Florida’s agricultural economy”

    “to safeguard the public ”

    She is supposed to safeguard the public as best she knows how… not just in agriculture. Right or wrong, giving advice is part of the job. Our governor is doing a good job but he wouldn’t be if he wouldn’t listen to advice from intelligent people.

    Even if she were stupid, she doesn’t give up the right to an opinion just because we voted her into office. She answers to us not him.

    David for public safety

  14. Just saying on March 21st, 2020 12:07 pm

    Healthy workers ??

    In medicine, a disease is considered asymptomatic if a patient is a carrier for a disease or infection but experiences no symptoms. A condition might be asymptomatic if it fails to show the noticeable symptoms with which it is usually associated.

  15. southerner on March 21st, 2020 11:28 am

    Healthy workers should work. Let this thing run its course. Not all of us have government jobs that will give them paid time off and big bank accounts. If this virus comes back next year, are we going to shut down again?

  16. Not Amused! on March 21st, 2020 11:04 am

    I am not amused, she is just trying to be relevant but The Governor is in Charge.

  17. Dwn on March 21st, 2020 10:57 am

    So following medical guidelines to isolate in order stop the virus from spreading so rapidly as to attempt to lower a surge of patients into overwhelmed medical systems is somehow Democrats THINKING they are smart? So, following medical guidelines to isolate is bravado?

    I bet you don’t have any family working on the floor of a hospital.

    At least the Democrats are thinking, instead of constantly trying to come up with red meat statements like “Chinese” virus or downplaying the highly contagious nature of the virus with “alternative facts”, which are nothing more than lies and coverup, as a number of Republicans have already done.

  18. Gene on March 21st, 2020 9:50 am

    I am sorry but she is just trying to be relevant… Governor Ron DeSantis, is doing a Great job managing this situation the best he can…. Thank goodness he was not passed out in a hotel somewhere.

  19. Rebecca Bankston on March 21st, 2020 9:31 am

    People are still going to work at there jobs to support there families not everyone has savings and can afford to stay home truck drivers people who work in grocery stores so dont be so quick to lock people up

  20. Concerned Citizen on March 21st, 2020 9:05 am

    How in Gods name did she get elected? It’s planting season and the cattle market demand is rising by the day. Also if you’re are healthy, and don’t have a compromised immune system, this Coronavirus isn’t anything to worry about. People over 60, people that smoke, and people with compromised immune systems are those that are in greater risk, but that’s for any virus. Look at the number of people over 60 that die from influenza and phenomena every year.

  21. Any on March 21st, 2020 9:03 am

    I work in a daycare. I’m afraid for my families life and mine. Children that age do not know how to cover there mouth. They put everything in there mouth. My husband has had & stints and a bypass. He has heart problems. I cannot bring everything back to him. He works full time and is our rock. Please Shut Pensacola down!!!!!! People are not taking things seriously. The kids that are sick with a fever the parents give them medicine and we don’t know that there sick until about nap time. So please SHUT PENSACOLA DOWN!!!!!!

  22. JimC on March 21st, 2020 8:22 am

    Meanwhile, they’re setting up internet access centers at libraries and community centers. Yeah, let’s gather our kids into groups, but keep the breadwinners locked up at home.

  23. Just Create More Panic on March 21st, 2020 8:22 am

    More Panic for the People. The questions everyone will have? Will the state pay our electricity and water? Will the state pay our house payments or our bills. Will the state feed us? If we don’t work we simply will not be able to live. I can see the concern, but how will staying home going to help us if we do not even have the necessary resources to live?

  24. Jackie Johnson on March 21st, 2020 8:13 am

    This maybe the way to go, but considering all the cancer patients in Escambia County and the State of Florida it would be tough to just up and stop radiation and chemo treatments. If the State is on complete lockdown there could be more deaths due to stopping pertinent treatment already in place. Personally, I do not believe each County would have a hospital to hold all cancer patients to continue treatments in a confined area.

  25. Samantha on March 21st, 2020 7:50 am

    I agree fully and before you attack my response just know I’m sitting at home only working 12hrs a week down from 39hrs. Yes I am struggling, yes I am worried about paying my bills and sinking in debt. Yet every life is precious and should be protected at all cost with this virus. Keep in mind at any point you could be the one infected and altough you may recover some people you came in contact with will not.. This is not the common cold and it should be taken more seriously..

  26. BamaDad on March 21st, 2020 7:43 am

    Who says you’ll be the one deciding if she gets votes back in or not?

  27. fisherman on March 21st, 2020 7:33 am

    7.7 billion people world wide 272806 cases of COVID19 world wide and just shy of 12000 deaths.When you look at these numbers you wonder what the panic is about. If people would just stay home if they are feeling bad and go out only when they need to this is all we need.

  28. rule104 on March 21st, 2020 7:29 am

    Even though a “Stay at Home” order seems to be a good idea, it is not. It usually not only cause finanical hardships, it also increases fear and panic.

  29. Alan on March 21st, 2020 7:28 am

    Is this a function of the FL Department of Agriculture and she is speaking on its behalf or is this a politician using a situation for a possible political advantage when she runs for Governor in 3 years?

  30. Agree on March 21st, 2020 7:18 am

    This Republican agrees with her. Now is the time to act. Do it now Governor.

  31. miixster on March 21st, 2020 6:49 am

    Democrats always THINK they know what’s best for us. She’s commish of ag. farmers are planting as of now. guess who won’t be voted back in.

  32. Republican on March 21st, 2020 5:59 am

    This is one time that a republican is going to agree 100% with a democrat. I agree with her we need to get ahead of the curve on this and stop this virus in its tracks before claims more precious lives.

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