amended

More businesses and facilities will soon be able to reopen.

Gov. Kay Ivey announced Thursday the current safer-at-home order is set to expire Friday at 5 p.m. and an amended safer-at-home order will expand the number of businesses allowed to reopen, which will run through July 3.

Although 6-foot distancing and extra preventative measures should be taken, childcare facilities, schools, entertainment venues and youth sports and athletic events may resume under specific guidelines.

“We have more things opening but there is more guidance on safety and behavior and practices we’d like to see these businesses and people maintain,” state health officer Dr. Scott Harris said. “These are simple changes in our behavior but save lives and they are important. Now more than ever, we need people to take social distancing seriously. The best thing is to watch our own behavior.”

Childcare facilities may reopen with no maximum or number limit on children but adults must continue to maintain 6-foot distances.

Performing arts venues must limit occupancy to 50%; employees must continue wearing masks and guests should practice social distancing. Venues to reopen include bowling alleys, arcades, concert venues, auditoriums, performing centers, tourist attractions, public playgrounds, casinos, etc.

The new order removes the closure of schools as state superintendent Dr. Eric Mackey continues to work on a plan and individual schools and colleges may make their own decisions on reopening.

Youth sports and athletic events are allowed to resume under the new order including practices, conditioning and drills but direct competition is not allowed until June 15.

“If things don’t get worse, we’re going to continue putting personal responsibility on each and every individual citizen, which extends to store owners, hair stylists, youth sports coaches, pastors; it takes all of us being vigilant and adhering to social distancing guidelines to stop the spread of the virus,” Ivey said. “We also reserve the right to reverse this course if things don’t go as planned.”

Long-term care facilities are still a hot bed for the coronavirus and therefore visitation is still restricted to compassionate care only.

For other areas of residents’ livelihoods, Ivey said people cannot sustain a delayed way of life as the search for a vaccine continues.

“It’s time to move forward and further open our state and live with a new normal while incorporating COVID-19 precautions into our routines,” Ivey said. “Like with the flu and other viruses, with no known cure, it’s not realistic to think we’re able to keep everyone totally isolated forever.”

Ivey said the threat of COVID-19 is not over but there must be a balance between economic and public health.

Ivey and Harris both emphasized the need for personal responsibility and to do what is best for individuals and their families.

“Having a life means having a livelihood too,” Ivey said. “It’s important to go back to work and open the economy but also we all have got to take personal responsibility.”

See updates and changes below:

New updates

Entertainment venues, such as arcades, theaters, bowling alleys: Open subject to social-distancing and sanitation rules and guidelines 
Athletic facilities: Open subject to social-distancing and sanitation rules and guidelines
Educational institutions: Open subject to social-distancing and sanitation rules and guidelines
Child daycare facilities: Open subject to social-distancing and sanitation rules and guidelines 
Summer camp: Remain open with rules and guidelines available 

What's staying the same?

Individuals: Encouraged to stay home and follow good sanitation practices 
Employers: Businesses may open subject to sanitation and social-distancing guidelines 
Retail stores: All retail stores open subject to 50% occupancy rate, social-distancing and sanitation rules 
Medical procedures: Allowed unless prohibited in the future by the state health officer to preserve resources necessary to diagnose and treat COVID-19; providers must follow COVID-19-related rules and guidance from state regulatory boards or public health authorities 
Senior citizen centers: Regular programming still suspended except meals still available through curbside pickup or delivery 
Hospitals and nursing homes: Still must implement policies to restrict visitation 
Non-work gatherings: Still required to maintain 6 feet of distance between persons not from same household 
Restaurants, bars and breweries: May open with limited table seating, 6 feet between tables and subject to additional sanitation rules and guidelines 
Athletic facilities (such as fitness centers and commercial gyms) Athletic facilities may open subject to social-distancing and sanitation rules and guidelines 
Close-contact service providers: Close-contact service providers (such as barber shops, hair salons, nail salons, tattoo services) may open subject to social-distancing and sanitation rules and guidelines 
Beaches: Open with no limit on gatherings. Must maintain 6 feet of separation.