MAINE, USA — Anyone coming to Maine during the COVID-19 pandemic will be greeted with a message: prepare to self-quarantine for 14 days.
In April, in an effort to slow the spread of the virus, Governor Janet Mills issued the executive order.
"You drive around and you see more cars in yards MA. CT, RI, NY" said Wells Police Chief Jo-Ann Putnam on Monday.
She says the two-week quarantine is not deterring a lot of people from coming here.
"People are coming here as their areas are harder hit than ours."
Because of that, there has been a lot of criticism from residents about whether people from out of state are following the quarantine guidelines.
Others are simply asking, what are the guidelines?
NEWS CENTER Maine reached out to the state for clarification, and the message is clear.
The Maine CDC is advising people in other states to stay where they are, but if they have to come to Maine, bring everything they need, and don't interact with others.
That means no shopping, going for takeout, picking up supplies at a hardware store. Anything that would expose others at risk.
CDC officials say people in quarantine can go for a walk, but they must wear a face mask and stay six feet apart or more from others.
But they do recommend people in quarantine avoid going for walks along heavily traveled trails and be ready to keep their distance from others during chance encounters.
Governor Mills says police are authorized to enforce the quarantine rule but as Chief Putnam says that's not as simple as it sounds.
"It's not an easy thing to enforce but we're doing the best we can. We're relying on people to do the right thing."
After quarantining for 14 days, you could interact with others by conforming to the face-covering and physical distancing guidelines that are in place.
The CDC guidelines also point out if you have to come to Maine, and bring everything you need, and don't interact with others, it wouldn't violate the quarantine order if you stayed in Maine for fewer than 14 days.
But keep in mind, the state you return to, will likely have quarantine guidelines to follow as well.
At NEWS CENTER Maine, we're focusing our news coverage on the facts and not the fear around the illness. To see our full coverage, visit our coronavirus section, here: /coronavirus
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