At a press conference on Monday, May 4, North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said that on Tuesday or Wednesday at the latest he would announce the details for Phase 1 of lifting the current statewide stay-at-home order that is set to expire on Friday, May 8.

The original stay-at-home order went into effect on March 30 and was set to expire on April 29. However, on April 23, Cooper announced he was extending the stay-at-home order to Friday, May 8 because the trends, testing and tracing were not where they wanted them to be.

At the April 23 press conference, Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Mandy Cohen noted that North Carolina had not had a surge or spike in COVID-19 cases like other states, and that the number of cases had leveled.

Cooper in answer to a question about a spike in COVID-19 cases after Phase 1 is implemented said that it was important to “look at these trends and indicators over a 14 day period.”

But he added, “As we make decisions about what happens this weekend, we have said from the beginning, if there is a spike we could go back to another phase.”

Cooper said that Phase 1 would stay in effect for at least two weeks before moving on to Phase 2.

On April 23, Cooper said that during Phase 1 the stay-at-home order would remain in place but people would be allowed to leave home for commercial activity, and clothing, sporting and book stores would be allowed to reopen. Retailers and services that are open would have to implement social distancing for employees and customers and requirements for enhanced cleaning, and other protective measures would remain in place.

Face coverings will be recommended in public and gatherings of more than 10 people will still be prohibited.

More specific details about what is involved in Phase 1 will be provided later in the week