North Carolina has the third strictest COVID-19 restrictions in the country.

Of the 50 states and District of Columbia, only Pennsylvania and California are currently more restrictive than North Carolina under the executive orders of Gov. Roy Cooper according to a study by WalletHub.

The North Carolina legislature passed several bills in an effort to ease the restrictions and get people back to work, such as a bill to allow gyms and fitness centers to open, but Cooper vetoed all of them.

States in the Southeast with which North Carolina competes economically are far more lenient in COVID-19 restrictions.   Georgia is ranked 10th by WalletHub compared to 49th for North Carolina. South Carolina is ranked 15th. Tennessee is 16th. Florida is 18th. Washington, DC is 28th. Virginia comes closest to North Carolina at 41st.

As far as COVID-19 cases and deaths, North Carolina ranks in the middle of the pack, but it is one of only six states to still require gyms and fitness centers to remain closed.

In May according to WalletHub North Carolina was ranked 28th and in June 21st which means that other states have lessened their restrictions and Cooper has kept the severe restrictions in place in North Carolina keeping people out of work and refusing to allow the economy to open back up.

According to WalletHub, Texas, Arizona, Tennessee, South Carolina, Florida, Mississippi, Louisiana, Georgia, Idaho, Nevada and Alabama all have higher death rates, but fewer restrictions.

WalletHub ranked on a number criteria including:

  • Requirement to wear a face mask in public
  • Travel restrictions
  • Large gathering restrictions
  • Statewide school restart
  • Reopening of restaurants and bars
  • State guidance on customer health checks at restaurants
  • Reopening of nonessential businesses
  • Workplace temperature screening
  • Working from home requirements/recommendations
  • Childcare programs reopening
  • Strictness of “shelter in place” order
  • Enforcement or penalties for COVID-19 legislation non-compliance
  • Presence of mandated contact tracing program
  • Suspension of postponement of legislative sessions
  • State court closure or suspension
  • Guidance on elective surgery and medical procedures
  • Guidance for Assisted living facilities related to COVID-19

So the comparison was extensive and, in the entire country, only two states were found to have more severe restrictions than those Cooper has placed on North Carolinians based on “science, facts and data.”

You can read the full report here: