Businesses willfully violating stay home order face consequences, attorney general says

Attorney General Dana Nessel is working with local police to interpret and implement Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's stay home order, which was issued Monday. (Photo courtesy: MGN)
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LANSING (WJRT) (3/25/2020) - State and local authorities are working together to make sure nonessential businesses remain closed after Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's stay home order.

Attorney General Dana Nessel said her office is working with local law enforcement agencies to interpret and implement the order. That includes deciding which businesses are essential and nonessential.

"The orders are in place to protect the public health and welfare of Michigan’s residents, and consequences will result to those found to be in willful violation” Nessel said.

Anyone who wants a clarification on whether a business is essential or wants to report a business violating the order should contact their local law enforcement agency. The Attorney General's Office and Michigan coronavirus hotline are not equipped to field those calls.

Calls to law enforcement should be made to nonemergency numbers and not 911.

The attorney general’s consumer protection hotline will continue to receive reports of price gouging and scams at 1-877-765-8388. All other questions or concerns should go to local police.

The following activities are considered critical functions and allowed to continue during the shelter in place order:
-- Health care and public health.
-- Law enforcement, public safety and first responders.
-- Food and agriculture.
-- Energy.
-- Water and wastewater.
-- Transportation and logistics.
-- Public works.
-- Communications and information technology, including news media.
-- Other community-based government operations and essential functions.
-- Critical manufacturing.
-- Hazardous materials.
-- Financial services.
-- Chemical supply chains and safety.
-- Defense industrial base.

Monday's order prohibits employers from requiring workers to leave their homes unless they are necessary to sustain or protect life and conduct basic operations.

Whitmer posted a frequently asked questions page that can help determine which businesses are allowed to remain open. Anyone still unclear after reading that can email a question to COVID19@michigan.gov.

“This situation is fluid and rapidly changing, and we appreciate your patience,” Nessel said. “We’re all in this together and we are counting on every resident to do everything they can to stay safe, stay healthy and stay home.”