Gov. Ducey Finally Issues Shelter Order, But Essential Business Still Too Broad

Essential Business

Governor Ducey, under pressure from local leaders across the state, the media, and “at the recommendation of public health officials who are tracking data specific to Arizona” (whomever that might be is unclear), has finally issued a Stay at Home Order to all Arizonans.

One major problem remains: Ducey’s EO prohibiting the closure of essential businesses remains far too broad, requiring too many business and their employees to hazard exposure of and from the public, and thus, further spreading infection without any real public safety justification.

Ducey needs to rescind his EO prohibiting closures of “essential businesses” and issue new, much more narrowly tailored guidance for what essential businesses should remain active.

Ducey should also rescind the language in the EO that states:

“No county, city or town may make or issue any order, rule or regulation that restricts or prohibits any person from performing any function designated by either the Governor, the [AZ DHS], or the Department of Emergency Management as an essential function during the COVID-19 public health emergency.”

Nor should Ducey try to enforce his will on local leaders in this regard. He should especially not have his legislative goons threaten SB 1487 actions against localities just doing their best to keep their constituents safe by closing what truly are non-essential businesses, such as hair salons and beauty parlors.

Ducey’s EO on essential businesses prohibits localities from closing an overly broad number of industries, such as (but not limited to): golf courses, bike shops, dry cleaners, gun stores, insurance agents, hotels and motels, and most of all, fucking lawyers. Come on. Speaking as an attorney, we can all do with fewer damn lawyers.

Ducey should be guided by the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security, which itself is perhaps too inclusive in some particulars, but does a much better job of defining what jobs are actually essential to maintaining our security and critical infrastructure during this difficult time.