FILE - Hair stylist shampooing, salon, occupational licensing

(The Center Square) – Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed an executive order Saturday demanding “non-essential” personal care services to close through April 13 to help reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Non-essential services include hair, nail, tanning, massage, spa, tattoo, body art, and piercing services, and services that require individuals to be within 6 feet of each other.

There’s an exemption for services ordered by a licensed medical provider.

The order goes into effect at 9 a.m. Sunday.

"COVID-19 has created an unprecedented challenge to our way of life as Michiganders," Whitmer said in a news release. "That's why we are making decisions based on science and facts to protect public health and keep people safe. I know these changes will be hard, but they are temporary, and they are necessary to slow the spread of the virus and help save lives."

COVID-19 is a respiratory disease caused by the new coronavirus, which has symptoms including fever, coughing, and shortness of breath.

Most people infected with the virus show only mild symptoms, but some populations, including the elderly and those with underlying health conditions, are vulnerable to more severe symptoms.

In Michigan, there were 787 positive cases of COVID-19 and at least five related deaths as of 6 p.m. Saturday.

Health officials recommend the following precautions:

  • If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19, call your healthcare provider. If you do not have a health care provider, call the nearest hospital.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds. If not available, use hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • If you are sick, stay home, and avoid contact with others.
  • Stay at least 6 feet away from others when in a public setting.

Whitmer has shuttered many businesses through March 30. This order extends the initial ban to April 13.

From Monday to Wednesday, over 55,000 people filed for unemployment, a 1,500 percent increase compared to this time of last year. 

Staff Reporter

Scott McClallen is a staff writer covering Michigan and Minnesota for The Center Square. A graduate of Hillsdale College, his work has appeared on Forbes.com and FEE.org. Previously, he worked as a financial analyst at Pepsi.