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Social Distancing is for the Bears

Western, North Carolina Mountains

Coronavirus social distancing may need to continue into 2022?

This bearly make sense, says Chuck Fisher, we as Americans continue to exercise extreme measures, this came out of no where, It’s April 16th and in Buncombe County, Confirmed 37 Covid-19 Cases, Recovered- Deaths 3, we are beginning to see folks in rural areas cover up when in public places, not everyone, but its improving daily according to one local supermarket in Weaverville, NC   As of the 16th the local Buncombe County Government has published “ A Look at Community-Based Responses to COVID-19” which is guidance from experts in the medical and scientific communities and treated this as a public health crisis.

All mountain schools are closed in Western, North Carolina and internet provides are FREE broadband & Wi-Fi access in Buncombe County, Read  Attention Buncombe County Families, FREE broadband & Wi-Fi access

Banjo Beary the friendly black bear wearing his mask during Covid-19 in his #stopthespread campaign in the mountains of Western, North Carolina. Photo Credit: The Mountain Dispatch/Barnardsville Local

Chuck, went on to say, we need to do are part and follow the recommendations until local experts have the data to better plan the future, even in rural areas, going in gas stations, the post office, we need to keep hand sanitizer in the car, cover up.  this isn’t going away anytime soon and many local mountain businesses are bearly hanging on. If I could say anything and people really listen, we need to serve each other like never before, we need to take this opportunity to build stronger communities, care for the poor, check on the elderly and bear one another burdens on a daily basis, I see opportunities for us to serve one another, like never before ,  we can be more neighborly during Covid-19, lets use social distancing to become more socially acceptable to change the things we can.


A Message from the North Carolina Governor

Apr 9, 2020
Governor Roy Cooper took action to the address the spread of COVID-19 by issuing stronger social distancing requirements and speeding up the process to get benefits to people out of work through Executive Order No. 131.

Three key areas are addressed in Executive Order 131. The first requires retail stores that are still operating to implement new social distancing policies to make shopping safer for customers and employees. The second makes earlier COVID-19 guidelines mandatory for nursing facilities, and recommends other long-term care facilities to do the same. The third area is unemployment benefits, issuing changes that will speed up certain benefit payments to those who are out of work.

“North Carolina continues to take strong action to slow the spread of COVID-19, and today’s Order will help make stores safer, protect those living and working in nursing homes, and get more unemployment benefits out quicker. Our state is resilient, and we will get through this crisis together if we all do our part,” said Governor Cooper.


This Order offers clear requirements that essential businesses must implement in order to safeguard the health of customers and employees. Some of the directives include:

Setting limits of how many people can be in a store at one time, 5 people per 1,000 square feet of retail space or 20% of fire marshal posted occupancy limits
Marking 6 feet of distance for areas where people gather like checkout lines
Requiring specific cleaning measures for retail stores
The Order encourages:

Implementing hygiene recommendations for employees and customers, like hand sanitizer at the doors and face coverings for workers
Establishing designated shopping times designated for high-risk groups
Creating barriers between customers and employees at checkout to lower the risk of required interactions
Creating barriers between customers and employees at checkout to lower the risk of required interactions

The Order states these requirements will last for thirty days unless extended by further executive action.


The Order sets public health and safety requirements for nursing homes during the public health emergency. The Order encourages other long-term care facilities to follow the same guidance. Some of the directives include:

Canceling communal activities, including group meals
Taking the temperature of employees and essential personnel when they enter the facility
Requiring specific personal protective equipment in the facility
Requiring close monitoring of residents for COVID-19 health indicators like body temperature
The Order states these requirements will last until this order is repealed.


The Order makes it easier for employers to file a batch of claims, called an attached claim, on behalf of their employees. By temporarily eliminating some of the hurdles for employers, benefits can get in the hands of those who need them faster.

The Order will extend 60 days beyond the date the state of emergency is lifted to allow employers to get back on their feet.

Additionally, the Division of Employment Services issued information on timing of federal benefits reaching North Carolinians today.

Read the full Order.

Read questions and answers about specific items in the order.

Make sure the information you are getting about COVID-19 is coming directly from reliable sources like the CDC and NCDHHS. For more information, please visit the CDC’s website at and NCDHHS’ website at, which includes daily updates on positive COVID-19 test results in North Carolina.



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