A safer-at-home order related to the COVID-19 pandemic that closed restaurants, gyms, salons and churches in Alabama will end Monday, May 11.

Gov. Kay Ivey made the announcement Friday morning during a press conference in Montgomery. According to Ivey, several changes will go into effect Monday at 5 p.m.

“Today’s order will hopefully provide another round of hope for us all,” said Ivey.

The order removes the 10-person limit, but still requires six foot social distance between people not from the same household. This includes church gatherings.

Restaurants, bars and breweries may open with limited table seating, six feet between tables and subject to additional sanitation rules and guidelines. Party size has to be limited to no more than eight people. Self-service by guests at drink stations, buffets or salad bars is prohibited.

Gyms and other athletic facilities may open subject to social distancing and sanitation rules and guidelines.

Close contact providers such as salons, barber shops, tattoo parlors and nail salons may re-open   with social distancing and hygiene in place.

Beaches will be open with no limit on gatherings as long as people maintain a six -foot distance between people from other households.

Friday morning, Ivey also issued two supplemental states of emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The first one is designed to protect healthcare workers and businesses from lawsuits and the second is related to the July 14 primary runoff election.

Ivey said the first order covers reasonable protections from the risk and expense of lawsuits for businesses and healthcare providers that “comply with or reasonably attempt to comply with applicable health guidance.”

Ivey said it in no way shields from serious misconduct.

“The very last thing a business owner needs to worry about is a frivolous lawsuit from responding to COVID-19,” said Ivey. “However, if someone knowingly abuses the public during a time of crisis, they should be held accountable and prosecuted as such.”

The second proclamation gives probate judges more flexibility related to the July 14 primary runoff election, such as reducing the number of poll workers or conducting poll worker training remotely.

It also cuts red tape for electric cooperatives so they can access emergency loans.

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