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Stitt announces new restrictions on bars, restaurants amid COVID-19 spike

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Governor Kevin Stitt speaks during a press conference giving an update on the state’s response to COVID-19 on September 1, 2020 at the McKnight Center in Stillwater, Oklahoma.

Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt is implementing many new regulations to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

During a Monday press conference, Stitt announced that all bars and restaurants must close by 11 p.m. effective Thursday. Only drive-thru or curbside options will be available after 11. Restaurants must also ensure all tables are six feet apart or install sanitized dividers.

This announcement comes after the Oklahoma State Department of Health reported that there were more than 2,700 new COVID-19 cases. The state reported nearly 4,000 new positive tests on Sunday. There were 10 deaths reported Monday.

“We need to slow the spread of this virus,” Stitt said in a press conference. “Data shows that social distancing is harder to maintain as it gets later at night, especially at bars.”

Stitt also announced that state employees will be required to wear a mask in common areas or places of work.

There have been a surge of cases throughout the country. Stitt pleaded with the public to do their job.

“Each one of us has a role to play in this fight,” Stitt said. “I need every Oklahoman to think about what they personally can do to help slow the spread.”

Stitt told the public to wear masks, social distance and wash hands frequently.

This story will be updated.