Chicago’s emergency travel order for Indiana takes effect on Friday at midnight. The order is aimed at limiting travel to and from the city to the Hoosier State, with some exemptions, like work-related purposes, medical care and child custody agreements.
While some see the order as an inconvenience, others, like Crystal Shannon, associate director of the graduate program at the school of nursing at Indiana University Northwest, see it as an effective way to reduce transmission of the virus.
She said now that Hoosiers and Chicagoans are familiar with travel restrictions, like the ones that were implemented at the beginning of the pandemic, she expects the order to be effective.
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Shannon said it’s also important to note how much more guidance and knowledge people have about COVID-19 in general.
“Every day that we are living with this, we are becoming much more aware, much more understanding of how the spread of the virus takes place,” she said. “Any type of continuation or new measures that are put into place now, I do believe they can have a much more impactful result than our previous ones because we know more about it.”
Shannon said while the order may seem difficult to enforce, it makes sense that Chicago wants to limit the number of people traveling to and from the city to states with surges COVID-19 cases and looser restrictions. She said one of the first things that experts look at during a pandemic is how people travel, because that helps indicate the spread of a virus.
Indiana joins a list of 25 other states under the order, as well as Puerto Rico.
Shannon said overall, the order also serves as a reminder that people owe it to each other to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
"Look at this from the perspective of 'am I my other’s keeper?' The answer in health care is yes, I have a responsibility to everyone," she said.
Under Chicago’s order, individuals traveling for reasons other than work-related purposes to and from the city, as well as other specific exemptions, are expected to quarantine, or face fines that can total up to $7,000.