Hotline overwhelmed with questions about Indiana’s stay-at-home order amid COVID-19 outbreak

Data pix.

State officials launched a new hotline to help answer questions from employers about the new stay-at-home order. Soon after it went live, the line was so busy it crashed.

“Because of the call volume, basically it overloaded our system,” said Steve Cox, executive director of the Indiana Department of Homeland Security.

The issue was quickly fixed, but questions remained. By early afternoon, the hotline had over 1,000 calls. The line meant for employers was overwhelmed by employees.

“We would ask that employees maintain direct contact with the employer that you’re working for to find out if your business is listed as essential,” Cox said.

As a broad list, the governor classified essential business as any healthcare facility, pharmacies, grocery stores, public safety, delivery services and garbage pickup. For a more comprehensive list, including answers to FAQs, click HERE.

“This is not meant to be a hammer, this is meant to be instructional," said Governor Eric Holcomb. "We’re asking for citizen buy-in over the next two weeks.”

The governor didn’t outline enforcement of the order, but said police won’t be out pulling people over. You can still do things like get groceries, walk your dog, or pickup medicine as long as you distance yourself and stay home as much as possible.

“The point of this all was to say that the quicker we all get on the same page and we all start playing our role, the quicker we will get through this,” Gov. Holcomb said.

The number for the hotline is 877-820-0890. There is also an email address:

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