Stay home except for essential needs

Colorado is on a statewide Stay-at-Home order.

You should stay home as much as possible except for critical activities including: 

  • Obtaining food and other household necessities including medicine
  • Going to and from work if you are a critical employee (See list of critical businesses below)
  • Seeking medical care
  • Caring for dependents or pets
  • Caring for a vulnerable person in another location
  • Participating in outdoor recreation at a legally-mandated safe distance of six feet or more from other parties

Read the full executive order here.

Read the FAQ here.

Read the governor's press release here.

Read the public health order here.

Watch the press conference here

Key points you should know:

  • Work from home is permitted and encouraged where possible. 
  • Grocery stores, gas stations, pharmacies, health care facilities, public transportation and other critical businesses will remain open. Cannabis and liquor stores will remain open. Please note that cities and counties may have specific rules around the purchase, consumption, and delivery of liquor and cannabis. Please check your local government website to see if they have more specific rules. 
  • Although this order does not apply to critical business, social distancing will be mandated for those businesses that remain open. 
  • All gatherings of individuals of any size for any reason other than critical business or government functions are banned.
  • All non-critical businesses statewide are closed to the public.
  • All non-critical businesses must close in-office personnel functions. Keep employees working from home whenever possible.
  • Bars and restaurants are closed, but takeout and delivery options are permitted.
  • Theaters, sports venues, casinos, and other gathering places are closed.
  • Pastoral services for individuals who are in crisis or in need of end-of-life services are allowed.
  • Houses of worship may remain open, but must practice social distancing or use electronic platforms.
  • You can find a detailed explanation of the order, and who it applies to, here.

The State has not currently created a certification process for individuals who need to leave their homes while the Stay Home order is in place or for businesses to certify that they are critical businesses; however the Stay Home order is the law in Colorado and everyone is expected to abide by it

How long will we stay home?

The order goes into effect at 6 a.m. on March 26, 2020, and ends at 11:59 p.m. on April 11, 2020. The order may be changed or extended. Please check this page frequently.


Critical businesses

Any business, including any for-profit or non-profit, regardless of its corporate structure, engaged in any of the commercial, manufacturing, or service activities listed below, may continue to operate as normal. Critical Businesses must comply with the guidance and directives for maintaining a clean and safe work environment issued by the CDPHE and any applicable local health department. Critical Businesses must comply with Social Distancing Requirements and all PHOs currently in effect to the greatest extent possible and will be held accountable for doing so. Critical Businesses do NOT include health clubs as defined in C.R.S. § 6-1-102(4.6), fitness and exercise gyms, and similar facilities, or any of the other businesses required to close by PHO 20-22.

Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA) Guidance on Critical vs. Non-Critical Business Professions

Critical business self-certification   Spanish | Simplified Chinese | Vietnamese | Somali

The self-certification document is voluntary and not a requirement of any state order. It was created to assist critical businesses and law enforcement to comply with public health orders.

  • K-12 public and private schools for the purpose of providing meals, housing, facilitating or providing materials for distance learning, and providing other essential services to students. 
  • Postsecondary institutions including private and public colleges and universities for the purpose of facilitating distance learning or performing essential functions, provided that Social Distancing Requirements are observed, such as security, medical and mental health service, housing, food service, and critical research
  • Pastoral services for individuals who are in crisis or in-need of end-of-life services
  • Houses of worship may remain open, but must practice social distancing or use electronic platforms
  • Professional services, such as legal, title companies, or accounting services, real estate appraisals and transactions   

  • Hospitals, clinics, and walk-in health facilities
  • Medical and dental care, including ambulatory providers
  • Research and laboratory services
  • Medical wholesale and distribution
  • Home health care companies, workers and aides
  • Pharmacies
  • Pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies
  • Behavioral health care providers
  • Veterinary care and livestock services
  • Nursing homes, residential health care, or congregate care facilities
  • Medical supplies and equipment manufacturers and providers, including durable medical equipment technicians and suppliers
  • Blood banks

  • Utilities and electricity, including generation, transmission, distribution and fuel supply
  • Road and railways
  • Oil and gas extraction, production, refining, storage, transport and distribution
  • Public water and wastewater
  • Telecommunications and data centers
  • Transportation and infrastructure necessary to support critical businesses
  • Hotels, and places of accommodation
  • Businesses and organizations that provide food, shelter, social services, and other necessities of life for economically disadvantaged, persons with access and functional needs, or otherwise needy individuals
  • Food and plant cultivation, including farming crops, livestock, food processing and manufacturing, animal feed and feed products, rendering, commodity sales, and any other work critical to the operation of any component of the food supply chain
  • Any business that produces products critical or incidental to the construction or operation of the categories of products included in this subsection

  • Food processing, manufacturing agents, including all foods and beverages
  • Chemicals
  • Computers and computer components
  • Medical equipment, components used in any medical device, supplies or instruments
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Sanitary products
  • Telecommunications
  • Microelectronics/semiconductor
  • Agriculture/farms
  • Household paper products
  • Any business that produces products critical or incidental to the processing, functioning, development, manufacture, packaging, or delivery of any of the categories of products included in this subsection
  • Any manufacturing necessary to support a Critical Business

  • Grocery stores including all food and beverage stores
  • Farm and produce stands
  • Gas stations and convenience stores
  • Restaurants and bars (for take-out/delivery only as necessary under Executive Order D 2020 011 and PHO 20-22, as amended)
  • Marijuana dispensary (only for the sale of medical marijuana or curbside delivery pursuant to Executive Order D 2020 011)
  • Firearms stores
  • Hardware, farm supply, and building material stores
  • Establishments engaged in the retail sale of food and any other household consumer products (such as cleaning and personal care products)
  • Establishments engaged in the sale of products that support working from home

  • Trash, compost, and recycling collection, processing and disposal
  • Mail and shipping services, and locations that offer P.O. boxes
  • Self-serve laundromats and garment and linen cleaning services for critical businesses
  • Building cleaning and maintenance
  • Child care services
  • Automobile rental, auto supply and repair (including retail dealerships that include repair and maintenance, but not retail sales)
  • Warehouse/distribution and fulfillment, including freight distributors
  • Funeral homes, crematoriums, and cemeteries
  • In-person pastoral services for individuals who are in crisis or in need of end of life services provided social distancing is observed to the greatest extent possible
  • Storage for Critical Businesses
  • Animal shelters, animal boarding services, animal rescues, zoological facilities, animal sanctuaries, and other related facilities

  • Newspapers
  • Television
  • Radio
  • Other media services

  • Banks and credit institutions
  • Insurance, payroll, and accounting services
  • Services related to financial markets

  • Homeless shelters and congregate care facilities
  • Food banks
  • Human services providers whose function includes the direct care of patients in State-licensed or funded voluntary programs; the care, protection, custody and oversight of individuals both in the community and in State-licensed residential facilities; those operating community shelters and other critical human services agencies providing direct care or support

  • Housing and housing for low-income and vulnerable people
  • Skilled trades such as electricians, plumbers
  • Other related firms and professionals for who provide services necessary to maintain the safety, sanitation, and critical operation of residences, and other essential services

  • Defense, security, and intelligence-related operations supporting the State of Colorado, local government, the U.S. Government or a contractor for any of the foregoing
  • Aerospace operations
  • Military operations and personnel
  • Defense suppliers

  • Law enforcement
  • Fire prevention and response
  • Building code enforcement
  • Security
  • Emergency management and response
  • Building cleaners or janitors
  • General maintenance whether employed by the entity directly or a vendor
  • Automotive repair
  • Disinfection
  • Snow removal

  • Logistics
  • Technology support for online and telephone services
  • Child care programs and services
  • Government owned or leased buildings
  • Critical Government Functions

  • Public safety (police stations, fire and rescue stations, correctional institutions, emergency vehicle and equipment storage, and, emergency operation centers)
  • Emergency response
  • Judicial branch operations, including attorneys if necessary for ongoing trials and required court appearances, unless appearances can be done remotely
  • Emergency medical (hospitals, ambulance service centers, urgent care centers having emergency treatment functions, and non-ambulatory surgical structures but excluding clinics, doctors offices, and non-urgent care medical structures that do not provide these functions)
  • Designated emergency shelters
  • Communications (main hubs for telephone, broadcasting equipment for cable systems, satellite dish systems, cellular systems, television, radio, and other emergency warning systems, but excluding towers, poles, lines, cables, and conduits)
  • Public utility plant facilities for generation and distribution (hubs, treatment plants, substations and pumping stations for water, power and gas, but not including towers, poles, power lines, buried pipelines, transmission lines, distribution lines, and service lines)
  • Transportation. Airlines, taxis, transportation network providers (such as Uber and Lyft), vehicle rental services, paratransit, and other private, public, and commercial transportation and logistics providers necessary for Necessary Activities
  • Transportation infrastructure (aviation control towers, air traffic control centers, and emergency equipment aircraft hangars), critical road construction and maintenance
  • Hazardous material safety
  • Services to at-risk populations and Vulnerable Individuals
  • Any government service required for the public health and safety, government functionality, or vital to restoring normal services
Stay at home order with white house icon and aerial view of suburban homes.