Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam talks about how he was raised during an interview in the Governor's Mansion February 09, 2019 in Richmond, VA. He and Attorney General Mark R. Herring have admitted to using blackface in the past. And, Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax denies sexually assaulting two women. (Photo by Katherine Frey/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
**FILE** Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (Photo by Katherine Frey/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced Tuesday that the state will adhere to restrictive operational mode on July 1.

Virginia’s move into Phase 3 of its gradual reopening from COVID-19 will allow for social gatherings of up to 250 people and restaurants and retail businesses to operate at full capacity.

“It still means you’re safer at home, especially if you’re vulnerable. We’re still strongly encouraging teleworking” as well as social distancing and face masks, Northam said.

The governor added that the rate of positive cases among those tested is at 6.4% and trending downward.

Hair salons and barbershops as well as child care centers will also be allowed to open completely.

The state’s guidelines, which recommend continued social distancing of 6 feet, also require the use of face coverings.

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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