Why track COVID19 Policing?
Across the United States, emergency “shelter in place,” “stay at home,” “social distancing,” and quarantine orders in response to the COVID19 pandemic are being enforced through aggressive policing, steep fines, criminal charges, and harsh penalties. Officers – who have some of the highest rates of infection – are violating social distancing rules to harass, ticket, and take people into custody. Even a brief encounter with an officer or short detention in a police car can dramatically increase risk of infection, and that risk increases in a holding cell or jail where people are unable to maintain social distancing and have little or no access to soap, water, and sanitizer.
Instead of offering our communities the information and support we need to stay safe, these policing tactics place individuals and communities at increased risk of violence and infection. Rather than investing resources in community organizations and building networks of support and safety, public officials are doubling down on policing and punishment, targeting communities bearing the brunt of the pandemic: Black, Indigenous and Brown communities, migrants, and other essential workers, low and no-income, unhoused, young, and disabled people. In the midst of unprecedented economic devastation and the highest rates of unemployment in our lifetimes, cities and states are imposing exorbitant fines and offering people rewards to turn in our neighbors instead of reaching out to support them.
Communities are fighting for a world where we keep ourselves and each other safe, without surveillance, policing, or punishment. We are building networks of mutual aid, sewing masks for essential workers, and documenting and calling out aggressive and abusive policing in the midst of a pandemic. This website offers tools and resources for individuals and communities to stay safe and to mobilize for what we need – instead of more cops, stops, tickets, cuffs and cells.
Laws, Orders, and Enforcement
Wondering what orders are in place where you live? What the penalties are for violations? Who is enforcing them? What exceptions exist? What organizations to contact for help?
Check this database of emergency and public health laws in place to prevent the spread of COVID19. You can filter results by state, municipality (where separate orders exist), and mandated or prohibited activity. Click on a row to see a pop up of all the information, or just scroll to the right! If you would like to download the ENTIRE database: reset/clear all filters and “Show ‘ALL’ entries” (at the top left of the table). Then click the Excel, CSV, or PDF button to export.
Data updated: June 1, 2020
COVID19 Public Health Orders
|wdt_ID||Jurisdiction||Municipality||Facial Covering||Maintain 6 feet distance||Gatherings||Curfew||Travel||Quarantine||Links||Link Titles||COVID-19 Orders/Legislation||Permanent Quarantine Laws||Penalties||Enforcement||Status||Relevant language||Exemptions|
|1||Federal||Public Health and Welfare Act||The Surgeon General, with the approval of the Secretary, is authorized to make and enforce such regulations as in his judgment are necessary to prevent the introduction, transmission, or spread of communicable diseases from foreign countries into the Stat||For purposes of this subsection, the term ‘‘State’’ includes, in addition to the several States, only the District of Columbia. (2) For purposes of this subsection, the term "qualifying stage’’, with respect to a communicable disease, means that such dise|
|2||Alabama||recommended for individuals; mandatory for employees||mandatory||permitted with social distancing||Recommended to minimize||Mandatory 14-day quarantine if tested positive for COVID-19||https://governor.alabama.gov/assets/2020/05/Safer-at-Home-Order-FINAL-5.21.2020.pdf||ORDER OF THE STATE HEALTH OFFICER SUSPENDING CERTAIN PUBLIC GATHERINGS DUE TO RISK OF INFECTION BY COVID-19||ORDER OF THE STATE HEALTH OFFICER SUSPENDING CERTAIN PUBLIC GATHERINGS DUE TO RISK OF INFECTION BY COVID-19||Misdemeanor: fine of $50 to $500. Such punishment applies to individuals who violate quarantine orders, those required to provide notification of notifiable diseases who willfully neglect to do so, anyone who knowingly transports a person or thing in viol||06/14/2020||Effective immediately, any person who has tested positive for COVID-19—other than institutionalized persons—shall be quarantined to their place of residence for a period of 14 days, or other period of time as directed by the State Health Officer, or his d|
|3||Alabama||Ala. Code § 22.12.1 to 22.12.29; § 22.11A.7||§ 22.12.1-22.12.29: Violation by quarantine officer or guard or other person: misdemeanor. Fine not less than $50.00 nor more than $100.00 for each offense. Violation of a health or quarantine law: misdemeanor. Fine of $50 to $500 for individuals who viol||§ 22.11A.7: Police Power & Limitations. An officer or guard carrying out a quarantine may arrest without warrant anyone who attempts to violate quarantine regulations and move them to the designated detention area or in front of an officer with jurisdicti||§ 22.12.1 to 22.12.29: Any person who makes affidavit before a quarantine officer or guard, engaged in enforcing quarantine for the protection of a place which said person wishes to enter, and who furnishes such other evidence as may be prescribed by the|
|4||Alabama||Birmingham, AL||recommended||mandatory||permitted with social distancing||Recommended to minimize||Mandatory 14-day quarantine if tested positive for COVID-19||https://www.birminghamal.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/2020.05.22-FINAL-Jefferson-County-Safer-at-Home-Order_-Signed-1.pdf||Birmingham City Ordinances||Birmingham City Ordinances||Fine of up to $500.00 and/or up to thirty (30) days in the municipal jail||06/06/2020||All non-work related gatherings of any size that cannot maintain a consistent six-foot distance between persons from different households, are prohibited. Each employee shall wear a mask, or other facial covering that covers his or her nostrils and mouth,||Face coverings or masks are not required to be worn over the face during individual outdoor exercise, for example, walking or jogging, but must be worn when encountering and interacting with groups of other people in a park or other public place. For the|
|5||Alabama||Montgomery, AL||recommended||mandatory||10 people max||Curfew 10pm - 5am for non-essential workers and activities||Essential activities||https://www.montgomeryal.gov/live/coronavirus||City Proclamation||City Proclamation||Fine of up to $500.00 and/or up to one hundred eighty (180) days in the municipal jail.||During such curfew, no persons shall be or remain in public spaces. Residents of the City of Montgomery shall remain in their residences (exceptions for essential workers or essential activities).||Essential workers, unhoused individuals, and government employees|
|6||Alaska||recommended||recommended||10+ permitted||Mandatory after out-of-state travel; COVID-19 diagnosis, symptoms, or exposure||https://covid19.alaska.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/05222020-Phase-III-IV-Mandate-018.pdf||HEALTH MANDATE 018 - INTRASTATE TRAVEL||HEALTH MANDATE 018 - INTRASTATE TRAVEL||Intrastate Travel Between Communities Located On The Road System And/Or The Marine Highway System is permitted for all purposes. Note: travelers may travel between the Road System and Marine Highway System communities via any normal means of transportatio||No one traveling to or from any community for Critical Infrastructure/Essential Services reasons or Critical Personal Needs travel may be subject to any automatic quarantine or isolation on arrival, except as allowed under Alaska Statutes or Health Mandat|
|7||Alaska||Anchorage, AK||recommended||mandatory||10+ permitted||No restrictions||Mandatory after out-of-state travel; COVID-19 diagnosis, symptoms, or exposure||The Safe Anchorage: Roadmap to Reopening Phase 3||The Safe Anchorage: Roadmap to Reopening Phase 3||This order is the third phase in a phased reopening and continues a process that has prevented a surge of new COVID-19 cases while providing businesses with safety parameters to protect customers and workers. EO-10 is consistent with Centers for Disease C|
|8||Arizona||recommended||recommended||10+ permitted||No restrictions||Mandatory after COVID-19 diagnosis, symptoms||https://azgovernor.gov/sites/default/files/executive_order_2020-36_return_stronger.pdf||Executive Order 2020-36||Executive Order 2020-36||Executive Orders 2020-18, 2020-24, 2020-33 are hereby rescinded. Under this policy all vulnerable individuals...are advised to take reasonable steps to continue limiting their time away from their place of residence or property.|
|9||Arkansas||mandatory||10 people max||https://governor.arkansas.gov/images/uploads/executiveOrders/EO_20-25._._.pdf||Executive Order 20-25||Executive Order 20-25||Any person violating can be charged with a misdemeanor offense|
|10||California||mandatory||mandatory||prohibited||Essential activities only||https://covid19.ca.gov/img/Executive-Order-N-33-20.pdf||Executive Order N-33-20||Executive Order N-33-20||Misdemeanor: fine up to $1,000; up to 6 months in jail.||To protect public health, I as State Public Health Officer and Director of the California Department of Public Health order all individuals living in the State of California to stay home or at their place of residence except as needed to maintain continui|
|Jurisdiction||Municipality||Facial Covering||Maintain 6 feet distance||Gatherings||Curfew||Travel||Quarantine|
Maintain 6 feet distance:
Permanent Quarantine Laws:
Stops, Fines & Arrests
We are building a comprehensive and secure searchable database of enforcement actions based on news reports, self-reports and reports from Cop Watch, legal, and community organizations, and Freedom of Information Requests which will be available in the coming month.
In the meantime, check out the database below for a compilation of news reports about enforcement actions. This database is mostly based on media reports and does not represent a complete collection of enforcement actions to date. By tracking incidents and emerging patterns of policing under COVID-19, we hope to provide useful information while recognizing that media reports often misrepresent the complex identities and lived realities of our communities. To report a stop, ticket, or arrest, please use the REPORT button, or email email@example.com. Please indicate in the subject line whether you need immediate support.
You can filter results in the enforcement tracker by date, age, race, gender, state, city, and type of enforcement – just click on a row to see a pop up of all the information in that row or scroll to the right to find the link to the original news story. If you would like to download the ENTIRE database, reset/clear all filters and “Show ‘ALL’ entries” (at the top left of the table). Then click the Excel, CSV, or PDF button to export.
Data updated: June 1, 2020
|wdt_ID||Date||Age||Race||Gender||First Nation/State/Territory||Municipality||Enforcement Action by Police or other Law Enforcement||Description||Media Link|
|1||05/26/2020||21||Black||man||Illinois||Chicago||arrested||Police arrested two people while dispersing large gathering in violation of social distancing order. Both are facing weapons charge.||https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/men-face-gun-charges-after-2-cpd-officers-injured-breaking-up-englewood-gathering/2277783/|
|2||05/26/2020||42||Black||man||Illinois||Chicago||arrested||Police arrested two people while dispersing large gathering in violation of social distancing order. Both are facing weapons charge.||https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/men-face-gun-charges-after-2-cpd-officers-injured-breaking-up-englewood-gathering/2277783/|
|3||05/21/2020||53||man||New Jersey||Gloucester||arrested||Police arrested and charged a man for two counts of aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer for coughing on them, claiming he had COVID-19.||https://www.nj.com/camden/2020/05/nj-man-kicks-and-coughs-on-police-claims-he-has-coronavirus-during-arrest-cops-say.html|
|4||05/20/2020||21||white||man||Washington||Spokane||arrested||Man ordered to quarantine after exposing police officers to COVID-19.||https://www.spokesman.com/stories/2020/may/26/six-spokane-police-officers-in-quarantine-after-se/|
|5||05/18/2020||26||Black||man||New Jersey||Jackson||arrested||Man arrested after refusing to put a face mask back on at a dollar store; police say he spit in an officer's face.||https://patch.com/new-jersey/lakewood-nj/lakewood-man-spits-officers-face-says-he-has-virus-police|
|6||05/18/2020||39||white||man||New Jersey||Bellmawr||arrested||One member of Atilis Gym was arrested for violating the governor’s executive order.||https://www.inquirer.com/health/coronavirus/bellmawr-atilis-gym-police-arrest-member-new-jersey-coronavirus-closure-ian-smith-20200519.html|
|7||05/16/2020||23||white||woman||Hawaii||Maui||arrested||Woman from Colorado arrested in Hawaii for violating quarantine law.||https://www.denverpost.com/2020/05/18/tara-trunfio-arrested-hawaii-quarantine-coronavirus/|
|8||05/16/2020||Asian||man||Hawaii||Waikiki||arrested||Man from California arrested in Hawaii for violating quarantine law.||https://www.staradvertiser.com/2020/05/18/hawaii-news/1-new-case-1-tourist-arrested/|
|9||05/15/2020||23||Middle Eastern/North African||man||Hawaii||Honolulu||arrested||Man from NYC arrested in Hawaii for violating quarantine law.||https://globalnews.ca/news/6952218/coronavirus-hawaii-beach-arrest/|
|10||05/13/2020||22||Black||woman||New York||New York City||arrested||A mother with a child was wrestled to the ground and arrested in a NYC subway station over confrontation with police about mask-wearing.||https://abc7ny.com/viral-video-violent-arrest-kaleema-rozier-nypd/6196707/|
|Date||Age||Race||Gender||First Nation/State/Territory||Municipality||Enforcement Action by Police or other Law Enforcement|
Enforcement Action by Police or other Law Enforcement:
Need legal support?
Stopped? Ticketed, Arrested for violating a “stay at home,” “shelter in place,” or other emergency order? National Lawyers’ Guild hotline coming soon!
Resources on criminalization and COVID19
- Know Your Rights During COVID-19 (Coronavirus)
- Cop Watch During the COVID-19 Pandemic
- Demands to End Broken Windows Policing During COVID-19
- Policing in a Time of Pandemic: Recommendations for Law Enforcement
- An Abolitionist Platform Toward Healthy Communities Now and Beyond COVID-19
- Movement for Black Lives COVID19 Platform
- COVID Racial Data Tracker
- Mutual Aid Hub
- American Public Health Association FAQ on COVID19 and Policing
- More COVID19 resources