As scientists and medical professionals work to treat the ill and to develop medicines to combat the coronavirus, state and local governments are implementing measures, including ordering people to shelter at home to stem the spread of COVID-19.

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What exactly does “shelter at home” mean, and could people find themselves in trouble with the law if they disregard it?

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Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva says law enforcement is looking for “voluntary compliance.”

“If someone is refusing to comply and they pose a threat to other people,” he says, “then we can start escalating and get them to comply, or we’ll take other necessary action.”

Villanueva says that while people should go about their daily business within the confines of their home, it is still permissible to grocery shop, attend medical appointments, or to exercise outdoors, as long as they maintain a safe distance between themselves and others.

What about the health of those who are incarcerated during the coronavirus pandemic? Watch the video above to find out what Sheriff Villanueva says his department is doing to help protect the jail population.

Check here to find out where you can watch more from Friday’s Dr. Phil.

For the most up-to-date information on COVID-19, please visit the Centers for Disease Control And Prevention (CDC) website at

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