(St. Louis Post-Dispatch) — Gov. Mike Parson has issued a statewide stay-at-home order starting Monday, meaning Missouri will join about 40 other states that require residents to avoid going out except for essential purposes. The Republican governor’s order came Friday as the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Missouri topped 2,000. The number of infections in the state has risen eight-fold in the past 10 days. Nineteen people have died of COVID-19, the illness caused by the virus. The majority of Missouri residents are already living under stay-at-home orders issued by local leaders, including most of the St. Louis and Kansas City areas, Springfield and Columbia.