California, the country's most populous state, is taking its first significant step in reopening its economy today, as part of a phased exit from the social distancing measures meant to mitigate the coronavirus pandemic.
California was the first in the nation to issue a stay home order to all of its nearly 40 million residents, effective on March 19.
Dr. Mark Ghaly, the state’s Health and Human Services secretary, said yesterday that data showing stable hospitalization rates gave authorities confidence to move into this reopening stage. All reopenings in the state will be subject to active monitoring and surveillance, California Gov. Newsom said earlier this week.
What’s allowed to reopen today:
- Select retailers with curbside pickup and delivery options, such as clothing stores, florists and bookstores
- Some industries with workers spaced farther apart, using protective gear, sanitizing equipment
What’s not reopening yet:
- Offices, gyms, restaurants with dine-in service, shopping malls, museums, public beaches (except where approved with restrictions), in-person churches and salons
What are big cities planning to do?
- Los Angeles will be following the state’s easing of restrictions today, with the limited reopening of businesses. Parks, hiking trails, and golf courses will reopen tomorrow, but masks will be required.
- San Francisco and the rest of the Bay Area have decided not to begin reopening just yet. The stay-at-home order for seven Bay Area jurisdictions, which began on March 17 and was extended on May 4, still remains in effects.
- San Diego County will also follow state guidance on reopening.