Amid a surge in COVID-19 cases, Los Angeles County is putting into effect a new “targeted” safer-at-home order that will go into effect on Monday.
The new order, which is significantly less restrictive than earlier lockdowns in the spring, will last for three weeks through Dec. 20. L.A. County reported 4,544 new cases and 24 deaths on Friday, bringing the 7-day average to 4,751.
The order mostly bans all gatherings, either inside or outside, of people outside ones’ household and implements new capacity restrictions in an attempt to allow some businesses to stay open. There are exceptions for church services and protests, both of which are constitutionally protected rights. The move follows the earlier closure of all restaurants, breweries and wineries for dine-in service last week.
“To those who recently lost loved ones from COVID-19, we send you wishes for healing and peace,” said Barbara Ferrer, Director of Public Health. “With the recent surge of COVID-19 across our community, we must take additional safety measures to reduce the risk of illness and death from this terrible virus and protect our healthcare system. These targeted measures are in effect for the next three weeks and still allow for many essential and non-essential activities where residents are always masked and distanced.
Here is brief rundown of the new restrictions:
Gatherings: All public and private gatherings with individuals not in your household are prohibited, except for church services and protests, which are constitutionally protected rights.
Occupancy limits at various businesses; all individuals at these sites are required to wear face coverings and keep at least 6 feet of distance:
- Essential retail – 35% maximum occupancy
- Non-essential retail (includes indoor malls) – 20% maximum occupancy
- Personal care services – 20% maximum occupancy
- Libraries – 20% maximum occupancy
- Fitness centers operating outdoors – 50% maximum occupancy
- Museums galleries, zoos, aquariums, botanical gardens operating outdoors – 50% maximum occupancy
- Mini-golf, batting cages, go-kart racing operating outdoors – 50% maximum occupancy
Outdoor recreation activities all which require face coverings (except for swimming) and distancing:
- Beaches, trails, and parks remain open; gatherings at these sites with members outside your household are prohibited.
- Golf courses, tennis courts, pickleball, archery ranges, skate parks, bike parks, and community gardens remain open for individuals or members of a single household. Pools that serve more than one household may open only for regulated lap swimming with one person per lane.
- Drive-in movies/events/car parades are permitted provided occupants in each car are members of one household.
- All schools and day camps remain open adhering to re-opening protocols. K-12 Schools and Day Camps with an outbreak (3 cases or more over 14 days) should close for 14 days.
Closed non-essential businesses/activities:
- Playgrounds (with the exception of playgrounds at childcare and schools)