November 27, 2020 at 4:45 pm PST | by Brody Levesque
LA County imposes new modified stay-at-home order
Screenshot of Dr. Barbara Ferrer speaking with reporters earlier this year. (Blade file photo)

LOS ANGELES – As new daily COVID-19 cases reported remain at alarming levels and the number of people hospitalized continues to increase,  Dr. Barbara Ferrer, Director of Public Health for Los Angeles County announced Friday that the department was issuing a new stay-home order as coronavirus cases surge.

The temporary order will take effect Monday, November 30, 2020 and remain in effect through December 20, 2020 and also requires additional safety measures across all sectors of business and activities.

“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, Ferrer said in an emailed statement.

“We know we are asking a lot from so many who have been sacrificing for months on end and we hope that L.A. County residents continue following Public Health safety measures that we know can slow the spread.  Acting with collective urgency right now is essential if we want to put a stop to this surge. Please remain home as much as possible and do not gather with others not in your household for the next three weeks.”

Ferrer noted that the department confirmed 24 new deaths and 4,544 new cases of COVID-19. Currently, the five-day average of new cases is 4,751.

The order states that residents are advised to stay home as much as possible and always wear a face covering over their nose and mouth when they are outside their household and around others.

The additional safety modifications in the order include the following changes to the existing Health Officer Order:

  • 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.

  • Schools:
    • 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)
    • Cardrooms

Because of the high rates of transmission in the community, restaurants, bars, breweries and wineries remain closed for in-person dining and drinking, as customers are not wearing face coverings during their visit which results in an increased chance of transmission of the virus.

Restaurants, wineries and breweries remain open for pick-up, delivery, and take-out. Breweries and wineries remain open for retail sales at 20% occupancy.

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