94 Coronavirus Cases In LA County; Bars, Gyms, Dine-In Restaurants Directed To Close
Los Angeles County and a number of cities, including Pasadena and Santa Monica, are taking even more extreme steps to distance residents from one another and protect against the ongoing coronavirus outbreak. L.A. County's new restrictions apply to all 88 cities within the county, as well as unincorporated parts of the county.
The list of businesses directed to close is long and includes:
- entertainment centers
- fitness centers
Restaurants are barred from providing dine-in service and instead are limited to dine-in and takeout orders.
The measures include strongly discouraging any gatherings of more than 50 people (an announcement that didn't go quite as far as President Donald Trump's call just minutes earlier to limit gatherings to 10 people or fewer).
The news came even as the number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in L.A. County nearly doubled over the weekend.
County health director Dr. Barbara Ferrer said 41 cases have been reported in the last 48 hours, bringing the total to 94 countywide. Two of the people whose cases were announced today have been hospitalized.
Anticipating the financial and economic hardship this would place on residents, Supervisor Kathryn Barger said the county was also introducing measures to help residents weather this social storm, including:
- work on eviction relief for those impacted, including potentially a temporary moratorium on evictions
- assist small businesses in applying for loans through the U.S. Small Business Adminstration
- work with utility and service providers to waive late fees and forgo service disconnections for tenants and businesses
- consider working with banks to waive late fees, forgo notices of default, and delay other actions such as foreclosing on properties
- examine other options including food through the Cal-Fresh program
Barger also said the county is working to set up telemedicine services and is encouraging residents to use remote health services in lieu of going to the doctor, when possible.
All county buildings are closed to the public, too, and the county is canceling non-essential meetings and events.
For a full list of county closures, check the county website here.
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