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The Full Safer At Home Order From Los Angeles – What You Can Do? What May Not Do!

The novel coronavirus pandemic is a global emergency that is unprecedented in modern history. Profoundly impacting our daily lives, it has inspired Angelenos to respond with courage, compassion, wisdom and resolve to overcome this crisis and help each other. In a short period of time and at an unprecedented scale, residents in every community have embraced urgent social distancing best practices and aggressive hygienic precaution, not just to protect themselves, but to protect others. Angelenos understand with exceptional clarity that there is only one way to get through this difficult moment: together. The City’s recent emergency orders — curtailing large public gatherings; temporarily closing many government facilities; closing theaters, bars and entertainment venues; prohibiting restaurants from serving to dine-in customers while permitting take-out, delivery and drive-thru; and a ban on evictions of residential and commercial tenants who cannot pay rent due to financial impacts caused by COVID-19 — have been followed with a willing and generous spirit.

While we have previously taken strong action, now the City must adopt additional emergency measures to further limit the spread of COVID-19. With this virus, we are safer at home. Wherever feasible, City residents must isolate themselves in their residences, subject to certain exceptions provided below. This Order is given because, among other reasons, the COVID-19 virus can spread easily from person to person and it is physically causing property loss or damage due to its tendency to attach to surfaces for prolonged periods of time Under the provisions of Section 231(i) of the Los Angeles City Charter and Chapter 3, Section 8.27 of the Los Angeles Administrative Code, I hereby declare the following orders to be necessary for the protection of life and property in the City of Los Angeles, effective on Friday, April, 10, 2020 at 11:59 PM:

1. Subject only to the exceptions outlined in this Paragraph and Paragraph 5 below, all persons living within the City of Los Angeles are hereby ordered to remain in their homes. Residents of the City of Los Angeles who are experiencing homelessness are exempt from this requirement. The City is working, along with partner government agencies and non-governmental organizations, to make more emergency shelters available for the unhoused residents of our City. City of Los Angeles officials and contracted partners responsible for homelessness outreach shall make every reasonable effort to persuade such residents to accept, if offered, temporary housing or shelter, as the Health Officer of the County of Los Angeles recommends that sheltering individuals will assist in reducing the spread of the virus and will protect the individual from potential exposure by allowing the individual access to sanitation tools. People at high risk of severe illness from COVID-19 and people who are sick are urged to stay in their residence to the extent possible except as necessary to seek medical care.

2. Subject only to the exceptions outlined in this Paragraph and Paragraph 5 below, all businesses within the City of Los Angeles are ordered to cease operations that require in-person attendance by workers at a workplace (including, without limitation, indoor malls and indoor shopping centers, including all stores except for those stores considered essential activities or infrastructure under this Order which are directly accessible to the public from the exterior of the mall or shopping center – the interior of the indoor mall or indoor shopping center shall remain closed to the public). To the extent that business operations may be maintained by telecommuting or other remote means, while allowing all individuals to maintain shelter in their residences, this Order shall not apply to limit such business activities. A business that fails to cease operation despite not meeting an exception in this Paragraph or Paragraph 5 may be subject to having its water and power services shut off by the Department of Water and Power for not being in compliance with the Order. The Deputy Mayor of Public Safety, or his written designee, may, after engagement with and a written warning issued to a noncompliant business, refer that business in writing to the Department of Water and Power to shut off water and power services pursuant to this order. Upon receiving such a written referral, the Department of Water & Power is authorized to shut off water and power services to the noncompliant business operating in violation of the Order

3. All public and private gatherings of any number of people occurring outside a residence are prohibited, except as to those exempted activities described in this Paragraph and Paragraph 5. This provision does not apply to gatherings within a single household or living unit.

4. All travel, including, without limitation, travel on foot, bicycle, scooter, motorcycle, automobile, or public transit is prohibited, subject to the exceptions in Paragraph 5.

5. Exceptions. People may lawfully leave their residence while this Order is in effect only to engage in the following activities: (i) First 24 hour allowance. This Order shall not apply, for a 24-hour period following the effective date above, to allow employees and business owners to access to their workplaces to gather belongings or address other administrative needs, so long as social distancing requirements are followed. Such workplaces shall remain closed to the public in accordance with this Order. (ii) Essential Activities. To engage in certain essential activities, including, without limitation, visiting a health or veterinary care professional, obtaining medical supplies or medication, obtaining grocery items (including, without limitation, canned food, dry goods, fresh fruits and vegetables, pet supplies, fresh or frozen meats, fish, and poultry, any other household consumer products and products necessary to maintain the safety and sanitation of residences and other buildings) for their household or to deliver to others, or for legally mandated government purposes.

In addition, any travel related to (a) providing care for minors, the elderly, dependents, persons with disabilities, or other vulnerable persons; (b) returning to one’s place of residence from outside the City; (c) travelling to one’s place of residence located outside the City; (d) compliance with an order of law enforcement or court shall be exempt from this Order; or (e) legally mandated government purposes.

Persons engaging in these essential activities are required to maintain reasonable social distancing practices. This includes maintaining a distance of at least six-feet away from others, frequently washing hands with soap and water for at least twenty seconds or using hand sanitizer, covering coughs or sneezes (into the sleeve or elbow, not hands), regularly cleaning high-touch surfaces, and not shaking hands. (iii) Outdoor Activities. Travel for purposes of or to engage in passive outdoor activity and recreation, provided that the individuals comply with social distancing requirements, including, without limitation, walking, running, cycling; use of scooters, roller skates, skateboards, or other personal mobility devices; or travel in a vehicle with household members to a location where it is possible to walk, run or ride a bike, horseback ride or operate personal mobility devices, while maintaining social distancing practices. Indoor and outdoor playgrounds for children, except those located within childcare centers, shall be closed for all purposes.

The City of Los Angeles, following the recommendations and directives of the County Department of Public Health, shall cancel its recreational and cultural programming and close its beaches, public beach parking lots, beach access points, piers, park trails, trail heads, and park facilities. Parks shall remain open for passive recreational activities while practicing social distancing. “Recreation and cultural programming” refers to recreational and cultural activities, indoor and outdoor sports leagues, aquatics classes, instructional courses, and group sessions on City-owned and operated park land. “Park facilities,” which shall be closed to the public, refers to the City’s Department of Recreation and Parks facilities, including: skate parks, basketball courts, tennis courts, volleyball courts, baseball fields, Venice Boardwalk (except as necessary to travel to an essential business), Griffith Observatory, Travel Town, Griffith Park train rides and pony rides, the Cabrillo Marine Museum, Sherman Oaks Castle, EXPO Center, and aquatics facilities. Census Centers located at Recreation and Parks facilities may remain open, provided strict adherence to social distancing practices. (iv) Work in Support of Essential Activities. To perform work providing essential products and services or to otherwise carry out activities specifically permitted in this Order. (v) To care for or support a friend, family member, or pet in another household. (vi) Emergency Personnel. All first responders, gang and crisis intervention workers, public health workers, emergency management personnel, emergency dispatchers, law enforcement personnel, and related contractors and others working for emergency services providers are categorically exempt from this Order. (vii) Essential Activities Exempt. Certain business operations and activities are exempt from the provisions of this Order, on the grounds that they provide services that are recognized to be critical to the health and well-being of the City.

These include:

(a) All healthcare operations, including hospitals, clinics, dentists, pharmacies, pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, medical and scientific research, laboratories, healthcare suppliers, home healthcare services providers, veterinary care and pet day care providers (excluding pet grooming and training), mental and behavioral health providers, substance use providers, physical therapists and chiropractors, cannabis dispensaries, or any related and/or ancillary healthcare services, manufacturers and suppliers. Healthcare operations does not include fitness and exercise gyms and similar facilities.

(b) Grocery stores, water retailers, farm and produce stands, supermarkets, convenience stores, warehouse stores, food banks, and other establishments engaged in the retail sale of canned food, dry goods, fresh fruits and vegetables, pet food and medication supply (but not grooming or training), fresh or frozen meats, fish, and poultry, any other household consumer products (such as construction supplies, cleaning and personal care products). This includes stores that sell beer, wine, and liquor, groceries and other non-grocery products, and products necessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences. The portions of wineries, breweries and tap rooms that provide tastings to the public are closed. Certified farmers markets may operate only if they are able to obtain written approval from the Bureau of Street Services (BSS) and only according to the guidelines set forth by BSS.

(c) Food cultivation, including farming, livestock, and fishing.

(d) Organizations and businesses that provide food, shelter, and social services, and other necessities of life for economically disadvantaged or otherwise needy individuals (including gang prevention and intervention, domestic violence, and homeless services agencies).

(e) Newspapers, television news, radio, magazine, podcast and journalism.

(f) Gas service stations, auto part supply, mobile auto repair operations, auto repair shops (including, without limitation, auto repair shops that operate adjacent to or otherwise in connection with an used or retail auto dealership), bicycle repair shops and related facilities. No auto dealership may operate, with the exception of its auto service and part stores. Fully automated or self-service car washes are permitted to operate; car washes that require personnel are not permitted to operate.

(g) Banks, credit unions, financial institutions and insurance companies, and pawn shops.

(h) Hardware and building supply stores, day labor centers, and nurseries.

(i) Plumbers, electricians, custodial/janitorial workers, handyman services, funeral home workers and morticians, moving services, HVAC installers, carpenters, day laborers, landscapers, gardeners, exterminators, property managers and leasing agents, private security personnel and other service providers who provide services to maintain the safety, sanitation, and essential operation to properties and other essential activities discussed in this subsection.

(j) Businesses providing mailing and shipping services, boxes and packaging, and post office boxes.

(k) Educational institutions — including public and private K-12 schools, colleges, and universities — for purposes of facilitating distance learning or performing essential functions provided that social distancing of six-feet per person is maintained.

(l) Laundromats, dry cleaners, and laundry service providers.

(m) Restaurants and retail food facilities that prepare and offer food to customers, but only via delivery service, to be picked up, or drive-thru. For those establishments offering food pick-up options, proprietors are directed to establish social distancing practices for those patrons in the queue for pick-up. This includes maintaining a distance of at least six-feet away from others. Schools and other entities that typically provide free food services to students or members of the public may continue to do so under this Order on the condition that the food is provided to students or members of the public on a pick-up and carry out basis only. Schools and other entities that provide food services under this exemption shall not permit the food to be eaten at the site where it is provided, or any other gathering site. Cafeterias, commissaries, and restaurants located within hospitals, nursing homes, or similar facilities are also exempt from this Order. Social distancing shall be maintained at a distance of at least six-feet away from others

(n) Businesses that supply or provide storage for products needed for people to work from home.

(o) Businesses that supply other essential businesses with the support, services, or supplies necessary to operate, provided that strict social distancing is maintained. This section includes, without limitation, utility companies.

(p) Individuals and businesses that ship, truck, transport, or provide logistical support to deliver groceries, food, goods, or services directly to residences, or businesses engaged in essential activities or essential infrastructure.

(q) Airlines, taxis, ride sharing services, car rental companies, and other private transportation services providing transportation services necessary for essential activities and other purposes expressly authorized in this Order.

(r) Home-based care for disabled persons, seniors, adults, or children.

(s) Residential facilities and shelters for homeless residents, disabled persons, seniors, adults, children and animals.

(t) Professional services, such as legal, leasing and real estate transactions, payroll or accounting services, when necessary to assist in the permitting, inspection, construction, transfer and recording of ownership of housing, and when necessary to achieve compliance with legally mandated activities. Vacant units and real property may be shown, provided that appointments and other residential viewings must occur virtually or, if a virtual viewing is not feasible, by appointment with no more than two visitors at a time residing within the same household or living unit and one individual showing the unit (except that in-person visits are not allowed when the occupant is still residing in the residence);

(u) Childcare facilities providing services that enable employees exempted in this Order to work as permitted.

To the extent possible, childcare facilities must operate under the following mandatory conditions:

(1) Childcare must be carried out in stable groups of 12 or fewer (“stable” means that the same 12 or fewer children are in the same group each day).

(2) Children shall not change from one group to another. (3) If more than one group of children is cared for at one facility, each group shall be in a separate room. Groups shall not mix with each other.

(4) Childcare providers shall remain solely with one group of children. (v) Hotels, motels, shared rental units and similar facilities. (w) Military/Defense Contractors/FFRDC (Federally Funded Research and Development Centers). For purposes of this Order, essential personnel may leave their residence to provide any service or perform any work deemed essential for national security including, without limitation, defense, intelligence, and aerospace development and manufacturing for the Department of Defense, the Intelligence Community, and NASA and other federal government, and or United States Government departments and agencies. Essential personnel include prime, sub-prime, and supplier contractor employees, at both the prime contract level and any supplier level at any tier, working on federal United States Government contracts, such as contracts for national intelligence and national security requirements. (x) Businesses that manufacture or sell personal protective equipment or cloth or fabric face coverings, and businesses that sell materials for purposes of assembling such face coverings, subject to the following conditions: for manufacturers, at least 50% of daily production must consist of personal protective equipment, cloth or fabric face covering or other essential products; for retail businesses, their products may be available to purchasers by delivery or pick-up but may not be open to the public. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to allow otherwise non-essential businesses to render themselves essential for purposes of this Order by adopting similar sales protocols. (viii) Government Employees. This Order does not apply to employees of government agencies working within the course and scope of their public service employment. Employees of the City of Los Angeles shall follow any current or future directives issued by the Mayor. (ix) Essential Infrastructure. Individuals may leave their residences to provide any services or goods or perform any work necessary to to build, operate, maintain or manufacture essential infrastructure, including without limitation construction of public health operations, commercial, office and institutional buildings, residential buildings and housing; airport operations, food supply, concessions, and construction; port operations and construction; water, sewer, gas, electrical, oil extraction and refining; roads and highways, public transportation and rail; solid waste collection, removal, and recycling; flood control and watershed protection; internet and telecommunications systems (including the provision of essential global, national, and local infrastructure for computing services, business infrastructure, communications, phone retail sales and servicing, and web-based services); and manufacturing and distribution companies deemed essential to the supply chains of the industries referenced in this Paragraph, provided that they carry out those services and that work in compliance with social distancing practices as prescribed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, to the extent possible. (x) Non-Essential Businesses. Businesses regarded under this Order as “non-essential” may be permitted to conduct minimum basic operations including inventory, security, custodial services, payroll and employee benefits processing, and any reasonable activity designed to maximize the ability for its employees to work remotely from their homes.

6. Public Notice of Social Distancing Protocols. The owner, manager, or operator of any business engaged in Essential Activities or Essential Infrastructure under Paragraph 5, shall prepare and post by no later than 11:59 p.m. on April 15, 2020, a Social Distancing Protocol for each of their facilities within the City of Los Angeles.

The Social Distancing Protocol must be (i) substantially in the form attached to this Order as Appendix A; (ii) posted at or near the entrance to the facility so that it is easily viewable by the public and employees; and (iii) provided to each employee performing work at the facility. All such businesses shall implement the Social Distancing Protocol and provide evidence of its implementation to any authority enforcing this Order upon demand.

The City of Los Angeles has adopted the County of Los Angeles Department of Public Health Social Distancing Protocol, available for download at Social Distancing Protocols must observe the following safety guidelines:

a) limit the number of people who may enter into the facility at any one time to ensure that people in the facility can easily maintain, at all times, a minimum six (6) foot distance from others;

b) designate where lines may form at a facility, marking six (6) foot increments at a minimum, establishing where individuals should stand to maintain adequate social distancing;

c) provide hand sanitizer, soap and water, or effective disinfectant at or near the entrance of the facility and in other appropriate areas for use by the public and employees;

d) post a sign in a conspicuous place at all public entries that instructs members of the public to not enter if they are experiencing symptoms of respiratory illness, including fever or cough, and to maintain social distancing from one another;

e) regularly disinfect high-touch surfaces, including, without limitation all payment portals, pens, and styluses after each use. Businesses engaged in essential activities and essential infrastructure are encouraged to offer touch-less payment mechanisms, if feasible;

f) provide employees and contracted workers whose duties require close contact (within 6 feet for 10 minutes or more) with other employees and/or the public with cloth face coverings;

g) require that members of the public who enter the facility wear a face covering during their time in the facility; and

h) adhere to communicable disease control recommendations provided by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, including guidance for cleaning and disinfecting the site. See guidance posted at

7. To the extent that this Order is in conflict with earlier Orders, this Order shall supersede the others.

8. Failure to comply with this Order shall constitute a misdemeanor subject to fines and imprisonment. I hereby urge the Los Angeles Police Department and the City Attorney to vigorously enforce this Order via Sections 8.77 and 8.78 of the Los Angeles Administrative Code.

9. If any subsection, sentence, clause, phrase, or word of this Order or any application of it to any person, structure, or circumstance is held to be invalid or unconstitutional by a decision of a court of competent jurisdiction, then such decision shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions or applications of this Order. This order shall be in place until May 15, 2020, and it may be extended prior to that time. Dated: April 10, 2020 at Los Angeles, California

Dr. Prince Mario-Max Schaumburg-Lippe
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