The Alameda County Health Officer today joined six Bay Area health jurisdictions to extend and expand the Shelter in Place Order through May 3, 2020, to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
Alameda County Public Health officials said:
The COVID-19 public health crisis in the County, the region, and the nation has worsened significantly over the past two weeks. Confirmed cases in the six most populous Bay Area counties have increased more than eight-fold since the Prior Shelter Order. The number of confirmed cases increased from 258 to 2,092 cases between March 15, 2020 and March 29, 2020. The number of confirmed deaths rose from 3 to 51 in this same period. While the Prior Shelter Order has been effective in reducing the rate of transmission of the COVID-19 disease (“flattening the curve”), it is not enough.
The County Health Officer has determined that more and stricter social distancing is needed to slow the rate of spread, prevent deaths, and stop the health care system from becoming overwhelmed, and that we need to continue with these social distancing measures for a longer period of time.
The full order is here.
Alameda County has also provided answers to Frequently Asked Questions here.
“The only vaccine we have right now is social distancing. We all need to take this extended, more restrictive public health order seriously and do our part to save lives. Oakland, we can #beatcovid19 together —by staying apart!” said Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf.
According to the new, expanded order, social distancing requirements are mandatory. The City of Oakland is complying with the order and posting signage in public parks reminding visitors of the 6-foot social distancing requirement.
In accordance with the Order, effective at 11:59 PM tonight, the City of Oakland will close the following areas to the public:
- Playgrounds, dog parks, public picnic areas, and public recreational areas;
- Shared public recreational facilities such as golf courses, tennis and basketball courts, pools, and rock walls.
The expanded public health Order also prohibits sports or activities that require use of shared equipment, like frisbees, basketballs, baseballs, and soccer balls, except by members of the same household.
The County Health Order noted that, “Crowding at beaches, public parks, and open spaces has been a problem. The Health Officer, government, or entity that manages the space may adopt restrictions to reduce crowding and risk of COVID-19 transmission, including limiting number of entrants, restricting vehicular access, or complete closure.”
In addition, to recreational restrictions, under the expanded order, “Most construction—residential and commercial—is prohibited. Exceptions are made for healthcare facility construction directly related to the COVID-19 response; affordable housing; public works projects when designated as essential by the lead governmental agency; shelters and temporary housing; projects necessary to provide critical services to certain vulnerable individuals; construction necessary to secure an existing construction site; and limited essential residential or business repairs.”
The City of Oakland is currently reviewing these restrictions and will develop more specific guidance regarding construction projects and developments in Oakland in the coming days.
In accordance with the County’s order, and with the health and well-being of Oakland residents and City employees in mind, it is the City’s intent to continue to provide critical services to our residents while allowing people to remain sheltered in place at home and maintaining social distancing.
A list of City service impacts, including facility closures, service suspensions, and alternative service points (online, telephone, or by appointment) is available on the City’s website. This list will be updated and modified in accordance with the expanded Order and ongoing guidance from the Alameda County Public Health Officer.