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What California’s Re-Opening Means for Oakland

City is taking a cautious, thoughtful, safe, and equitable approach to re-opening

Oakland, CA – As more people are getting vaccinated, COVID cases are dropping in California and in Oakland. It’s good news that the safe, free, and now widely available vaccines are making a big dent in the COVID crisis.

Today, the State of California moved beyond the Blueprint for a Safer Economy and fully reopened the economy. Along with California’s re-opening, many City programs and services will be open, too. Here are some examples of in-person services we are offering the public:

  • Oakland Public Library—The Main Library is open seven days a week; 15 neighborhood branches are open six days per week and until 8:00 pm two nights per week.
  • Parks, Recreation and Youth Development
    • Town Camp is open! Town Camp is a fun and safe summer camp experience for youth ages 5-12 years old at 18 recreation centers citywide.
    • Two new outdoor fitness courts are open at Lowell and Arroyo Viejo parks.
    • Five swimming pools are open to the public: Lions, Temescal, Fremont, deFremery, and East Oakland Sports Center and Water Park.
    • Boating and sailing camps, as well as boat rentals, are open and available at the Lake Merritt Boating Center.
    • Parks and recreation facilities are available for rentals.
    • Ace Kids Golf is programming at Lake Chabot Golf Course.
    • Tennis courts and playgrounds are open citywide.
    • The “Town Park” Skate Park at deFremery and skate ramps at Rainbow and Montclair recreation centers are open.
    • Junior Tennis Camp and the Oakland Neighborhood Basketball League will resume this summer.
    • The Adult Softball League will start June 21.
  • Senior Centers are open for food distribution and vaccination clinics, and will begin to open to Senior Center members by appointment.
  • Oakland Paratransit is serving seniors and physically disabled residents.
  • Oakland Animal Services is open to the public seven days a week from 11 am to 5 pm. Animal control officers respond to all calls from 7 am to 9:30 pm, and emergency calls via a stand-by officer the remaining hours.
  • Parking Citation Assistance Center is open weekdays, 10 am – 2 pm
  • Revenue offices continue to serve walk-in visitors.
  • OPD offers a full range of services, including vehicle releases, police reports/records, towing abandoned vehicles.

For a number of direct service programs across the City, full re-opening will be contingent upon hiring part-time staff to fill the positions necessary to run those programs and services. City staff are working hard to fill those positions as quickly as possible.

City of Oakland Workplace Requirements

Even with the State of California lifting most restrictions, employers must continue to follow Cal/OSHA standards. Currently all employees are required to wear masks indoors and maintain social distancing protocols. While Cal/OSHA is expected to revise its workplace guidance soon, employers may continue to enforce public health best practices (masks, distancing) to maintain a safe & healthy workplace.

COVID is still circulating in our community, and a significant percentage of the population (about 40%) is not fully vaccinated, including children under 12 (76.6% of eligible residents have had a least one shot). We are not asking employees or the public to reveal their vaccination status, so we must assume that people are unvaccinated and continue masking and physical distancing protocols to keep everyone safe.

The City of Oakland will continue to require employees and visitors to our facilities to wear cloth face coverings, even those who are vaccinated. See the City’s Face Covering Requirements for more details. These requirements will be evaluated over time and as Cal/OSHA rules and public health guidance evolve.

City Plans for Safe Re-opening of Public Facilities

City employees have been working throughout the pandemic and many never stopped reporting to work in person. As COVID restrictions are lifting, the City is beginning to safely re-open public facilities and restore in-person services that were curtailed during the COVID pandemic. Our goal is to ensure a safe and healthy workplace for employees and visitors alike.

While things are certainly trending in the right direction, the global pandemic is not over. The virus is still circulating in our community, many residents are not yet vaccinated, and some, like children under 12, are ineligible to receive the vaccine. For these reasons, The City is taking a safe, cautious, intentional, equitable, and thoughtful approach to re-opening.

The Human Resources Management Department has convened an interdepartmental Safe Re-Opening Task Force to guide the City through the process.

Slowly, some departments are beginning to return to in-person service based on operational needs and guided by public health requirements established by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the California Department of Public Health, Cal/OSHA, and the Alameda County Public Health Department.

Each Department may safely re-open office workspaces at its own pace. Depending on operational and business needs, this may include implementation of a phased or hybrid approach. City employees provide essential services and can be called back to the office at any time.

Tentative Timeline

Below is a tentative timeframe to implement a gradual re-opening of City facilities and resume in-person service delivery; this timeline is preliminary and subject to change:

  • June/July:
    • Departments determine operational needs/priorities
    • Evaluate telecommuting arrangements/requests
    • Some departments may initiate phased return
  • Mid-August: Implement staged and/or hybrid re-opening
  • Early Fall: Full re-opening of City facilities to the public



Posted: June 15th, 2021 3:35 PM

Last Updated: June 15th, 2021 4:44 PM

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