The update was approved based on the county’s ability to meet the State of California’s readiness criteria, which includes metrics related to the county’s success in slowing the spread of the virus, available hospital capacity, supplies of personal protective equipment (PPE) and having enough contact tracers — employees who track those who have contact with a person positively diagnosed with COVID-19.
While the cautious reopening of local businesses has garnered praise from both owners and their patrons, it has left many wondering what exactly is — and is not — permitted in San Diego. Here, we offer a summary of what has and has not changed under the update.
What has changed:
- Retail businesses, including malls, can now have in-store customers. Businesses must follow all industry guidance and sanitizing protocols, and ensure that customers and employees wear face coverings and maintain social distancing.
- You can dine in restaurants that meet California public health measures. When visiting a restaurant, you must maintain social distancing of at least 6 feet from other diners and wear a mask as you enter and leave the restaurant and at any time not seated at your table. Self-service items, such as buffets, salad bars and soda machines, are not permitted.
- Hair salons and barbershops can open as long as they adhere to the state’s guidance, which supports a safe and clean environment for both employees and their customers. Only services that can be performed with face coverings on the stylist and client are allowed. This includes haircuts, coloring, weaves and braiding, but excludes services that require touching a client’s face, such as eyebrow and eyelash services, waxing and facials. Tanning salons are also permitted to reopen, but nail salons are not included in the updated orders.
- Places of worship, including churches, synagogues and mosques, can reopen as long as they follow guidelines, which include limiting attendance to 25% of capacity or 100 people, whichever is lower. Physical distancing must be maintained and it is recommended that the following should be avoided: passing of collection plates, shared materials, physical contact, and group singing or recitations.
- Some service-based businesses — pet groomers, dog walkers, recreational equipment rentals, car washes, landscapers, appliance repair, cleaning services and plumbers — can reopen, as can offices unable to support remote working, and outdoor museums and gallery spaces.
- Parking lots attached to parks may open, with limitations.
- You can now sit or lie down on the beach with members of your household. Beach parking lots may open, with limitations.
- Stay home if you are sick.
- Stay home unless traveling to and from essential businesses, reopened businesses and essential activities, or to participate in individual or family outdoor activity allowed under the health order.
- Wash your hands frequently with soap and water or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol, and avoid touching your face.
- Practice social distancing. Keep at least 6 feet away from other people unless they are members of your household, and avoid gatherings of any size.
- Wear a face covering when leaving your home, entering a business or within 6 feet of anyone who is not a household member.
- Golf courses and tennis courts that follow safety protocols remain open.
- If you are over 65 years old, have a chronic underlying health condition or a compromised immune system, it is recommended that you stay home unless you need medical care.
“Local metrics are trending in the right direction,” says Dr. Wilma J. Wooten, the county’s public health officer. “We urge San Diegans to continue to do their part, so the county can proceed with its thoughtful and calculated process of reopening businesses and other activities.”
Learn more about what Sharp HealthCare is doing to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.