By Sandra G. Leon
COVID-19 restrictions will be eased for gyms, camps, and hotels beginning June 12th under new guidelines released by California Governor Gavin Newsom.
The easing of restrictions will now include bars and wineries, gyms and camps, hotels, and entertainment facilities like bowling alleys, arcades, miniature golf, and batting cages.
Facilities will still have to comply with social distancing requirements, and also provide hand sanitizer and wipes to customers where equipment is shared, including gyms and sports facilities.
Other locations, including museums, galleries, zoos, and aquariums can also reopen but the guidelines restrict group tours groups, and discontinue the shared use of audio headsets and rented strollers.
Bars and wineries are required to follow the same guidelines as restaurants, including using outdoor seating when possible and maintaining six feet of separation between diners. Wine tasting rooms are required to use a fresh glass for each tasting and limit groups.
Live sporting events can also restart but without fans in attendance, as well as movie, TV, and music productions. The new guidelines allow each industry to develop its own plans through negotiations with their respective labor or employee groups or unions.
Although the state cannot force schools to close, all school districts followed the state’s stay-at-home orders but have now announced they will reopen in August. The new guidelines include recommendations for schools to follow that include staggered arrival times to minimize contact between students, staff, and parents, and having lunch in classrooms or outdoors instead of cafeterias or shared eating areas. Schools are also encouraged to limit the sharing of toys, books, and other supplies to reduce the possibility of spreading the coronavirus.
The move to relax restrictions comes as the State Department of Health released new statistics on COZVID-19 cases. As of June 5th, California had 122,901 confirmed cases and 4,485 deaths. 2,238,463 tests have been conducted in California. California’s case positivity rate is at 4.5 percent of those tested, and the number of hospitalizations has decreased by 2.9 percent over the last 14 days.