California has been making consistent strides towards lowering COVID-19 related deaths and reducing person-to-person transmission. This is creating an opportunity for less restrictive guidelines to be applied to the golden state.
The ease on restrictions will include indoor dining and movie theaters potentially reopening. However, there is an underlining concern whether the reduction of the guidelines and its effect on the stabilization of COVID-19 reports.
Rising vocalist, Leilia, shared her thoughts as someone who enjoys performing in front of large crowds; she passionately believes in waiting until the county reflects dramatically sparse numbers in transmission and COVID-19 related deaths.
Theme parks, stadiums, and outdoor ballparks are looking to reopen April 1, according to State officials. The Dodgers, Angels, and other California baseball teams have clearance to allow a specified amount of people inside their stadiums when the season starts.
The resurgence of public activity is directed by the State’s four-tier, color-coded plan; it navigates the flow of reopening businesses and educational institutions. The tier goes from ‘purple’ being the most restrictive tier and ‘yellow’ being the tier with the lightest guidelines.
Starting on April 1, California is looking to allow outdoor sports and live performances to take place on every tier level. The color-coded tiers will specify the size of the population allotted at a time. For instance, the purple tier only allows 100 people for max capacity and reservations will be enforced.
Amusement parks located in California will open when their county is officially accepted in the red tier; this will allow 15 percent of a grouped population set as max capacity for the entertainment venues.
Leilia is an L.A. native, born to perform and share her musical talents. She reflected on the opportunity of performing again as Los Angeles prepares to reopen, “I understand the want to re-open public activities and I understand the need to re-open for the resurrection of jobs, as well as for more of a steady cash flow within our economy.”
She continued, “However, our case and death numbers in Los Angeles alone are incredibly high; the vaccination roll out is uneven and, in my opinion, we have enough flexibility to at least get out of our homes when we need to—which is a lot more leniency than other countries. I think until L.A. has earned the ability to have our numbers lower, we shouldn’t participate in any social activities just yet.”
She reflected on the potential harm of opening back up being greater than the need to re-open, highlighting the irreplaceable value of life—it’s the most important narrative to focus on during a global health crisis according to Leilia.
Live performances can allow California attendees in, on every tier starting April 1 as well. Counties in the purple tier must limit group capacity to 100 or less and require advanced reservations. The volume for space goes up to 20% in the red tier, 33% in the orange tier, and 67% in the yellow tier.
Attendance to any public activity is limited to California residents only, but decisions may go on a case-by-case basis. Director of Governors’ Office of Business and Economic Development, Dee Dee Myers, explained that there will most likely be away around it.
California’s top health official, Dr. Mark Ghaly stated that there is more confidence in conducting outdoor activities, in comparison to indoor activities. The risk of transmission is reduced with the use of masks and physical distancing which is easier to conduct outside.
KTLA 5 reported that California plans to speed up the reopening process, once 2 million vaccine doses are distributed in the most impacted neighborhoods. As the vaccinated population increases, State officials will have more inferential evidence to reduce health guidelines.
The statistics released on Tuesday by the L.A. County health department projected an average daily rate of 7.2 infections per 100,000 Angelenos. The goal is to have the number ratio drop to a single whole number that is seven or less and continue to decline or plateau for two weeks. Following those desired results, the county will be able to integrate into the red tier, which is right below the purple tier.
The red tier would provide loosened restrictions in different sectors of business; increasing indoor capacity to 50% and strengthening the volume available for indoor dining by 25 percent. Other business that will be allotted the same space include theaters, museums, and aquariums, while and fitness centers could also operate at 10 percent.
The tier assignments for all 58 counties are updated every Tuesday; to improve one’s tier status, the County must see all three State- ordered metrics are met and hold those measurements for two weeks. Specifically, for the red tier, the County would have to have a daily case rate between four and seven per 100,000 people (about the seating capacity of the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum).
Current reports reflect that the County has been unsuccessful in maintaining the required metrics for a two-week period. The last data report reflected that the benchmarks were being met for a period, but then, the County experienced a surge during their winter season.
The concerning metric is the case rate per capita, according to the report released by KTLA 5, Los Angeles’ positivity rate is 3.5 percent, with an equity percentile of 5.1. These numbers represent the county being in good enough standing to move down to the orange tier; however, the case rate per capita is too large for the colossal build of the city.
Regardless of tier movement, the final inference related to the regulated health guidelines will come from officiated health personnel; they can set stricter stipulations than what the State may suggest.
In the past week, L.A. County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer highlighted the fluctuation in transmission numbers has been reflecting a downward trend in all measurements in the virus. The health director confirmed that new COVID cases have fallen below 1,000 reports. She credited this to the socially distanced guidelines that have been present over the year of the viral spread.
Ferrer stated, “We are moving in the right direction, a direction that will hopefully lead to us moving forward on our recovery journey, where more of our young people can go back to school for on-site learning.”
On March 7, the county released data information that reflected 41,307 new COVID-19 cases in the Black community, and 1,620 related deaths; these numbers exclude the City of Long Beach and Pasadena. Although there is evidence reflecting a decrease in overall transmission, which would permit the consideration of less restrictions, the numbers projected above, found within the Black community, is what Leilia was shedding light on; one thousand lives gone, is one thousand lives too many.