Los Angeles City Mayor, Eric Garcetti (Screen Shot)

Friday, July 10, Los Angeles City Mayor Eric Garcetti disclosed updates surrounding the escalation of positive COVID-19 cases in L.A. The mayor has stressed the importance in maintaining physical distancing, getting tested, and staying at home whenever possible. Recent numbers reflect a spike in community transmission, specifically in the younger demographic of 18-40. The mayor has forewarned, if numbers of positive coronavirus cases reach severe levels, there will be another Safer at Home Order issued.

The mayor continues to work closely with the County Public Health Department, to combat the spike in community transmission seen in recent months. Warning signs have been flagged through the resurgence of outdoor activity; a Safer at Home Order can be issued at any time public officials see a severe escalation in positive cases.

Garcetti created an acronym called “The three C’s: Confined places, Crowded spaces, and Close Contact,” He expressed that these areas should be avoided during this time. Upholding social distancing is our strongest weapon. Extreme vigilance when doing business outside your home is highly recommended. Social gatherings are still prohibited, the mayor was very stern with that declaration. Groups large and small are a major source of spread.

There are lives at stake, the mayor emphasized that every single decision made on a daily scale can lead to a fatal outcome during this global pandemic. Garcetti stated, “If we make the right decisions today, we move closer to getting this virus under control again.” The mayor mentioned flattening the curve is a shared responsibility, between the community, public leaders, and the work force.

The COVID-19 threat level remains at ‘orange,’ meaning the risk of spreading coronavirus is high. The L.A.  County Public Health Department shared on Friday, there were 2,667 new positive cases and 834 of those reports were found in the city of Los Angeles. That brings the county’s total cases to 127, 358. There has been additional 51 deaths reported, the rate of fatal cases is slightly going up as result of the spike. 32 individuals were over 65, 14 victims were between 41-65, and three people were between 18-40.

Additionally, hospitalization has been climbing but new admissions has been increasing at a manageable rate.  The rate of tests that are coming back positive are at 9.3%. This is above where the county was, in late May. 20,000 people were tested in city and county testing sites on July 10 and over the course of future weeks, 110,000 people will be tested for COVID-19.

There is a pop-up testing site in South L.A. on Central Avenue and 59th Street, this temporarily walk-up site is for community members and local factory workers. There are no appointments needed, more than 400 tests are offered. Pop-up test locations will continue to sprout throughout Los Angeles, specifically in areas where there has been recorded surges in spread.

Monday, July 13, the highly anticipated renter’s assistance program is looking to roll out. 100-million dollars will go directly to landlords and help tenants. Providing $2,000 to the “hardest hit” households and looking to amplify financial relief to both tenants and property owners. Eligible tenants will have to do three things: Live in the city of L.A., show the financial impact of COVID-19, and earn less than 80% of the average income in the area.

The mayor announced 18,000 additional tests will be added, to meet the surge in demand for higher thresholds in testing capacity.  In total, One-million people have been tested for coronavirus through walk-up and drive-thru testing sites in Los Angeles. Garcetti called for federal help to assist with growing demand for testing sites, he asked for national leadership to help, he emphasized their direct assistance at from a federal level. The application window for renter’s assistance start on Monday, July 13, at 8am. For more information go to https://hcidla.lacity.org/