L.A. City and County COVID-19 Weekly Update (May 18, 2020)

California COVID-19 Guidance: Week in Review

Reopening Timeline

The County began to announce further plans to reopen businesses in the region. While some version of a stay-at-home order will remain in place through July, the County announced a gradual relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions. Specifically, on May 14, 2020, the County published a revised Safer-at-Home Order intended to further the process of reopening. Among other changes, under the modified Order:

  • “Lower-risk” retail (except for businesses located in indoor malls and shopping centers) will be permitted to open for curbside or “doorside” pickup.
  • Manufacturing and logistics businesses supporting reopened retail establishments will also be permitted to reopen.
  • Essential businesses will remain open, with some additional clarifications as to the extent of permissible activities:
     
    • For example, individuals “may leave their residence to work for, volunteer at, or obtain services at Healthcare Operations,” which the County defines as including (among other things) hospitals, clinics, laboratories, pharmacies and dental facilities.
    • Likewise, newspapers, television news, radio, magazines, podcasts and journalism activities may restart, with new clarification that this category includes taped, recorded or streamed content of “any sort” that is “produced by a single individual or household in a residence without the physical presence of individuals other than the single individual or the members of the household.”
  • Bars, nightclubs, gyms, movie theaters, community centers, outdoor flea markets and swap meets, malls, and congregated events and gatherings remain barred. Before any business may reopen, it will need to implement and post plans for adhering to social distancing and infection control practices.

New Ordinances and Rules

The Board of Supervisors adopted a Worker Protection Ordinance that covers the janitorial, maintenance, security service and hospitality industries and commercial properties and applies only to employers with 25 or more employees in those industries. While the language of the Ordinance does not explicitly limit its applicability to the unincorporated parts of the County, the Supervisors indicated that this was their understanding and intent. The Ordinance includes two components: Worker Retention and a Right of Recall:

  • The Retention rules require employers to retain employees when there is a transition or change of ownership, and to rehire employees by seniority.
  • The Recall rules require an employer to rehire laid-off workers by seniority for a given category of position and to provide written notice of job openings as it rehires.
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