Governor Gavin Newsom briefly discussed the state’s concerns on Friday morning during a briefing on its stimulus package before lawmakers.
You can see the full replay in the player below.
It’s called the California Comeback Plan, and according to Newsom’s office, “it tackles the toughest challenges” the state is facing.
Newsom didn’t have much to say about the state’s guidelines on masks, given the CDC’s announcement Thursday that vaccinated people can live normally without masks in most situations.
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On Friday his office tweeted: “… we are reviewing the new CDC guidelines on masking.”
With @CAPublicHealth we are reviewing the new CDC guidelines on masking.
CA has administered 33 million vaccines and has one of the lowest case rates in the country. We continue to encourage all eligible Californians to get vaccinated as we aim for a full reopening on June 15th.
– Office of the Governor of California (@CAgovernor) May 14, 2021
California counties await masking and social distancing
LOS ANGELES (AP) – California counties await instruction from the state after the federal government said Thursday that fully vaccinated people can stop wearing face coverings and social distancing in most situations, whether indoor or outdoor.
The California Department of Health did not respond to questions about if and when the state would adopt new guidelines announced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC continues to urge the wearing of masks in crowded indoor spaces such as buses, airplanes, hospitals and prisons, and urges residents to follow local regulations.
Governor Gavin Newsom says the state is well on its way to fully reopen its economy next month, signaling an end to most pandemic restrictions as infection rates remain at record lows and more people are vaccinated. On Thursday, the state began making the vaccine possible for children between the ages of 12 and 15
The CDC’s announcement raised additional questions for some health officials, including Dr. Barbara Ferrer, director of public health for Los Angeles County, which is home to about a quarter of the state’s nearly 40 million residents.
“I think the most important question for many people is, what does it mean when people go about their daily business?” She said. “The big problem we face is making sure we can continue to protect our employees.”
At least 60% of California residents 16 and older are partially vaccinated. However, the percentage of people vaccinated varies greatly between states and across the country. There is also no way of knowing who is vaccinated or who is just saying they are vaccinated.
“I think this is early,” said Dr. Marin County Health Officer Matt Willis on KGO-TV from San Francisco. “Frankly, the idea of people not covering their faces indoors when they congregate is worrying that there would be ongoing transmission.”
In California, people who are fully vaccinated are only required to wear a mask during crowded outdoor events. But they still have to wear a mask indoors outside their own home unless they meet other vaccinated people. The state has a number of other rules for businesses and other public places that vary by state based on how the virus is spreading.
Newsom said earlier this week that residents will not wear face covers in June, except for large indoor convention events. But the next day he said the state will likely have “guidelines and mandates” for wearing masks indoors after the state fully reopens.
Disability rights activist Sascha Bittner, 47, suffers from cerebral palsy, uses a wheelchair and survived the lymphoma. She plans to continue wearing a mask and staying away from people she doesn’t know unless she is sure she is in a place where everyone else is vaccinated.
She wished the Biden government had waited for more people to be vaccinated at the national level
“I’ll mask myself and stay socially distant as long as I see fit. Nor will I be with people who are sloppy in their logs, ”the San Francisco resident said via email. “I’m just not there yet and I REALLY hope people will see that we’re not quite there yet.”
Berkeley-based Justin Grant wishes the federal government relaxed the rules on external masking sooner, as all the scientific research he’s seen shows that “external masking is completely unnecessary.”
He was waiting in a Walgreens pharmacy on Thursday with his 13-year-old daughter who had just received her vaccination. She wanted the shot so she could hang out with her friends, he said, and he had no hesitation in letting her get the vaccine as he trusts science.
The San Francisco Department of Health, one of the toughest in the country when it comes to masks and social distancing, welcomed the announcement as “good news” on social media, underscoring the vaccine’s effectiveness.
The department said it would have to wait for the state to pass new guidelines, as did Riverside County.
Jose Arballo Jr., a spokesman for the county health department, spoke on Thursday of a vaccination site in the Moreno Valley where around 1,000 people had come to take their pictures by noon, including a handful of children between the ages of 12 and 15. All young people arrived with their immediate families, he said.
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