San Francisco Mayor Welcomes Newly Eased Restrictions Under Extended Shelter Order

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San Francisco Mayor London Breed on Wednesday welcomed newly eased restrictions for some jobs and activities, per the extended shelter order for the city and other Bay Area jurisdictions that will now go through at least May 31 to help limit the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.

Although precautions like social distancing and wearing face coverings in public will still be required for the public to slow the spread of the coronavirus, under the extended order starting on Monday, businesses that operate primarily outdoors can resume operations, like construction businesses, car washes, plant nurseries and flea markets.

Also, per the extended order, outdoor activities at skate parks and golf courses can resume. Sports involving contact or shared equipment will still be prohibited.

The newly allowed activities come after city officials have also recently opened several streets up to pedestrians and bicyclists, including both John F. Kennedy Drive in Golden Gate Park and John F. Shelley Drive in John McLaren Park, to allow for social distancing.

"The small changes to loosen restrictions on some lower-risk activities are the result of the outstanding job by our residents of abiding by the rules and precautions that have helped keep our community safe," Breed said in a statement.

"I know this is hard for everyone, but we have to keep our focus on protecting public health every step of the way. Our focus now must be on continuing to strengthen our system and track progress as we plan for the future steps we can take if we continue to see improvements," she said.

The decision on which restrictions to ease was decided on by health officers from San Francisco, San Mateo, Alameda, Santa Clara, Contra Costa and Marin counties.

The health officers will then decide in the coming weeks, or months, which, if any, restriction to ease even further.

The criteria for that decision involves factors like COVID-19 hospitalization rates in the Bay Area; the number of hospital beds available throughout the region; whether there is an adequate supply of personal protective equipment for all health workers; whether counties are meeting testing demands for high-risk populations; and whether counties have the capacity to conduct contact tracing investigations and quarantine people who test COVID-19 positive or have been exposed.

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