By Lillian Boyd

Gov. Gavin Newsom released a detailed plan on reopening the state amid the coronavirus pandemic during a Tuesday, April 14 press briefing.

The roadmap to modify the stay-at-home order is centric to six indicators, which Newsom outlined during his announcement:

  • The ability to monitor and protect our communities through testing, contact tracing, isolating and supporting those who are positive or exposed
  • The ability to prevent infection in people who are at risk for more severe COVID-19
  • The ability of the hospital and health systems to handle surges
  • The ability to develop therapeutics to meet the demand
  • The ability for businesses, schools, and child care facilities to support physical distancing
  • The ability to determine when to reinstitute certain measures, such as the stay-at-home orders, if necessary

“Our next phase is an optimistic phase,” Newsom said. “We move from surge and begin to transition to suppression . . . there’s a ray of optimism. This is one (phase) where science and public health—not politics—must be the guide.”

Newsom went on to applaud the actions that individuals have taken in physical distancing to bend the curve—but did so soberly.

“Today, we had a record number of deaths that we are reporting,” Newsom said. “Seven hundred fifty-eight individuals, stories, families, lives that were torn apart. Seventy-one individuals that lost their lives just since the last reporting I gave you. . . . We are not out of the woods yet. We are not spiking the ball.”

This will not be a permanent state, Newsom said.

Today, State Sen. Patricia Bates, whose district represents Dana Point, San Clemente and San Juan Capistrano, signed a letter among other Republican leaders urging Newsom to prioritize the economy as the next phase of the COVID-19 response.

The letter called for Newsom to have equal representation between job creators and their workforce in conversations surrounding the reopening of the economy. On Monday, April 13, Newsom announced a pact between California, Oregon and Washington on a shared vision for reopening their economies.

“Government’s sole revenue depends on the private sector,” the letter to Newsom stated. “Any plan for recovery must be coordinated and transparent so we get Californians back to work and save our crucial small businesses. How we plan to move forward with this recovery will have a dramatic effect on not just the current economy, but our future economy as well.”

In closing remarks during Newsom’s press briefing, he emphasized that the public should not expect normalcy in the near future.

“There’s no light switch here,” Newsom said. “I would argue it’s more like a dimmer. This toggling back and forth between more restrictive and less restrictive measures. More individual accountability, more individual responsibility as it relates to face coverings, as it relates to practicing physical distancing. More individual responsibility if you’ve been exposed.”

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