In a Friday press release, Piedmont announced it would close playgrounds in town starting Monday, Dec. 7 in response to changes mandated by a new health order outlined on Friday by Alameda County and neighboring health jurisdictions. Although playgrounds will be closed, the city said that parks will remain open as long as residents comply with social distancing requirements and restrictions on gatherings. The city will monitor the situation and close parks again if compliance becomes a problem.
“It is important that our entire community take action to stem the spread of this disease by limiting interactions with people outside their household,” said City Administrator Sara Lillevand. “Our collective well-being is at stake and we owe it to each other to keep our community safe.”
The city says it is currently examining other ways in which operations will be affected and will make announcements as appropriate.
In Alameda County, the revised shelter in place order will become effective at 12:01 a.m. on Monday, Dec. 7 and will remain in effect until Jan. 4. The revised, stricter shelter in place order is designed to limit interactions between persons living in different households which could spread the disease. The biggest change in the order is that private gatherings are prohibited and that social bubbles must be disbanded.
The health officers stressed that this order aligns these health jurisdictions with the stricter standards announced by the state earlier this week but does so earlier than required by the state. In a media release issued by the health officers, Santa Clara County Health Officer Dr. Sara Cody states, “We cannot wait until after we have driven off the cliff to pull the emergency break. We understand that the closures under the State order will have a profound impact on our local businesses. However, if we act quickly, we can both save lives and reduce the amount of time these restrictions have to stay in place, allowing businesses and activities to reopen sooner.”
Alameda County Health Officer Dr. Nicholas Moss said, “Rising hospitalization rates across the region threaten not only our community members with severe COVID-19, but anyone who may need care because of a heart attack, stroke, accident, or other critical health need. By acting together now we will have the greatest impact on the surge and save more lives.”
Among the changes required by this order are the closure of outdoor dining, personal care services, playgrounds, museums, zoos, wineries, and bars. Restaurants will remain able to serve takeout and delivery.