Newsom announces new virus protections for essential workers

California

SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) – Governor Gavin Newsom on Friday provided another update on the state’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.

>> You can watch it here on KRON4.comKRONon.tv, and on Facebook.

Newsom said keeping essential workers safe is a top priority in order to combat the virus.

“We demanded even with our stay at home order certain sectors of our economy to stay open,” said Newsom.

This includes health care, grocery stores, food prep workers, truck drivers, stockers, and personal care aides.

Newsom announced additional worker safeguards to protect essential workers:

  • Preventative Measures
    – Ensure workers can isolate and quarantine when sick or exposed
    – Provide safe, temporary housing for COVID positive and exposed agriculture and farmworkers
    – Build on Public Awareness Campaign to reach employers, workers, and families
  • Employer Education
    – New Employer Safety Handbook that will include guidance for safe clean environments; best practices for an outbreak; proactive education efforts to help businesses comply; testing information for employees
  • Ensuring Long-Lasting Protections
    – Work to expand worker protections and build on existing Executive Orders including: COVID-19 paid sick leave; workers’ compensation for at-risk workers; strategic enforcement of labor laws; strengthen employer reporting of outbreaks

According to state data, there were 9,718 confirmed cases on July 23. The 7-day average was 9,881.

The 7-day average of daily tests was 124,540, according to Newsom.

At this time, there were 42,898 admitted patients and a 11% increase in ICU admissions over 14-days.

While there are 2,002 total ICU COVID-19 patients, there were 2,614 total ICU beds available. Newsom said there were 11,932 ventilators available.

On Wednesday, Newsom gave an update on the state’s PPE response, revealing the state has been able to distribute 86.4 million N-95 respirators and 297 million surgical masks to Californians working on the front lines against COVID-19 including to hospitals, emergency responders, farm and factory workers and nursing home workers.

There are now 34 counties on the state’s COVID-19 watch list, with Kern County being the one most recently added.

Newsom on Monday revealed updated guidelines allowing personal care services such as barbershops and salons to reopen outdoors, with safety precautions in place.

At this time, there are 33 counties on the state’s COVID-19 watch list. In the Bay Area, those counties are Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, Santa Clara, Solano, and Sonoma.

Last week, Newsom revealed strict guidelines for schools to reopen in California, making it unlikely that the vast majority of districts will have classroom instruction in the fall as the pandemic surges.

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