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Press Release - March 20, 2020 - City of Riverside Encourages Residents to Heed Governor’s Order, Stay Home
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 20, 2020 Contact: Phil Pitchford Public Information Officer 951-826-5975 firstname.lastname@example.org City of Riverside Encourages Residents to Heed Governor’s Order, Stay Home Permitted trips are grocery stores and food outlets, pharmacies, gas stations, banks, laundry services RIVERSIDE, Calif. – The City of Riverside, in an effort to protect its residents from the spread of the novel coronavirus COVID-19, is strongly urging everyone to heed Gov. Newsom’s order issued Thursday night that greatly restricts most travel outside the home. Residents should avoid all travel to dine-in restaurants, bars and nightclubs, entertainment venues, gyms and fitness studios, public events and gatherings, and convention centers. Permitted travel includes trips to gas stations, pharmacies, food outlets (including grocery stores, farmers markets, food banks, convenience stores, take-out and delivery restaurants), banks, laundromats and laundry services. Essential local and state government functions will continue. The police and fire departments will continue to keep the city safe; water and electric workers will continue to provide safe and reliable water and power; and refuse workers will continue to pick up and dispose of trash. But, given the restrictions, other city services will be minimal until further notice. “The Governor’s order makes it very clear that the best thing we can do for one another is stay home to prevent the spread of the virus,” Mayor Rusty Bailey said. “If you need to go out for a walk or a bike ride, just make sure you observe social distancing and stay at least six feet away from other people.” The changes are the latest effort by the City of Riverside and the state to reduce the spread of COVID-19, which the World Health Organization has characterized as a worldwide pandemic. The City and County each have declared a local emergency in connection with COVID-19. President Trump has declared a national emergency. Gov. Newsom’s order increases the previous restrictions of travel and gathering for people living in this area. Riverside County’s Public Health Officer had previously cancelled all gatherings with an expected presence of 10 individuals based on an imminent and proximate threat to public health. Now, Gov. Newsom’s order – which can be found at https://covid19.ca.gov/img/N-33-20.pdf -- makes it more important than ever to stay home when not undertaking the specific permitted tasks, most of which are related to food, medicine, banks and laundry services. The measures are designed to prevent the spread of COVID-19, which can be debilitating for most people, but deadly for some, especially the elderly. People who believe they may have contracted COVID-19 should contact medical professionals and follow their advice before proceeding to a hospital or doctor’s office. “The best antidote for what we are experiencing now is a well-prepared populace,” Mayor Pro Tem Erin Edwards said. “Our city’s website – www.RiversideCA.gov/COVID-19 -- is a great place to learn about the steps you can take to safeguard yourself and your loved ones.” Police Chief Larry Gonzalez stressed that residents do not need to be worried about being questioned or arrested just for being on the street. That would be akin to martial law, which is not in effect. “We want you to be able to get groceries, bring home a prepared meal from a restaurant or pick up your prescriptions, for example,” he said. “We just want you to go home as soon as you do those things.” Chief Gonzalez encouraged Riverside residents in a video today: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VCaKQG0BU2A
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