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Effective November 17, San Joaquin County will be officially moved back to the more restrictive Purple, or Widespread, Tier after the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) announced changes to its Blueprint framework today.

California Health and Human Services Agency Director Mark Ghaly has announced that forty-one counties in California, including San Joaquin County have reached the Purple Tier meaning businesses and organizations must be more restrictive. This move by CDPH is one of many they are implementing to help slow the recent rise in cases statewide. In addition, CDPH is moving counties back more than one tier at a time, giving counties less time to implement their new tier restrictions (24 hours versus the previous 72 hours), and will be less likely to approve adjudications. San Joaquin County’s adjusted case rate is now 16.4 cases per day per 100,000 people, well above the requirements to remain in the Red Tier, and positivity rate is 6.5%. “The swift rise in cases is concerning. Our community has heard the message for several months now to wash hands, practice physical distancing, and wear a mask properly,” says Dr. Maggie Park, San Joaquin County Public Health Officer. “Nobody wants to see business rollback or close, but now, more than ever, we need San Joaquin County residents to step up and take these actions seriously.” A return to the Purple Tier drastically impacts many local businesses that will now have to close indoor business operations or reduce capacity. Effective November 17, the following businesses will have these restrictions:

  • Family entertainment centers: Outdoors only with modifications
  • Gyms and fitness centers: Outdoors only with modifications
  • Movie theaters: Outdoors only with modifications
  • Museums, zoos and aquariums: Outdoors only with modifications
  • Places of worship: Outdoors only with modifications
  • Retail: Open indoors with a maximum of 25% occupancy
  • Restaurants: Outdoors only with modifications
  • Shopping centers: Open indoors with a maximum of 25% occupancy
  • Schools that were open prior to today for in person learning, will remain open following State Guidance.

Personal care services, nail salons, hair salons and barber shops can still remain open indoors with modifications in the Purple Tier and must follow the State’s industry guidance. Any schools that have reopened for in-person learning while San Joaquin County was in the Red Tier, or with an approved waiver, are not required to close and can remain open. Schools that have not yet opened will need to receive a waiver to reopen under the Purple Tier or wait until San Joaquin County has moved back into the Red Tier. Due to the current case rate, San Joaquin County does not meet the stipulations to accept school waiver applications at this time. Additionally, to slow the spread of COVID-19, State officials announced a revised Gathering Guidance, Face Covering Guidelines and a Travel Advisory. The Gathering Guidance replaces the October 9, 2020 guidance to mandate gatherings that occur outdoors and are limited to three households or less. The Face Covering Guidance mandates that a face covering is required at all times when outside of the home, with some exceptions. The Travel Advisory recommends that those traveling into California from other states and countries self-quarantine for 14 days and Californians to remain at home or in their region and avoid non-essential travel to other states or countries. Help slow the spread by following the Health Orders and guidelines, wearing a mask, washing your hands regularly, practicing physical distancing, being tested, and limiting mixing with people outside your household. Free testing is available at many locations in San Joaquin County. To find testing locations, more information, or report violations, visit For additional information about the State’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy, Industry Guidance, or to find out what is open, visit Follow San Joaquin County on Facebook at: or Twitter at:

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