Congressman Ted Lieu - Update 7/24/20 - COVID-19 Reminders + State & County Updates

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July 24, 2020

Update 7/24/20 

Dear neighbor, 

As we continue to battle the COVID-19 pandemic, I am writing to help you stay informed on the progression of coronavirus cases in California and LA County and the corresponding public health directives in place to keep you and your families safe. Below are updates on state and local response efforts as well as mental health, financial support and other resources to guide you through this uncertain time.

Earlier this week, I hosted a Small Business Virtual Town Hall with SBA Los Angeles District Director Victor Parker, SBDC Business Advisor Trevor Shickman and LA County DCBA Business Development Manager Chris Perry to discuss loans and other assistance available to small businesses on the federal and county levels. To watch our full discussion with presentations on the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, as well as LA County small business support resources and grant opportunities, click here. If you have additional questions, please contact my district office at (323) 651-1040. Although our offices are physically closed, my staff is working full-time remotely and can assist you.

We are at a critical stage in this pandemic. Our actions now will determine what happens in the weeks ahead. Please remember to do your part and wear a mask in public; practice social distancing; and wash your hands frequently.

Your weekly reminder: 

  1. If you tested positive for COVID-19, you should expect a call from a county public health specialist as part of an effort to contact trace and contain the spread of the virus. They are not law enforcement officers and will not ask about immigration status. The call will appear on your phone as “L.A. Public Health.” Please pick up – contact tracing can help save lives. 
     
  2. Due to public health concerns caused by COVID-19, every registered voter in California will receive a mail-in ballot in time for the November 2020 election. Voting from home will help protect yourself and others from the virus. Please run through the checklist below to ensure all your information is up to date. If you see something that’s outdated, you can change it by going to lavote.net or calling 800-815-2666.
     
  3. The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us about the importance of ensuring state and local governments have adequate resources to address the needs of their communities. In order to get an accurate count in the 2020 Census, every resident of our community must respond to the census. Please remember to complete your census form, either online, by phone or by mail to do your part in helping our community receive its fair share of federal resources to benefit schools, roads, hospitals, emergency preparedness plans and more.
     
  4. Have you witnessed fraud, waste, or abuse of coronavirus pandemic relief funds? Congress has approved over $3 trillion in federal spending to combat the pandemic and I am committed to ensuring your tax dollars are being spent properly. I encourage you to visit coronavirus.house.gov/contact/tip-line or call 202-225-4400 today to report waste, fraud, or abuse of COVID-19 funds.

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COVID-19 Updates

From the State

This week, Governor Newsom issued new guidance allowing for hair salons and barbershops to operate outdoors. The guidance allows these businesses to resume services outdoors only when they are ready to do so with the appropriate safety measures in place. Please see below for specific personal care service requirements in LA County. 

Last week, Governor Newsom laid out a plan for California school reopenings. In California, school reopenings will be determined by local health data. The new plan prohibits schools in counties that are on California’s County Monitoring List from resuming in-person instruction until their county has been off the Monitoring List for a period of at least 14 days. LA County is currently on the County Monitoring List. To track county data on cases, hospitalizations and Monitoring List status, click here.  

The Governor also announced new actions to boost California’s Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) stockpile. The state moved to secure an additional 120 million N-95 masks and 300 million surgical masks for distribution to front-line workers. The Governor also directed the Department of Public Health and Office of Emergency Services to further increase the strategic stockpile to 100 million N-95 respirators and 200 million surgical masks to prevent shortages and increase preparedness heading into early fall.

From LA County

LA County issued reopening protocols for hair salons, barbershops and other personal care businesses offering outdoor services. Customers must wear a mask the entire time and businesses must ensure there is enough air flow for circulation. In addition, appropriate distancing measures and infection control protocols must be in place.

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This week, the LA County Board of Supervisors approved a $1.22 billion spending package to assist people and businesses impacted by the pandemic using federal and state funds provided through the CARES Act. The plan allocates money to expand contact tracing and testing; support small businesses through grants; provide financial relief to families; and ramp up the countywide response to the crisis by supporting disaster workers and providing PPE for employees. For a full list of spending allocations, click here 

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Update 7/10/20 

Dear neighbor, 

This week, coronavirus case numbers in California and Los Angeles County reached a record high. Current modeling suggests 1 in 140 LA County residents are unknowingly infected with COVID-19. Two weeks ago, that number was 1 in 400. Now more than ever, we must all do our part to limit the spread of COVID-19, which continues to take American lives and disrupt livelihoods. Please remember that your actions have a direct impact on the health of our community and wash your hands frequently; do social distancing; and wear a mask in public. 

As the demand for COVID-19 tests increases, LA County officials have placed new restrictions on who should get tested. Those who are showing symptoms; work in a high-risk environment; or have had known exposure to the virus are now prioritized for testing. To keep up with the high demand, LA County is working to increase appointments at existing sites and set up new testing sites over the next two to three weeks. To learn more about new testing requirements and schedule an appointment, go to covid19.lacounty.gov/testing. 

Yesterday, I joined Rep. Raul Ruiz and other Southern California Congressmembers in speaking with the media about the urgent need for the Senate to pass the HEROES Act to provide much-needed relief to frontline workers, small businesses and families impacted by this crisis. I also led a letter urging the Small Business Administration to clarify the guidance for Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) so small businesses can use these funds for COVID-19 safety and mitigation activities, such as purchasing glass partitions and personal protective equipment.

Your actions over the coming weeks will affect how our community moves forward in the fight against COVID-19. Please remember that wearing a mask in public indoor and outdoor spaces is mandatory and will help stop the spread of this highly contagious virus. Below are updates and resources from state and local officials to guide you through this ongoing crisis. 

Your weekly reminder: 

  1. If you tested positive for COVID-19, you should expect a call from a county public health specialist as part of an effort to contact trace and contain the spread of the virus. They are not law enforcement officers and will not ask about immigration status. The call will appear on your phone as “L.A. Public Health.” Please pick up – contact tracing can help save lives. 

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  2. Due to public health concerns caused by COVID-19, every registered voter in California will receive a mail-in ballot in time for the November 2020 election. Voting from home will help protect yourself and others from the virus. Please run through the checklist below to ensure all your information is up to date. If you see something that’s outdated, you can change it by going to lavote.net or calling 800-815-2666.
     
  3. The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us about the importance of ensuring state and local governments have adequate resources to address the needs of their communities. In order to get an accurate count in the 2020 Census, every resident of our community must respond to the census. Please remember to complete your census form, either online, by phone or by mail to do your part in helping our community receive its fair share of federal resources to benefit schools, roads, hospitals, emergency preparedness plans and more.
     
  4. Have you witnessed fraud, waste, or abuse of coronavirus pandemic relief funds? Congress has approved over $3 trillion in federal spending to combat the pandemic and I am committed to ensuring your tax dollars are being spent properly. I encourage you to visit coronavirus.house.gov/contact/tip-line or call 202-225-4400 today to report waste, fraud, or abuse of COVID-19 funds.

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COVID-19 Updates

From the State

California is calling on healthcare providers, behavioral health professionals and health care administrators to join the California Health Corps and help fight COVID-19. So far, over 96,000 people have filled out an application and 741 Health Corps members have been deployed to skilled nursing, corrections and other facilities. If you are over 18 and have a California License for clinical practice, or are a medical resident or nursing student, you can play a role in responding to the crisis in your region. You will be paid and given malpractice insurance coverage. To register, click here

On May 1, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an emergency use authorization allowing the use of remdesivir, an inhaled antiviral drug, to treat adults and children hospitalized with COVID-19. Remdesivir has proven effective in helping to treat the virus for some patients. Due to the drug’s limited availability, the federal government agreed to ship remdesivir only to states with increasing cases, including California. Governor Newsom announced that the state received its first inventory of remdesivir and is in the process of distributing it to local providers. For more on the allocation of remdesivir in California, click here

From LA County 

Beaches in LA County are now open following the temporary closure over the July 4th holiday weekend. Beach parking lots, bike paths, facilities and access ways are also open. Remember: face coverings are required on all L.A. County beaches when you are out of the water and around others. 

Bars, breweries, pubs, wineries and tasting rooms remain closed, in addition to indoor dining services, cardrooms, satellite wagering facilities, zoos, aquariums and museums. For a full list of what is open and closed in LA County, click here

Last month, when bars and restaurants started to reopen in LA County, the county Public Health Department discovered that 83% of these locations were violating some part of the public health protocols. Now, county inspections have seen a 90-98% compliance rate at the same businesses. For business safety protocols, please visit covid19.lacounty.gov/recovery.

The LA County Department of Public Health updated its reopening guidance for Places of Worship to align with Governor Newsom’s recent directives. The new order prohibits singing and chanting during indoor services to prevent the spread of COVID-19 droplets. Although LA County published reopening protocols for Places of Worship, it is still recommending they continue to facilitate remote services. 

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Update 7/2/20 

Your weekly reminder: 

  1. All Californians are now required to wear face masks in public indoor spaces and outdoors when physical distancing is not possible. Please remember to wear your mask to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.
     
  2. If you tested positive for COVID-19, you should expect a call from a county public health specialist as part of an effort to contact trace and contain the spread of the virus. They are not law enforcement officers and will not ask about immigration status. The call will appear on your phone as “L.A. Public Health.” Please pick up – contact tracing can help save lives. 
     
  3. Due to public health concerns caused by COVID-19, every registered voter in California will receive a mail-in ballot in time for the November 2020 election. Voting from home will help protect yourself and others from the virus. Please run through the checklist below to ensure all your information is up to date. If you see something that’s outdated, you can change it by going to lavote.net or calling 800-815-2666.

    Image

     
  4. The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us about the importance of ensuring state and local governments have adequate resources to address the needs of their communities. In order to get an accurate count in the 2020 Census, every resident of our community must respond to the census. Please remember to complete your census form, either online, by phone or by mail to do your part in helping our community receive its fair share of federal resources to benefit schools, roads, hospitals, emergency preparedness plans and more.

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COVID-19 Updates

From the State

On June 30, Governor Newsom signed an executive order extending authorization for local governments to halt evictions for renters financially impacted by COVID-19 through September 30. The order also extends numerous other provisions previously put in place in response to the pandemic, including the option to obtain marriage licenses through videoconferencing; the suspension of in-person foster care visits; and In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) videoconferencing care for older adults and those with disabilities. 

Over the past three months, California has served around 14,200 individuals through Project Roomkey, a statewide effort to secure housing and safe isolation spaces for those experiencing homelessness. This week, Governor Newsom announced Homekey, a new phase of the COVID-19 response to provide safe shelter for homeless Californians. The Homekey program will allow counties to partner with the state to rehabilitate hotels, motels, vacant apartment buildings, residential care facilities and other housing types to serve people experiencing homelessness and protect our most vulnerable from COVID-19.

From LA County

According to recent health inspections, around 40% of restaurants in LA County have not been compliant with some of the basic safety requirements such as wearing face coverings or distancing tables six feet apart. If you own or operate a business in LA County, please go to covid19.lacounty.gov/recovery for industry-specific reopening guidelines to ensure the health and safety of your employees and customers. If you entered a business and noticed it was not following health guidelines, please use this online form to file a complaint or call the LA County Environmental Health Customer Call Center at (888) 700-9995.

Please beware of fake “Face Mask Exempt” cards circulating around LA County. These flyers and cards were not sent by a government agency and are not endorsed by the Department of Justice or any LA County department. All Californians are still required to wear masks while in common and indoor public spaces and while outside when physical distancing is not possible.

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Additional Resources 

  1. LA County is encouraging all those who’d like to receive a COVID-19 test to contact their Primary Care Provider first to request a test at their facility. If you don’t have access to this care or are unable to contact your provider, free testing is available across LA County. To schedule a test, please go to covid19.lacounty.gov/testing. Please note that fewer slots will be available due to the July 4th holiday weekend.
     
  2. For an update on the progression of coronavirus cases in California and LA County, visit update.covid19.ca.gov and publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/coronavirus.
     
  3. Governor Newsom recently announced a new online marketplace run by the California Manufacturers and Technology Association to help companies access non-medical grade PPE. To learn more, go to safelymakingca.org
     
  4. The LA Regional COVID Fund will provide grants of $5K to micro-entrepreneurs and $15K to small businesses and non-profits in response to the impact the virus has had on the local economy. Applications for the first round of funding open on July 6. To apply, click here. To learn more about the grant opportunity, please click here to watch an informational webinar.

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  5. If you need access to Wi-Fi, use the LA County Wi-Finder to locate free internet spots near you.
     
  6. The City of Los Angeles created a new risk monitoring tool to help the community better understand the threat level of COVID-19. The tool breaks down the risk into four categories: red, orange, yellow and green. Today, the indicator is orange, meaning you should stay home as often as you can and only leave for essential activities. Click here to learn more.
     
  7. To give or receive food support in LA County, please go to covid19.lacounty.gov/food.
     
  8. While we continue to fight the spread of COVID-19, we also must prepare ourselves for the upcoming 2020-2021 flu season. Please click here for CDC information and frequently asked questions on COVID-19 and the flu.

As your Member of Congress, I will continue to provide you with updated information on the coronavirus to help keep you and your families safe. For more information on COVID-19, please visit my coronavirus webpage and follow me on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube. For updates from LA County and California, please go to covid19.lacounty.gov and covid19.ca.gov. Please remember to practice good hygiene; wear a face covering; and stay home when possible. I look forward to updating you again soon.
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Update 6/26/20 

Dear neighbor, 

This week, Los Angeles County public health officials reported a rise in the number of daily confirmed coronavirus cases and a slow climb in hospitalizations due to COVID-19. According to the LA County Department of Public Health, there are currently 1,676 hospitalizations due to COVID-19 within LA county. Although this number is still below the county’s peak of 1,900 and we are not seeing the immediate threat of hospitals being overwhelmed, we must recognize the next few weeks are crucial to slowing the spread of this virus. 

Public health officials anticipated the uptick in cases as sectors of the economy are reopening and more people are spending time outside of their homes. Experts indicate that the new surge in cases appears to be driven, in part, by an increase in infections among younger Californians. It is crucial to remember that you can be infected with the virus without showing symptoms and unknowingly pass it along to someone else who may be more vulnerable. Please continue to protect yourself and others by wearing a face mask; washing your hands often; and keeping 6 feet of distance from those outside of your household. If you are older than 65 or have a chronic medical condition, please stay home. 

The health and safety of our community depends on the actions of individuals like you. Please continue to take preventative measures to help limit future COVID-19 infections in our community. 

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Your weekly reminder:

  1. All Californians are required to wear face masks in public indoor spaces and outdoors when physical distancing is not possible. Please remember to wear your mask to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.
      
  2. The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us about the importance of ensuring state and local governments have adequate resources to address the needs of their communities. In order to get an accurate count in the 2020 Census, every resident of our community must respond to the census. Please remember to complete your census form, either online, by phone or by mail to do your part in helping our community receive its fair share of federal resources to benefit schools, roads, hospitals, emergency preparedness plans and more.
     
  3. Due to public health concerns caused by COVID-19, every registered voter in California will receive a mail-in ballot in time for the November 2020 election. Voting from home will help protect yourself and others from the virus. For more information about mail-in ballots and to check your voter status, go to vote.ca.gov.
     
  4. If you tested positive for COVID-19, you should expect a call from a county public health specialist as part of an effort to contact trace and contain the spread of the virus. They are not law enforcement officers and will not ask about immigration status. The call will appear on your phone as “L.A. Public Health.” Please pick up – contact tracing can help save lives. 

COVID-19 Updates

From the State 

The state of California made its COVID-19 data and modeling available to researchers, scientists and the general public so anyone can learn about the science informing public health decisions. Click here to view California data on how quickly the virus is spreading, what we can expect in the upcoming weeks and the potential long-term impacts of COVID-19 based on different scenarios.  

Now more than ever, we must ensure all Californians have access to quality health insurance. In response to COVID-19, Covered California opened a special enrollment period for those who are uninsured and eligible to sign up for affordable, reliable health care coverage. The deadline to enroll has been extended through the end of July to give Californians more time to find a plan that works for them. If you are uninsured, please go to CoveredCA.com before July 31 to sign up and be covered during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

From LA County

Please see below a list of businesses and public spaces that may now reopen in LA County, as well as those that remain closed.

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If you choose to visit any of these spaces, please continue to keep 6 feet of distance from those not in your household; wear a face covering that fits tightly around your nose and mouth; and wash your hands frequently.

LA County businesses that suffered physical damage or economic injury due to the recent civil unrest are now eligible for disaster assistance loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). Eligible businesses of all sizes and nonprofit organizations can borrow up to $2 million to help with the cost of damaged goods, real estate, equipment and other assets. The deadline to apply for property damage assistance is August 17, 2020. The deadline to apply for economic injury assistance is March 17, 2021. Complete an application online at sba.gov or call the SBA Customer Service Center at (800) 659 – 2955. . 

Additional Resources 

  1. Same or next-day appointments for COVID-19 tests are available at select locations in LA County. If you’d like to schedule a test, please go to covid19.lacounty.gov/testing.

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  2. For an update on the progression of coronavirus cases in California and LA County, visit update.covid19.ca.gov and publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/coronavirus.
     
  3. The deadline to apply for a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) SBA loan is June 30th. These loans provide vital relief to small businesses and will be fully forgiven if at least 60% of the loan is used for payroll. To learn more and apply, click here.
     
  4. If you received an Economic Impact Payment, please keep Notice 1444, Your Economic Impact Payment, with your other important tax records, especially if you believe your payment amount is wrong. The notice provides information about the amount of your payment, how it was administered and how to report any payment that wasn’t received. When you file your 2020 tax return, you can refer to Notice 1444 and claim additional credits if you are eligible. For more information, click here.
     
  5. If you’re a public service employee, health care worker or first responder in LA County, please read these guidelines to learn more about how to protect yourselves and others from COVID-19.
     
  6. If you own a restaurant in LA County, please refer to the full set of safety protocols before reopening. While dining at a restaurant, please expect to wear a face covering when you’re not eating or drinking; sanitize often; prepare to use digital menus by bringing a smartphone; and keep in mind that seating capacity will be limited.
     
  7. The LA County Department of Public Health has published recovery guidelines for non-residential substance use settingscongregate living spaces, and homeless services facilities.  
     
  8. LA County Workforce Development, Aging & Community Services (WDACS) wants to hear from business owners in the community to better understand their needs and concerns during this difficult time. Please click here to take the COVID-19 Business Response Survey by July 2nd. Your responses may be used to inform officials about emergency services, programs and relief.
     
  9. The LA County Disaster Help Center is holding a 4-part webinar series to provide restaurants, retail stores, salons and offices guidance for reopening. They are held on Thursdays at 3pm from June 25 – July 16, 2020. To RSVP, click here.
     
  10. If you are a summer camp administrator, please see these tips from the CDC about how to protect campers and staff from COVID-19.
     
  11. Day camps in LA County may now reopen with the proper infection control and distancing protocols in place. Please see below for what to expect when at day camp.
     
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  12. If you witness a hate crime, please call 2-1-1 and report it right away.
     
  13. 211 LA County and Slingshot Aerospace teamed up to create Food Finder 211 LA, a geographical information system for food mapping in LA County. If you are in need of food, please use Food Finder 211 LA to locate food resources near you.
     
  14. If you believe you’ve been a victim of fraudulent activity such as theft, cybercrime or forgery, please call the LA County Fraud Hotline at 1-800-544-6861 or visit fraud.lacounty.gov to report it.
     
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  15. The LA County Board of Supervisors extended the LA County eviction moratorium through July 31st. For more information on how this may affect you as a renter or landlord, please visit rent.lacounty.gov or call (833) 233-RENT.
     
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  16. LA County allocated $30 million for rent relief for families financially impacted by this crisis. To learn more, click here.

As challenges surrounding the coronavirus persist, I will continue to update you with the latest developments and provide you with resources to help keep you and your families safe. For more information, please visit my coronavirus webpage and follow my FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube accounts. I look forward to updating you again soon. 

Sincerely, 

Ted W. Lieu 
Member of Congress

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Update 6/19/20 

Dear neighbor, 

Today is Juneteenth, when we commemorate the end of slavery and celebrate 155 years of freedom for Black Americans. On this day, we also recognize the systemic racism and oppression Black Americans still face today. As we honor Juneteenth, we continue on in the fight for equality and justice for all Americans. 

I’m pleased that hospitalizations due to COVID-19 have decreased in California over recent days. However, this does not mean that the virus has stopped spreading. We’ve made significant progress in slowing the spread of COVID-19 and must continue to protect ourselves and others by washing our hands often; maintaining physical distance; and staying home when possible.

This week, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)'s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program reopened to all eligible businesses and nonprofits impacted by COVID-19. EIDL loans can provide long-term, low interest assistance to businesses in need. They can be used to cover payroll and inventory, pay debt or fund other expenses to alleviate financial losses caused by the virus. In addition, the EIDL Advance Program will provide up to $10,000 in emergency advance grants to businesses that are suffering financially, which do not have to be repaid. To learn more and apply for assistance, go to sba.gov/disaster.

As a reminder, the deadline to apply for a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) SBA loan is June 30th. These loans provide vital relief to small businesses and will be fully forgiven if at least 60% of the loan is used for payroll. To learn more and apply, click here.

Your weekly reminder: 

  1. All Californians are now required to wear face masks in common and public indoor spaces and outdoors when physical distancing is not possible. Please remember to wear your mask to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.   

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  2. If you plan to head to the beach this weekend, please take the necessary health precautions outlined below and read through these FAQs. Gatherings of any size with people from multiple households, volleyball, group sports and other events are still prohibited.

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  3. The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us about the importance of ensuring state and local governments have adequate resources to address the needs of their communities. As of June 11, California’s 33rd District has a census response rate just below 60%. In order to get an accurate count in the 2020 Census, every resident of our community must respond to the census. Please remember to complete your census form, either online, by phone or by mail to do your part in helping our community receive its fair share of federal resources to benefit schools, roads, hospitals, emergency preparedness plans and more.

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    Census Self-Response Rate in California’s 33rd District (Updated 6/11)

     
  4. Due to public health concerns caused by COVID-19, every registered voter in California will receive a mail-in ballot in time for the November 2020 election. Voting from home will help protect yourself and others from the virus. For more information about mail-in ballots and to check your voter status, go to vote.ca.gov.
     
  5. The state of California launched California Connected, a new contact tracing program to identify COVID-19 patients and reach out to the people they’ve come in contact with to ensure all parties receive a test and subsequent medical care. Through this program, tracers will work with patients and their friends and families to isolate cases and prevent the spread of COVID-19. If you tested positive for COVID-19, please call your local health department for help getting in touch with those you’ve recently encountered. Any personal information you share is confidential and the process will be done anonymously.

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COVID-19 Updates

From the State

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Covered California opened a special enrollment period to help those who are uninsured enroll in quality, affordable health care plans. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 open enrollment period, more than 155,000 Californians have signed up for health care coverage. Any person who is uninsured and eligible can enroll in a health care plan that works for them by going to CoveredCA.com

The California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) has made significant progress in supporting local communities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As of June 15th, Cal OES has distributed 46.3 million N-95 masks, secured 365,233 hotel rooms for health care workers and delivered 1.2 million meals to older adults in need through the Great Plates Program.
 

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From LA County

Effective today, June 19th, bars, wineries, tattoo parlors, spas, nail salons, casinos and card rooms in LA County may reopen with physical distancing and infection control protocols in place. Gyms may also reopen with no more than 50% occupancy in workout areas and classes. This new reopening phase will move LA County into Stage 3 of California’s Pandemic Resilience Roadmap. To read the updated LA County Health Officer Order, click here

LA County restaurants can reopen for dine-in service with the proper health protocols in place.
 

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Some high-risk businesses remain closed until further notice, including lounges and nightclubs; public entertainment venues; family entertainment centers such as bowling alleys and batting cages; and indoor and outdoor playgrounds. For a full list of what is open and closed in LA County, please click here.

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Update 6/12/20 

As key economic and community sectors reopen in LA County, COVID-19 remains a highly contagious threat. We must continue to each play our part in preventing the spread of the virus so our community can recover safely. Below you will find information on plans to reopen from state and local officials as well as resources to help keep you and your family safe. 

The LA County Department of Public Health is advising those who recently attended a protest to self-quarantine for two weeks, monitor for symptoms and get tested if symptoms develop. If you choose to partake in future demonstrations, please remember to take the proper health precautions. Please wear a facial covering that covers your mouth and nose and fits tightly around your face, and try to maintain 6 feet of distance from others.

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Your weekly reminder: 

  1. All LA County and state-run COVID-19 testing sites are now open. COVID-19 tests are free and available to all residents of LA County, including people without insurance, and regardless of immigration status. If you would like to get tested, LA County is encouraging residents to first contact their Primary Care Provider or Healthcare Center. If you are unable to receive a test, free testing is available across LA County at various testing sites. To locate a testing site near you, click here. To sign up for a test in LA County, click here. You can also call the California Medi-Nurse line for free advice at 1-877-409-9052.
     
  2. The state of California recently launched California Connected, a new contact tracing program to identify COVID-19 patients and reach out to the people they’ve come in contact with to ensure all parties receive a test and subsequent medical care. Through this program, tracers will work with patients and their friends and families to isolate cases and prevent the spread of COVID-19. If you tested positive for COVID-19, please call your local health department for help getting in touch with those you’ve recently encountered. Any personal information you share is confidential and the process will be done anonymously.

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  3. Due to public health concerns caused by COVID-19, every registered voter in California will receive a mail-in ballot in time for the November 2020 election. Voting from home will help protect yourself and others from the virus. For more information about mail-in ballots and to check your voter status, go to vote.ca.gov.
     
  4. The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us about the importance of ensuring state and local governments have adequate resources to address the needs of their communities. It is absolutely crucial that every resident of California be counted in the 2020 CensusPlease remember to fill out your census form, either online, by phone or by mail to do your part in helping our community receive its fair share of federal resources to benefit schools, roads, hospitals, emergency preparedness plans and more.
     

COVID-19 Updates

From the State

Last week, Governor Newsom signed an executive order to help increase the availability of hand sanitizer and medical devices such as respirators, ventilators and masks. The order also addresses numerous other issues caused by the pandemic by allowing for increased flexibility in the emergency placement of foster youth; permitting In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) caseworkers to continue caring for older adults; and implementing procedures to prevent a delay in processing employment in critical sectors. 

The California Department of Public Health released new county monitoring data as well as guidance to help counties prepare for the reopening of schools, businesses, childcare and entertainment. The new data is intended to show Californians their county’s progress in mitigating the spread of COVID-19 while indicating areas of concern. Specifically, it shows where counties stand in terms elevated disease transmission, hospitalization rates and hospital capacity.  

From LA County 

LA County is moving forward on the Roadmap to Recovery and reopening key economic and community sectors today, June 12th. Starting today, gyms, museums, day camps, campgrounds, music and TV production spaces, professional sports without live audiences and hotels can reopen with infection control and distancing protocols in place. With these reopenings, LA County will move into Phase 3 of California’s Resilience Roadmap. For more information and reopening guidelines for specific sectors, click here.  

Although LA County is taking this major step forward, it doesn’t mean COVID-19 is gone. The virus is still around us and remains highly contagious. Please remember to practice physical distancing; wear cloth face coverings; and follow public health directives.

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Additional Resources 

  1. The CDC recently expanded its list of COVID-19 symptoms. Please be on the lookout for the following symptoms and call your health care provider if any arise. If you need a provider, call 2-1-1.

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  2. For an update on the progression of coronavirus cases in California and LA County, visit update.covid19.ca.gov and publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/coronavirus.
     
  3. To view COVID-19 numbers by race and ethnicity from the California Department of Public Health, click here.
     
  4. If you own a business that suffered physical damage or economic injury during the recent protests, you can register online to be connected to future disaster relief aid as it becomes available. 

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  5. If you are looking for small business assistance, Small Business Administration (SBA) partners are offering free business counseling, mentoring and training via phone, email or video conferencing. Click here to find a resource partner near you.
     
  6. LA County Workforce Development, Aging & Community Services (WDACS) is providing emergency food distribution services at 8 community and senior centers in LA County. Please call to make an appointment at the center closest to you.

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  7. The LA County Great Plates Delivered program to deliver meals to those in need while supporting community restaurants has been extended through July 10th. Restaurants and participants can apply here.
     
  8. If you’re an undocumented immigrant or don’t have insurance, you can still get tested and receive treatment for COVID-19 through Medi-Cal. Please view this California Immigrant Resource Guide for more information.
     
  9. LA County public health officials hold frequent COVID-19 briefings in multiple languages. Tune in through the county’s FacebookTwitter or YouTube accounts, or call the numbers below to listen in.

    -English: (888) 664-1451
    -Spanish: (888) 664-1453
    -Mandarin: (888) 664-1459
    -Korean: (888) 664-1454

     
  10. LA County released guidance for restaurants, breweries, bars, pubs and wineries reopening for in-person dining. Click here to learn more about steps dine-in restaurants can take to protect the health of their employees and customers.
     
  11. On May 29th, Governor Newsom and First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom launched new state initiatives to protect domestic violence victims during the COVID-19 crisis. If you are currently experiencing domestic violence, please text 911 or call California’s 24-hour hotline (800-799-7233) or the national hotline (800-799-SAFE).
     
  12. While we deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, we must also ensure we’re prepared for other disasters that may affect our community. As we officially head into wildfire season, please check your emergency kit and replace any missing items.
     
  13. I understand this is an extremely difficult time for many Americans. If you’re feeling stressed, anxious or depressed, please take a look at the following resources to help you take care of your mental health and well-being:
  • For tips on how to manage stress brought on by COVID-19, visit covid19.ca.gov/manage-stress-for-health.   
     
  • For educational and mental health resources on racism, protests and the coronavirus, visit dmh.lacounty.gov/resources.
     
  • If you need someone to talk to, please call the LA County Crisis Line at (800) 854-7771 or text “LA” to 741741. 

I am pleased to see our community taking steps to return to normal. However, we must keep the foot on the accelerator and continue to follow public health guidelines to protect ourselves and others. For more information on COVID-19, please visit my coronavirus webpage and follow me on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube. Please also visit covid19.ca.gov and covid19.lacounty.gov for additional resources from California and LA County. I look forward to updating you again soon.


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Update 6/5/20

I hope you and your families are safe and healthy during this difficult time.

While we as a nation continue to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, over the last week we’ve seen public outcry sparked by the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police. Protests have erupted across the nation as Americans express their pain and frustration in response to the pervasiveness of racism in our country. Please read my full statement on the killing of George Floyd here.  

If you choose to protest, please remember to take the proper health precautions. Please wear a facial covering that covers your mouth and nose and fits tightly around your face, and try to maintain 6 feet of distance. 

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Some COVID-19 testing sites have closed or changed their operating hours. However, COVID-19 tests are still free and available to all LA County residents.  The county is monitoring the situation closely and updating covid19.lacounty.gov/testing daily with new information on testing site closures. Click here to register for a test at an open testing site near you.

Your Weekly Reminder:

  • The state of California recently launched California Connected, a new contact tracing program to identify COVID-19 patients and reach out to the people they’ve come in contact with to ensure all parties receive a test and subsequent medical care. Through this program, tracers will work with patients and their friends and families to isolate cases and prevent the spread of COVID-19. If you tested positive for COVID-19, please call your local health department for help getting in touch with those you’ve recently encountered. Any personal information you share is confidential and the process will be done anonymously.
  • Due to public health concerns caused by COVID-19, every registered voter in California will receive a mail-in ballot in time for the November 2020 election. Voting from home will help protect yourself and others from the virus. For more information about mail-in ballots and to check your voter status, go to vote.ca.gov.
  • The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us about the importance of ensuring state and local governments have adequate resources to address the needs of their communities. It is absolutely crucial that every resident of California be counted in the 2020 CensusPlease remember to fill out your census form, either online, by phone or by mail to do your part in helping our community receive its fair share of federal resources to benefit schools, roads, hospitals, emergency preparedness plans and more.

COVID-19 Updates

From the State 

On June 3rd, Governor Newsom signed an executive order to ensure registered California voters can safely vote in person during the general election on November 3rd. To prevent the spread of COVID-19, the order requires counties to provide three days of early voting starting the Saturday before election day, drop-box locations for ballots and the consolidation of voting sites while ensuring there is at least one location per every 10,000 registered voters. 

The Governor’s Administration will continue working with the state legislature, the Secretary of State and county elections officials to encourage voter participation while preserving public health. 

On May 29th, Governor Newsom and First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom launched new state initiatives to protect domestic violence victims during the COVID-19 crisis. These include additional funding, free accommodations and transport and expanded capacity to text 911 in an emergency. As of last Friday, 75% of Californians can now send texts to 911 if they need help in a violent situation at home. If you are currently experiencing domestic violence, please text 911 or call California’s 24-hour hotline (800-799-7233) or the national hotline (800-799-SAFE).

From LA County

As LA County moves forward on the Roadmap to Recovery, hair salons and barbershops can now reopen and in-person dining at restaurants may resume with public health safeguards in place. This decision was made after the State of California approved the LA County’s request for a variance to state guidelines as testing and contact tracing levels were appropriate to move forward. The county is now in advanced stages of Phase 2 of California’s Resilience Roadmap

Businesses must establish safeguards to keep employees and customers safe, including implementing physical distancing measures and screening customers and employees for symptoms. Please see below for specific guidelines for barbershops and restaurants.

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Additional Resources

  • If you are in need of free meals or you’d like to help others experiencing food insecurity during this crisis, please visit covid19.lacounty.gov/food.
  • The California DMV has extended expiration dates for drivers licenses due to COVID-19. Drivers over 70 whose licenses are set to expire in June or July will receive an extension of 120 days. Licenses for those under 69 are now valid through July.

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  • The LA County Department of Public Health has a podcast with updates on COVID-19 and recordings of the county’s daily COVID-19 press briefings. The podcast is now available on all podcast platforms.
  • The LA County Development Authority (LACDA) announced the Transit Oriented Communities Small Business Recovery Loan Program to support small businesses, funded by LA Metro. Eligible LA County small businesses within ¼-mile of a transit stop can receive up to $20,000 in loans. Applications can be completed here from Thursday, June 4th until next Thursday, June 11th.  
  • Select LA County libraries are offering sidewalk no-contact pickup for holds starting June 8. Please click here for more information. 
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  • Before visiting parks, trails and other amenities in LA County, please visit parks.lacounty.gov/covid-19 for updated safety guidelines. 
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  • 211 LA County launched a new website with frequently updated information and resources for county residents.
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  • Some Americans will receive their Economic Impact Payment by prepaid debit card, rather than by paper check. EIP card recipients can use the card to make payments, transfer funds to their bank account and get cash from in-network ATMS without incurring any fees. For more information about EIP prepaid debit cards, visit eipcard.com.
  • If you are looking for small business assistance, Small Business Administration (SBA) partners are offering free business counseling, mentoring and training via phone, email or video conferencing. Click here to find a resource partner near you.
  • The LA County Development Authority has posted a draft of its Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy for a 30-day public review period. Review and submit a comment here through July 3rd. If you’re feeling stressed, anxious or depressed, please call the LA County Department of Mental Health Access Line at (800) 854-7771 or text “LA” to 741741.

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Update 5/15/20 

Today the House of Representatives passed the HEROES Act, a bold, comprehensive coronavirus relief package that builds upon four prior congressional laws to address the impact of the pandemic. The bill provides significant funds to state and local governments and school districts to protect essential workers like first responders, health care workers and teachers. It would also support critical health measures like testing, contact tracing and access to free coronavirus treatment.

In addition, the bill includes provisions to send more direct economic assistance payments ($1,200 per family member and up to $6,000 per household) to Americans, protect payrolls, support small businesses and nonprofits, extend unemployment benefits, strengthen food security and more to protect the lives and livelihoods of those impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. My hope is that the Senate will move swiftly to pass this bill, which puts American workers and families first.

I am pleased that the Heroes Act contains two bills I introduced: the SAVE Act to allow the VA to provide food and supplies to homeless veterans, and the Inspector General Protection Act, which passed the House last year, to require the President to notify Congress prior to removing an Inspector General.

Also included in the Heroes Act is a bill I coauthored to allow smaller cities direct access to coronavirus relief funds – so they have the necessary resources to address the unique needs of their communities. The bill includes a provision to address price gouging, an issue I’ve championed with Senators Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren and Representative Joe Neguse; $25 million for the Farm to Food Bank Project; and the inclusion of non-profit organizations as eligible beneficiaries of the Paycheck Protection Program. 

One of the biggest challenges families face is the risk of losing their homes because they are unable to pay rent due to COVID-19. I was pleased to see that the Heroes Act would provide emergency assistance funds to help low-income renters avoid eviction. Although this is a step in the right direction, we need to establish a more permanent federal standard to keep families in their homes, which is why I recently introduced the Prevent Evictions Act to reduce low-dollar evictions by creating and supporting landlord-tenant mediation and rental insurance programs.

The HEROES Act is an important step towards getting families what they need during this crisis. I am pleased to see provisions in this bill that will help CA-33 address challenges brought on by COVID-19. 

Below are additional updates and resources related to the coronavirus.

COVID-19 Updates

From the State 

California is now early in Stage 2 of the reopening process, meaning curbside pickup retail, manufacturing and logistics sites can open. These lower-risk workplaces must follow state-issued industry guidelines to ensure a safe reopening. This includes performing a detailed risk assessment, implementing disinfecting protocols and physical distancing guidelines and training employees on how to limit the spread of COVID-19.

This week, Governor Newsom announced that California has administered over 1 million COVID-19 tests, averaging more than 35,000 tests daily. To increase testing capacity even further, the California Department of Consumer Affairs and the California State Board of Pharmacy issued a waiver to soon make testing available in pharmacies. I’m proud of California’s leadership in prioritizing testing as one of the most fundamental steps in the path toward recovery.

From LA County 

LA County has expanded its Safer at Home order indefinitely beyond the original May 15 expiration date. The new order will allow for all retail locations to open for curbside pickup – except for those at indoor shopping centers. The manufacturers that supply those retailers can also open but must clearly post the safety measures they are taking to meet County guidelines. Although the new order does not have an expiration date, there will be modifications in the coming weeks and months to slowly ease restrictions. For updates on what is opening and when, visit covid19.lacounty.gov/recovery. 

I’m pleased that on May 13, beaches in LA County reopened for ocean activities and exercise. Please remember that sitting, gathering and sunbathing is still prohibited and beach parking lots, piers, concessions, and boardwalks remain closed until further notice. While on the beach, individuals must maintain 6 feet of distance and wear face coverings when out of the water and around others. Although I’m glad we can begin to exercise on the beach again, we need to remember to take the necessary precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19. For more information on beach reopenings, visit beaches.lacounty.gov

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Update 5/8/20 

Below is our weekly update of resources and information to help keep you and your family safe. I also want to let you know that federal, state, and local officials are working together like never before to address this pandemic. 

On Wednesday, I joined state Senator Ben Allen, LA Councilmember Mike Bonin and LA Unified School District Board Member Nick Melvoin for a Westside COVID-19 Virtual Town Hall (click on the hyperlink to watch the full town hall).  

Non-profit organizations have played a pivotal role in providing relief for Americans during this crisis. However, we’ve heard from many non-profits that have not been able to apply for much-needed loans through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). I sent a letter to House and Senate leadership requesting that these organizations be included as eligible beneficiaries of the PPP in the new coronavirus legislation.  

In addition, I led my colleagues in urging leadership to expand funding for the USDA’s Emergency Food Assistance (TEFAP) Farm to Food Bank Program, which pays for projects to harvest, process and transport food from farms to local food banks. As COVID-19 causes hunger to spike across the nation, this funding is needed to help keep food from being destroyed on the farms and to feed hungry Americans.

I am currently working with other Members of Congress on our fifth bill to address this pandemic. We need to provide another round of stimulus to stabilize our economy and put us in position for recovery. Hopefully that bill will be ready for introduction next week. 

COVID-19 Updates

From the State 

This week, Governor Newsom announced that because of Californians’ commitment to staying at home, the state has made sufficient progress to move to Stage 2 of the four Resilience Roadmap Stages today, May 8th. This means some lower risk workplaces such as bookstores, clothing stores, florists and sporting goods stores can reopen with modifications if they meet the guidelines provided by the state. Although I look forward to seeing the reopening of some of our businesses, it’s crucial we approach this stage with considerable caution to prevent another spike in cases and lose the progress we’ve made so far.
 

Contact tracing plays a significant role in containing the spread of COVID-19. Through this method, trained tracers can identify those who’ve recently come in contact with a COVID-19-positive patient and closely monitor their symptoms, offer testing and recommend isolation. This process is integral to curbing the exponential growth in cases we’ve seen over recent months. To strengthen our capacity to contact trace, Governor Newsom announced a partnership with UCLA and UC San Francisco to create a landmark contact tracing program with a goal of virtually training 20,000 new tracers.

California also launched a new testing website, covid19.ca.gov/testing-and-treatment, where you can find the COVID-19 testing site nearest to you by inputting your address and/or zip code.

From LA County

The degree of reopening capacity in California varies depending on county. Here in LA County, Phase II will begin today, May 8, and will allow low-risk retailers such as florists, toy stores and bookstores to open for curbside pick-up only. In addition, trails, trailheads, and golf courses will reopen on Saturday, May 9 and local, community and regional parks will open on Sunday, May 10. All activities in these locations must adhere to social distancing and infection control protocols. Please note that beaches are still closed at this time. To learn more about LA County’s Phase II reopening plan, go to covid19.lacounty.gov/recovery/

 

Additional Resources 

  • For an update on the progression of COVID-19 cases in California, visit update.covid19.ca.gov.
     
  • All LA County residents are eligible to receive a COVID-19 test. Priority will still be given to those experiencing symptoms and critical front-line workers. To schedule a test, click here. New testing sites in or near California’s 33rd District are:

         - Santa Monica College (SMU), 2800 Airport Avenue, Santa Monica, CA 90405   

         - Hawthorne Memorial Center, Betty Ainsworth Sports Center, 3851 W El Segundo Blvd, Hawthorne, CA 90250

         -Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, 21840 Normandie Ave, Torrance, CA 90502 (Opening May 11)
         
  • To see a list of LA County locations such as residential congregate settings, restaurants and retail stores where one or more COVID-19 cases have been reported, click here.
     
  • To sign up for local alerts in Los Angeles County, click here.
     
  • Covered California is now holding a special enrollment period for eligible Californians to sign up for quality, affordable health care coverage through the end of June. To learn more, go to coveredca.com.
  • If you’re unable to pay your rent, you cannot be evicted by your landlord in LA County during this time. Please visit rent.lacounty.gov or call (833) 238 – 4450 for help making a payment arrangement.
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  • Mayor Eric Garcetti and City Attorney Mike Feuer announced the launch of LA Represents, a pro bono initiative to provide free legal services to LA City residents facing extreme hardship due to COVID-19. For more information, visit corona-virus.la/LARepresents.
     
  • To find qualified, licensed child care providers near you, use the interactive map tool on mychildcare.ca.gov and search by location, health and safety details, ages of children, capacity, and hours of care.
     
  • For helpful resources for college students and parents, take a look at this guide from Scholar Share 529.
  • May is Mental Health Awareness Month. LA County’s Department of Mental Health is partnering with Headspace to offer free subscriptions to all LA County residents. Visit Headspace.com to sign up for meditation, sleep and movement exercises to help ease your anxiety and stress.
     
  • All LA County voters will receive mail-in ballots in time for the November election. Visit California Secretary of State Alex Padilla’s website for more.
     
  • The California Lifeline Program provides low-cost or free telephone services to eligible, low-income residents. Click here to see if you qualify for the program. 
     
  • Covered California for Small Business created a new program to help employers continue to provide insurance to their employees during the pandemic. If you are an employer who’d like to participate, please call the CCSB Service Center at (877) 777-6782.
     
  • If you own a small business and are in need of financial relief because of COVID-19, go to the SBA website for more information on available loans.
     
  • To see if you are eligible for an Economic Impact Payment or to check the status of that payment, visit irs.gov/coronavirus/economic-impact-payments and take a look at these updated FAQs.
     
  • Governor Newsom recently announced new initiatives to distribute excess produce from farmers to local food banks and provide benefits to replace free school meals that children are no longer receiving. Click here to learn more about the state’s efforts to combat food insecurity.
  • If you are a resident of LA County in need of food support, visit covid19.lacounty.gov/get-support.
     
  • If you have food to share and would like to donate or volunteer, visit covid19.lacounty.gov/give-support.
     
  • To safely help our community by donating blood, supporting food shelters, delivering meals to seniors and more, go to Californians for All and join the fight. 
I hope you find these resources helpful as you continue to protect yourself and your loved ones from COVID-19. Thanks to your hard work, we’ve made significant progress toward our goal of mitigating the spread of the virus in our community. Together, we can continue to fight COVID-19 by practicing good hygiene, maintaining social distance and checking in with ourselves and others.

As always, you can find additional COVID-19 updates on my coronavirus webpage and FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube accounts. If you need help with a federal agency, please contact my office at (323) 651-1040. My staff is working remotely and can assist you. I look forward to updating you again soon.

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Update 5/1/20 

Read full update here

Dear neighbor,

I hope you and your families are staying safe and healthy as we continue to navigate this public health crisis.  

As the weather continues to warm up across Southern California, please remember that all Los Angeles County and Orange County beaches are closed until further notice. This decision was made in an effort to reduce crowding on beaches thus reducing infections so we can continue to flatten the curve. My hope is that we will soon be able to once again enjoy the peace and tranquility our beaches offer, but for now it’s important we stay committed to our goal of staying home to save lives.

I’m pleased that this week, the Small Business Administration reopened applications for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) after critical funds were replenished by an additional $310 billion through the interim emergency aid measure signed into law last week. If you own a small business and are seeking relief, please go to the SBA website for more information on available loans. If you’d like to receive regular updates from the SBA district office nearest to you, enter your zip code here to subscribe to the SBA newsletter.

In addition, California recently launched the new federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program (PUA) to help businesses, self-employed individuals, independent contractors and others who are out of work because of the coronavirus. As part of the federal CARES Act, the program helps unemployed Californians with up to 39 weeks of benefits and a federal extension for those who have run out of their regular state-provided UI benefits. For more information on how to file a claim, visit the CA Employment Development Department (EDD) website and take a look at these FAQs

Earlier this week, I joined a virtual meeting with city councilmembers and mayors within my district to provide updates on the work being done in Congress and hear from local leaders about key issues their cities are facing. I also participated in a virtual town hall hosted by Assemblymember Al Muratsuchi and CalNonprofits to discuss resources for nonprofit organizations as they help provide relief for Californians, and give updates on federal assistance programs. I was pleased to learn about the various community initiatives in place to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and reduce its impact on businesses and families.

I recognize this is an especially difficult time for smaller communities as they grapple with drastic changes in funding, which is why I will do my best to ensure their concerns are heard in Congress as we work on a more comprehensive relief package.  Today, I spoke with my colleagues from the California delegation in the House of Representatives during a regional press call. We discussed provisions we’re hoping to see in the next CARES coronavirus package, including more funding for state and city governments.  

Here are some additional COVID-19 updates and resources:

COVID-19 Data

The state of California launched a user-friendly webpage, update.covid19.ca.gov, to track the progression of COVID-19 cases across California and in individual counties. The site also outlines the distribution of COVID-19 cases based on gender, age, and ethnicity, and provides an update on testing and hospitalizations. The data on this portal will be updated daily.

Reopening

As you may know, Colorado and Nevada have joined California, Oregon and Washington in their West Coast pact to work together to reopen our economies when it’s safe to do so. California will make modifications to the Stay-At-Home order by working through 4 Roadmap Stages defined by scientific results and data. Additionally, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors recently approved a plan outlining the framework for economic recovery and development in Los Angeles County following the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Updated 4/24/20 


READ FULL UPDATE HERE

Dear neighbor,                                   

Yesterday, the House passed an interim emergency aid measure to replenish small business relief funds and provide additional funding for hospitals and testing. The package provides more support for small businesses with $310 billion to strengthen the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), $50 billion for emergency disaster lending, and $10 billion in emergency disaster grants. Democrats fought hard to expand access to the PPP to more small businesses, and to ensure the legislation also included $75 billion in aid for hospitals and $25 billion to bolster the nation’s testing capacity, which will be crucial to reopening the economy.

I’ve been meeting virtually with various chambers of commerce about the PPP and the emergency disaster lending program. This week I was pleased to speak with the Calabasas Chamber of Commerce. Although I’m glad we passed the interim legislation, it is an intermediate step while Congress works to put forth another more comprehensive coronavirus relief package in the coming weeks.

Earlier this week, I joined Senator Kamala Harris, Senator Elizabeth Warren, and Representative Joe Neguse in highlighting the issue of price gouging. In this time of increasing economic uncertainty, the last thing Americans need is to face a spike in the price of essential goods and consumer products. We discussed the bill I introduced with Rep. Neguse, Senator Warren and Senator Harris, the Price Gouging Prevention Act to prohibit this predatory practice. The bill was modeled after the California anti-price gouging statute, which made it illegal for a person or business to raise the price of an item by more than 10% after an emergency has been declared.

Here are some updates on COVID-19:

Testing

As testing becomes more widely available across California, frontline workers in LA County are now eligible to receive tests – regardless of whether they are experiencing symptoms. This includes health care workers, grocery store workers, first responders, critical government personnel and other essential workers.

If you are not a frontline worker but are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, you are also eligible to receive a test. To schedule an appointment for a test, visit covid19.lacounty.gov/testing.

Californians For All

As we continue to stay home and save lives, we can find more ways to safely support our community. On April 21, Governor Newsom announced a new #CaliforniansForAll service initiative to connect Californians with safe volunteer opportunities. Through #CaliforniansForAll, you can volunteer to help those in need by supporting local food banks and shelters, delivering meals to seniors, donating blood, and more. To sign up to volunteer, go to californiansforall.ca.gov.
 

Free Food Resources

The County and City of LA are mobilizing to provide free meals for those in need. If you need help with food expenses or don’t have access to food, please visit this LA County webpage to sign up for the free food program.

If you’re pregnant or a caretaker of a child under five and your economic situation has been impacted by COVID-19, you may qualify to receive free, nutritious food through the California Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program. To apply, visit phfewic.org/apply or text APPLY to 91997. For more information, call WIC at 1 (888) 942-2229.

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Alternatively, if you’re in the position to donate food and/or volunteer, please click here to see how you can lend a hand during this crisis.

Critical Delivery Service

If you need essential items such as groceries or other vital necessities but are unable to leave your home, LA County Workforce Development, Aging & Community Services (WDACS) can deliver items right to your door. Deliveries can be made 24/7. To request services, call 1-888-863-7411.

Friendship Line for Older Californians

The Institute on Aging (IOA) has a 24-hour phone line to serve older adults and caregivers during this isolating time. If you’re feeling lonely and would like someone to talk to, please call the Friendship Line at 1 (888) 670-1360.
 

Food Sector Workers and Consumers

Our food sector workers are serving every day on the front lines of this crisis. On April 16, Governor Newsom signed an executive order providing paid sick leave benefits for food sector workers impacted by COVID-19. The order provides two weeks of paid sick leave for workers employed by large businesses such as grocery store chains and fast food restaurants, filling a gap in the federal relief program which provides similar benefits for workers in businesses with fewer than 500 employees.

The order also established additional safety protections for workers and consumers. For more information on grocery store best practices, see the recently issued guidance by Cal/OSHA for the grocery industry.

Consumer Information and Resources

The California Department of Justice has made available more resources to protect consumers. If you have questions about price gouging, avoiding scams, paying your mortgage or federal student loans and more, visit oag.ca.gov/consumers/covid-19 for the latest consumer information from the office of California Attorney General Xavier Becerra.

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READ MORE HERE
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UPDATED 4/3/20 

Dear Neighbor,                                  

On Wednesday, I hosted a telephone town hall with CA-33 constituents regarding the coronavirus crisis. We discussed the bipartisan stimulus law and how individuals and businesses can seek economic relief. If you didn’t get the chance to join the call, you can listen to the full audio here.

During these difficult times, we must continue to work together to support our community. I’ve compiled a few resources to guide you to ways you can safely help people in need during this crisis.

As the coronavirus pandemic grows, more scheduled blood drives in our community have been cancelled due to concerns about congregating in workplaces, college campuses and schools. These cancellations have resulted in severe blood shortages, making victims of accidents or people recovering from cancer especially vulnerable without the help of lifesaving blood. The American Red Cross is urging those who are young, healthy and able to donate blood. To find information on where you can safely donate blood, click here.

In response to the growing number of COVID-19 cases, California is opening new health care sites to treat those affected. To ensure these sites are properly staffed, the state is calling on medical health professionals to join the California Health Corps and help fight this illness. If you are a health care provider, behavioral health professional or health care administrator, click here to sign up. I am incredibly grateful for the tireless work of our doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers who are going above and beyond to help our community during this crisis. I encourage you to find a way to thank healthcare workers in our community for their bravery and heroism on the front lines of this fight.

Another way to help our healthcare workers is to make sure they're protected. If you want to donate or know of businesses that may be able to help with personal protective equipment (PPE) such as surgical masks, N95 face masks, face shields, and other medical supplies, contact the LA County Department of Public Health by emailing medsupply@dhs.lacounty.gov.  



Whether you're a healthcare professional or not, this is a stressful and uncertain time for all of us. If you’re feeling stressed, anxious or depressed, please call the LA County Department of Mental Health 24/7 Access Line at (800) 854-7771 to talk to someone. You can also text “LA” to 741741. Although we are physically apart, we can continue to be there for one another as we navigate through this crisis.

For help with the following, please call:

  • General information about COVID-19: (833) 544 – 2374
  • Community services and support: 211
  • Medicine and medical attention: your healthcare provider or pharmacy
  • An Emergency: 911

I also recognize how challenging this situation can be for parents and caretakers with children at home. For tips on how to talk to kids about COVID-19 and other family resources, visit First 5 California.

To find more ways to get involved and safely help our community during this difficult time, click here. As always, you can visit my coronavirus webpage for updates and resources on COVID-19. You can also visit the California COVID-19 webpage and the LA County COVID-19 webpage. Together we will slow the spread of coronavirus if we continue to practice social distancing, wash our hands, and stay at home except when performing essential activities. I look forward to updating you again soon.

Sincerely,

Ted W. Lieu
Member of Congress
 

 

UPDATED 3/23/20 

Dear neighbor,                                   

During this pandemic, I intend to keep updating you with the latest information on the coronavirus. My top priority is your health and safety, and that of the community. On Tuesday, I hosted a telephone town hall with public health experts who answered many questions about COVID-19, how it spreads, and what we can do to manage it. I also updated constituents on the work being done in Congress to mitigate the potential long-term economic effects this crisis will have on American lives. To listen to our full discussion, click here

As you may know, California Governor Gavin NewsomLos Angeles County, and LA Mayor Eric Garcetti have issued Stay at Home orders. It is imperative that we comply with these orders to prevent the virus from spreading. In general, this means people should stay home except when performing essential activities such as buying food, caring for a relative or friend, getting necessary health care, or going to an essential job. If you leave your home, you must continue to practice social distancing by keeping at least 6 feet of separation between you and another person. All bars and nightclubs, restaurants (except for take-out and delivery services), gyms, entertainment venues and other establishments will remain closed to the public until further notice. To find more information about the specific provisions of the Stay at Home orders, visit https://covid19.ca.gov/ and https://corona-virus.la/

Congress has been working hard to provide relief for families and workers impacted by the coronavirus. On Wednesday, the House-passed coronavirus relief package was finally signed into law. The package includes provisions such as free coronavirus testing, more funding for unemployment insurance and paid emergency leave for workers at small and medium sized businesses. This is in addition to the bipartisan legislation Congress passed two weeks ago for billions for vaccine research, small business loans and testing. However, more needs to be done to curb the impact that this virus will have. I am currently working with House Leadership on a third bill to provide economic stimulus and immediate relief to Americans who are now unemployed or underemployed because of this pandemic. 

This week, I also sent two letters to Vice President Pence, chair of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, requesting that the Administration outline its plan to address critical shortages in personal protective equipment for first responders and healthcare providers, and shortages of the chemical reagents needed to conduct coronavirus testing. Earlier this month I co-signed a letter to the President requesting that he use the Defense Production Act to get the equipment and materials we need to combat the spread of coronavirus. I am grateful the President agreed to do so today.

While our community's health and safety is my top concern, I am also aware of another threat related to COVID-19 that could disrupt lives and cause financial damage. During times of crisis - particularly public health emergencies - there is always an increase in phishing scams and cyberattacks by hackers exploiting confusion and fear. Now more than ever, we must practice good "cyber hygiene" by following these steps from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC):

1. Don’t click on links from sources you don’t know. They could download viruses onto your computer or device.

2. Watch for emails claiming to be from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or World Health Organization experts saying they have information about the virus. For the most up-to-date information about the coronavirus, visit the actual websites of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO).

3. Ignore online offers for vaccinations. There currently are no approved vaccines, pills, potions, lotions, lozenges or other prescription or over-the-counter products that can treat or cure Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) — online or in stores.

4. Do your homework when it comes to donations, whether through charities or crowdfunding sites. Don’t let anyone rush you into making a donation. If someone wants donations in cash, by gift card, or by wiring money, don’t do it.

Below are several trustworthy sources where up-to-date information can be found:

Your actions during this unprecedented crisis affect the health of others in our community. Remember to keep practicing good hygiene by washing your hands regularly, coughing or sneezing into your elbow or preferably a tissue, and staying home as much as possible. Because this virus can be spread by people who have no symptoms, the best course of action is to continue to put six feet of distance between you and others. Although we are facing challenging times, I am confident we can get ahead of this virus if we continue to work together.

Sincerely,

Ted W. Lieu
Member of Congress

 

Contact:
Janet Turner, Field Rep, Constituent Services
janet.turner@mail.house.gov, (323) 651-1040