Frequently Asked Questions
What is COVID-19?
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a highly contagious respiratory illness that can spread from person to person and is caused by a novel coronavirus. Its symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath — and may appear in as few as 2 days or as long as 14 days after exposure. Find more resources and information from the L.A. County Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
What should I do if I’m showing symptoms of COVID-19 or a family member is?
Symptoms of COVID-19 may appear 2-14 days after exposure and include fever, cough, and shortness of breath.
If you are feeling sick, call your primary care doctor, a nurse hotline, or an urgent care center for advice. You can also learn more about the symptoms of COVID-19 and how to care for yourself or someone in your home from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.
If you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19, you should get medical attention immediately. Emergency warning signs include: trouble breathing; persistent pain or pressure in the chest; new confusion or inability to rouse; bluish lips or face.
If you have life-threatening symptoms, you should call 911. If you are getting yourself to a healthcare facility, do not use public transportation. You should drive yourself, if possible. If you cannot drive yourself, keep as much distance as possible between yourself and the driver and leave the windows down.
You should wear a cloth face covering -- like a scarf or bandana wrapped around your mouth and nose -- to prevent exposing others to your respiratory droplets when you cough and sneeze. You can find more information on face coverings here.
What should I do if I've been in close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19?
If you have been in close contact with someone who is positive or presumed positive, you must self-quarantine.
Even if you feel well now, it is possible that you are also infected. It can take 2-14 days to show symptoms, which is why you need to stay home and separate yourself from others in your home as much as possible. The L.A. County Department of Public Health website has detailed information on home quarantine in a dozen languages here. (See "What You Should Know"; "What if I'm Exposed")
And, if you are a resident of Los Angeles County who is subject to a mandatory quarantine due to COVID-19 exposure, you may be eligible for testing. To learn more about testing, click here.
What should I do if I am diagnosed with the COVID-19 virus?
If you have tested positive for COVID-19, or been told by a clinician that you are presumed to be positive, you are required to isolate yourself at home.
The L.A. County Department of Public Health website has detailed information on home isolation in a dozen languages here. (See "What You Should Know"; "What if I'm Sick")
Should I cover my face when I leave home and interact with others?
Wearing a face covering when you are interacting with others will help to contain your respiratory droplets. But a face covering is not a substitute for other critical measures to slow the spread of COVID-19 — most importantly, staying home and practicing safe physical distancing.
But when you are running essential errands, it is recommended that Angelenos wear face coverings (such as one made with a bandana or scarf, or that you made yourself by following instructions available online from trusted sources). These face coverings should be washed after each use to ensure that you are practicing good hygiene.
At this time, you should not be purchasing medical grade masks, which are in short supply. It is extremely important that masks are reserved for those who need them most and have the highest risk of infection, including medical professionals, healthcare workers, public safety workers, and other front line workers.
Safer at Home Order
What is Safer at Home?
To further combat the spread of COVID-19, Mayor Eric Garcetti has issued a “Safer at Home” emergency order — ordering all residents of the City of Los Angeles to stay inside their residences, and immediately limit all movement outside of their homes beyond what is absolutely necessary to take care of essential needs.
The virus spreads easily, and this Order is intended to prevent the spread of this disease from overwhelming our healthcare system. The goal here is to “flatten the curve” to slow down the spread of the virus and ensure we have adequate health care resources for those who get sick with COVID-19 and those who need emergency medical care for accidents, heart attacks, strokes, and other routine medical conditions.
What is allowed and what is prohibited?
THE BOTTOM LINE
Residents of the City of Los Angeles are required to stay inside their homes unless they are engaged in certain “essential activities.” On those occasions when you are out of your home for necessary tasks, stay at least six feet away from others.
YOU CAN …
Go to the grocery store
Go to the pharmacy to pick up medications and other healthcare necessities
Go to medical appointments (check with your doctor or provider first)
Go to a restaurant for take-out, delivery or drive-thru
Care or support a friend or family member
Take a walk, ride your bike, jog and be in nature for exercise — just keep at least six feet between you and others in the community.
Walk your pets and take them to the veterinarian if necessary
Help someone to get necessary supplies
YOU SHOULD NOT …
Go to work unless you are providing essential services as defined by this Order
Visit friends and family if there is no urgent need
Maintain less than 6 feet of distance from others when you go out, as possible
Travel to or from a job outside the City, unless to perform essential activities
Visit loved ones in the hospital, nursing home, skilled nursing facility, or other residential care facility
Go to the beach in groups, play group sports, or engage in outdoor activities in groups of any size
What are essential activities and what businesses will stay open?
The following essential activities and businesses -- which will be characterized by their business licenses --- will remain open:
- City/County government services;
- Police stations
- Fire stations
- Public Transportation
- Water, power, and gas utilities
- Public works construction, including construction of housing
- Airport and Port operations
- Gas service stations, auto parts supply, auto repair, bicycle repair shops and related facilities.
- Health care providers, including:
- Pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies
- Medical and scientific research
- Healthcare suppliers
- Home healthcare services providers
- Veterinary care providers
- Mental health providers
- Physical therapists and chiropractors
- Cannabis dispensaries
- Manufacturers and suppliers
- Healthcare operations does not include fitness and exercise gyms and similar facilities
- Food providers, including:
- Grocery stores
- Water retailers
- Certified farmers’ markets (with approved COVID-19 operational plans)
- Farm and produce stands
- Convenience stores
- Warehouse stores
- Food banks
- Pet food and medicine supply (not grooming or training)
- Take-out from restaurants, drive-thru restaurants, food trucks and delivery from restaurants
- Food cultivation, including farming, livestock, and fishing
- Hardware and building supply stores, day labor centers, and nurseries
- Plumbers, electricians, exterminators, custodial/janitorial workers, handyman services, funeral home workers and morticians, moving services, HVAC installers, carpenters, day laborers, landscapers, gardeners, property managers, private security personnel and other service providers who provide services to maintain the safety, sanitation, and essential operation to properties and other essential activities
- Banks, credit unions, financial institutions and insurance companies.
- Organizations and businesses that provide food, shelter, and social services, and other necessities of life for economically disadvantaged or otherwise needy individuals, (including gang prevention and intervention and domestic violence agencies).
- Laundromats/laundry service
- Newspapers, magazines, television, radio, podcasts and journalism
- Educational institutions, including public and private K-12 schools, colleges, and universities -- for purposes of facilitating distance learning or performing essential functions provided that physical distancing of six-feet per person is maintained to the greatest extent possible
- Businesses that supply or provide storage for products needed for people to work from home, including businesses that supply items necessary to religious practice.
- Utility companies and other businesses that supply other essential businesses with the support, services, or supplies necessary to operate, provided that strict physical distancing is maintained.
- Individuals or businesses that ship or deliver groceries, food, beverages or goods directly to residences or businesses, including rail and trucking.
- Airlines, taxis, ride sharing services, car rental companies, and other private transportation services providing transportation services necessary for essential activities and other purposes expressly authorized in this Order.
- Home-based care for disabled persons, seniors, adults, or children.
- Residential facilities and shelters for disabled persons, seniors, adults, and children.
- Professional services, such as legal, payroll or accounting services, when necessary to assist in compliance with legally mandated activities.
- Hotels, motels, shared rental units and similar facilities.
- Military/Defense Contractors/FFRDC (Federally Funded Research and Development Centers)
- Childcare facilities providing services that enable employees exempted in this Order to work as permitted, under restrictions contained in the Order.
What about infrastructure and construction?
Individuals may leave their residences to provide any services or goods or perform any work necessary to the operations, maintenance and manufacturing of essential infrastructure, which includes but is not limited to:
- Construction of commercial and institutional buildings, and residential buildings and housing
- Airport operations, food supply, concessions, and construction
- Port operations and construction.
- Water, sewer, gas, electrical, oil extraction and refining.
- Roads, highways, public transportation and rail.
- Solid waste collection and removal, and recycling.
- Flood control and watershed protection.
- Internet and telecommunications systems and phone retail sales and servicing (including the provision of essential global, national, and local infrastructure for computing services, business infrastructure, communications, and web-based services).
- And manufacturing and distribution companies deemed essential to the supply chains of the above industries.
Are non-profit organizations allowed to continue operating?
Yes, but only if they provide essential services as described in the order. This would include non-profit operating food pantries, providing housing and services for homeless residents, and many other critical services.
How long will the Order last? Can it be changed?
The Order is currently set to expire on April 19, 2020. The duration can be either shortened or extended by the Mayor. We want to be sure the Order is in place for only as long as necessary, and the Mayor, in coordination with the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, will be closely monitoring the situation every day in order to determine what adjustments make sense.
Yes, the Order can be changed. It was important to get this Order in place quickly given the spread of the virus in Southern California. However, it can and will likely be updated as conditions warrant. Sign up for NotifyLA for the City of L.A.’s mass notification system. We will also share new updates with the media.
Is this Order mandatory? What happens if individuals and businesses don’t comply?
Yes. The “Safer at Home” order is a legally enforceable order. Failure to heed the order is a misdemeanor that can result in fines or jail time.
The “Safer at Home” Business Ambassadors program will deploy City workers and volunteers with the Mayor’s Crisis Response Team to non-essential businesses that appear to be out of compliance with the emergency order. If voluntary compliance is not achieved, the ambassadors will share information with the City Attorney and LAPD for follow-up.
Is there a way to report a business that is violating the Order?
Members of the public can report out-of-compliance businesses using this complaint form.
I am currently on vacation outside the City. Does the Order allow me to return home?
Yes. You should maintain physical distancing on your way home, and then you will be subject to the limitations in this Order. If you prefer to stay indoors at your current location, you are encouraged to follow this Order while outside the City of Los Angeles in order to protect yourself and others.
What happens if I leave the City to go on a planned vacation?
The Order requires that you stay in your place of residence. Traveling runs the risk of spreading the virus to other areas and exposing new populations. Do not travel. As explained above, if you live outside of the City of Los Angeles, you are allowed to travel to and from work if your work is essential business, or if you need to travel to the City of Los Angeles, for another essential service like medical appointment.
I’m visiting Los Angeles from out of town. What should I do? Can I go home?
If you have a car and can return home via travel, you may do so if you are following physical distancing protocols. If you have a flight or other travel, you should check first with the carrier to see if they are still operating and what protocols they recommend. You are strongly encouraged to shelter in place when you arrive at your destination to avoid infecting anyone else in your home community.
If you need to stay longer, coordinate with your accommodations as best you can.
What is the difference between “safer at home” and “physical distancing”?
Safer at home is a stricter form of physical distancing. There are some differences. Safer at home means:
- Stay home (stay unexposed).
- Only go out for essential services -- and when you do, stay six feet or more away from others.
- Don’t gather in groups.
The best way to reduce the risk of getting sick, as with seasonal colds or the flu, applies to prevent COVID-19:
- Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Cover your cough or sneeze.
- Avoid touching your face.
- Reduce the time you are around others outside the home, even when at least six feet away.
What about Government Employees?
This Order does not apply to employees of government agencies working within the course and scope of their public service employment. Employees of the City of Los Angeles shall follow any current or future directives issued by the Mayor.
Is the City providing testing for COVID-19?
At this time, the City’s free testing is available to residents of L.A. County who are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 or who have been quarantined due to exposure to a confirmed case of COVID-19.
Priority for same day or next day testing will be given to L.A. County residents who are in the highest-risk categories and currently have symptoms, including individuals who are:
- 65 and older; and/or
- Have underlying health conditions including:
- Heart disease
- Chronic lung disease
- Moderate to severe asthma; or
- People who are immuno-compromised, including as a result of cancer treatment
- L.A. County residents are also eligible for priority testing if they are subject to a mandatory 14 day quarantine period because they have been exposed to an individual with a confirmed case of COVID-19 and have more than 7 days of the 2-week quarantine period remaining.
All other individuals who meet the eligibility criteria can schedule appointments two days in advance.
Can I still call 3-1-1?
Yes. 3-1-1 is still available for immediate access to information; or 213-473-3231 if outside the city limits.
3-1-1 calls are answered 7:00am - 7:00pm on weekdays and 8:00am - 4:45pm on weekends.
Service is available in English, Spanish, and 150+ other languages through the use of translation services, as well as for the hearing or speech impaired. You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org with questions.
Will my trash still get picked up?
All trash collection services are being continued at full capacity. Seven SAFE Centers across the City will remain open to accept household hazardous waste, but mobile collection has been halted.
Is the public library open?
L.A.’s 73 public libraries are closed through April 19. Digital services remain available 24/7 at lapl.org, including e-books and audiobooks; streaming TV, movies, and music services; classes and digital subscriptions to newspapers and magazines.
No late fines are being charged and due dates are being automatically extended.
Are senior centers open?
All Multipurpose Senior Centers and dining sites are closed to the public. All programs and activities at all facilities will be canceled.
Senior centers are distributing packaged and frozen meals for older adults enrolled in their meal programs. Angelenos aged 65+ need to send a family member, friend, or caregiver (under 65) to pick up their meals at assigned senior centers.
The Department of Aging is working to expand home-delivered meals to reduce the need for pick ups.
To determine an assigned meal provider, call (800) 510-2020. To enroll in the Department of Aging meal program, call (213) 482-7252.
Is City Hall open to the public and as a filming location?
City Hall (200 N. Main Street) is closed to members of the public and not available for on-location filming.
Are animal shelters open?
L.A. Animal Services is closed to the public. Staff will continue to be on hand to care for the animals already in shelters. There is still a need for foster volunteers; information on how to foster an animal can be found here.
Is parking enforcement continuing? Who can I call for questions about parking enforcement?
Mayor Garcetti put a temporary halt to the issuance of several parking citations so that Angelenos can more effectively practice the safe social distancing necessary during the outbreak.
The order, which will be in place until April 19 and is subject to extension, includes the following:
- Relaxed enforcement of street sweeping restrictions in residential areas
- Relaxed enforcement around closed schools
- Moratorium on ticketing and towing for abandoned vehicles and oversize vehicle overnight parking fines
- Freeze on parking fine increases for the next 60 days
- Extended grace period for people dropping off or picking up groceries and goods
- Immediate extension on all deadlines for payment due until June 1
- Moratorium on ticketing or towing for expired car registration
Enforcement will be maintained on operations that prioritize health, safety, and emergency access — including colored curbs, street sweeping around encampments, peak-hour restrictions, and repaving and slurry operations.
It will also continue at metered spaces to encourage parking turnover for businesses and restaurants relying on takeout and deliveries.
Additionally, Mayor Garcetti directed the Chief of Police to issue guidance to police officers to refrain, during this emergency period, from issuing citations for driver’s licenses or vehicle registrations that have expired in the last six months.
Drivers within the City of Los Angeles will nonetheless be expected to obey all other laws; nothing in this memorandum should be construed to suggest that the Police Department will not be enforcing all moving violations, consistent with state and local laws and any applicable emergency orders.
For questions about parking enforcement, call 3-1-1.
Resources for Renters and Homeowners
What assistance is available for renters impacted by COVID-19?
For the duration of this local emergency period, landlords cannot evict residential and commercial tenants who are unable to pay rent due to circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
On March 30th, Mayor Garcetti signed an ordinance that builds on his previous emergency order, giving eligible residential tenants 12 months following the expiration of the local emergency period to repay any missed rent during the emergency period. Commercial tenants have three months to pay back their rent.
For more information, see the Housing and Community Investment Department website. You can find a fact sheet on residential tenant protections and a form to notify your landlord of inability to pay full rent due to the COVID-19 emergency here.
You can also call the HCID hotline at (866) 557-7368, Mon.-Fri., 8:30 a.m.- 4:30 p.m., and weekends, 10 a.m.- 3 p.m.
What can I do if my landlord isn’t obeying these orders?
If you are facing eviction, or if your landlord has questions on the emergency order, please contact the Housing and Community Investment Department (HCID) hotline at (866) 557-7368, Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Saturday-Sunday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
You can find more information on tenants' rights during this emergency on the HCID website.
Are there resources for homeowners who can’t keep up with their mortgage payments?
The State of California is working to soften the financial impact of COVID-19 on residents who are struggling to pay their mortgage bills. Citigroup, JP Morgan Chase, US Bank, Wells Fargo, and nearly 200 state-chartered banks, credit unions, and servicers have committed to providing relief for homeowners in California.
Under the Governor’s proposal, Californians who are struggling with the COVID-19 crisis may be eligible for relief after contacting their financial institution, including mortgage-payment forbearances of up to 90 days, which allow you to reduce or delay your monthly mortgage payment. To learn more, visit the State’s Covid-19 Response website.
The federal government has announced several programs, including low-interest disaster loans to help businesses and homeowners recover. To learn more, visit the U.S. Small Business Administration website.
What if I can’t afford an increase in my rent?
Mayor Garcetti signed an emergency order to halt any new rent increases on residential units that are subject to the City’s Rent Stabilization Ordinance (RSO).
If you live in a rent stabilized unit, you will not be subject to any new rent increase through 60 days after the expiration of the local emergency period. To find out if your unit is subject to the RSO, text "RSO" to (855) 880-7368.
Resources for Workers
What assistance is available for workers impacted by COVID-19?
If your employer has cut your hours or shut down operations in this crisis, you can apply for unemployment benefits from our state immediately. Visit the state’s employment development department at edd.ca.gov.
The State also oversees paid family leave if you are providing care for an ill or quarantined family member, disability benefits for particularly long illnesses, and workers’ compensation if you were exposed to COVID-19 while on the job and in the course of your regular duties.
To learn more and apply for these benefits, please visit the EDD’s website.
Where can I get help with completing forms to receive state unemployment insurance?
The City’s WorkSource and YouthSource Centers are available to assist job seekers and young people in Los Angeles over the phone and via email. WorkSource Centers provide information and assistance to adults on state unemployment insurance applications and supplemental job placement assistance. To contact the City’s centers, please visit ewddlacity.com.
Where can I look for a job if I have been impacted by COVID-19?
The City has launched LAJobsPortal.org for those whose jobs have been impacted by COVID-19. This website helps unemployed or underemployed Angelenos find and apply to job opportunities across industries, and connects them to a repository of additional resources such as emergency assistance and healthcare.
What are trusted sources for COVID-19 employment related updates?
- The state’s Employment Development Department
- The City’s Economic and Workforce Development Department and LAJobsPortal.org
- The County of Los Angeles’s Workforce Development, Aging and Community Services
Resources for Businesses
What assistance is available for businesses impacted by COVID-19?
To support small businesses impacted by this crisis, the Economic and Workforce Development Department will provide $11 million through its Small Business Emergency Microloan program.
The no-fee microloans of $5,000 to $20,000 can be used to cover working capital. The program will offer relaxed underwriting with no credit score minimum, a generous allowance to meet debt service, and a 100% Loan to Value ratio. The interest rate can either be 0% for a term of six months to one year, or 3% to 5% for a term of up to five years. A digital Small Business Resilience Toolkit is also available online, which includes strategies to keep employees safe, maintain operations at maximum possible capacity, and prepare business continuity plans.
Mayor Garcetti has also ordered an eviction protection that applies to all commercial tenants in the City of Los Angeles who are unable to pay rent as a result of circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Commercial tenants will have three months following the expiration of the local emergency period to repay any back due rent.
Can I leave home to exercise?
Yes, but only if you are outdoors and not in close contact with other people. Otherwise, no, because fitness and exercise gyms and similar facilities are closed. Please wear a face covering while exercising in a neighborhood or a shared area where others may be.
Are the city’s parks and recreation centers open?
Parks will remain open during regular park hours for the purpose of respite, walking,running or jogging. Please be sure to keep at least six feet between yourself and others in the community.
All gymnasiums, sports fields and courts, golf courses, playground, fitness equipment, playgrounds, skateparks, pools and other park amenities are closed. All recreation and cultural programming at all facilities are canceled; this includes all recreational and cultural activities, indoor and outdoor sports leagues, aquatics classes, instructional courses, and group sessions. All events and permits of 50 people or more at L.A. Recreation & Parks sites or locations are canceled.
Dog parks remain open.
Are public trails and trailheads open?
No. They’re closed.
Are the beaches open?
No. All beaches in the City of Los Angeles are closed.
Food and Supplies
Can I go to the store (grocery store, market, corner store, food bank, etc.)?
Yes, you can go to the store to buy food, drinks and goods for yourself, for those in your home, and for anyone else that needs help. This also includes medical supplies at a pharmacy and supplies at a hardware store. When out of your house always maintain six feet of distance from other people. It is also recommended that you wear a cloth face covering when you are running essential errands.
Can grocery stores other food retailers remain open?
Yes. Grocery stores, water retailers, produce stands, supermarkets, food banks, convenience stores, and similar food retail establishments are encouraged to remain open to provide food to the public.
When visiting these establishments, please help retailers maintain at least six feet minimum distance between patrons, including by providing ample space while shopping and waiting in line. It is also recommended that you wear a cloth face covering when you are running essential errands.
Are sidewalk vendors allowed to continue operations?
Food vendors with a valid health permit issued by the County Department of Public Health are allowed to continue operations, as long as they comply with physical distancing requirements for customers waiting to order or pick up food.
StreetsLA is paying extra attention to sidewalk vending activities to reduce incidents of people congregating, as well as to enforce distancing requirements and ensure that food vendors have valid health permits.
Can I still get deliveries from local businesses and online stores?
Yes. The mail and other delivery services can continue to function, as can food delivery services. Just keep six feet between you and the person making your delivery.
Can I go shopping for things other than food/groceries?
Yes. You can shop for health care items, as well as office, pet, and hardware supplies. You must minimize unnecessary trips. It is also recommended that you wear a cloth face covering when you are running essential errands.
Can I go to a bar/nightclub/theater?
No. Entertainment venues like these are not permitted to be open during this Order.
Can I go to the bank?
Yes, but avoid unnecessary trips.
Can I go out to do laundry or have my laundry done?
Can I get my hair cut or styled at a beauty salon or barbershop?
No. These businesses are ordered closed under the “Safer at Home” emergency order.
Can I go to the gym or health club?
No. Gyms are ordered closed.
Can I go to a vet or pet hospital if my pet is sick?
Yes. Please call first to determine if there are any restrictions in place.
Am I able to take my pet to be groomed?
Generally speaking, you cannot — as pet groomers are not considered essential businesses under the Safer at Home”order. There may be some exceptions for certain services, but only if provided as part of veterinary care.
Are supplies of food and other necessities running low?
No. There is no shortage of supplies at our grocery stores and no reason to over-buy.
Grocery, convenience, and warehouse stores and pharmacies are frequently restocking. Please continue to buy normal quantities of these items on the same schedule you normally do. This will ensure that there is enough for everyone.
As part of the directive, trucks and other vehicles engaged in the delivery of grocery items to stores are exempt from nightly curfews — a measure which will help ensure stores remain well-stocked.
Are florists and flower shops open?
No. These are considered non-essential businesses under the order.
Is my favorite restaurant, cafe, coffee shop, etc. still open?
Yes, but only for delivery and carry out.
Restaurants and other facilities that prepare and serve food are encouraged to stay open, but patrons will not be permitted to dine-in.
Are funeral homes and mortuaries open?
Yes. The work performed by funeral home workers and morticians is considered essential under the order.
I don’t cook--how can I purchase meals?
Restaurants, cafes, food trucks, and similar establishments may remain open to supply meals to the public via delivery and carryout. You can also purchase prepared foods at grocery stores, supermarkets, certified farmers’ markets, convenience stores, and other such food retailers.
What if my plumbing gets stopped up? How will I access essential services for my home?
Call your plumber or building manager. This Order allows service providers like plumbers, electricians, carpenters, exterminators and building managers to keep working and providing their services to the public. To obtain supplies for a DIY solution, you can also visit hardware stores, which are allowed to stay open under the Order.
How can I access free or reduced price meals for myself or my family?
Schools, soup kitchens, food banks, and other entities that provide free or reduced priced food goods or meals to students or other members of the public are encouraged to continue providing these services. However, food provided by these establishments to the public may not be eaten on the premises and must instead be delivered or picked up to be consumed at home.
Are farmers markets open?
On March 30th, Mayor Garcetti required all certified farmer’s markets in Los Angeles to submit plans to the Bureau of Street Services for approval on how they will ensure safe operations, including for hygiene and physical distancing.
For a complete list of farmers markets that have been approved to resume operations, including their locations and days of operation, see https://streetsla.lacity.org/covid.
Health Care and Caregiving
Can I still seek non-essential medical care like eye exams, teeth cleaning, elective procedures?
To the extent possible, all non-essential health care visits should be cancelled, postponed, or conducted remotely if possible.
Can I leave home to care for elderly parents, friends, or family members who need assistance?
Yes. You are permitted to provide care or get supplies for loved ones. Be sure that you follow physical distancing guidelines and maintain at least 6 feet of distance when possible, wash your hands, use hand sanitizer, and cough or sneeze into a tissue. It is also recommended that you wear a cloth face covering to keep your respiratory droplets to yourself.
Can I visit loved ones in a hospital, nursing home, skilled nursing or other facility?
Generally no. There are limited exceptions, such as if you are going to the hospital with a minor who is under 18 or someone who is developmentally disabled and needs assistance. For most other situations, the Order prohibits non-necessary visitation to these kinds of facilities. If you need more information, please contact the facility directly by phone. This is difficult, but necessary in order to protect hospital staff and other patients.
Education and Child Care
If my child’s school is providing food or meals, can I leave home to pick them up?
How can students get meals with schools closed?
Los Angeles Unified, in partnership with the Red Cross, will continue to provide nutritious meals to all students who need them during the temporary closure of schools. There are 60 Grab & Go Food Centers open weekdays from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. Each child can take home two nutritious meals.
What do I do about my kids? I have to work.
The Order allows you to take steps necessary to take your children to authorized childcare. Otherwise, you should address childcare needs as you are able given the constraints of the situation.
How will I entertain my kids? Can we go to the playground or arrange playdates?
Do your best to entertain your children with games, reading, puzzles, and TV/videos at home. Engage them in educational online tools. However, you should not take them to the playground or arrange playdates. Children are not able to maintain physical distance, and even adults are prohibited from socializing with friends in this manner. It is essential that we stop the spread of the virus by not having in-person social interactions.
Can my children remain in childcare? Will my daycare be shut down?
Childcare facilities may only operate if they comply with the conditions of this Order as they related to child care. Among these conditions, children must be cared for in groups of 12 or fewer, groups of children may not mix with each other, and providers may not circulate between groups.
Is LAX still open during this crisis?
Yes. Airlines have dramatically reduced domestic and international flights for the coming months as they deal with reduced demand and travel restrictions. Angelenos are encouraged to limit all non-essential travel. LAX is continuing to coordinate with its federal partners on recommended travel restrictions and screenings of passengers coming from areas with widespread COVID-19 infections.
Is LADOT Transit still running?
DASH and Commuter Express remain operational on all routes. DASH is free. Customers are required to board and exit DASH buses through the rear door only.
For the most up-to-date information, visit: ladottransit.com/.
CityRide remains at normal service levels.
What is the city doing to clean and disinfect public spaces?
Metro has increased its cleaning efforts at major transit hubs like Union Station with a special focus on high touch point areas like handrails, elevator call buttons, and ticket vending machines.
Buses and trains are cleaned at least once per day with EPA-approved disinfectants. Metro is reviewing cleaning protocols and will update them as recommended as this crisis evolves.
Metro is also installing sanitation stations and hand sanitizer dispensers at major transit stops and stations to allow riders to wash their hands, and signs that describe what individuals can do to reduce risk of exposure to the virus.
Additionally, StreetsLA has doubled cleanings for transit shelters operated by OUTFRONT/JC Decaux, increasing from twice a week to four times a week.
Can I use ride share, on demand service, or a taxi?
Only for essential travel. You should avoid being in a vehicle with many other people. In circumstances under which such transportation is needed, you must practice physical distancing, cover your mouth and nose if you cough or sneeze, use hand hand sanitizer or wash your hands before and after rides. Airlines, taxis, and other private transportation providers, like Uber and Lyft, providing transportation services necessary for essential activities and other purposes are expressly authorized in the “Safer at Home” Order.
Can I take public transportation (bus, subway, train)?
Only for essential travel. Public transit will continue to operate on a limited basis. When using public transit, maintain at least six feet of distance from others.
What is being done to protect homeless Angelenos?
The City is opening thousands of emergency shelter beds to help get homeless Angelenos indoors more quickly.
As of March 31, there are 13 emergency shelters at rec centers across the city. In addition, many winter shelter programs will remain until September 30, 2020.
There are more than 500 camper trailers on their way to Los Angeles from the State, and the Mayor’s office is working with LAHSA and state and local partners to open 900 motel and hotel rooms for isolation and quarantine for homeless Angelenos who are at the highest risk for COVID-19.
If other motels and hotels want to step up and help, they can sign up at Coronavirus.LACity.org/Rooms.
How to Help
I’m a medical professional; How can I help?
If you are a medical professional looking for an opportunity to help, please consider joining the CIty of Los Angeles Medical Corps. The first step is to complete this form.
I’m a manufacturer; How can I help?
The City of Los Angeles and Reformation have partnered to make protective gear and other much-needed medical supplies for our frontline workers.
Garment and apparel manufacturers in the city can sign up to be part of the program and help us reach our goal of producing 5 million non-medical masks. These are not N95 medical grade masks, but will be designed to meet the needs of grocery store workers, non-medical staff in hospitals, and others providing essential services during this crisis.
How can I volunteer to help Angelenos impacted by this crisis?
At this time, the City of Los Angeles is not deploying in-the-field volunteers in response to the COVID-19 crisis. But we are collecting contact information of prospective volunteers so that we can take action swiftly if the need arises.
We encourage you to sign up for the City’s Community COVID-19 Response Volunteer Interest List.
Here are some other things you can do –– so long as you are healthy, not a member of a vulnerable population, and meet all advised public health requirements:
- Donate to food banks and volunteer to ensure our most vulnerable populations are still able to provide for their families. Much needed items include canned goods, peanut butter, toilet paper, antibacterial cleansers, and financial contributions.
- Volunteer with the American Red Cross to help distribute meals to students affected by school closures or as a volunteer blood donor to address the current blood shortage.
- Do neighbor check-ins. Offer to pick up groceries or medications for those who aren't able to and stay connected by calling your neighbors, friends, and loved ones who might appreciate human connection despite physical distancing.
- Consider virtual volunteer opportunities with organizations like L.A. Works.
- Check-in with your local homebound meal delivery programs. Many of them are scaling up to support the increased need and need volunteers. Find a location near you and call to ask if they need assistance.
How can I offer financial support to Angelenos impacted by this crisis?
The L.A. Emergency COVID-19 Crisis Fund was created by The Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles to provide relief to families and small businesses impacted by the crisis, support and protect healthcare workers and first responders, shelter uhhoused neighbors, and strengthen the City's capacity to respond to emergency needs and plan for long-term recovery.
The Angeleno Fund is another program of The Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles designed to give Angelenos a means of providing direct financial assistance to families experiencing extreme financial hardship, many of whom are immigrants or independent workers who will not qualify for other benefits.