Santa Clara County opens retail to curbside pickup

After a long nine weeks, retail operations got a sliver of good news Monday. Santa Clara County is joining other Bay Area Counties to allow a number of retail operations to reopen this week.

“We are issuing a new order today that allows retail establishments to offer storefront pick-up, and also allows the manufacturing, warehousing, and logistical operations that support retail to resume,” health officials from Alameda, Santa Clara, Marin, San Francisco, and Contra Costa Counties, as well as the City of Berkeley, said in a statement. San Mateo County is also opening for curbside retail operations on Monday, but under a slightly different health order.

Health officials praised the collective work of Bay Area residents to shelter at home. Retail openings can happen on Friday, May 22.

“We have seen sustained progress on several key indicators regarding containment of COVID-19,” the statement read.

Officials said that a number of COVID-19 indicators have been moving in the right direction for two weeks. That progress led to the retail changes, as well as to openings in manufacturing, warehousing, and logistics.

Testing has significantly increased over the last two weeks in Santa Clara County, with a decreasing percentage of positive results. Additionally, hospitalization rates are stable or decreasing. And, personal protective equipment stockpiles continue to increase.

“We share the sense of urgency, and will reopen activities as soon as they can appropriately resume,” said Dr. Sara Cody in a press release.

While many more operations can reopen, customers are not allowed in stores and social distancing remains paramount. Businesses that do reopen must display and implement distancing protocols.

“Bay Area residents are still required by health order to stay home as much as possible, wear face coverings, and follow the precautions that have helped the region make progress to slow the spread of COVID-19.”