As Silicon Valley residents shelter in place, San Jose police Chief Eddie Garcia said his officers have issued more than 50 warnings to non-essential businesses that were continuing to operate in violation of the isolation order.
Health officials from Santa Clara County and several neighboring Bay Area jurisdictions gave the word Monday afternoon for residents to stay at home to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. California Gov. Gavin Newsom followed up Thursday evening by putting the whole state on lockdown, with no end date in site.
But while some businesses have closed up shop for the time being, a number of trades—like banks, grocery stores and take-out only restaurants—are allowed to continue operating since they’re deemed “essential.”
But it turns out, not everyone has complied with the legal order. At a news conference Friday morning, Garcia said officers have had to force the closure of 56 local businesses.
Here’s what they’ve shut down so far:
- 2 repair shops
- 3 restaurants
- 2 clothing stores
- 14 hair salons
- 7 barber shops
- 11 smoke shops
- 2 flower shops
- 3 gyms
- 1 sporting goods store
- 1 video game store
- 1 billiards hall
- 1 gun store
- 1 recycling center
- 1 furniture store
- 1 flea market
- 1 car wash
- 1 music store
- 2 groups playing sports at local parks
On Wednesday, the police department began deploying four “health order compliance” cars during the day shift and four in the evening. Garcia said that, so far, everyone has been given a warning. Next week, however, that will change.
“Our current plan is to move from an education stance to an enforcement stance on any business that have been contacted, warned and then reopened,” he cautions.
The city’s top cop said SJPD would explore criminal citations, licensing sanctions and health code violations for businesses that run afoul of the public health order.
Most of the businesses found to be in violation were simply concerned about paying the bills or confused about which authority they should listen to, Garcia said. Some were simply snubbing the public health edict.
“I mentioned a store right now, a billiards hall,” Garcia said. “Are you kidding me? I mean, I don’t know how a billiards hall thought they could be open at this time.”
But while SJPD cracks down on businesses, Garcia has told his officers that they are not allowed to make car or pedestrian stops solely based on the order because people still have a wide range of legitimate reasons to be out and about.
WATCH LIVE: San Jose mayor and police chief give an update on the shelter-in-place order. Tracking the latest COVID-19 updates here: https://abc7ne.ws/2QxQgOE
Posted by ABC7 News on Friday, March 20, 2020
Below is a list of businesses that are allowed to stay open during the stay-home order (which you can read here).
- Healthcare operations and essential infrastructure
- Grocery stores, certified farmers markets, farm and produce stands, supermarkets, food banks, convenience stores, and other establishments engaged in the retail sale of canned food, dry goods, fresh fruits and vegetables, pet supply, fresh meats, fish, and poultry, and any other household consumer products (such as cleaning and personal care products). This includes stores that sell groceries and also sell other non-grocery products, and products necessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences
- Food cultivation, including farming, livestock, and fishing
- Businesses that provide food, shelter, and social services, and other necessities of life for economically disadvantaged or otherwise needy individuals
- Newspapers, television, radio, and other media services
- Gas stations and auto-supply, auto-repair, and related facilities
- Banks and related financial institutions
- Hardware stores
- Plumbers, electricians, exterminators, and other service providers who provide services that are necessary to maintaining the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences, essential activities, and essential businesses
- Businesses providing mailing and shipping services, including post office boxes;
- Educational institutions—including public and private K-12 schools, colleges, and universities-for purposes of facilitating distance learning or performing essential functions, provided that social distancing of six-feet per person is maintained to the greatest extent possible
- Laundromats, dry cleaners, and laundry service providers
- Restaurants and other facilities that prepare and serve food, but only for delivery or carry-out. Schools and other entities that typically provide free food services to students or members of the public may continue to do so under this order on the condition that the food is provided to students or members of the public on a pick-up and take-away basis only. Schools and other entities that provide food services under this exemption shall not permit the food to be eaten at the site where it is provided, or at any other gathering site
- Businesses that supply products needed for people to work from home
- Businesses that supply other essential businesses with the support or supplies necessary to operate
- Businesses that ship or deliver groceries, food, goods or services directly to residences
- Airlines, taxis, and other private transportation providing services necessary for essential activities and other purposes expressly authorized in this order
- Home-based care for seniors, adults, or children
- Residential facilities and shelters for seniors, adults, and children
- Professional services, such as legal or accounting services, when necessary to assist in compliance with legally mandated activities
- Childcare facilities providing services that enable employees exempted in this Order to work as permitted. To the extent possible, childcare facilities must operate under the following mandatory conditions:
- Childcare must be carried out in stable groups of 12 or fewer (“stable” means that the same 12 or fewer children are in the same group each day).
- Children shall not change from one group to another.
- If more than one group of children is cared for at one facility, each group shall be separate. Groups shall not mix with each other.
- Childcare providers shall remain solely with one group of children.
Residents can report non-essential businesses that are still operating by calling the San Jose Police Department’s non-emergency number at 3-1-1.