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The latest news and announcements from Mayor London N. Breed

Mayor London Breed Announces San Francisco's Plan for Further Reopening Businesses and Activities

San Francisco’s updated timeline allows for a safer and gradual reopening, balances the risk of the activity with the ability of the City’s resources to manage COVID-19 cases

San Francisco, CA — Mayor London N. Breed, Dr. Grant Colfax, Director of Health, and Assessor-Recorder Carmen Chu, co-Chair of the City’s Economic Recovery Task Force, today announced the next steps in San Francisco’s reopening of businesses and activities.

Since July, San Francisco has been on the State’s COVID-19 watch list, which restricted many activities and required the City to pause further reopening. On Friday, August 28, the State issued new criteria and a colored-coded tiered system, which replaced the watch list. San Francisco has been placed on the “red” tier, which provides the City the discretion to move forward with reopening some activities. While San Francisco recognizes the State’s thresholds, the City will continue on a reopening path based on its unique challenges and successes, and maintains the ability to open more gradually than what the State allows.

“Our priority has always been to protect the health and safety of the people of San Francisco,” said Mayor Breed. “Since March, people have been struggling financially, mentally, and emotionally, and being able to continue our gradual reopening of businesses and activities will help to ease some of that burden. We remain committed to making decisions based on data and our local conditions with COVID-19, and our next steps take a balanced and thoughtful approach to reopening. But we all need to do our part to reopen while keeping our community safe, so remember to cover your face, keep your distance, and wash your hands regularly.”  

San Francisco’s immediate path forward starts with outdoor activities that are lower risk and moves to indoor activities that are lower risk and with limited capacity. In parallel to this, in-person learning and child and youth development activities will also be opened on a rolling basis. Today, outdoor personal services are resuming, as well as indoor malls at limited capacity. Additional services, businesses, and activities will resume over the coming weeks and months, as long as San Francisco continues to make progress on limiting the spread of COVID-19.

“We know our communities and businesses are anxious to get back to work and start doing some regular activities,” said Dr. Colfax. “We will continue our deliberate and gradual reopening as it allows us to monitor the spread, manage its immediate challenges and mitigate the long term impact on our city. Our reopening pace will be informed by our ability to manage the risk of more activity that may result in more cases and hospitalizations.”

“Time and again, San Franciscans have risen to the challenge to slow the spread of COVID-19,” said Assessor Carmen Chu, Co-Chair of the Economic Recovery Task Force. “That collective action is what has allowed us to be here today. Reflected in comments we’ve heard from hundreds of people through the Economic Recovery Task Force, this announcement is important because it shows the path forward for so many industries and businesses that have been shuttered for months. Let’s keep each other safe and let’s work together to sustain our steady openings.”

“San Franciscans have made real and ongoing sacrifices to slow the spread of COVID-19 and to get back in a position where we can begin reopening again,” said Joaquín Torres, Director of the Office of Economic and Workforce Development. “This crisis is multi-faceted, and as a City, we’re extremely concerned about the enormous economic toll it’s taking, especially on those who are out of work and for businesses that have not been able to reopen. We’re keeping these workers and businesses center of mind, and that’s why we’ve moved ahead immediately with reopening personal services and will continue quickly but carefully expanding our reopening.” 

The gradual reopening of outdoor services, malls, and children’s activities will increase travel and interaction throughout the city, which means increasing community spread of the virus and an increase in cases. Public health officials will need to regularly assess the Key Public Health Indicators, particularly new positive case counts and hospitalizations to ensure San Francisco has the necessary resources available for those that are infected.

As San Francisco moves forward with reopening businesses, more than 50 San Francisco Transitional Kindergarten (TK)-6 grade schools have been provided an application for in-person learning with limited capacity. These applications are under review and will be approved within two to four weeks. The goal is for in-classroom learning to resume on rolling basis, starting with the youngest children. Additionally, applications for Community Hubs are currently being accepted, and the program is scheduled to start on September 14. Other child and youth development activities are underway including after-school programs and childcare facilities.

San Francisco’s updated reopening plan is outlined below and is available online at Reopening is dependent upon San Francisco’s Health indicators remaining stable or improving, and the plan below is subject to change. All San Franciscans must do their part to limit the spread of COVID-19, including face masking, social distancing and handwashing. The reopening of most of the below activities and businesses requires limited capacity and approved health and safety plans.

San Francisco’s Path Forward to Reopening

Outdoor activities – Moving Forward September 1

  • Outdoor hair salons and barber shops
  • Outdoor personal services
  • Outdoor massage
  • Outdoor pools (lap swimming, wading), with limited capacity
  • Outdoor non-contact, recreational activities
  • Indoor malls (no food courts, gathering areas) at 25% capacity
  • Childcare and Out of School Time programs, with limitations
  • Higher and adult education, with limitations
  • Indoor funerals (up to 12 people)
  • Outdoor gym and fitness centers (September 9)

GOAL: Mid-September, Low Risk Outdoor Activities and TK-6th grade in-person learning

  • Outdoor tour buses and boats, with limited capacity
  • Outdoor movies, with limited capacity
  • Outdoor family entertainment, with limited capacity
  • Hotels and lodging (not hotel fitness centers), with limited capacity
  • In-classroom learning: TK-6 grade on rolling basis with approved health and safety plan
  • Indoor museums, zoos, aquariums, with limited capacity and an approved health and safety plans)
  • Places of worship (allows one person at a time for individual prayer indoors; 50 people outdoors)
  • Small special gatherings, for example election campaigns, with limited capacity (1 person indoors, 12 people outdoors)

GOAL: End of September, Low Risk Indoor Activities

  • Indoor hair salons and barber shops, with limited capacity
  • Indoor personal services, with limited capacity
  • Indoor one-on-one personal training, with limited capacity
  • Indoor solo use of gyms and fitness centers, with limited capacity
  • Places of worship, with limited capacity (25% of capacity indoors, up to 25 people; 50 people outdoors)

GOAL: October, Middle School in-person learning

  • Middle schools, in-person learning, on rolling basis with an approved health and safety plan

GOAL: November, High Schools, additional learning activities

  • High schools, in-person learning, on rolling basis with an approved health and safety plan