When Can Riverside County Reopen Safely?

Today (June 1), Riverside County, along with the rest of the state, is reopening with capacity limits and physical distancing requirements removed for most businesses and events. The county has proposed a gradual reopening starting in September, submitting a letter to the California Department of Public Health last week. This letter highlighted the overwhelming burden that closures have had on residents, from job losses to poor mental health. The Reopening Safety Plan (PDF) outlines the Riverside County Office of Education's (RCOE) plan to comply with the California Department of Public Health Cohort Guidance (CDPH) for school settings in the reopening of student programs in the Programs and Services divisions for Students and Early Learning Services.

The California Department of Public Health recently moved Riverside County to the red level of the state's reopening framework, allowing more businesses to resume indoor operations. According to an analysis by The Desert Sun, Riverside County is one of at least 49% of California counties that received approval to quickly reopen businesses in May without meeting at least one of the state-mandated reopening criteria. However, for this new schedule to be implemented, Riverside County needs state approval as it is currently on California's watch list.