Santa Cruz Mayor to City: Personal Responsibility is Crucial
Residents can help restrict the spread of COVID-19, ensure health and safety for all
SANTA CRUZ, CA – With the beaches now open and thousands expected to visit Santa Cruz for the Independence Day holiday, Mayor Justin Cummings urges residents to remain cautious, limit gatherings, and avoid crowds this weekend.
“Santa Cruz has been a leader in the State in minimizing the impacts of COVID-19. I urge our residents to continue to lead by example,” said Mayor Justin Cummings. “Consider staying at home or seeking outdoor venues other than the beaches for holiday celebrations. We are not only responsible for our own health, but also the health of the most vulnerable residents in our community.”
The County’s face covering order, which aligns with the State’s guidance, remains in place indefinitely. Face coverings are required for everyone, including any children over the age of 2 years old. Physical distancing of at least six feet is also strongly urged.
Education and encouragement, not enforcement, characterizes the City’s approach. “With hotels, state parks, and other areas for tourism and recreation open, it is very hard to manage keeping just the City’s beaches closed. In the absence of a statewide emphasis on minimizing travel and county-wide beach closures, more conflict could arise between law enforcement and people who are visiting from out of town. Our officers are needed to respond to an increase in calls that we typically receive during the 4th of July holiday weekend. People should continue to shelter in place and follow the guidelines that will ensure their health and wellbeing,” Cummings said.
Santa Cruz Police and Fire crews will focus on enforcement of the citywide Safety Enhancement Zone that will be in effect from 8 p.m. on Thursday, July 2, 2020, through 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, July 5, 2020. The safety enhancement designation authorizes the tripling of fees for violations of the City’s municipal code, such as the illegal discharge of fireworks, littering, and public consumption of alcohol.
According to the Santa Cruz County Health Officer, most documented cases in Santa County and the state are person-to-person spread by known contacts who remained within 6 feet of each other for prolonged periods without wearing face coverings. The County began to see upticks in cases following Mother’s Day, Memorial Day, and graduation celebrations.
Residents should also remain vigilant at gatherings of family and friends to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Minimize contact with others, including keeping visits short, wearing face coverings, staying 6 feet apart whenever possible, washing your hands often, and gathering outdoors instead of indoors. Additionally, be sure to clean and disinfect commonly touched surfaces, don’t share utensils, equipment, sports equipment.
Press Availability: Mayor Cummings will be available to meet in-person with the press today, June 30 at 1:30 p.m. immediately following the Cowell Beach press event to be held at the Cowell Beach overlook near the stone sculpture adjacent to the Wharf. Additional availability can be arranged by appointment.
About the City of Santa Cruz
The City of Santa Cruz is the county seat and largest city in Santa Cruz County. The City serves over 63,000 residents with full services, including police, utility, waste, recreation, and library programs. Santa Cruz is a Charter City governed by a seven-member council.