Anti-lockdown protesters march to the home of Los Angeles County’s public health director to insist she ‘open LA’ as she’s ‘killing small businesses’ with three-week shutdown order
- An anti-lockdown protest took place outside the home of Los Angeles County Health Director Barbara Ferrer on Sunday
- At least 50 people marched to her Echo Park, California, home to fight the new ‘Safer at Home’ restrictions
- Protesters also criticized California Gov. Gavin Newsom and LA Mayor Eric Garcetti
- The new restrictions limited business occupancy capacities and banned most gatherings until December 20
- California, and Los Angeles County, have experienced coronavirus case and death increases
At least 50 outraged Angelenos shouted ‘Open L.A.’ and as they marched through the city to the Echo Park home of Dr. Barbara Ferrer.
Some waved Americana flags and others wore President Trump‘s ‘Make America Great Again’ paraphernalia as they all hoisted signs that read ‘No science. No data. No shutdown.’
‘Stop Killing Small Businesses,’ one sign read, while another declared ‘Covid is a Con-job’ and one banner proclaimed ‘stop the fear propaganda!’
Around 50 Californians on Sunday marched to the home of Los Angeles County Health Director Barbara Ferrer’s home in Echo Park
The group of protesters (pictured) were outraged by new coronavirus restrictions starting Monday in Los Angeles County
Other signs were directed at Ferrer, California Gov. Gavin Newsom, and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti – frequent subjects of criticism for their pandemic restrictions.
‘Lost all three jobs from lockdown!’ one sign read. ‘Jobless [and] depressed…Garcetti doesn’t care.’
Very few people in attendance to the anti-restriction protest wore proper face masks. LAPD officers were at the scene and parked near Ferrer’s home.
The public outcry at Ferrer’s home came after Los Angeles officials announced a new ‘Safer at Home’ order that limited business capacities and banning most gatherings.
The three-week order takes effect Monday and advises residents to stay home ‘as much as possible’ and to wear a face covering when they go out.
It bans people from gathering with others who aren’t in their households, whether publicly or privately.
Some signs that were hoisted on Sunday read; ”Covid is a Con-job,’ ‘stop the fear propaganda’ and ‘stop killing small businesses’
The new coronavirus restrictions in Los Angeles County will last until December 20 amid a surge in coronavirus cases. Pictured: protesters march to Barbara Ferrer’s home
Pictured: Two women holding anti-lockdown signs get into a verbal altercation with a Echo Park neighbor near Barbara Ferrer’s home
However, exceptions are made for church services and protests, ‘which are constitutionally protected rights,’ the county Department of Public Health said in a statement.
‘We know we are asking a lot from so many who have been sacrificing for months on end,’ Ferrer told the Associated Press on Friday.
‘Acting with collective urgency right now is essential if we want to put a stop to this surge.’
Barbara Ferrer (pictured): ‘Acting with collective urgency right now is essential if we want to put a stop to this surge’
Indoor retail businesses, which make much of their profits during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday seasons, are allowed to remain open but with just 20 per cent of capacity, including nail salons and other personal care services.
Restaurants in the county already were recently barred from in-person dining. They can still offer pickup, delivery and takeout services.
Beaches, trails, and parks will remain open, with safety requirements.
The order, which runs through December 20, is more modest than a statewide closure order issued by Governor Gavin Newsom in mid-March
Newsom has been on the receiving end of scrutiny after implementing a statewide curfew that essentially barred residents from 10pm to 5am.
The curfew requires people to stay home unless they are responding to an emergency, shopping for groceries, picking up takeout or walking their dogs.
But Newsom recently apologized for attending a 50th birthday party with 12 friends at 3-star Michelin restaurant this month after repeatedly advocating for public health guidelines.
Protesters on Sunady demanded that officials ‘open LA’ and put an end to the new restrictions that will last three weeks
One of the signs photographed on Sunday read: ‘Newsom and Ferrer are non-essential.’
‘Barbara Ferrer. How do you feel about yourself making $413,865 while putting millions out of business,’ another read, per Newsweek. ‘How? I’d feel shame.’
The demonstration temporarily devolved into a shouting match when protesters began butting heads with neighbors.
Some neighbors were bothered by the protest at Ferrer’s home, while others argued with demonstrators over the outcome of the 2020 presidential election.
Neighbors responded to a ‘Trump Won’ sign with placards reading ‘Trump lost’ and ‘go home!’
Pictured: One man hoists an American flag as he and others march to Barbara Ferrer’s Echo Park home to fight new coronavirus restrictions
California has recorded 1.1million infections, 19,000 deaths and increasing hospitalizations at 8,198 administered coronavirus patients
One neighbor in a particularly intense discussion called the protesters ‘fascists’ and ‘Nazis.’
Police were seen overlooking the exchanges, but the situation did not appear to turn physical. The demonstration ended at 5pm and the protesters left the area.
California this month became the second state to surpass one million coronavirus cases in a grime milestone.
The Golden State has recorded 1.1million infections, 19,000 deaths and increasing hospitalizations at 8,198 administered coronavirus patients.
OF California’s 7,881 ICU beds, only 1,990 were available on Saturday. The state’s 14-day positivity rate was 6.1 per cent.
California’s coronavirus dashboard listed coronavirus cases in Los Angeles County as ‘widespread’ with a 4.2 per cent positivity rate.
More than 386,000 cases have been counted in Los Angeles County – the highest of any county in the country – and a death toll of 7,623. On Saturday, officials counted 3,454 new cases and 19 new deaths.
Hospitalized coronavirus patients have reached 2,513, while only 614 ICU beds out of the county’s 2,305 total.
Despite its reputation for sprawl, Los Angeles has some of the densest neighborhoods in the U.S.
Many of those areas have multi-generational households where workers who don’t have the luxury to telecommute are exposed to the virus at work or on public transportation and spread it to family members.
Case numbers in those communities have been higher and the virus has disproportionately affected more Latinos and Black people.
With infections out of control, the other options for public officials to take are even more onerous and unlikely to be enacted in the U.S., said Dr. George Rutherford, an epidemiologist at the University of California, San Francisco.
China, for example, tested millions of people and enforced quarantines. Italy brought in the military to enforce a shutdown.
‘It’s hard to imagine how much further you can go in a society like we have,’ he said told Associated Press.
‘It’s a balancing act, right? You want people to obey it but you don’t want to make it so draconian that people are trying to figure out ways around it all the time.’