Gov. Gavin Newsom Exempts Entertainment Industry Workers From New Coronavirus Restrictions

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Gov. Gavin Newsom (D-CA) on Thursday announced a new round of stay-at-home orders for the Golden State, which state “that non-essential work, movement and gatherings stop between 10 PM and 5 AM in counties in the purple tier.” Nearly every county in California is currently in the purple tier, accounting for 94% of the state’s population.

Deadline reported that Newsom’s office said Thursday that the order would not apply to workers in the entertainment industry, saying those workers were deemed “essential.” The original order included a list of “Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers to help state, local, tribal, and industry partners as they work to protect communities, while ensuring continuity of functions critical to public health and safety, as well as economic and national security.”

As Deadline reported: On that list of exemptions, under “Industrial, Commercial, Residential, and Sheltering Facilities and Services,” there is essential worker designation 15 which reads, “Workers supporting the entertainment industries, studios, and other related establishments, provided they follow covid-19 public health guidance around physical distancing.”

The guidance does indicate this exemption only applies if remote work is not possible, but with film and TV production it is often not.

Film and TV production employees were not included on the essential workers list during the first California shutdown in March. Their addition to the list speaks to the success and strong protocols on set since then. The document was last updated September 22.

No one is suggesting film and TV production crews should not be allowed to work (and the world needs entertainment right now), rather, it seems odd that they would be included when many in the restaurant business (unless working for delivery services) are not and when schools are closed despite not being a high-risk source of spreading the coronavirus. – READ MORE

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