California Takes Action to Combat COVID-19


  • Governor Newsom signed an executive order addressing a variety of issues in response to the COVID-19 pandemic (6/15/2020).
  • Governor Newsom announced that California-based BYD North America received certification from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) to produce N95 respirators for the state (6/8/2020).
  • Governor Newsom signed an executive order that will help increase the availability of over-the-counter drugs, such as hand sanitizer, and medical devices, such as respirators, ventilators and masks, which are in demand due to the COVID-19 pandemic (6/5/2020).
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order extending authorization for local governments to halt evictions for renters impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, through July 28 (5/29/2020).
  • The state is partnering with the California Partnership to End Domestic Violence (CPEDV), Airbnb and Uber to provide free accommodation and transportation to victims of domestic violence (5/29/2020).
  • Governor Newsom launched California Connected, the state’s comprehensive contact tracing program and public awareness campaign (5/22/2020).
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order addressing a variety of issues in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. (5/19/2020)
  • As a result of California scaling up its COVID-19 testing capacity in recent weeks, Governor Newsom announced that more than 1 million diagnostic tests for the virus have been conducted statewide. (5/12/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order extending some critical deadlines that have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. (5/8/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order to ensure that Californians can exercise their right to vote in a safe and accessible manner during the General Election this November. (5/8/2020)
  • The state released updated industry guidance – including for retail, manufacturing and logistics – to begin reopening with modifications that reduce risk and establish a safer environment for workers and customers. (5/7/2020)
  • The state launched an interactive website to help Californians find COVID-19 community testing sites near them. (5/6/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order waiving penalties on property taxes for residents and small businesses experiencing economic hardship based on COVID-19 and extending deadline for filing property tax statements. (5/6/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order that creates a time-limited rebuttable presumption for accessing workers’ compensation benefits applicable to Californians who must work outside of their homes during the stay at home order. (5/6/2020).
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order that temporarily broadens the capability of counties to enroll persons into the California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs) program using various eligibility verification methods due to social distancing requirements. (5/1/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order allowing adults to obtain marriage licenses via videoconferencing rather than in person amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. (4/30/2020)
  • California launched covid19.ca.gov/childcare to provide convenient access to safe and reliable child care options for working parents, including essential workers and vulnerable populations. (4/30/2020)
  • The Governor announced that that CalFresh recipients will receive the maximum benefits for the month of May and families with children eligible for free or reduced price meals are eligible to receive additional support thanks to the Pandemic Emergency Benefits Transfer Program (P-EBT). (4/29/2020)
  • Philanthropy committed to a  $15 million campaign to fund Farm to Family program through the end of the year. (4/29/2020)
  • The state expanded its Farm to Family program to help meet the growing demand at California food banks. (4/29/2020)
  • California is mobilizing more than 1,000 callers through the Social Bridging Project to proactively reach out to older Californians who are isolating at home. (4/24/2020)
  • The state is expanding Friendship Line California to provide statewide support to lonely and isolated older Californians. (4/24/2020)
  • California is launching a first-in-the-nation program that will enlist community restaurants to prepare and deliver meals to older Californians who are isolating at home during California’s stay at home order. (4/24/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order addressing a variety of issues in response to the COVID-19 pandemic including extensions for customers on several Department of Motor Vehicles deadlines and suspension of late fees for expired vehicle registrations. (4/23/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order giving flexibility to the California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) and Medi-Cal providers on a variety of deadlines and requirements to ensure continuity of service to patients and customers. (4/23/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order to empower schools to focus on responding to COVID-19 and to provide transparency to their communities. (4/23/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order to stop debt collectors from garnishing COVID-19-related financial assistance. (4/23/2020)
  • Governor Newsom announced that most private student loan servicers have agreed to provide payment and other relief to borrowers, including more than 1.1 million Californians with privately held student loans. (4/23/2020)
  • California Volunteers’ launched the #CaliforniansForAll service initiative to connect Californians with safe volunteer opportunities and encourage those unable to physically volunteer to think creatively about ways to make a difference in their communities. (4/21/2020)
  • The state secured commitments from companies, business leaders, and philanthropists to provide Internet access for hundreds of thousands of households and laptops, Chromebooks, and tablets for over 70,000 students. (4/20/2020)
  • The California Public Utilities Commission is making $30 million available to help school districts ensure that families have Internet access and computing devices for distance learning. (4/20/2020)
  • The California State Transportation Agency is partnering with the City of Sacramento to convert and deploy seven transit buses to be used as super hotspots. (4/20/2020)
  • California negotiated master agreement template with Motel 6 which counties can now use to access these facilities for Project Roomkey. (4/18/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order allowing temporary waivers to certain foster youth programs to ensure continuity of care in response to COVID-19. (4/17/2020)
  • Governor Newsom established a state Task Force on Business and Jobs Recovery to chart a path forward on recovery in the wake of COVID-19. (4/17/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order addressing upcoming admissions criteria for the CSU system, background checks for essential workers, and deadline extensions to real estate licenses and more. (4/17/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order increasing health and safety standards by permitting workers at food facilities to wash their hands every 30 minutes, or as needed. (4/16/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order to give two weeks of supplemental paid sick leave to certain food sector workers if they are subject to a quarantine or isolation order or medical directive. (4/16/2020)
  • Philanthropic partners committed to raising a $50 million to support undocumented Californians. (4/15/2020)
  • California invested $75 million in statewide Disaster Relief Assistance funding to provide financial support for immigrant workers affected by COVID-19. (4/15/2020)
  • The Employment Development Department is implementing a one-stop shop for those applying for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, including the self-employed and independent contractors. (4/15/2020)
  • The state launched a new initiative to expand call center hours at the Employment Development Department to better assist Californians with unemployment insurance applications. (4/15/2020)
  • Governor Newsom signed an executive order to address the release and reentry process at the Division of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) so that eligible youth serving time at DJJ can be discharged safely and expeditiously. (4/14/2020)
  • Governor Newsom outlined six critical indicators California will consider before modifying the stay-at-home-order and other COVID-19 interventions. (4/14/2020)
  • California invested $42 million to protect younger Californians who are at heightened risk for abuse and mistreatment due to COVID-19. (4/13/2020)
  • Governor Newsom announced the release of $100 million to support child care services, and to support child care providers who are stepping up to serve essential infrastructure workers and vulnerable populations and their children. (4/10/2020)
  • The USNS Mercy is taking non-COVID-19 patients to help decompress skilled nursing facilities in the Los Angeles area. (4/10/2020)
  • California is providing stipends to certified nurse assistants, licensed vocational nurses and other critical staff at nursing homes to make sure their needs are met. (4/10/2020)
  • The state created a program to provide doctors, nurses and other critical front-line health care workers access to no-cost or low-cost hotel rooms. (4/9/2020)
  • California is partnering with United Airlines, which will provide free, round-trip flights for volunteer medical professionals from across California and the country who join the state’s health care workforce. (4/9/2020)
  • The state will begin implementing new federal benefit payments of $600 on top of the weekly benefit received by California workers as part of the new Pandemic Additional Compensation (PAC) initiated by the CARES Act. (4/9/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order that provides additional support for older adults and vulnerable young children. (4/7/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order to help the state procure necessary medical supplies to fight COVID-19. (4/7/2020)
  • California’s Surgeon General released new stress management playbooks for individuals, caregivers and kids. (4/7/2020)
  • California published a consolidated page of helplines and resources for those experiencing stress, anxiety or depression, facing substance abuse disorders, violence at home, or seeking to protect child welfare and address child abuse or neglect. (4/7/2020)
  • California secured 4,613 additional beds to fight COVID-19 and is aggressively planning for a surge in hospitalizations in the coming weeks, aiming to add 50,000 beds to our existing hospital capacity of nearly 75,000 beds. (4/6/2020)
  • The Governor created a COVID-19 Testing Task Force, a public-private collaboration that will work with stakeholders to rapidly boost testing capacity. (4/4/2020)
  • California launched a new website, covid19supplies.ca.gov, to allow individuals and companies to donate, sell or offer to manufacture 13 of the most critical medical supplies including ventilators, N95 respirators and testing materials. (4/4/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order allowing health care providers to use video chats and applications to provide health services without risk of penalty. (4/3/2020)
  • Governor Newsom signed an executive order expanding consumer protection against price gouging on critical items, such as food and medical supplies, during the COVID-19 crisis. (4/3/2020)
  • The state is securing thousands of isolation rooms in hotels and motels through Project Roomkey, for extremely vulnerable individuals experiencing homelessness, to help flatten the curve & preserve hospital capacity. (4/3/2020)
  • California is the first state in the nation to secure FEMA approval for 75 percent federal cost-share for housing vulnerable individuals experiencing homelessness. (4/3/2020)
  • Governor Newsom signed an executive order that will restrict water shutoffs to homes and small businesses while the state responds to the COVID-19 pandemic. (4/2/2020)
  • The state is providing $50 million in loan guarantees for small businesses that may not be eligible for federal relief. (4/2/2020)
  • California is also allowing small businesses to defer payment of sales and use taxes of up to $50,000, for up to 12 months. (4/2/2020)
  • Governor Newsom announced $17.8 million in new state initiatives to support California workers impacted by COVID-19. The allocation will come from Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act funds with $7.8 million going to the Los Angeles region and $10 million made available statewide. (4/2/2020)
  • California is partnering with Google, which will be donating Chromebooks and will fund the use of 100,000 donated mobile hotspots to provide free and unlimited high-speed Internet connectivity for the remainder of the school year. (4/1/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order expediting the use of funds to support the state’s continuing efforts to protect public health and respond to the COVID-19 crisis. (4/1/2020)
  • The state developed an agreement between teachers, classified employees, school boards, superintendents, and principals to work together to provide distance learning to California’s students as a result of physical school closures due to mitigation efforts against the COVID-19 outbreak. (4/1/2020)
  • California launched a statewide hotline (833-544-2374) and call center in partnership with 2-1-1 to connect older Californians with essential services like food and medication. (3/31/2020)
  • Governor Newsom called for community members to check in on senior neighbors, friends, and family as part of the ‘Stay Home. Save Lives. Check In.’ (3/31/2020)
  • The state is urging local non-profits and faith-based organizations to call to check in on all of the older Californians in their networks. (3/31/2020)
  • In partnership with AARP, the state is sending a mailer to every older Californian with information and resources to adapt to the stay at home order. (3/31/2020)
  • Governor Newsom issued an executive order to expand the health care workforce and staff at least an additional 50,000 hospital beds needed for the COVID-19 surge. (3/30/2020)
  • The state launched the California Health Corps– health care professionals with an active license, public health professionals, medical retirees, medical and nursing students, or members of medical disaster response teams in California are all encouraged to join and staff the surge in COVID-19 patients. (3/30/2020)
  • Governor Newsom signed an executive order providing relief to small businesses–  it includes a 90-day extension in state and local taxes and extends licensing deadlines and requirements for a number of industries. (3/30/2020)
  • The state secured partnerships with leading digital and media platforms, businesses and celebrities from across the state on the COVID-19 public awareness campaign. (3/29/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order banning the enforcement of eviction orders for renters affected by COVID-19 through May 31, 2020. (3/27/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order enabling the Chief Justice to take emergency actions for the state’s courts to be able to conduct business during the COVID-19 pandemic. (3/27/2020)
  • Governor Newsom secured a major financial relief package – financial institutions will provide a 90-day grace period for mortgage payments and will not negatively impact credit reports for Californians accessing payment relief. (3/25/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order directing the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to temporarily halt intake of inmates and youth into the state’s 35 prisons and four youth correctional facilities. (3/24/2020)
  • The state is moving to videoconferencing of all scheduled parole suitability hearings starting next month. (3/24/2020)
  • California awarded $100 million to cities, counties and continuums of care to help people experiencing homelessness during the COVID-19 pandemic. (3/23/2020)
  • California State Parks is working closely with local county and public health officials to modify park operations by closing vehicular traffic at some park units to reduce the density of visitors. (3/23/2020)
  • The state secured a presidential Major Disaster Declaration, which makes federal funding available to state, tribal and local governments for emergency protective measures, including direct federal assistance, and makes funding available for crisis counseling for impacted individuals. (3/22/2020)
  • California requested and received Personal Protective Equipment from the Strategic National Stockpile. (3/21/2020)
  • The state is leasing two hospitals to increase availability of beds for COVID-19 patients. (3/21/2020)
  • California is directing more than $42 million in emergency funding to expand California’s health care infrastructure and secure equipment and services to support California’s response to COVID-19. (3/21/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order giving the state the ability to increase the health care capacity in clinics, mobile health care units and adult day health care facilities. (3/21/2020)
  • California launched a partnership Neighbor-to-Neighbor campaign with NextDoor and California Volunteers to safely deploy volunteers to help the most vulnerable Californians. (3/20/2020)
  • The Governor activated close to 500 members of the California National Guard to help distribute food at food banks and protect California’s most vulnerable residents. (3/20/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order to permit vote-by-mail procedures to be used in three upcoming special elections, protecting public health and safety during the COVID-19 outbreak. (3/20/2020)
  • The California Department of Human Resources issued directives to departments on how to manage the state workforce to keep employees safe while continuing to provide Californians critical support and services. (3/19/2020)
  • The Department of Food and Agriculture published a resource page for the agricultural sector. (3/19/2020)
  • The Governor requested immediate deployment of the USNS Mercy Hospital Ship to the Port of Los Angeles to decompress the state’s health care delivery system in Los Angeles. (3/19/2020)
  • The state requested federal assistance to supplement California’s efforts to prepare for a COVID-19 surge. (3/19/2020)
  • The Governor issued a stay-at-home order to protect the health and well-being of all Californians and slow the spread of COVID-19. (3/19/2020)
  • The Department of Motor Vehicles cancelled behind-the-wheel drive tests, suspended extended office hours and moved to appointment-only service for transactions requiring an in-person visit. (3/18/2020)
  • California launched a consumer-friendly website and public service announcements to boost COVID-19 awareness. (3/18/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order providing flexibility to local governments to spend their emergency homelessness funding on immediate solutions tailored to combatting COVID-19 and its impacts on the homeless population. (3/18/2020)
  • The Governor directed the first allocation of the $500 million in emergency funding recently authorized by the Legislature for COVID-19 related activities – $150 million for local emergency homelessness actions. (3/18/2020)
  • California is securing 1,309 travel trailers and hundreds of hotels rooms to provide immediate housing options for those most at risk. (3/18/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order to ensure Californians who rely on Medi-Cal, CalFresh, CalWORKS, Cash Assistance for immigrants and in-home supportive services will not lose access due to COVID-19. (3/18/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order to suspend standardized testing to focus on the mental and socioemotional well-being of students. (3/18/2020)
  • The Governor placed the National Guard on alert to support COVID-19 community readiness. (3/17/2020)
  • The state secured SBA disaster assistance for California small businesses economically impacted by COVID-19. (3/17/2020)
  • The state removed barriers to make it easier for California to quickly and effectively provide care to about 13 million Medi-Cal beneficiaries and expand telehealth options. (3/17/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order to ensure vital goods can be delivered to California retailers in a timely manner during the COVID-19 outbreak. (3/17/2020)
  • The Governor requested and signed emergency legislation providing up to $1 billion in funding to help California fight COVID-19. (3/17/2020)
  • California released guidance and resources for schools to plan and implement distance learning and school meal delivery. (3/17/2020)
  • State health and emergency officials directed bars and clubs to close and restaurants to open only for drive-through or pick-up/delivery. (3/17/2020)
  • The state issued guidance for vulnerable Californians– older residents (65+) and those with underlying health conditions – to isolate at home. (3/16/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order to protect the health and safety of Californians most vulnerable to COVID-19 residing at health care, residential and non-residential facilities licensed by the state. (3/16/2020)
  • California Volunteers created a resource page on how Californians can safely help their communities during COVID-19. (3/16/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order that authorizes local governments to halt evictions for renters and homeowners, slows foreclosures, and protects against utility shutoffs for Californians affected by COVID-19. (3/16/2020)
  • The Department of Motor Vehicles is allowing customers to avoid coming into the DMV office for 60 days so that at-risk populations can avoid required visits and practice social distancing. (3/16/2020)
  • EDD is encouraging employers who are experiencing a slowdown in their businesses or services as a result of the outbreak’s impact on the economy to apply for an Unemployment Insurance work sharing program. (3/13/2020)
  • In partnership with federal and local government, California managed the safe disembarkation and treatment of passengers from the Grand Princess cruise ship. (3/13/2020)
  • Californians unable to work because they are caring for an ill or quarantined family member can file a Paid Family Leave. (3/13/2020)
  • The California Employment Development Department (EDD) is encouraging individuals who are unable to work due to exposure to COVID-19 to file a Disability Insurance claim. (3/13/2020)
  • The Franchise Tax Board is providing a 90-day extension to file California tax returns for taxpayers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. (3/13/2020)
  • Caltrans launched a statewide educational campaign on more than 700 electronic highway signs, urging all Californians to be more diligent about containing the spread of the virus. (3/13/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order to ensure schools retain state funding even in the event of a COVID-19 physical closure. (3/13/2020)
  • The Governor issued an executive order removing the waiting period for unemployment and disability insurance for Californians who lose work as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak and readying the state to commandeer hotels and medical facilities. (3/12/2020)
  • The state is allowing local and state legislative bodies to hold meetings via conference calls while still meeting state transparency requirements. (3/12/2020)
  • The state directed mass gatherings be postponed or cancelled to slow the spread of the virus. (3/11/2020)
  • The California Business, Consumer Services and Housing Agency released guidance for homeless assistance providers in the state. (3/10/2020)
  • California obtained approval to provide meal service during school closures to minimize potential exposure to COVID-19. (3/7/2020)
  • California activated the State Operations Center and the Medical and Health Coordination Center to coordinate response efforts across the state. (3/6/2020)
  • 24 million more Californians were made eligible for free medically necessary COVID-19 testing. (3/5/2020)
  • The Governor declared a State of Emergency to make additional resources available, formalize emergency actions already underway across multiple state agencies and departments, and help the state prepare for broader spread of COVID-19. (3/4/2020)
  • California made available some of its emergency planning reserves of 21 million N95 filtering facepiece masks for use in certain health care settings to ease shortages of personal protective equipment. (3/3/2020)
  • The state secured COVID-19 test kits from the CDC to help get results sooner, identify and treat cases and trace potential exposure. (2/28/2020)
  • The California Department of Public Health is coordinating with federal authorities and local health departments that have implemented screening, monitoring and, in some cases, quarantine of returning travelers. (Ongoing)
  • The California Department of Public Health’s state laboratory in Richmond and 21 other public health department laboratories are testing for the virus that causes COVID-19. (Ongoing)
  • The state’s public health experts are providing information, guidance documents, and technical support to local health departments, health care facilities, providers, schools, universities, colleges, elder care and congregate living facilities, childcare facilities and homeless shelters across California. (Ongoing)
  • The state is piloting Community Based Testing Sites for high-risk individuals in partnership with Verily. (Ongoing)