On Monday April, 20th demonstrators converged in front of the State Capitol to protest the lockdown order issued by Governor Gavin Newsom to slow the spread of COVID-19. The lockdown started on March, 19th and will be in effect until further notice. This “stay home”order limits businesses and organizations while others that provide critical infrastructure to the state are exempt. Small local businesses such as restaurants, bars, gyms, and public event gatherings have all been temporarily closed. This may come as a burden to some business owners as they may need to seek financial assistance through the CARES Act which comprises over $2 trillion in economic relief.
Not only owners of businesses, but families are experiencing furloughs, and layoffs. Even students must now transfer to online based education and graduating seniors cannot have a celebratory ceremony for completing the milestone. The demographic of people who are affected organized and rallied around the State Capitol in hopes to lift quarantine restrictions. Amongst the group of protesters, many were in their cars and even more out in the crowd.
One of the protesters, who is a mother of two twin daughters, Debra Pickering, has been out of work for almost a full month. Debra worked in human resources for a number of companies and industries. Her work has led her to live in Sacramento and she has been a resident for over 6 years.
“The idea of going anywhere with more than 10 people is definitely scary, but I can’t let fear hold us back. When you can only gather so many resources for help it turns from struggle to survival, that’s why I attended the protest, I believe in setting an example for others to follow. Not just for me but my daughters, I really do appreciate the time I get with my family the quarantine has put an immense amount of stress on my shoulders and spending time with my girls really puts me at ease, even when they try to drive me insane I would always be at work and only get to see them so many hours out of the day.”
As of right now Governor Gavin Newsom has ordered all state beaches to be closed by Friday, as temperatures rise and transition into summer weather. The impulse to go outside and experience the outdoors is a healthy expression, however, it’s advised to use your best judgement as lock-down could proceed until the end of May.