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California Gov. Gavin Newsom. Photo: Carolyn Cole/ Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Thursday announced that the majority of the state will be under a limited stay-at-home order starting Saturday due to rising coronavirus cases.

The big picture: The announcement brings a monthlong curfew between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. for residents in 41 counties, covering roughly 94% of the state's population. Newsom said earlier this week he was pulling an "emergency brake," halting further reopening plans, tightening restrictions on indoor businesses and strengthening mask mandates.

  • Under the curfew, non-essential businesses and gatherings must cease by 10 p.m., though residents will still be able to visit the pharmacy or grocery store, walk pets and order takeout and delivery from restaurants.
  • California recently moved more than 20 counties into its purple tier, meaning more than seven new cases each day per 100,000 residents, or a positivity rate higher than 8%.
  • Local and state jurisdictions will be able to use "enforcement tools" to reduce transmission, California Health and Human Services Secretary Mark Ghaly said at a press conference Thursday. He did not clarify what these tools look like.

Why it matters: The state's COVID-19 positivity rate has jumped 52% in the last two weeks. COVID-19 hospitalizations have increased by 63.6% during the same period.

  • All signs point to a continued rise, with the pandemic's disproportionate impact on people of color set to persist as well, according to Ghaly. Roughly 12% of new cases today will turn into hospitalizations in two to three weeks.
  • "All tools are on the table" to avoid further restrictions, he added.
  • Newsom caught flack last week for holding a private dinner that did not adhere to state guidelines.

What they're saying: "Non-essential work and gatherings must stop from 10pm-5am in counties in the purple tier," Newsom tweeted Thursday afternoon. "This will take effect at 10pm on Saturday and remain for 1 month. Together--we can flatten the curve again."

  • “These immediate actions will help reduce community spread, protect individuals at higher risk of severe illness or death from COVID-19, and prevent the state’s health care delivery system from becoming overwhelmed,” Erica Pan, California's acting public health officer, said in a statement.

Zoom out: Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot on Nov. 12 announced a stay-at-home advisory and a 10-person cap on social gatherings to combat a surge in new COVID-19 infections.

Go deeper

Jan 29, 2021 - Health

NYC set to restart indoor dining in February, weddings in March

Outdoor dining in New York City in January. Photo: Alexi Rosenfeld/Getty Images

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Friday that if the current coronavirus positivity in New York City holds, indoor dining will reopen at 25% capacity on Feb. 14, one of the busiest dining days of the year.

Why it matters: The forced closure of indoor dining in December caused major backlash, as New York's struggling restaurant industry had already been hit hard by pandemic restrictions. Restaurants will still be required to close at 1o p.m.

Jan 30, 2021 - World

Germany to impose travel restrictions to curb spread of coronavirus variants

Border police officers check passports and COVID-19 tests at Frankfurt Airport. Photo: Thomas Lohnes via Getty Images

Germany announced Friday that it was imposing new travel restrictions in an effort to curb the spread of more contagious coronavirus variants.

Details: All non-German residents traveling from countries deemed "areas of variant concern," including the United Kingdom, South Africa, Portugal, Ireland, Brazil, Lesotho and Eswatini, will be banned from entering the country, even if they test negative for the coronavirus.

Updated 10 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Health: WHO says Omicron poses "very high" risk — Fauci says Omicron variant will "inevitably" be found in U.S. — U.S. restricts air travel from 8 countries over Omicron concerns.
  2. Politics: Biden says fight against Omicron won't include "shutdowns or lockdowns."
  3. States: New York declares state of emergency amid concerns over Omicron.
  4. World: Omicron adds urgency to vaccinating worldWHO warns against travel bans on southern African countries — First North American Omicron cases identified in Canada.
  5. Variant tracker: Where different strains are spreading.