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COVID-19 and Mar Vista Businesses

The Mar Vista Chamber of Commerce is here to help local businesses stay open, retain their employees, and serve the community during the 2020 Coronavirus epidemic.

Mar Vista Chamber position on the Coronavirus outbreak

As members of the Mar Vista community, we are concerned, as most of you are, about the issues surrounding the Coronavirus outbreak in Los Angeles and beyond. We have noted that most community events have been suspended, and Mayor Garcetti has closed most retail businesses and recreational centers.

How does this affect you?

According to regulations issued by the Los Angeles County Department of Health on March 21, 2020, all non-essential businesses must close; shopping centers and malls are closed to the public, restaurants may only serve food as takeout or delivery, public gatherings are prohibited, and beaches and recreational facilities, both city and private, are closed, while certain businesses and services deemed to be necessary for the public welfare, such as banks, supermarkets, building, hardware and auto parts stores, utility offices, and trade businesses such as plumbing, electrical and auto repair may remain open. These closures will remain in force until April 19, 2020 or whenever the epidemic has been declared over, whichever comes first.

Most residents are voluntarily remanded to their homes to “shelter in place,” except for urgent needs trips for food, supplies, fuel or medical treatment. Schools countywide are closed for the remainder of the school year.

Most businesses will need to create an online presence in order to retain their customers and transact business. Many companies will need to transition to teleconferencing and virtual consultation practices, some will provide live streaming broadcasts to educate their clients, and others will adopt webinar models for group education and sales meetings. Brick-and-mortar businesses will need to practice extreme cleaning and sanitation for their customers’ safety and peace of mind.

How we can help

The Chamber takes it’s responsibility to help promote the businesses in our community very seriously, and never more so than in difficult times such as now. We plan to introduce promotional vehicles to help you publicize your business; the initial effort will be to publish a regularly-updated listing of retailers and services which can work with the public either online or remotely.

Future efforts may include active promotion of our members’ virtual company events, social media postings and targeted publicity efforts with the cooperation of the City of Los Angeles, as well as possible virtual meetings with guest speakers who have expertise in online marketing.

If you have actionable ideas, suggestions or solutions that we can share with our members, please send an email message to us for consideration. If feasible, we will try to adopt as many suggestions as we can to help the Mar Vista business community. Please address all comments to media@marvistachamber.com.

Resources for further information on COVID-19 regulations, precautions and warnings:

Centers For Disease Control (CDC) COVID-19 information:
cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html

National Institutes of Health (NIH) COVID-19 information:
nih.gov/health-information/coronavirus

California State Department of Health
cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/Immunization/ncov2019.aspx

Los Angeles County Department of Public Health
publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/Coronavirus/

Press information, Office of the Mayor of Los Angeles
lamayor.org/media/press_releases

How to be safe during the epidemic

There’s a lot of bad information out there. People are misunderstanding the recommendations. People are mistrusting the science. People are making things up. Seriously. Here are recommendations you can do, right now, to enhance your safety and those of others in the community.

The facts, as far as we can confirm them, are these:

  1. The Coronavirus spreads primarily through contact with your eyes, nose and mouth. This means TOUCH is the primary way people get infected.
  2. If you are sick and suspect you might have the virus, DON’T leave your home. Have someone else bring you food and supplies.
  3. Sure, you could get infected by breathing the air of a sick person after they cough or sneeze, however, there have been virtually NO reports of this happening, and the window for that possibility is measured in minutes. Most people get sick from touching infected surfaces and shortly after, touching their faces.
  4. The virus does not transmit through your skin, only your mouth, eyes or nose. This is why you should wash your hands often, clean work surfaces regularly, wipe down products you buy from stores, and transfer food to clean containers you own.
  5. Masks are for sick people so they can’t sneeze or cough onto surfaces. Masks do not stop the virus from reaching you if you’re not infected. Doctors and nurses need masks far more than you do. If you have extras, bring them to a clinic or hospital and leave them outside for a guard or attendant to retrieve.
  6. Wear disposable gloves to pump gas, open doors or accept packages. When you have used the gloves and return home, dispose of them immediately and wash your hands.
  7. If you’re driving after purchasing supplies, your car’s door handles and steering wheel, plus any other controls or surfaces you touch, may now be contaminated. Wear disposable gloves before you enter your vehicle, and/or clean the vehicle with antiseptic wipes before and after each trip.
  8. You’re going to catch the Coronavirus. Up to 80% of the country is expected be infected. Authorities are, in fact, counting on it, because when enough people are infected, recover and develop immunities, the virus infection rates will begin to die down. The above recommendations are to help you prevent the spread to OTHERS, not to keep you from getting it. You will get it.

The Mar Vista Chamber of Commerce is a 501(c)(6) non-profit organization. Contributions to section 501(c)(6) organizations are not deductible as charitable contributions on the donor’s federal income tax return. They may be deductible as trade or business expenses if ordi­nary and necessary in the conduct of the taxpayer’s business, to the extent allowable by law.

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