June 27 marks 100 days since the state of California issued an order for all residents to stay home to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
CapRadio Visual Journalist Andrew Nixon has documented that time. The photos show snapshots of life in the Sacramento region since that March 19 order to stay at home, and how the coronavirus has disrupted so much so quickly.
As cases of the coronavirus first started appearing in the Sacramento region, leaders and officials began to make decisions to cancel events and pause normal activities.
One early disruption came when the Elk Grove Unified School District announced it would cancel classes and student activities — putting one high school team's championship basketball hopes on the line. Sheldon High School eventually won a rescheduled playoff game March 11, but the remainder of the tournament was canceled the following day.
Responding To A Crisis
After Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the statewide order March 19 asking all Californians to stay at home except for essential activities, the reality of the pandemic began to settle in.
The state struggled to expand testing for the virus, people began stockpiling grocery items like toilet paper and flour, and governments and organizations began responding with creative solutions to help combat COVID-19.
The shutdown put millions of Californians out of work and forced many local businesses to stop operating. While there has been some support for businesses, it didn't reach all parts of Sacramento equally.
Protests Against Shutdown
As the shutdown wore on, some residents skeptical of public health officials and the government began protesting the order to stay at home.
Multiple protests were held at the state Capitol, with one resulting in 32 arrests. Many did not practice social distancing measures as they carried signs decrying the governor and questioning the virus’ impact.
Phased Reopenings Begin
In May, the state began modifying its stay-at-home order to allow some businesses and activities to resume in phases, depending on risk.
Counties were allowed to apply to reopen some parts of their economy faster than others if they met certain state guidelines for health and safety.
Meanwhile, some businesses such as hair and nail salons had to wait even longer, and other aspects of daily life continued in modified forms.
Protests for Black Lives
People hit the streets once again. Instead of demanding an end to shelter-in-place orders, crowds demanded an end to deadly encounters with police.
The killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police sparked protests across the world — and Sacramento was no exception.
Demonstrations against police brutality and systemic racism began the week following Memorial Day and have continued since. Thousands marched in the streets for changes to policing, accountability in recent deaths, and the value of black lives.
More Than A Moment
As of June, many of California’s restrictions have been lifted and businesses have been allowed to reopen.
But life is far from back to normal.
Drive-through graduation ceremonies, curtains between restaurant tables and a new statewide order requiring masks in public are just some of the ongoing adaptations to life amid COVID-19.
Calls for police reform continue throughout the state and region, and an end to fears about the virus is nowhere in sight as case counts continue to climb.
And as California reaches 100 days under the stay-at-home order, cases and hospitalizations are beginning to spike throughout the state. June 24 marked the largest single-day increase in cases since the start of the pandemic.
As of June 25, more than 5,700 Californians have died from the virus.
For Nixon, these photos show how much we've given up as a community in the past 100 days and how it's affected many different people in the region. And the past few weeks seem to show that we're still a long way from the end of the pandemic.
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