Redwood City — A countywide two-day curfew in San Mateo County will go into effect today, June 2, 2020, beginning at 8:30 p.m. and ending at 5 a.m. to help maintain the health and safety of residents and prevent property damage and looting.
County Manager Mike Callagy, under his authority as the director of emergency services and in consultation with the Board of Supervisors and Sheriff Carlos Bolanos, proclaimed a local public safety emergency and issued the curfew order this afternoon.
“The County takes our residents’ civil liberties extremely seriously and we want to protect their right to peacefully demonstrate over the heartbreaking and preventable death of George Floyd and other violent acts in our nation. However, we also take their safety seriously, and this order is a tool to help prevent looting and civil unrest by those who would take advantage of this highly emotional and tragic period of time,” Callagy said.
Callagy said the decision to implement the curfew was not taken lightly and is based on looting and other criminal activities in the county as well as that in neighboring jurisdictions. While the County remains hopeful that protests will be peaceful, the County is aware of specific threats of civil unrest, including plans to conduct coordinated looting, property damage, and other violent activities at various retail locations across the County beginning on the night of June 2, 2020.
The curfew order requires all non-exempted individuals in the county to remain indoors between the hours of 8:30 p.m. and 5 a.m. on Tuesday, June 2, 2020, and Wednesday, June 3, 2020.
Exempted individuals include:
- Peace officers, firefighters, emergency operations personnel, the National Guard or other military personnel deployed to the area;
- Individuals traveling to a home, workplace or the airport;
- Individuals traveling to obtain emergency medical care or to care for another individual in another household;
- Authorized members of a media organization;
- Individuals experiencing homelessness and without access to a viable shelter
The curfew applies to the entire county, both the unincorporated areas and each of its cities. Cities can implement stricter curfew based on their local needs.
Workers can come and go to their workplaces during the curfew, but businesses cannot remain open to the public during the hours of the curfew, with the exception of medical facilities, including pharmacies and urgent care.
“Our residents and local businesses have already been hurt so much by the COVID-19 pandemic, and we must do what we can to prevent further harm to their health and livelihood by individuals with ill intent,” said Supervisor Warren Slocum.
Individuals exercising their right to free speech and lawful assembly during non-curfew hours are reminded to maintain social distancing and wear a face covering as required by the San Mateo County Health Officer’s order to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
“We ask that our residents adhere to the curfew to maximize everybody’s safety. However, the Sheriff’s Office and our law enforcement partners stand ready to enforce this order as necessary to protect our community and protect their right to lawfully gather outside of curfew hours,” said Sheriff Carlos Bolanos. “There are voices that deserve to be heard, and we will do all we can to ensure they are not drowned out by the unacceptable actions of others.”
Read the emergency proclamation and curfew order here: https://bit.ly/2Xt6lZC
Frequently Asked Questions about the order are here: https://www.smcgov.org/press-release/countywide-curfew-frequently-asked-questions