NOTE: The following guidance is superseded by updated guidance released on November 13, 2020.
To protect public health and slow the rate of transmission of COVID-19, gatherings as described below should be postponed or canceled across the state of California until further guidance is issued by the California Department of Public Health.
The California Department of Public Health finds the following:
This applies to all non-essential professional, social, and community gatherings regardless of their sponsor. Gatherings that do not meet the aforementioned criteria should only be conducted when they are essential—that is, if the activity is essential and could not be postponed or achieved without gathering, meaning that some other means of communication could not be used to conduct the essential function.
The timely implementation of aggressive strategies that create social distance and those that reduce close contact of people not regularly together, including limiting gatherings, has proven effective in prior pandemics at delaying rates of transmission and reducing illness and death.
By decreasing the prevalence of disease across California we will:
This guidance will remain in place until further guidance is released by the California Department of Public Health. As with all guidance that relates to COVID-19 response, authorities will revisit this guidance on a regular basis to evaluate the continued public health need for it and to evaluate if any elements need to be changed. To stay informed, continue to monitor the California Department of Public Health's web page on COVID-19 guidance.
The goal of this recommendation is to prevent people physically coming together unnecessarily, where people who have the infection can easily spread it to others. This guidance does not apply to activities such as attendance at regular school classes, work, or essential services.
Please see the guidance for schools document for additional information.
Certain activities are essential to the functioning of our state and must continue. Hence, this does not apply to essential public transportation, airport travel, shopping at a store, mall, or farmers' market, or charitable food pantries and distributions. Other specific guidance can be found on the CDPH website to help people take actions that can protect them in those settings.
This does not apply to congregate living situations, including dormitories and homeless encampments. For more information on what can be done to protect homeless individuals, please see the Guidance for Homeless Assistance Providers on Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) (PDF).