Gilpin County moves to “Safer at Home – Level Yellow” status due to rise in COVID-19 cases
New tighter restrictions effective November 13
By Bonnie Albrecht
Effective November 13, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) moved Gilpin County from the “Protect Our Neighbors – Level Green” phase to the “Safer at Home – Level Yellow” phase in the state’s Dial Framework. This move was a result of a rise in COVID-19 cases in the county and means stricter capacity limits for many businesses and activities.
Gilpin County has had 64 total cases among residents since the start of the pandemic, with 30 of those cases reported in the past two weeks. Additionally, Gilpin County’s two-week average test positivity rate is 9.8 percent, which indicates the virus is widespread in our community and that there are likely more people with COVID-19 who haven’t been tested.
“Unfortunately, Gilpin County, like many other counties across our state, has had a surge in COVID-19 cases and we are already starting to see real impacts on our community and our local health care system,” said Bonnie Albrecht, Gilpin County Public Health Coordinator. “We know this has not been easy and everyone wants to get back to normal, but to do that we all have to do our part to slow the spread of this virus so we can get it under control as quickly as possible.”
Under Safer at Home – Level Yellow, some key capacity limits that have now changed for Gilpin County include (but are not limited to):
–Personal gatherings are limited to 10 people from no more than two households.
–Restaurants are limited to 50% capacity or 50 people (or up to 100 with the Social Distancing Calculator) indoors.
–Bars must be closed.
–Casinos may operate their slot machines at 50% of capacity, not to exceed 100 people per room indoors, excluding staff.
–Group sports and camps are limited to a 25 person capacity per activity.
“We also want to remind residents that with the Thanksgiving holiday coming up, everyone should take extra precaution and avoid gatherings,” Albrecht said. “Since gatherings have been a major cause of our current surge, we highly recommend celebrating in-person with only those who already live in your home.” For more tips for celebrating the holidays more safely this year, go to www.jeffco.us/4137/Holidays-COVID-19.
“Doing what is necessary now to slow the transmission of the virus will help keep Gilpin County at Level Yellow on the COVID19 dial,” said Ron Engels, Gilpin County Commissioner. If case counts continue to rise, the county may need to move down to Level Orange on the dial, causing casinos to close again. That would put thousands of people out of work yet again. It would stop tax revenue to the county, and make it more difficult for our casinos, especially the smaller ones, to be able to reopen later.” Protecting the health of our residents, employees and visitors is paramount while understanding the need to keep businesses open, especially with no Federal economic aid available.
Here are other important ways everyone can help protect our community’s health, safety and economy:
–Wear a mask to protect yourself and others. Remember that wearing a mask has been proven to greatly reduce the spread of the virus between individuals.
–Watch your distance. Keep 6 feet or more apart and avoid gatherings with people who do not live with you.
–Wash your hands often. Scrub for 20 seconds with soap and warm water. When using hand sanitizer, make sure to choose a product with 60% or higher alcohol content.
–Stay home if you’re sick, including mild symptoms such as headache, cough, runny nose and congestion.
–Be kind to your neighbors. Check in on one another and support your friends and loved ones, especially those who live alone or are homebound.
–Support local businesses. Keep them open by slowing the spread. You can also show your support by ordering takeout or delivery from your favorite restaurant, keeping memberships when possible, or purchasing a gift card to a local retailer this holiday season.
For more information about CDPHE’s Dial Framework, including complete guidance and FAQs for the community and businesses under Safer at Home – Level Yellow, please visit https://covid19.colorado.gov/data/covid-19-dial. You can also refer to CDPHE’s Dial Public Health Order (PHO 20-36) for more details on Level Yellow requirements.