“Social Bubbles” Allow Safe Small Group Gatherings in Marin
Marin Public Health is adopting a model that will guide residents on how to safely come together with a small groups of friends and families outside of a person’s immediate household.
Under the prior shelter in place model, individuals were only allowed to interact with individuals from their same household. Now, Marin will implement the “Social Bubble” model, supporting residents to have small group socialization in outdoor settings.
“A lot of effort has gone into finding ways to reopen our local businesses and economy, but the friendships and social lives of our residents are just as crucial to our community’s stability during the COVID-19 crisis,” said Dr. Matt Willis, Marin’s Public Health Officer. “This model will allow each of us to begin to engage with people from outside of our household unit as safely as possible.”
A social bubble is a stable group of 12 people or less who have collectively agreed to limit their in-person social activities to only each other for at least three weeks. Individuals belong to only one social bubble at a time, except for children who may belong to a second bubble related to a childcare or camp environment. Children living in two different households may participate with both parent’s social bubbles, so they do not have to choose between them.
“We know families and friends miss each other and want to socialize together,” said Dr. Willis. “We also know people are already congregating outside their households in more risky ways. This model provides guardrails so small gatherings can occur in a safe way, especially as we move into the summer season.”
While social bubbles allow more than one household to come together, members of each bubble are strongly encouraged to practice protective measures such as physical distancing, wearing face coverings, frequent hand washing, staying home when sick, and obeying isolation or quarantine guidelines if a member of the social bubble is diagnosed with, or exposed to, COVID-19.
Learn more about how to safely implement the social bubble model with your household, family and friends:
Guidance Now Available for June 29 Phase of Reopenings
More indoor -based businesses in Marin County, including gyms and fitness studios, hair salons and barber shops, nail salons, hotels and short-term lodging facilities, and indoor seating at restaurants will be allowed to proceed effective June 29.
On June 19, the Marin Recovers Industry Advisors released new guidelines for business operators to implement to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Guidance for all industries allowed to proceed beginning June 29 is available on the “Guidelines for Reopening” page of MarinRecovers.com.
In addition, outdoor businesses and activities that may proceed June 29 include campgrounds and RV parks, use of picnic areas, and outdoor-based vehicle gatherings guidance such as drive-in movies and other related events. Guidelines for those businesses and activities will be posted to MarinRecovers.com the week of June 22.
Another addition to MarinRecovers.com is an interactive map for Marin restaurants to indicate their service status. Built by the City of San Rafael, a restaurant can add their status to the map once they complete a reopening SPP. Restaurant patrons can sort the map by take-out or curbside pick-up, delivery, outdoor dining, minority owned, and starting June 29, those restaurants available for indoor dining.
Where to get the latest information:
Have questions? Individuals can contact Marin Health and Human Services with non-medical questions about the coronavirus by email or by calling (415) 473-7191 (Monday – Friday, 9:30am to 12-noon and 1pm to 5pm).