Lawmakers question why Gov. Newsom wants to close playgrounds under stay-at-home order

California
Maala Sampath, 2, tries to climb into a swing before her nanny reminds her that the playground is closed at Glen Anderson Park in Redondo Beach on Dec. 1, 2020. (Christina House / Los Angeles Times)

Maala Sampath, 2, tries to climb into a swing before her nanny reminds her that the playground is closed at Glen Anderson Park in Redondo Beach on Dec. 1, 2020. (Christina House / Los Angeles Times)

Some California lawmakers are calling on Gov. Gavin Newsom to reconsider closing public outdoor playgrounds under a new stay-at-home order that is set to go into effect once regions of the state hit critical care shortages due to COVID-19.

Though much of the discourse surrounding the newly announced coronavirus-related restrictions has focused on businesses — with many questioning the science behind or justification for the planned closures — parents have also expressed outrage and confusion about why playgrounds would be off-limits while places like malls remain open.

In a letter sent to Newsom Friday, legislators also noted that lower-income areas would be hit hardest by the rule because many residents don’t have backyards and other open spaces to take their kids.

“While we must appropriately consider best practices to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, we also must ensure the children across the state are not unfairly deprived of their opportunities for outdoor access and play,” states the letter, which is signed by a dozen legislators. “The broad closure of playgrounds unfairly negatively impacts children and families.”

Read the full story on LATimes.com.

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