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Oakland Opens Coronavirus Testing Site For Restaurant Workers

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At drive-through testing facilities, patients are swabbed by on-site healthcare workers — frequently, from the comfort of their cars.
Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

Oakland’s new drive-through COVID-19 testing center is open to food service workers.

Many Bay Area cities have opened testing facilities for “front-line” workers during the coronavirus crisis, with a focus on first-responders. A new testing site in Oakland will also serve “grocery store, food bank and restaurant workers,” ABC 7 reports, as they, too, have “extra risk and exposure to COVID-19,” Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf says.

The drive-up test site, which is located at the Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center on Oakland’s 10th Street, can process 240 tests per day, and will operate Mondays-Saturdays. An appointment is required, and can’t be arranged by the general public — instead, reports KRON 4, “anyone who thinks they might need a test should contact their employer,” and their employer should contact the city of Oakland to arrange the test, which they can do by emailing covid19testing@oaklandca.gov.

Schaaf admits that the game of testing telephone isn’t ideal, and that she hopes that eventually the sites will be open to the general public, without the need for employer intervention. “We are constantly evaluating our access to tests as well as where we think those tests will make the most difference,” she says, “and for us we believe that we have got to keep our front line workers and our direct care workers healthy, to be able to track their contacts if it tests positive. So we think that this is the most strategic and impactful place to expand our testing efforts right now.”

And in other news...

  • Independent chefs and restaurateurs say that the recently passed $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package doesn’t do enough to protect small, local, and non-chain spots. [Eater National]
  • KQED staffers are making things like dosa, beans, and noodles as they shelter-in-place. [Bay Area Bites]
  • Jonathan Sutton and Tony Ferrari, the co-owners of recently shuttered Bernal Heights restaurant Hillside Supper Club, are both moving out of San Francisco to places where (per Sutton) “it’s a little easier to run a small business.” Ferrari is headed to Cincinnati, Sutton to Bellingham, Washington. [Hoodline]
  • Market Street pizza spot Crossroad Pizza, which has closed during the shelter-in-place, had five break-ins over a three-day span. “They took toilet paper, garbage bags, any household items we had and our Clorox wipes. Our cleaning supplies, bleach and everything for cleaning! They took sodas, booze, they tried to take our coffee machine and coffee blender too,” co-owner Saira Gomez says. [ABC 7]
  • Grocery delivery service Good Eggs has shuttered its SF warehouse and moved “most of its operations to the East Bay.” [SF Business Times]
  • Five immigrant-owned restaurants in Oakland and Berkeley are rising to the challenges presented by the coronavirus shutdown, changing their business models, hours, and offerings in an effort to stay afloat through the crisis and beyond. [Berkeleyside]
  • Like Seven Stills in San Francisco, Pacifica’s Tripp Distillery has hopped off the booze train and onto one fueled by hand sanitizer. [KPIX]
  • Eighty percent of Third Culture Bakery’s revenue disappeared when the crisis struck, but now the owners of the Berkeley spot known for its mochi muffins say that things are picking up just a bit, and they’re adding hours back to their workers’ schedules. [ABC 7]
  • SF-based Uber is telling its drivers — business for whom has flatlined since no one is going anywhere — that they should become delivery workers for its Eats platform. [Reuters]

Hillside Supper Club

300 Precita Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94110 415 857 1461 Visit Website

Third Culture Bakery

2701 Eighth Street, , CA 94710 (415) 735-6699 Visit Website

Seven Stills Mission Bay

100 Hooper Street, Suite 4, , CA 94107 Visit Website

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