Protect Santa Ana Campaign urges residents not to gather as city's COVID positivity rates, deaths soar

SANTA ANA, Calif. (KABC) -- The Protect Santa Ana Campaign kicked off Thursday, with the goal of encouraging families to not gather with people living outside their household -- especially during the holidays -- as the region continues to see a surge in COVID-19 cases.

As part of the campaign, promotores -- or community workers -- with Latino Health Access went door-to-door Thursday asking residents to post signs outside their homes and help educate the community about the high rate of infections in the city and transmission prevention.

The posters encourage people to wash their hands, maintain physical distancing, wear face coverings and be "safer apart."

Teresa Garrido said she's afraid for everyone else after seeing her daughter go through COVID-19 back in June.

The Santa Ana grandmother told Eyewitness News in Spanish that she was onboard with putting the signs up on her windows.

Oralia Palacios has one on her snack truck. Palacios saw her sister infected and worries about Christmas, "because many gather and don't put on protection."

According to county data, the city is seeing testing positivity rates nearly double the rest of the county, and nearly 20 percent of deaths in O.C. because of the virus.

The city, school district and county teamed up with LHA to get the word out: as cases are going up at an alarming rate, don't gather with people living outside your household for the holidays.

"I am very sad that people have to continue dying because they are gathering thinking this is not going to happen to me," LHA Director Dr. American Bracho said during a press conference to kick off the campaign.

"We've always stood under that moniker that we're stronger together. We're just asking you now that we have to be safer apart," Mayor Vicente Sarmiento said.

Anyone wanting to display one of the signs outside their home can call 714-805-6517.
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