Michelle Steel responds to Governor Newsom moving Orange County back to Purple Tier

Today’s unilateral move by Governor Newsom is troubling and harmful to Orange County families who need to put food on the table, to small business struggling to stay open, and to the mental health of our community. These actions continue to erode trust in government. While rates of depression and other mental health issues continue to rise due to these shutdowns, Orange County’s hospital capacity is solid, and our positivity rate is still in the Orange Tier. I have strongly advocated for a regional approach with greater local control to allow our dedicated local health agencies to work together with the local medical community and develop plans to fight the virus. Instead of combatting COVID-19 in a thoughtful manner, this one-size fits-all approach threatens the livelihoods of our residents.

This article was released by the Office of Orange County Supervisor Michelle Steel.


  1. You mentioned that hospital capacity is “solid.” A nurse in Anaheim told me that that 3 OC hospitals closed today. Can you confirm?

    1. Dear OC Resident,

      I cannot presume to speak for Ms. Steel, neither can I confirm that three Orange County hospitals closed today, or recently. Perhaps the nurse in Anaheim could supply the names of the hospitals that she said closed today. That would be verifiable.

      The State of California moved Orange County into the Purple Tier from the less restrictive Red Tier because the County’s “health equity metric” is 5.5%. Ms. Steel referred to the “positivity rate” which is 4.6%. The dividing line between the Red and Purple Tiers is 5%.

      The health equity metric is a handy club, supposedly created to enforce fairness in health care delivery among disparate populations within a county. However, I fail to see how punishing restaurants, hair salons, and retail stores in, say, Seal Beach or Los Alamitos or Cypress because sections of Santa Ana and Anaheim suffer a much higher positivity rate will ensure more effective or beneficial health care to Santa Ana. All the punishment accomplishes is destroying small (and medium and large) businesses, throwing more people (back) out of work, and turning seasonal family gatherings into Prohibition-Era clandestine activity.

      Please note that I am not suggesting that the areas in need not receive the effective and beneficial health care needed.

      Meantime, Gov. Newsom parties at the oh-so-fancy French Laundry restaurant.

      Stay safe, stay healthy!

      Shelley Henderson
      editor, Orange County Breeze

      1. Agreed.

  2. Gov Newsom does bring Democrats and Republicans together – we all hate him! He’s out at Birthday parties, but tells us to stay home and wear a mask! Only because I didn’t want to be bothered with hosting, I was going to have Thanksgiving out at a restaurant with a small group. With this stupid restaurant lockdown, I changed my mind. 23 people will be at my Thanksgiving Day pot luck dinner. Everyone has to leave their mask home. The virus has a 98% survival rate – leave us alone!!!!!

    1. Beautiful, well said !!

  3. Thank you for stating exactly what so many rational people are thinking. This sledgehammer approach by a governor with unchecked power is starting to wear on all of us. And again, this is a flu that around 98% of the people who get it, recover. If you do nothing else the rest of your term, you already have my vote when you run for re-election!

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