Fully Vaccinated California Workers Can Now Go Maskless

Bernard Mendez
Bernard Mendez is an editorial intern at dot.LA. He attends UCLA, where he is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in applied mathematics. Mendez was previously an editor at the Daily Bruin, the student newspaper at UCLA.
Fully Vaccinated California Workers Can Now Go Maskless
Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

Fully vaccinated workers no longer have to wear masks or keep a six-foot distance from colleagues in the workplace.

The new guidelines set on Thursday by the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health normally take at least 10 days to take effect after an administrative review process, but Gov. Gavin Newsom fast-tracked them by signing an executive order that lifts many of the workplace restrictions for vaccinated individuals.

Its approval came two days after the governor repealed statewide indoor and outdoor mask restrictions for Californians.

The sole board member to vote against the ruling said she was concerned that the guidelines loosened restrictions too far and too soon.

"No matter how tired we are of restrictions, the pandemic is not over," said Laura Stock, the board member who voted against the changes.

The new guidelines allows everyone from hairdressers to construction to return to a pre-pandemic normality, though some businesses have been loath to drop the masks.

Here's the new rules:

  • Fully vaccinated employees will no longer be required to wear masks indoors, while workers who haven't been fully vaccinated will still have to wear masks indoors.
  • Workplaces will not have to enforce social distancing or place solid barriers between employees who work near others unless a COVID-19 outbreak occurs.
  • Employers will be required to provide N95 respirators for unvaccinated workers upon request.
  • Employees do not need to provide their vaccination cards to validate their vaccination status — employees can self-attest that they are fully vaccinated.

David Harrison, a labor representative on the board who voted for the change, expressed concern over the lack of a standard to verify worker vaccinations.

Several tech companies have told dot.LA they plan to make returning to the office a gradual or hybrid process.

This story has been updated to reflect Cal/OSHA's changes in workplace guidelines.

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Derek Jeter’s Sports Trading Card Company Brings in $10M

Kristin Snyder

Kristin Snyder is dot.LA's 2022/23 Editorial Fellow. She previously interned with Tiger Oak Media and led the arts section for UCLA's Daily Bruin.

sports trading cards
Arena Club /Andria Moore

Sports trading card platform Arena Club has raised $10 million in Series A funding.

Co-founded by CEO Brian Lee and Hall of Fame Yankees player Derek Jeter, Arena Club launched its digital showroom in September. Through the platform, sports fans can buy, sell, trade and display their card collections. Using computer vision and machine learning, Arena Club allows fans to grade and authenticate their cards, which can be stored in the company’s vault or delivered in protective “slabs.” Arena Club intends to use the new cash to expand these functions and scale its operations.

The new funding brings Arena Club’s total amount raised to $20 million. M13, defy.vc, Lightspeed Ventures, Elysian Park Ventures and BAM Ventures contributed to the round.

“Our team is thankful for the group of investors—led by M13, who see the bright future of the trading card hobby and our platform,” Lee said in a statement. “I have long admired M13 and the value they bring to early-stage startups.”

M13’s co-founder Courtney Reum, who formed the early-stage consumer technology venture firm in 2016 alongside his brother Carter Reum, will join Arena Club’s board. Reum has been eyeing the trading card space since 2020 when he began investing in what was once just a childhood hobby.

The sports trading card market surged in 2020 as fans turned to the hobby after the pandemic brought live events to a standstill. Since then, prices have come down, though demand remains high. And investors are still betting on trading card companies, with companies like Collectors bringing in $100 million earlier this year. Fanatics, which sells athletic collectibles and trading cards, reached a $31 billion valuation after raising $700 million earlier this week. On the blockchain, Tom Brady’s NFT company Autograph lets athletes sell digital collectibles directly to fans.

As for Arena Club, the company is looking to cement itself as a digital card show.

“Providing users with a digital card show allows us to use our first-class technology to give collectors from all over the world the luxury of being able to get the full trading card show experience at their fingertips,” Jeter said in a statement.

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