This Major City Is "On the Brink" of a New Stay-At-Home Order, Mayor Says
The big city mayor is proposing a more targeted shutdown to stop the spread of coronavirus.
The coronavirus pandemic has wreaked havoc on the country, with outbreaks in some states now worse than ever before. New COVID cases, hospitalizations, and deaths are on the rise, forcing the hardest hit places to decide if they should reverse reopening—or opt for even stricter measures. While California as a whole has been struggling to contain its coronavirus outbreak, one city in particular has seen a critical increase in COVID numbers. Now, Mayor Eric Garcetti is saying that Los Angeles is "on the brink" of a new stay-at-home order.
In an interview with CNN on July 19, Jake Tapper asked Garcetti, "How much worse does it have to get in Los Angeles before you feel compelled to issue another stay-at-home order?" Garcetti answered, "Well, I think we're on the brink of that."
This isn't the first time that Garcetti has mentioned the possibility of another shutdown for Los Angeles. "While the city of Los Angeles' COVID-19 threat level remains at orange, we are on the border of going to red," he said at a July 13 press conference, as reported by the Los Angeles Times. "Red is when everything shuts down again to our strictest level. I do want to warn people that we're close to that."
At the time, Garcetti noted that there were more COVID cases in Los Angeles County than in all of Canada. The coronavirus situation in Los Angeles has only grown worse since then, though Garcetti pointed out that it could take as long as three weeks to see if new restrictions have slowed the spread of the outbreak.
Positive test rates in L.A. County have gone up from 8 percent to almost 10 percent, according to the L.A. Times. Los Angeles also recorded a record number of hospitalizations on July 19: 2,216. And there were 2,848 new COVID cases that day, with more than half of those infected under 41 years old. As of July 20, The New York Times reports almost 155,900 coronavirus cases in L.A. County, with nearly 4,100 deaths.
It's not clear exactly what a new stay-at-home order for Los Angeles would look like. California governor Gavin Newsom already imposed several restrictions on counties throughout the state last week, ending indoor dining at restaurants and shutting down bars and gyms. In his CNN interview, Garcetti suggested that the kind of lockdown he's envisioning would not be a broad stay-at-home order, but rather something specific to the areas suffering the most.
"I want to go into those factories where we're seeing spread. I want to go into those communities, especially our lower-income communities," he said. "I think we have to be surgical rather than a cleaver that would just shut everything down." And for more places that should be considering new stay-at-home orders, check out these 11 States Where Locking Down Again Is Absolutely Necessary.