Chicago issues stay-at-home advisory, new restrictions as COVID-19 cases surge

Coronavirus

CHICAGO (WGN) — Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced a stay-at-home advisory for the City of Chicago that will go into effect starting Monday, Nov. 16.

The mayor’s announcement Thursday comes in response to the surge of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in the city.

“If changes are not made by Chicago residents, businesses, and visitors to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, the city is on track to lose 1,000 more Chicagoans by the end of the year or even more,” Lightfoot said in a statement.

Residents are advised to only leave home to go to work or school, or for essential needs such as seeking medical care, going to the grocery store or pharmacy, picking up food, or receiving deliveries.

Under the stay-at-home advisory effective Monday, November 16, the city is urging residents to:

  • Practice social distancing by staying 6 feet away from others and wearing a face covering at all times.
  • Not hold any gatherings at home with anyone outside their household, “even with trusted family or friends;” use remote communication for the holidays.
  • Avoid all non-essential and out-of-state travel, following the travel guidelines if travel is necessary.

Additionally, officials said CDPH Health Orders require any gatherings held inside private residences be limited to six non-household members.

“The City has the authority to fine individuals for breaking this requirement and hosting large social gatherings in their private residences,” officials said in a statement.

The City is also imposing new restrictions limiting meetings and social events to 10 people or less, for any gatherings held indoors or outdoors.

Officials said this applies to events like weddings, birthday parties, social events and funerals, and is applicable to any meeting room space.

The capacity limits do not apply to workplaces or places that have specific guidelines in place, including shops, salons, and movie theaters.

Additionally, residents are strongly advised to:

  • Not have guests in their homes unless they are essential workers (e.g., home healthcare providers or childcare workers.)
  • Cancel traditional Thanksgiving celebrations.
  • Avoid travel.

This advisory shall remain in place for 30 days or until such time as the Commissioner of Health determines a change to the guidance is appropriate.

On Thursday, Illinois saw a record increase in COVID-19 cases for a third straight day as health officials reported more than 12,000 new infections across the state.

In the United States, where there has been a series of records for new daily COVID-19 totals, over 242,430 people have died from the virus, more than any other nation according to Johns Hopkins data. The U.S. also leads the world in cases, with more than 10.5 million.

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