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New York City is ready to close non-essential schools and businesses in nine neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Queens where cases of Covid-19 have increased for two weeks, Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Sunday.

After an upsurge in Covid-19 cases, New York City plans to close non-essential schools, restaurants and businesses in nine neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Queens. This is an unprecedented flashback after months of extremely cautious deconfinement.

“I propose to close all non-essential schools and businesses in nine neighborhoods on Wednesday October 7th,” said Sunday October 4th. New York Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio, during a press briefing. He stressed that he was waiting for the approval of State Governor Andrew Cuomo to confirm this decision.

If the measure is approved, it will be the first time that the first American metropolis – become a model of prudence and control of the epidemic – is forced to go back on its deconfinement.

“It’s science that guides our decisions”

“New Yorkers have worked hard to bring the Covid-19 under control, and we are not making this proposal lightly,” said the mayor. “But in this city, science guides our decisions, and we do what the facts tell us to do,” added the elected Democrat, in an implicit criticism of the Trump administration and the Republicans accused of taking the virus lightly.

Of the nine neighborhoods concerned, six are in Brooklyn, particularly in areas where the Orthodox Jewish community is strongly represented, and three are in Queens, including a neighborhood very close to John F. Kennedy Airport. These nine neighborhoods have in common that they have seen their positivity rate remain above 3% over the last seven days, despite multiple interventions by the health services to ensure compliance with wearing masks and barrier gestures.

A positivity rate greater than 5%

In six of those nine neighborhoods, the positivity rate is currently over 5.6% and is even skyrocketing to 8.3% in the Borough Park neighborhood of Brooklyn, where health officials were bullied 10 ago. days by an Orthodox Jewish activist denouncing the wearing of the mask.

Eleven other neighborhoods, mostly around the nine most at risk, are also under surveillance, said the mayor. This partial reconfinement project comes as after weeks of controversy, New York has just partially reopen its public schools, on a model alternating face-to-face and online teaching, and to reopen its dining rooms at 25% capacity.

>> To read also: Covid-19 in New York: the reopening of schools, a puzzle for low-income families

With AFP

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