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    NYC threatens to SHUT non-essential businesses in neighborhoods where COVID-19 cases are on the rise

    NYC threatens to SHUT non-essential businesses in neighborhoods where COVID-19 cases are on the rise – after the Big Apple records its highest spike in three months

    • Six neighborhoods across Brooklyn and Queens are seeing concerning spikes in cases of COVID-19
    • The NYC Health Department is now threatening to shutter non-essential businesses in each of those areas as early as next Tuesday 
    • While overall infection rate remains low, the city reported 986 new cases of the virus on September 19 – the highest daily infection rate since early June 

    The New York City Health Department has threatened to close non-essential businesses where COVID-19 cases are on the rise. 

    Officials gave the warning on Wednesday, following an alarming uptick of new cases in six neighborhoods across Brooklyn and Queens.  

    Brooklyn’s Midwood, Borough Park, Bensonhurst and South Williamsburg, as well as Queens’ Far Rockaway and Kew Gardens, now account for 20 percent of all new infections across the Big Apple. 

    The city’s Health Department say they could curb activities in those neighborhoods as early as next Tuesday. 

    The New York City Health Department has threatened to close non-essential businesses  in six neighborhoods where COVID-19 cases are on the rise

    ‘If the indicators continue to rise, there must be additional enforcement actions,’ the department said in a statement. 

    ‘For the first time in the city’s recovery period, there could be the immediate scaling back of activities in these ZIP codes if progress is not made by Monday evening.’ 

    Mayor Bill de Blasio also addressed the concerning situation, stating:  ‘We have a lot to do because we’re seeing a serious uptick in multiple neighborhoods simultaneously and it’s something we have to address with a very aggressive public health effort right away.’

    In the meantime,  Health Department workers are being deployed to the areas to distribute face masks and hand sanitizer. Mobile testing sites will also be set up. 

    The impacted neighborhoods are all home to substantial Orthodox Jewish populations – but Mayor de Blasio has not singled out those communities for the spike. 

    Back in April, de Blasio personally oversaw the dispersal of a Hasidic funeral in Williamsburg  and weathered criticism over a tweet warning ‘the Jewish community, and all communities’ to heed the virus.

    The impacted neighborhoods are all home to substantial Orthodox Jewish populations - but Mayor de Blasio has not singled out those communities for the spike

    The impacted neighborhoods are all home to substantial Orthodox Jewish populations – but Mayor de Blasio has not singled out those communities for the spike

    Meanwhile, Dr. Mitchell Katz, the head of the city’s public hospital system, said health officials are meeting with religious leaders in the hard-hit neighborhoods, making robocalls in English and Yiddish and sending sound trucks to flood the streets with messages about virus guidelines.

    The Big Apple was once the global epicenter of the coronavirus crisis, before residents managed to flatten the curve. 

    While overall infection rate remains low, the city reported 986 new cases of the virus on September 19 – the highest daily infection rate since early June. 

    On Thursday, that number was down a little to 955. 

    In contrast, the city was frequently reporting upwards of 7,000 coronavirus cases every day during the peak of the crisis back in April and May.  

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