New York City Seeks Shut Down For Schools, Businesses, Dining In Areas With COVID-19 Spikes

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio called Sunday for the shutdown of non-essential businesses, schools and restaurants in nine areas in the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens starting Wednesday.

The mayor cited a spike in the areas of COVID-19 infections. The shutdowns would start on Wednesday and include public and private schools, restaurant dining, and most businesses, but would exclude houses of worship.

The Wednesday shutdown would allow children in those areas to still attend school for the next two days before going all-remote.

“We’re having an extraordinary problem — something we haven’t seen since spring,’’ de Blasio said during a conference call with reporters.

Another 11 neighborhoods in the city are on a “watch list,’’ de Blasio said, and could also face a shutdown.

The lockdowns “will require the support and approval of the state,’’ and de Blasio said he would talk with the administration of Gov. Andrew Cuomo to seek his approval. “This can only happen with state approval,’’ the mayor said. “We’ll be working to get approval. We understand this is unchartered territory.’’

Presuming the lockdown goes forward, de Blasio estimated it would last two to four weeks. The move comes as the nine areas targeted for shutdown showed infection rates of 3 percent or more for at least a week, de Blasio said.

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