‘We do believe there’s a connection:’ Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti admits protests DID lead to a spike in coronavirus cases after previously downplaying the link
- Mayor Eric Garcetti said some people have not been protesting safely
- He confirmed LA County health officials believe recent demonstrations have contributed to a spike in COVID-19 cases in the city
- Garcetti noted that some protesters have not been wearing masks or keeping a safe distance from others when gathering in mass
- The mayor previously said there was no evidence showing a link between protests and new cases
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has admitted recent protests and mass demonstrations have led to a spike in coronavirus cases in the city.
Garcetti revealed during a press conference on Wednesday that LA County health officials believe some of the new COVID-19 cases may have come from large groups of people gathering at rallies.
‘I talked again with [Director of Public Health] Dr Barbara Ferrer about that this morning. She does think some of the spread did come from our protests,’ the mayor told reporters.
Mayor Eric Garcetti (pictured at a demonstration on June 2) has admitted recent protests may have contributed to a spike in coronvirus cases in Los Angeles.
Members of Black Lives Matter-Los Angeles gather at a demonstration outside LAUSD headquarters last month
‘It’s not the act of protesting – that’s a great and American thing to do no matter what your opinion is… but protesting without maintaining physical distancing, without wearing your mask, without having sanitizer – we just have to be smart.’
Garcetti had been asked if there was a link between the two after cases of the deadly virus surged in the city and across the state in a two-week period.
The mayor noted that it was likely some people were not being conscious of the health hazard nor were they taking proper precautions while protesting.
‘Whether you’re at a protest or at your home, whether in your workplace or whether you’re out shopping, these rules don’t change,’ he added.
‘We do believe there is a connection, we don’t believe that everybody has been doing this safely and wherever you can, please stay at home.’
His comments came just a few days after he downplayed the connection between at an earlier press conference.
As of Thursday, LA County had a total of 105,325 cases and 3,402 deaths, according to data from the department of public heath
Governor Gavin Newsom announced the shutdown on Wednesday, days after imposing a statewide order requiring all residents to wear masks in most public places
On Monday the mayor said he supported Governor Gavin Newsom’s decision to close bars in LA county after it recorded its largest number of new infections in a single day and that 1 in 140 people had been infected, Fox LA reported.
However, Garcetti refused to speculate whether protests were contributing to the spike.
‘We follow the data closely. There’s no evidence yet that the protests led to much spread though it’s something that Dr Ferrer has hypothesized, but we haven’t seen any conclusive evidence there,’ he said.
As of Thursday, LA County had a total of 105,325 cases and 3,402 deaths, according to data from the department of public heath.
Governor Newsom on Wednesday was forced to shut bars and indoor operations at restaurants, movie theaters and museums in 19 counties, as infections continue to spread at an alarming rate.
The number of new cases in California has increase nearly 50 per cent over the last two weeks, with a 43 per cent spike in hospitalizations.
As of Monday, there were 222,917 confirmed cases in the state and 5,980 deaths, according to state’s public health department.