HomeNewsKenney continues call to stay at home

Kenney continues call to stay at home

Screenshot of the April 23 COVID-19 advisory.

As the city’s confirmed coronavirus cases continue to rise – there have been 12,868 as of Monday – Mayor Kenney is urging Philadelphians to adhere to his stay-at-home order and social distancing guidelines.

“We are still very vulnerable to a rise in cases, and the only way to prevent it is to continue staying at home unless it’s absolutely necessary,” the mayor said. “If you must go out, wear a mask, give plenty of space between yourself and others, and wash your hands often. The better we follow the public health guidance, the sooner we will get our lives back to normal. And I want to be very clear that the opposite is also true — ignoring the guidance will only prolong our current circumstances.”

On Monday, there were 302 additional cases of COVID-19 found on Philadelphian residents, a smaller number than previous weeks, which saw numbers higher than 500.

An interactive map of cases broken down by ZIP code can be found at phila.gov.

There have been a total of 484 deaths in the city. Two-hundred and fifty-nine of those deaths have been in nursing homes.

Kenney is soon planning to release a new budget that accounts for the economic impact caused by the coronavirus.

Statewide, there are 42,050 cases in all 67 counties, with 1,597 confirmed deaths.

“As we see the number of new COVID-19 cases continuously change across the state, that does not mean we can stop practicing social distancing,” Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said. “We must continue to stay home to protect ourselves, our families and our community. If you must go out, please make as few trips as possible and wear a mask to protect not only yourself, but others. We need all Pennsylvanians to continue to heed these efforts to protect our vulnerable Pennsylvanians, our health care workers and frontline responders.”

Heather Heidelbaugh, the Republican attorney general candidate, last week called for the state to file suit immediately against the government of the People’s Republic of China in a similar fashion to the lawsuit filed by Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt.

Former Food and Drug Administration head Scott Gottlieb has estimated that just by acting one week earlier, China could have reduced cases by 66%, and that a three-week earlier action would have reduced them by 95%.

“Pennsylvanians have [all] paid a high price in their health and economic well-being due to the coronavirus. The Chinese government’s stonewalling and lack of transparency has caused real harm to all of us. They need to be held accountable for their actions,” Heidelbaigh said.

Meanwhile, Philadelphians have plenty of options to pick up free food.

The city and Philadelphia Corporation for Aging are distributing meals to older adults. Family members can pick up for the seniors. Local sites are the Peter Bressi Northeast Senior Center, 4744-46 Frankford Ave.; KleinLife, 10100 Jamison Ave.; and the Northeast Older Adult Center, 8101 Bustleton Ave. They are distributing meals each Monday and Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. People will get two meals on Mondays and three meals on Wednesdays.

A youth meal distribution site, at Tarken Playground, 6250 Frontenac St., will be open Mondays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to noon. Families will receive eight meals per student: four breakfasts and four lunches. The Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation and the Nutritional Development Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia are supporting the food distribution.

Nutritional Development Services is sponsoring a feeding site for children every Monday and Wednesday from 9 a.m. to noon at Catholic Social Services’s Northeast Family Service Center, 7340 Jackson St. Families in need can receive up to three meals per child, funded by the federal Department of Agriculture.

The city continues to provide a box of free food to residents on Mondays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to noon at 21 sites. Local sites are Vogt Recreation Center, 4131 Unruh Ave.; Keep the Faith Ministries, 1906 Harrison St.; Pelbano Recreation Center, 8101 Bustleton Ave.; Salvation Army Citadel, 5830 Rising Sun Ave.; Feast of Justice, 3101 Tyson Ave.; Palmer Recreation Center, 3035 Comly Road; Mitzvah Food Program, KleinLife, 10100 Jamison Ave.; and Mizpah SDA, 4355 Paul St.

The Philadelphia Water Department on Monday agreed to postpone all water shutoffs for residential and commercial customers who are unable to pay their bills through June 1. Customers who cannot pay their bill should apply for help at 215-685-6300 or www.phila.gov/waterbillhelp.

PECO Energy is extending its coronavirus support policies, which include suspending service disconnections, waiving new late fees and reconnecting customers who were previously disconnected, through at least June 1. Call 800-494-4000 if you are having trouble paying your PECO bill.

Federal guidelines stating all Americans should practice safe social distancing and avoid gatherings of more than 10 people, have been extended to April 30.

The city Department of Streets introduced changes to its operations during the pandemic. Recycling materials will be collected on an every-other-week schedule, through at least May 15. Residents are urged to use lids for recycling bins to prevent debris from blowing away. Lids for city-issued recycling bins can be picked up from the Sanitation Convenience Center at State Road and Ashburner Street. The center is open for residents to dispose of items from Tuesday through Saturday, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Philadelphians looking for the latest local information on the coronavirus can visit phila.gov/COVID-19.

Residents with questions can call a 24-hour helpline at 800-722-7112.

Or, text COVIDPHL to 888-777 to receive updates to your phone. ••

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