New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Monday that he’s planning to close schools and all non-essential businesses starting Wednesday in nine ZIP codes in Brooklyn and Queens where coronavirus rates have spiked. The shutdown announcement, which does not cover houses of worship and would limit restaurants to pickup and delivery, came just three days after high schools opened and is contingent on state approval. The move would affect about half a million New Yorkers, 100 public schools, and 200 private ones.
“Today is unfortunately not a day of celebration,” said de Blasio, who also identified 11 other ZIP codes with rising rates he warned could see similar shutdowns soon. Despite those moves, the mayor said the city is not facing a second wave, as “it’s pretty definable where our problem is and we want to keep it that way.” He dismissed a question about a second wave as “hypothetical,” adding “We’ve being very clear. There does not have to be a second wave. These are communities that are experiencing a problem.”