coronavirus

Pritzker Recommends Ban on Gatherings of 250 People Or More Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

The update came during the state's daily coronavirus press briefing

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Gov. J.B. Pritzker has announced a ban on all large gatherings of 1,000 people or more in Illinois as the number of coronavirus cases in the state continues to rise.

Pritzker also asked that all gatherings of 250 people or more also be postponed amid the outbreak.

The ban will be in effect until May 1.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot echoed, saying that all community events of more than 1,000 people are banned for the next 30 days in the city "period."

"Community events mean planned events that bring together large numbers of people," she said. "We're not talking about airports, train stations, public transit or schools but we do mean conferences, banquets concerts and such."

She also urged gatherings of 250 or more to be canceled or postponed. After 30 days, the mayor said the city will "reassess."

"For now, it’s clear no gathering takes priority over the health of any attendee," Lightfoot said.

The update came during the state's daily coronavirus press briefing, where health officials also revealed seven new cases confirmed in the state.

"Don't be fooled into thinking your community is immune. It is not," Pritzker said.

Already this week, Chicago and state officials announced the city's St. Patrick's Day parades and iconic river dyeing have been postponed amid coronavirus concerns.

The postponement of the festivities come as several other major events around the city and U.S. are canceled or suspended.

Major League Baseball announced Thursday it has canceled the rest of its spring training game schedule and delayed the start of the season by at least two weeks. The National Hockey League also said it is pausing its season, following the NBA in doing the same. The NCAA also announced the cancellation of the Division I men’s and women’s 2020 basketball tournaments.

For a list of Chicago-area event cancellations, click here.

Several medical professionals joined NBC 5’s Marion Brooks Friday to answer viewers’ questions about the coronavirus outbreak.

State officials have been urging people, particularly elderly residents, to avoid mass gatherings in the area.

Pritzker, who on Monday declared a disaster proclamation in the state, said he has demanded the state receiving more testing kits as soon as possible.

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