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Newark Mayor Says Spike In COVID-19 Cases Due To Parties, Sports And Public Transportation

NEWARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) -- Parts of Newark are under a mandatory curfew in order to battle back from a spike in coronavirus cases.

CBS2's Dave Carlin has more on the new restrictions.

The city's rate of COVID-19 infection stands at 19%. That's more than double New Jersey's statewide rate.

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Mayor Ras Baraka says curfews and other drastic actions are necessary following intense spread he blames on parties, sporting events and public transportation.

Baraka sent out a live-streamed message Wednesday evening.

"I have bad news for you, people. We are back where we were," Baraka said on Facebook LIVE.


Newark's curfews, in selected hot-spot zones, are 9 p.m. on weekdays and 10 p.m. on weekends for roughly 135,000 people.

They are living in three zip codes where COVID infection is high.

In zip code 07104, everyone in it has been ordered inside homes after curfew.

And the same thing applies in 07105. If you're out you better be an essential worker or having an emergency. The other zip code impacted is 07107.

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Police will enforce this first with warnings, then summonses.

"It definitely changes nightlife, and then again does coronavirus only come out after 8 or 9 at night or is coronavirus out here all day long?" Newark resident Julio Gonzalez said.

"I agree with the mayor because in order to stop the COVID spread then we gotta do what we gotta do," resident Kimberly Hyman added.

CORONAVIRUS: NY Health Dept. | NY Call 1-(888)-364-3065 | NYC Health Dept. | NYC Call 311, Text COVID to 692692 | NJ COVID-19 Info Hub | NJ Call 1-(800)-222-1222 or 211, Text NJCOVID to 898211 | CT Health Dept. | CT Call 211 | Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Also in Newark, all gatherings indoors and out must be no more than 10 people, and sports have been canceled for at least the next two weeks.

While sporting events are shut down, coaches trainers and players must get tested and cleared for play, Carlin reported.

Across the city, restaurants and bars must still close indoor dining by 8 p.m., two hours earlier than the statewide guidelines.

"Maybe he is overreacting a little bit," resident Denile Robinson said. "We still have to get out here. People have to make their money. We have to make a living and life has to go on."

After Dec. 1 the city will study how well things are going before deciding whether or not to pull back or maintain the restrictions, Baraka said.


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