Miami-Dade County is closing restaurants and gyms again as coronavirus cases rise and ICU capacity falls, and the mayor is blaming young people.
Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez announced Monday that indoor dining, banquet facilities, party venues, gyms and fitness centers will be shuttered again as of Wednesday “as we continue to see a spike in the percent of positive COVID-19 tests and an uptick in hospitalizations.”
Restaurants can stay open for takeout, delivery and outdoor dining, while businesses including summer camps, child daycare centers, retail stores and “grooming services” can also keep their doors open.
Beaches are set to reopen Tuesday after the holiday weekend, but Gimenez threatened to close them down again “if we see crowding and people not following the public health rules.”
“We want to ensure that our hospitals continue to have the staffing necessary to save lives,” the mayor said in a statement.
Miami-Dade County, which has been the hardest hit in the state, reported a record 2,418 new cases on Saturday. As of Monday, almost 49,000 residents have tested positive and more than 1,000 have died.
Gimenez directly blamed the spike on 18- to 34-year-olds, who he said are “going to congested places — indoors and outside — without taking precautions such as wearing masks and practicing social distancing.”
“Contributing to the positives in that age group, the doctors have told me, were graduation parties, gatherings at restaurants that turned into packed parties in violation of the rules and street protests where people could not maintain social distancing and where not everyone was wearing facial coverings,” Gimenez said.
Carlos A. Migoya, the president and CEO of Jackson Health System, told Local 10 over the weekend that some Miami hospitals are already being forced to cancel elective procedures in order to free up hospital beds.