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As El Paso continues to grapple with an increase of coronovirus cases, county officials implemented it on Sunday Injunction And city health officer Asked the residents to stay at home For the next two weeks in an effort to stop the spread of the virus.
There are hospitals related to COVID-19 in the area According to Angela Mora, director of the El Paso Public Health Department, there was a 300% increase in less than three weeks from 259 to 786. And in the last 14 days, El Paso County has seen About 10,000 cases According to data from the Texas State Health Services Department.
Request to stay at home on sunday The announcement of the county curfew from city officials – and from 10 a.m. to 5 a.m. – came nine days before the election and El Paso followed a statewide trend of record turnout during early voting. Officials, however, stressed that Sunday’s announcement did not mean residents should not vote if they haven’t already.
“The public needs to understand that voting is safe and that our county elective department has taken steps to ensure the safety and health of El Paso voters,” El Paso County Judge Ricardo Samaniego said Sunday evening during the virtual news conference. “Please continue to exercise your right to vote.”
In addition to the presidential race, El Paso voters are deciding whether to send city hall Mayor de Margo, a former Republican state representative who, in addition to the epidemic, to the city’s response and the migrant border crisis and backlash Let’s look at the 2019 Walmart shooting. An alleged white supremacist has been charged in the murder of 23 people there.
Margo is challenged by her predecessor, Oscar Lesser, and two native El Pasoans, who are considered representatives of the more progressive faction of city politics, attorney Veronica Carbajal and former City Planner Carlos Galiiner. Two other candidates are also in the race.
Samaniago said that El Paso is “in a state of crisis” that inspired the latest order. Residents are encouraged to stay indoors leaving essential services. Curfew will not be imposed on residents traveling for work or necessary occupation, although enforcement will be “an important component”. Any peace officer can implement the latest order, the county judge said; Residents can be fined $ 250 for not covering a fine in public or a fine of $ 500 for any other violation of the order.
“Enforcement is going to be very necessary at the moment,” Sanamiego said. “This is something about which we are hesitant about our tremendous respect for law enforcement, tremendous respect for our community, but we find ourselves in a position at the moment where it takes precedence over many things It is a place. “
Asked later whether the county could move to a more restrictive shutdown, Samniego said that he and Margo spoke with Greg Abbott’s staff on Saturday about the possibility and that “it’s on our constituents’ income Would be harsh. ” Samaniego also said that he spoke with Abbott on Sunday afternoon, who expressed concern that the community and law enforcement did not respond to help avoid an increase in cases.
“I think we have done everything possible to do the right things,” Samanyego said.
Abbott’s office said on Sunday that the governor spoke with Samaniyogo and discussed concerns that local authorities had not imposed current limitations on revaluation.
Abbott spokesman John Wittman said in a statement, “As El Paso exceeded 15 percent hospital capacity for 7 days, the capacity limit was automatically reduced and is the responsibility of local authorities.”
Sunday’s announcement also comes on the heels of a recent decision by the El Paso ISD Board of Trustees to expand virtual education. As of Sunday, some students are set to resume learning on 6 November.
COVID trends in El Paso prompted officials earlier this month to increase restrictions for restaurants and some businesses, including increasing nonprofessional businesses by 50% and outsiders up to 10 people or less. Limiting was included.
Abbott’s office has also deployed medical personnel and equipment in the area in recent times. On Sunday, Abbott’s office announced that the state would establish an alternative care venue at the El Paso Convention and Performing Arts Center this week to provide additional hospital beds and medical equipment. Later on Sunday, Abbott’s office said the US Department of Health and Human Services planned to send medical support teams to the area this week.
Local media reported that in response to the spike in cases, area hospitals announced on Saturday that they were preparing to airlift patients to other hospitals.
Margo and Abbott have also stated that in recent times they have asked the Department of Defense to use William Beaumont Army Medical Center to serve non-COVIDs Patients at its convenience. El Paso is home to the Fort Bliss Army Base.
As of Sunday afternoon, the request from the city was still pending.
Editor’s Note: Cassandra Pollak reported from Austin and Julian Aguilar reported from El Paso.
Explanation, October 25, 2020: An earlier version of this story has not clarified that a number – 10,827 – given for the total cases of coronovirus for El Paso County was inflated because it included backlog cases. The 14-day total is said to be about 10,000 to update the story.