Ohio Gov. DeWine Extends Overnight Curfew Until January 2

 

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced on Thursday that he would be extending the state’s overnight curfew until January 2, 2021, to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.

The curfew — set for 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. — was originally set to expire on Thursday and bars everything except for trips for food, supplies and medical needs, as well as work travel.

“We believe the curfew, along with mask-wearing, have had an impact, and the next 21 days are extremely critical,” DeWine said in a statement on Twitter. “We must all do everything we can to slow down the virus.”

Ohio has seen a recent spike in COVID-19 confirmed cases, with some days in December topping more than 10,000 new cases in a day, according to data from The Covid Tracking Project. Hospitalizations resulting from the virus have also been steadily climbing.

The governor was slammed online after he announced that Ohio had issued a variance to the order that allowed fans to still watch several football games in person.

“To be frank, the biggest risk from these games is not the spectators who will be at the games and who will be following the safety protocols, but from other fans who may have the urge to gather with friends to watch these games inside w/out following mask/distancing protocols,” DeWine said on Twitter.

Some called the governor on the perceived double standard.

Reactions to the curfew have been mixed from Ohio business owners, with many simply expressing gratitude that it was not a lockdown.

“Especially when you’re already struggling, every little bit hurts even that much more,” bar owner Scott Elssowrth told WKBN last week.

Others, including industry leaders, said they understood the need for the curfew.

“Like everyone, we find the increase in COVID cases troubling, and we understand the need for this precautionary measure,” said David Miller, the president and COO of Cameron Mitchell Restaurants in Columbus, told The Columbus Dispatch in November. “We will continue do our part to reduce the spread of COVID-19, and we appreciate the governor’s approach because it allows us to remain operational and protect the jobs of our associates.”

Although it is unclear how much restaurants and bars can expect to lose, Ohio’s casinos and racinos saw a drop of more than 17 percent in revenue in November, according to Cinncinnati.comThe first curfew began on November 19.

Ohio also saw more than 35,000 new unemployment insurance claims, up more than 7,000 from the previous week — in itself a jump from the roughly 6,500 jump from the week prior.

DeWine said that the pandemic has caused some “really tough decisions.”

“I know that these decisions have impacted Ohioans in a lot of different ways. But, I also know that Ohioans can get through this if we work together and do what we need to do in these next three weeks,” DeWine said on Twitter. “We can protect each other. You and your families deserve to have some normalcy in your lives, and there are things that each one of us can do to help all of us live safely with the virus.”

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Jordyn Pair is a repoter with The Ohio Star. Follow her on Twitter at @JordynPair.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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