Mayor Bill de BlasioBill de BlasioFederal appeals court blocks NYC teacher vaccine mandate Meghan, Prince Harry visit One World Trade Center Google to purchase Manhattan building for .1 billion MORE (D) said Sunday that New York City's beaches will not open for Memorial Day weekend, and that he's considering fencing to close them off to the public.
The mayor said during a press conference that New York City is not ready to reopen its beaches as the coronavirus pandemic continues to take a toll.
“I’ve said before, I’m going to say again, we are not opening our beaches on Memorial Day, we are not opening our beaches in the near term. It is not safe. It is not the right thing to do in the epicenter of this crisis,” de Blasio said.
Join me at City Hall for a COVID-19 update. https://t.co/0tyEKuYtLz— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) May 17, 2020
De Blasio also said the decision to keep the beaches closed was “not made lightly” by officials, adding that indicators “are not where they need to be” for reopening. He said he has “never” ruled out the possibility of beaches opening later in the summer.
“No swimming, no parties, no sports, no gatherings. We’re going to give people a chance to get it right. And I believe in New Yorkers,” he said.
The mayor told Fox News’s “Sunday Morning Futures” that the decision was made to prevent overcrowding at the beaches as well as community spread.
“If people are smart about it and listen to the rules, great,” he said on the show. “If not, we actually might have to put up fencing to keep people off the beach. I don't want to do it, but if I have to, I will.”
“We are so far from being out of the woods here in New York City,” he added. “We're still the epicenter. Until we're safe, no beaches open.”
New York City has counted 189,031 cases of coronavirus, leading to at least 49,969 hospitalizations. At least 15,756 people are confirmed to have died from the virus, while 4,820 others are considered probable deaths, according to the city’s health department data.
New York Gov. Andrew CuomoAndrew CuomoThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Arizona recount to show Trump's loss by even wider margin Former co-worker accuses Chris Cuomo of sexual harassment in NYT essay NY health chief criticized over state's COVID-19 response resigns MORE (D) announced on Friday that the state, along with New Jersey, Connecticut and Delaware, would open beaches Memorial Day weekend with some restrictions.