New York barber that defied stay-at-home order tests positive for coronavirus

Health officials in New York say a barber in Kingston who has been providing haircuts to customers for weeks in defiance of the state’s stay-at-home orders has since tested positive for COVID-19. 

Ulster County Department of Health Commissioner Carol Smith confirmed the news in an announcement on Thursday and urged those who may have received services at this barber's shop to get tested for the virus.

“We are taking extraordinary measures to try and minimize the spread of this dangerous disease and learning that a barbershop has been operating illicitly for weeks with a COVID-19 positive employee is extraordinarily disheartening,” Smith said in a statement.

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“As much as we would all like to go out and get a professional haircut, this kind of direct contact has the potential to dramatically spread this virus throughout our community and beyond,” she continued. “I urge anyone who has received a haircut at a Kingston barber in the last several weeks to immediately contact their physician or call our hotline to arrange for a diagnostic test." 

Since late March, businesses in New York deemed nonessential like salons, barbershops and similar establishments that provide personal care services, temporarily shuttered under Gov. Andrew CuomoAndrew CuomoNew York City reports zero COVID-19 deaths for first time since pandemic hit Florida health officials agreed to receive remdesivir from New York before DeSantis dismissed offer Cuomo says Northeast will likely see rise in COVID-19 cases due to surge in other parts of country MORE’s  (D) “New York State on PAUSE” executive order. The order, which Cuomo extended through May 15, was intended to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in the state.

New York has reported more deaths from the virus than any other state in the country so far, data shows

According to The New York Times, new research has found that a bulk of cases of the novel coronavirus that have been reported in the U.S. were sourced from New York City.

The United States as a whole has confirmed more than 1.4 million cases of COVID-19 and more than 85,000 deaths from the disease.