Forget sitting down at a restaurant for a nice meal. Beginning Tuesday, all restaurants, bars and cafes will not let customers stay, instead restricted to take-out or delivery as the coronavirus threat grows.
Mayor Bill de Blasio says he will sign an executive order making such a determination Monday morning, which will then take effect 24 hours later, at 9 a.m., on Tuesday.
"Our lives are changing in ways that were unimaginable just a week ago," de Blasio said, in a statement. "We are taking a series of actions that we never would have taken otherwise in an effort to save the lives of loved ones and our neighbors. Now is a time to take yet another drastic step."
Eateries won't be the only venues affected in the city. de Blasio also is shutting down nightclubs, movie theaters, small theaters and concert venues. Many theaters in the Broadway theatre district of Manhattan shut down last week.
"This is not a decision I make lightly," de Blasio said. "These places are part of the heart and soul of our city. They are part of what it means to be a New Yorker. But our city is facing an unprecedented threat, and we must respond with a wartime mentality."
The move comes just hours after de Blasio officially closed New York City public schools beginning Monday morning, and lasting until at least April 20.
SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, has spread rapidly in the city and throughout the state. Earlier on Sunday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advised there be gatherings of no more than 50 people at at time over the next eight weeks.
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