South Suburban Mayors and Managers Association, representing Homewood, Flossmoor and surrounding communities, joined with members of the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus in calling upon residents and businesses to commit to common sense steps to help the Chicago region flatten the COVID-19 curve for the second time.
Acknowledging the need to combat the exponential increases in COVID cases across Chicagoland and the Illinois in recent weeks, regional mayors ask area residents and businesses to take the following actions for at least the next three weeks or until the rate of infection consistently declines:
- Continue to comply with regulations to wear face coverings whenever you are indoors at a public place or outdoors encountering people outside of your immediate household. The Center for Disease Control reinforced the importance of face masks last week, saying they protect both the wearer and individuals they may encounter.
- When leaving home, continue to practice social distancing by always staying 6-feet apart from others.
- Continue to wash hands or use hand sanitizer often. Avoid touching surfaces frequently touched by others and keep your hands off your face.
- Consider limiting trips outside your home to going to work, attending school and obtaining vital goods and services, such as medical care, food or household essentials.
- Limit gatherings to no more than 10 persons – and remember it is safest to only associate with members of your own household. If possible, avoid all non-essential travel.
Most of the requested actions are strategies recommended to residents since the pandemic began. These strategies are still on the regional mayors’ association recommendation list because of their history of successfully reducing coronavirus transmission.
Newer recommended actions such as limiting trips and gatherings are consistent with those proposed by area public health officials. Endorsing these strategies is one of the most coherent methods for dealing with the current increase of positivity results, hospitalizations and loss of life.
One of the main thresholds public health officials use to determine the severity of the spread of the coronavirus is when ICU bed utilization approaches 75 to 80%. Region 7, which includes Will and Kankakee Counties, is now at 88% ICU capacity.
Regions 8 (DuPage and Kane Counties), 9 (Lake and McHenry Counties), 10 (suburban Cook County) and 11 (Chicago) are projected to exceed 75% in the next few weeks.