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News Around Illinois – April 2, 2020

News Around Illinois Cover

Health Chief: ‘Be Strong And Courageous’ In Facing COVID-19

SPRINGFIELD — The state public health director has issued a somber warning that Illinois residents can expect mounting numbers of illness and death in the new month from the vicious spread of the coronavirus. The 6,980 cases of COVID-19 reported Wednesday by Dr. Ngoze Ezike are double the state’s total just last Saturday. Along with 986 new cases reported Wednesday were 42 deaths, the largest single-day increase since the first was reported March 17, bringing the state’s total to 141. Ezike says: “The coming weeks are going to get more and more difficult as the number of cases and deaths continue to rise.” – Associated Press

New COVID-19 Cases: 9 in Champaign County, 1 in Vermilion

CHAMPAIGN –  Nine new cases of COVID-19 (the disease caused by the novel coronavirus) were reported in Champaign County on Wednesday, according to a news release from a consortium of local health agencies. In all, there have been 38 confirmed cases in the county. According to data on the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District website, five of the people diagnosed with COVID-19 have recovered, leaving 33 active cases. 15 patients are currently hospitalized, while no patients have died. Meanwhile, the Vermilion County Health Department reports a second county resident has tested positive for COVID-19. Like the first case reported earlier this week, the patient is in their 20s, but officials do not believe the two cases are connected. – Jim Meadows, Illinois Newsroom

Pritzker Encourages Illinoisans To Fill Out Census While At Home

SPRINGFIELD – With so many residents forced to stay home due to the coronavirus, Governor J.B. Pritzker says it’s a good time fill out the census form. The governor says it only takes only about ten minutes. “It’s incredibly important to make sure that every Illinois resident, from newborn babies to great grandparents, is counted in the census,” said Pritzker. The census will determine how much federal tax money will come back to Illinois as well as the state’s political power when it comes to the number of congressional seats. An online census questionnaire is available and reminders to complete the form were sent through the mail. But census takers in the field are being delayed because of coronavirus concerns. – Sean Crawford, NPR Illinois

Fundraising For Illinois Artists Begins

CHICAGO – There is a new fundraising effort to help Illinois artists and artisans.  The Arts Illinois Relief Fund allows for donations that will be turned into grants to help during a time when nearly all performances and exhibits have been canceled. Chicago artist Amanda Williams says the arts community is resilient. “We will not stop making, creating, inspiring, challenging, bearing witness and bringing hope,” said Williams. “In fact, that’s all we know to do in these moments.” Williams says while some performers have continued to share art online, the shutdown has been far reaching.  She says those who do lighting, costumes and more have also found themselves out of work.  Click here for more details about the relief fund. – Sean Crawford, NPR Illinois

 

COVID-19 is a rapidly evolving story, and we are working hard to bring you the most up-to-date information. We recommend checking the Coronavirus Information Center for the most recent numbers and guidance.

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