coronavirus

De Blasio: NYC Might ‘Shelter in Place.’ Cuomo: No, It Won’t.

Photo: David Dee Delgado/Getty Images

On Tuesday, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced he was considering a shelter-in-place order for New York City, and that he would make the determination in the next 48 hours. The order, if implemented, would restrict New Yorkers from leaving their homes “except for essential needs,” like shopping for food and visiting health-care providers.

“Folks have to understand that right now, with so many New Yorkers losing employment, losing paychecks, dealing with all sorts of stresses and strains, I’m hearing constantly from people who are tremendously worried about how they’re going to make ends meet,” de Blasio said. “I don’t take this lightly at all.

Apparently, New York governor Andrew Cuomo didn’t take the possibility seriously at all. “Any blanket quarantine or shelter in place policy would require State action and as the Governor has said, there is no consideration of that for any locality at this time,” a statement from Cuomo’s office read. He reiterated his position on The Daily podcast, saying, “I wouldn’t approve shelter in place, that scares people — you can’t leave your home. The fear, the panic is a bigger problem than the virus and I shut that down immediately.”

Whether it’s understood as a jurisdictional issue or another skirmish in the long-standing feud between the two, life in the city has already been significantly altered, with restaurants, schools, and bars shut down for the foreseeable future. In San Francisco, a shelter-in-place order was put into effect on Monday, requiring residents to stay at home except for “essential activities” for at least three weeks.

On Tuesday, Mayor de Blasio also ordered an end to Uber/Lyft pools and that all rides can only accommodate one customer, except for couples. “Real couples,” he added.

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De Blasio: NYC Might ‘Shelter in Place.’ Cuomo: No, It Won’t