Wednesday, April 01, 2020
NEW YORK " New York City's top health officials were tracking warning signs of the flu, and didn't like what they were seeing: A massive, late-season spike in influenza-like-illnesses that revealed a troubling aberration.
So on March 10, Health Commissioner Oxiris Barbot went to City Hall to share the findings with Mayor Bill de Blasio and urge him to begin taking more drastic action to control the spread of the coronavirus, which has since claimed 450 lives across New York City. De Blasio resisted, believing that closing schools, restaurants and cultural centers would cripple the city's economy and disproportionately hurt the marginalized residents he aims to prioritize.
What followed was a week of mixed messages, delayed decisions and feuds that escalated to what one person described as "warfare" amongst city officials, all while the federal government withheld critical aid to New York and Gov. Andrew Cuomo grappled with whether to impose draconian mandates.
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