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Miami Mayor Francis Suarez is convinced thousands in Miami have the coronavirus, thinks the governor should lockdown Florida, and warns its impact ‘can become apocalyptic’


Miami Mayor Francis Suarez

Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, the first person in Miami-Dade County to test positive for the coronavirus, told Insider on Thursday that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis should implement a statewide lockdown.
The mayor shuttered all non-essential businesses in Miami, the hardest-hit city in the state, last week and issued a stay-at-home order and a curfew earlier this week.
Suarez, who is quarantined in his home, said his personal experience as a mostly asymptomatic victim of COVID-19 has “convinced” him that “thousands of people in my community have it,” but don’t know it.
He worries that if the city doesn’t make sure residents have food, can stay in their homes, and keep utilities operating, “it can become apocalyptic.”
“Where New York is today may be where Miami is tomorrow,” Suarez said.
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Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, the first person in Miami-Dade County to test positive for the coronavirus, told Insider on Thursday that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a fellow Republican, should implement a state-wide lockdown as the pandemic spreads across the country.

Suarez, 42, said that it’s “hard to second-guess” DeSantis’ reluctance to follow other states in instituting a shelter-in-place order given that about a third of the state’s counties don’t have any confirmed cases, “but I personally would.”

The mayor shut all non-essential businesses in Miami, the hardest-hit city in the state, last week and issued a stay-at-home order and a curfew earlier this week.

“Every decision that I’ve made that has been thought to be premature or overly aggressive, in a week or two weeks or three weeks has looked prophetic,” Suarez told Insider by phone from his Miami home where he’s quarantining himself.

As of Thursday evening, Florida had confirmed 2,484 infections and 29 deaths, but tests for the coronavirus remain relatively hard to come by, despite the state’s large, vulnerable population of elderly residents.

Suarez said his personal experience as a mostly asymptomatic COVID-19 patient has made him fearful that the virus is far more widespread than current data indicates.

“I’m convinced that thousands of people in my community have it,” said Suarez. “It’s possible I was one of the first ones who contracted it, but it’s also equally possible there are thousands of people who have it but didn’t know it.”

While New York is currently the country’s biggest hot spot, experts believe it’s a matter of time before other densely populated regions of the country see their own surges in infections.

“Where New York is today may be where Miami is tomorrow,” Suarez said.

The mayor, who has been in quarantine for two weeks, said he has barely had any symptoms of COVID-19, aside from a few body aches and some congestion, and never developed the sore throat, fever, or cough characteristic of the illness. If he hadn’t been tested after coming in contact with an infected top adviser to the Brazilian president, he “wouldn’t have even missed a day of work.”

‘It can become apocalyptic’

A close ally of President Donald Trump, DeSantis …read more

Source:: Business Insider

      

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