COVID-19 pandemic updates for April 14: Skokie mayor to require face masks starting Thursday

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Information in the COVID-19 pandemic is evolving rapidly, so to help keep WGN viewers informed with the latest updates, follow our live blog for April 14, 2020.

These updates will mostly focus on the Chicago area, but will include some national and international news as well.

Newest updates are at the top of this post.

9 p.m.

Starting at 5 p.m. Thursday, people living, working in, or visiting Skokie will be required to wear a face covering over their nose and mouth. According to the suburbs website, the mayor issued an emergency directive.

Those in the suburb will be required to wear the masks while “working at or patronizing a business open to the public.” This includes public transportation and rideshares.

Skokie’s website the directive includes the following:

  • grocery stores
  • restaurants
  • hardware and building supply stores
  • financial institutions, laundry services
  • pharmacies
  • group homes and assisted living
  • any curbside or home-delivery staff.

7:30 p.m.

On Tuesday, the CTA said a second employee died due to COVID-19. The employee was a bus operator who joined the CTA in 2018.

CTA president Dorval Carter Jr. provided the following statement:

“The entire CTA family extends its deepest sympathies to the family, friends and loved ones of this dedicated professional who was committed to providing the essential transit service that people rely on,” he said. “We hope everyone will remember and honor this employee’s service to CTA and Chicago.”

4:30 p.m.

Two employees at a South Side nursing home have died. The employees worked at BRIA of Forest Edge, located at  8001 S Western Ave in Chicago. Their deaths are reportedly COVID-19 related.

A statement from the nursing home said: “Our BRIA staff and residents are grieving over the loss of two heroes who were part of the BRIA family for many years.  We are planning a memorial service to celebrate their contribution to the residents they loved so much.   Our condolences and sympathy go out to their families.” 

3:30 p.m.

The number of parked planes at O’Hare Airport continues to pile-up. More than 120 planes from several airlines now sit idle in remote areas of the airport.

An unused runway is now being used for airplane storage. It’s a result of the huge downturn in travel demand that’s forced airlines to slash their schedules.

An airport spokesperson said the airlines are “not” being charged fees to park their planes in an effort to provide some financial relief to the air carriers.

SkyCam9 flew over a bunch of unused planes at O’Hare Airport Tuesday.

2:30 p.m.

Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker held his daily news conference about COVID-19 in the state.

There are 1,222 new cases of the virus and 74 additional deaths across the state. In total, 23,247 people have tested positive for the virus and 868 people are dead. More details here.

11:45 a.m.

The Indiana State Department of Health announced Monday a state total of 8,527 coronavirus cases and 387 deaths.

11 a.m.

Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle was joined by the County’s Emergency Management and Regional Security (EMRS) team as well as south suburban first responders to distribute thousands of personal protective equipment (PPE) to Cook County police and fire departments.

7:30 a.m.

Illinois National Guardsmen will help open a new COVID-19 testing center in Markham Tuesday. The site is located at 3824 W 159th Place. It is the third such site run by the state; the others are in Harwood Heights and downstate McLean.

Another 80 Illinois guardsmen are being deployed to support COVID-19 response operations across the state. That brings the total to about 650 guard members.

7 a.m.

The first city employee to die from COVID-19 also worked last month’s primary election. Revall Burke died two weeks after serving as an election judge at a South Side polling location. Poll workers or voters who may have come into contact with him are now being notified.

Gov. JB Pritzker defended his decision to not postpone the election, saying he did not have legal authority to do so.

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