Coronavirus pandemic in the US

By Mike Hayes, Meg Wagner and Zamira Rahim, CNN

Updated 10:33 p.m. ET, May 14, 2020
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6:00 p.m. ET, May 14, 2020

CDC releases warning about Covid-related pediatric syndrome

From CNN's Maggie Fox

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a health advisory to thousands of doctors across the country Thursday, advising them to be on the lookout for a troubling new syndrome that may be associated with Covid-19 infection.

The syndrome, called multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), has been seen in children across Europe and in at least 18 states, plus Washington, DC.

“During March and April, cases of COVID-19 rapidly increased in New York City and New York State. In early May 2020, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene received reports of children with multisystem inflammatory syndrome,” the CDC health advisory said. “There is limited information currently available about risk factors, pathogenesis, clinical course, and treatment for MIS-C.

"CDC is requesting healthcare providers report suspected cases to public health authorities to better characterize this newly recognized condition in the pediatric population," the advisory said.

5:50 p.m. ET, May 14, 2020

CDC releases "decision trees" to help pandemic reopening decisions

From CNN's Maggie Fox

A "decision tree" created by the CDC aimed at helping businesses decide on whether it’s safe to re-open.
A "decision tree" created by the CDC aimed at helping businesses decide on whether it’s safe to re-open. Source: CDC

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released six “decision trees” Thursday aimed at helping businesses, communities, schools, camps, daycares and mass transit decide on whether it’s safe to reopen. 

The "decision trees" are not part of a much-anticipated, lengthy and detailed document that has been delayed at least once.

The six documents posted on the CDC’s website Thursday provide step-by-step guidance advising employers, for instance, to encourage social distancing, hand washing and intensified cleaning.

“The purpose of this tool is to assist employers in making (re)opening decisions during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially to protect vulnerable workers. It is important to check with state and local health officials and other partners to determine the most appropriate actions while adjusting to meet the unique needs and circumstances of the local community,” one reads.

The "decision trees" are very similar, with small adjustments to account for the differences between school, for example, and restaurants.

5:47 p.m. ET, May 14, 2020

Kentucky will allow gatherings of 10 people or less starting May 22

From CNN’s Rebekah Riess

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said state will allow gatherings of 10 people or less starting May 22.

“We realize that people are making plans for Memorial Day and I trust that we can do this right, that we can do this safely,” Beshear said.

He recommended gatherings take place outside whenever possible. Beshear added that people should remain six feet apart from anyone who is not a part of their household.

The governor also said Kentucky will let its travel ban expire on May 22.

“The travel ban has been very important to where we are and to flattening the curve, and we still need to be very careful about where we travel to,” Beshear said.

5:43 p.m. ET, May 14, 2020

Idaho to make protective gear available to businesses

From CNN’s Andy Rose

As it prepares to loosen more economic restrictions Saturday, Idaho will make personal protective equipment available to any business that needs it to reopen.

“We don’t want the lack of access to PPE to inhibit small businesses from opening,” Gov. Brad Little said in a statement Thursday.

The state set up a website where businesses can order the supplies at cost. The state warned businesses that they can’t guarantee how quickly an order can be filled, but hopes to get materials faster by buying in bulk. Items that can be ordered include disposable masks, medical-grade gloves and hand sanitizer.

Idaho’s stage two reopening begins March 16.

Restaurants will be allowed to return to dine-in services. Gyms and salons can open with social distancing. 

Theaters will remain closed, and gatherings are limited to 10 people.

5:37 p.m. ET, May 14, 2020

New York Stock Exchange to reopen trading floor to subset of brokers in late May

From CNN's Kristina Sgueglia

People walk near the New York Stock Exchange on May 8.
People walk near the New York Stock Exchange on May 8. Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The president of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) said the trading floor will look different when it reopens to a subset of floor brokers on May 26.

Floor brokers will return in smaller numbers, wear protective masks and follow “strict social-distancing requirements, enforced by a new choreography” that defines spaces where each person may work on the floor, according to an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal from Stacey Cunningham, the president of the NYSE.

Cunningham wrote that “designated market makers” will largely continue to do their jobs away from the floor. 

NYSE will require all visitors to avoid public transportation, Cunningham said, adding that floor brokers and visitors will be screened and have their temperatures taken as they enter the building. Those who do not pass the check will not be allowed to enter until they test negative for Covid-19, or self quarantine, Cunningham wrote.

The NYSE will not resume its regular schedule of events and most of the rest of the building will remain “largely empty” as many employees will continue to work remotely, Cunningham said.

A daily regimen of “thorough cleaning and sanitation” of the floor will be implemented, Cunningham said.

5:33 p.m. ET, May 14, 2020

Illinois governor wants to return to office next week after self-isolating

From CNN’s Julie Gallagher

Gov. J.B. Pritzker speaks during his daily coronavirus news conference at the Thompson Center in Chicago, Friday, April 17.
Gov. J.B. Pritzker speaks during his daily coronavirus news conference at the Thompson Center in Chicago, Friday, April 17. Tyler LaRiviere/Chicago Sun-Times/AP

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker wants to return to his office in Springfield next week after self-isolating when a staffer tested positive for Covid-19.

“Well right now my staff and I are isolating at home, and we’re working with (Illinois Department of Public Health) to determine how long we’ll have to do this. I’d like to return to Springfield probably mid-late next week, for the opportunity to be there during session, but I just need to get sign off from the experts, from the doctors,” Pritzker said Thursday during a virtual news conference. 

Pritzker tested negative for Covid-19 on Monday, according to a statement from his office.

He said he plans to follow the same safety precautions Covid-19 as he did before self-isolating.

5:24 p.m. ET, May 14, 2020

Illinois has seen 6 times more unemployment claims now than compared to 2008 recession

From CNN’s Julie Gallagher

A woman takes a w
A woman takes a w Nam Y. Huh/AP

The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) has processed six times more unemployment claims during the period of March 1 through May 9, 2020 than “the equivalent time period of the 2008-2009 great recession,” Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced Thursday.

Pritzker said during a news conference that more than 1,076,000 claims have been filed in Illinois between March 1 and May 9, as the coronavirus pandemic swept through the state.

In addition to regular unemployment services, the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program opened on Monday in Illinois.

Pritzker said IDES processed more than 50,000 applications under the umbrella of this program, which includes self-employed and independent contractors. Official filing numbers for the PUA program will be reported starting May 21.

The governor also announced that Illinois will partner with Coursera, an online training website, to offer free virtual job training and professional certificate programs through the end of 2020 for unemployed individuals in the state. 

5:35 p.m. ET, May 14, 2020

North Carolina religious rights group files lawsuit against governor for executive order

From CNN’s Jamiel Lynch and Jennifer Henderson

A religious rights group headed by the pastor of a North Carolina church has filed a lawsuit against restrictions put in place in the state by executive orders signed by Gov. Roy Cooper. 

In the complaint, the group alleged the executive orders are unconstitutional because they treat religious gatherings less favorably than similar secular gatherings, which they say is a violation of the First Amendment of the Constitution.

The complaint said “absent emergency relief from this court all members and/or attendees of the Plaintiff’s entities will suffer immediate and irreparable injury form the threat of civil and criminal prosecution for the mere act of gathering for free exercise of region and in assembling for worship.”

The lawsuit is asking for a temporary restraining order.

Asked about the lawsuit during a news conference Thursday, Cooper responded, “We don’t want churches to become hotspots for this virus.”

“Regardless of executive orders, I would urge every congregation to pause and consider whether indoor services are the right thing to do right now for their members," he added. "We must care for and show love to one another. So, we need North Carolinians to keep doing what they know protects them from this pandemic.”

5:18 p.m. ET, May 14, 2020

Catch up on the latest coronavirus news from around the US

People walk through a shuttered business district in Brooklyn on May 12 in New York City.
People walk through a shuttered business district in Brooklyn on May 12 in New York City. Spencer Platt/Getty Images

It is about 5:15 p.m. ET in New York and a lot has happened with the coronavirus pandemic. Read up on the biggest headlines below:

  • Unemployment grows: Nearly 3 million people filed claims for unemployment benefits in the week that ended May 9. Altogether, more than 36.5 million Americans have sought initial unemployment aid since mid-March.
  • GOP senator to step down: Sen. Richard Burr is stepping aside as chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee while he’s under investigation for stock trades he made ahead of the market downturn sparked by the coronavirus pandemic.
  • Some NYC retailers could open in June: New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said that the city is exploring how to reopen some of the retail sector safely by next month. De Blasio said that the city is also talking to restaurant owners on how to reopen safely, possibly with outdoor seating.
  • Fleet retired: Delta Air Lines says it will retire its Boeing 777 fleet, which includes 18 aircraft, as the effects of the pandemic continue to cause a financial crunch.
  • Southwest Airlines and masks: Southwest Airlines has told flight crews not to stop passengers from boarding if they refuse to wear a mask, according to an internal memo obtained by CNN.
  • Florida's Miami-Dade and Broward counties: Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Miami-Dade and Broward counties can start reopening under phase one of the state's plan starting Monday.
  • New Jersey beaches: Ocean and lakefront beaches in New Jersey will be open by Memorial Day weekend with capacity limitations and social distancing remaining in place, Gov. Phil Murphy announced today.
  • America’s largest mall: North America’s largest shopping and entertainment complex – the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota — will reopen on June 1, according to a statement. 
  • Billions of dollars sent to New York: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he spoke to President Trump today about the state's funding issues and the administration agreed to expedite $3.9 billion in funding to the state for the Metropolitan Transit Association.
  • Disney’s “Frozen”: Disney’s Broadway production of "Frozen" will not reopen, according to a statement issued Thursday, which cites the “industry-wide shut down and resulting economic fallout” as the reason behind the decision.