Detroit Mayor To Young People: Stay Home, Watch TV, Play Video Games

WWJ News
March 23, 2020 - 5:59 pm

DETROIT (WWJ) - After another uptick in COVID-19 cases in Detroit, Mayor Mike Duggan is making a special appeal to the city's younger residents who may not feel like all the precautions being talked about apply to them.

Some may be thinking, the mayor said at a news conference Monday: "I'm young, I'm tough, it won't kill me, I'll survive, and go out with the groups...and that may be true.

"Except that if you go out with the group and you're one of those two or three people the virus spreads to, the two or three people you spread it to could be your grandmother, could be your best friend's father. What you are doing by going out with crowds is giving life to this very deadly virus."

An unprecedented "Stay Home, Stay Safe" order by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is set to take effect at midnight; with exceptions for critical jobs like police and fire, and outings for grocery shopping and other essential services. 

More than a dozen people in Michigan have already died, Duggan pointed out, "And the numbers are going up by the hour," he said, "and the people who are listening to me today have the power to choke this virus off, and that is the point of the governor's message."

Duggan emphasized that all city residents should heed the governor's order to stay home whenever possible and to practice social distancing. He's also asking the public to call city housing if they knew of a homeless person displaying symptoms of the virus.

As of Monday afternoon, the official number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in Michigan was 1,328, with 411 of those cases within the city of Detroit. Six of the total 15 deaths have been in Detroit. 

Duggan said if the city doesn't stay ahead of the virus and keep the numbers down, there will be too many sick people and not enough critical care beds and medical help for them.

"We're going to solve this testing issue; we're going to solve these hospital issues," the mayor said.

But in the meantime he stressed that there's something simple that everyone can do to help: 

"How many times have you heard sitting on your couch and watching TV and playing video games is bad for you? We're in a really unusual place, " Duggan said. "If you stay home and watch TV and play video games, you're making a real contribution to fighting this virus. And that's what we're asking you to do."

Duggan offered a special thanks to those who can't stay home, including emergency responders and those in medical community..

Meanwhile, Duggan said he is working to get water service restored to all city residents who have had their water shut off due to nonpayment. "So there's no ready why anybody should be without water by end of next week."