SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Mayor London Breed is giving the latest COVID-19 update in San Francisco after signing a joint jurisdiction with other Bay Area counties to extend the shelter-in-place order until May 31.
As of Monday afternoon, Breed announced there are 1,424 positive COVID-19 cases in the city, with 23 death and 85 hospitalizations according to the latest city data that can be found here.
The mayor reminded that there is much uncertainty and that San Francisco is "not out of the woods yet."
"There's a lot of uncertainty because we see the numbers (of positive COVID-19 cases) go up every day in our city," she said. "We also see the number of hospitalizations and they also go up, and the good news we see they have not gone up like other places because you are all doing your part to comply, but the fact is they are still going up."
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Breed said extending the shelter-in-place order until the end of May was not an easy decision. In a tweet, she shared, "I know this is not easy and you may be feeling restless. I feel the same way. But what we don't want is to relax restrictions too early, see new cases spike, and have to revert to tougher restrictions again."
Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Mateo, Santa Clara counties, as well as the City of Berkeley, are all extending the shelter-in-place order until May 31.
The mayor emphasized that public health is the city's priority and has been using data and information from public health experts to guide the next steps regarding COVID-19 restrictions.
"We want to be very careful that we don't take the steps out of frustration, out of concern, we don't move too quickly and repeat mistakes that have been made in our past history," Breed said. About 100 years ago, last time I brought up the Spanish Flu, when we thought the worst had passed us and folks threw off their masks, went into the streets and partied, and had a good time and a few days later, we were even worse off from when we started. We don't want this to happen in our city. This is not an easy thing to do."
Breed mentioned the success in the 'Slow Streets' program and announced that effective Tuesday at 6 a.m., JFK Drive in Golden Gate Park will be closed off to vehicle traffic as long as the shelter-in-place orders are in place. John F. Shelley Drive near McLaren park will also be closed off.
"I want to be clear after this stay-at-home order has expired, that will no longer be the case, but in the meantime in an effort to provide more space for people to move around and maybe get some exercise and to run and to bike, we wanted to do something to help," Breed said.
Breed reminded that social distancing orders were still to be followed.
"We don't want people driving to the park still. We want people walking, walking through the neighborhood, and neighborhood parks, we don't want people setting up picnics or playdates or the things we talked about. We still need you to socially distance yourselves."
The mayor also spoke on working with the city to extend the deadline for rent collection after signing a moratorium on residential evictions as long as the shelter-in-place order is in effect.
"Our goal is to make sure that when our city reopens, we want our economy to get going sooner rather than later," she said. " What that means is that we're not losing our businesses, our small businesses, our medium-sized businesses... that they are able to come back to work on day one with new guidelines, without the fear of getting evicted."
Dr. Grant Colfax shared that the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations shares great detail on the overall "stable" pattern of the virus in the city with a range of 94 to 85 serious cases within the past few weeks.
"A flat curve," Colfax said. "That means today our hospital system has room to care for patients and that is indeed good news, but that's still not enough. We need numbers to stay down and drop significantly in the next few weeks if that could happen, that can happen if we continue on our current course. Yet we know today that those numbers could start climbing again, that could happen if people stop taking precautions."
"We've made significant progress, but there is much more work to do in how to slow the spread (of COVID-19)," as Colfax explained generating more knowledge is needed.
The San Francisco police chief shared that overall crime in the city has decreased within the past week. Police saw property crimes decrease by 24% and a 23% decrease in serious crimes.
Mayor London Breed, along with other Bay Area county officials, are expected to give more details on the extended shelter-in-place orders.
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