Mayor Says Oklahoma City Is In A Crisis As COVID-19 Cases Continue To Climb


During a press conference with the Oklahoma County Health Department on Thursday Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt asked residents to help stop the spread of COVID-19 across the metro. The Mayor is asking residents to take a break from higher-risk activities for the next 10 days and keep our distance from each other to stop the skyrocketing spread of COVID-19 in the metro. The Mayor mentioned that Thanksgiving has the potential of being a super-spreader event with everyone not wearing masks and indoors.

Full Statement From Mayor's Office:

Mayor David Holt is imploring Oklahoma City to take a break from higher-risk activities for the next 10 days, and keep our distance from each other to stop the skyrocketing spread of COVID-19in the metro. 

Mayor Holt is issuing a new emergency proclamation providing for local enforcement of restrictions on bars and restaurants announced earlier this week by Gov. Kevin Stitt. He is also asking residents to work from home, order takeout, avoid meetings and gatherings that lack distance, and take extra precautions around Thanksgiving and holiday shopping.

“It’s time to get real,” Mayor Holt said Thursday during a virtual news conference at the OKC-County Health Department (OCCHD). “For at least the next 10 days, I’m asking you to make some tough decisions and take a break.”

Since Nov. 1, daily new coronavirus case counts have nearly tripled from already high levels in the Oklahoma City metro, according to state and local public health data. At more than 800 new cases per day, it’s about 16 times higher than the spring. About 1 out of every 100 metro residents has tested positive for the virus in the last three weeks.

Local hospitals are operating near capacity and expect even more patients, as many people infected during the dramatic recent increase in new cases get sicker in the coming days and weeks.

OCCHD Director Dr. Patrick McGough said people should consider the cost of their Thanksgiving plans.

“Consider whether that plan is worth spending two to three weeks in the hospital. Consider whether that plan is worth unknowingly giving the virus to your grandmother, grandfather, aunt or uncle, who could potentially lose their life before the end of the year if exposed to the virus,” he said. “Trust me, not seeing your family for one Thanksgiving is far better than having that chair empty next year, and every year after.”

Watch Mayor Holt’s and Dr. McGough’s comments in their entirety here on Facebook at fb.com/cityofokc.

Visit covid19.okc.gov for the latest local coronavirus information.

10 days to stop the spread

The vast majority of people infected with COVID-19 develop symptoms within 10 days, according to expert analysis of public health data. If everyone keeps their distance and wears masks during brief public outings for necessities or essential work, we can slow down the virus within those 10 days.

Mayor Holt is asking for all Oklahoma City residents to take specific steps for at least the next 10 days to stop the spread:

  • Don’t meet in groups, especially indoors. Politely decline social invitations. Suggest a phone or video call instead.
  • Order takeout to support restaurants. But don’t gather with others there.
  • Think of ways to gather for Thanksgiving without doing it indoors around a dinner table. Gather virtually or try outdoor drive-by visits.
  • People with authority over office workplaces should transition staff to remote work. Do not hold in-person meetings. For those who must work in person, call co-workers instead of visiting them, even from the office next door.
  • Religious leaders should encourage their communities to follow these guidelines.
  • For any gathering that must take place, require masks and distancing.
  • Wear masks for holiday shopping. Many local and national retailers also have curbside pickup for online or phone orders.
  • Help elevate this message: Tell family, friends and neighbors to take a break for 10 days.
New emergency proclamation

Mayor Holt will update Oklahoma City’s COVID-19 emergency proclamation to mirror parts of Gov. Stitt’s executive order dated Nov. 16.

Bars, restaurants and requiring and similar venues are required to stop in-person service by 11 p.m., and provide at least 6 feet of distance or barriers between parties served on-premises. The new local proclamation provides localPolice Departmentand code inspector enforcement of the statewide order.

Oklahoma City’s mask ordinance remains in place until at least Dec. 7. The City Council has discretion to consider an extension during its next scheduled meeting Nov. 24.

Visit covid19.okc.gov for the latest local coronavirus information, including the emergency proclamation, mask ordinance, City services updates and public health data.

Free signs about the mask requirement to print for display at local businesses and other public spaces, along with social media graphics and animations, are available on a public shared drive at covid19.okc.gov. The free signs are available in English,Spanish (español),Vietnamese (Tiếng Việt),Arabic (عربى) and Korean (한국어).

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