Phase 2 Changes to Restrictions (7.08.2020)

Mayor LaToya Cantrell announced new restrictions aimed at tamping down on the increasing rate at which the coronavirus is spreading in the city.

The new restrictions amount to tweaks to the city’s Phase 2 reopening plan, which was put in place on June 13.

Under the enhanced restrictions, bars and restaurants will be allowed to remain open but will required to serve customers at tables or through take-out rather than allowing them to sit at a bar. The restrictions also limit indoor gatherings to 25 people, a quarter of the number that were allowed previously.

The new changes to restrictions are effective July 11, 2020.

The new restrictions come amid a surge in cases across Louisiana, and a less dramatic increase in New Orleans, which was the center of the initial outbreak in March.

When New Orleans moved into Phase 2, officials released a set of metrics they would be tracking and which could prompt a return to more stringent regulations. Most of those metrics, including hospital capacity and testing volume, are still relatively healthy. But the number of cases being reported each day in New Orleans has been on the increase. There were 635 cases reported over the last 14 days, double the number tallied in the 14 days before. The percent of tests coming back positive has also been on the rise, indicating the jump is not solely due to an expansion of testing. The city’s guidelines call for reintroducing restrictions if the city averages more than 50 cases per day over several days. The five-day average for new cases in the city has surpassed 50 on four of the last seven days.

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