New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced late on Sunday that he had made the decision, though not lightly, to close "Nightclubs, movie theaters, small theater houses, and concert venues". The order, which he will sign on Monday, will take effect 17 March, at 9:00 a.m.
This is not a decision I make lightly. These places are part of the heart and soul of our city. They are part of what it means to be a New Yorker. But our city is facing an unprecedented threat, and we must respond with a wartime mentality.— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) March 16, 2020
Bill de Blasio suggested that the pandemic may "spread rapidly through the close interactions".
The virus can spread rapidly through the close interactions New Yorkers have in restaurants, bars and places where we sit close together. We have to break that cycle. Tomorrow, I will sign an Executive Order limiting restaurants, bars and cafes to food take-out and delivery.— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) March 16, 2020
New York City Mayor said that local resident "must make whatever sacrifices necessary".
We will come through this, but until we do, we must make whatever sacrifices necessary to help our fellow New Yorkers.— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) March 16, 2020
New York State earlier confirmed 86 more cases of COVID-19, bringing the total of infections to 421 - the highest number in the United States. A total of 154 cases have been confirmed in New York City alone.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has asked all staff working at the headquarters complex in New York to telecommute until 12 April, to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.