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COVID-19: ‘People Die If We Don’t Follow The Rules’

[CREDIT: Rob Borkowski] The RI State House. RIDOH warns COVID-19 masks are a must as spread is likely outside the home. Gov. Raimondo also announced new small business aid through a $10M loan program with Goldman Sachs.

[CREDIT: Rob Borkowski] The RI State House. RIDOH warns COVID-19 masks are a must as spread is likely outside the home. Gov. Raimondo also announced new small business aid through a $10M loan program with Goldman Sachs.
[CREDIT: Rob Borkowski] The RI State House. RIDOH warns COVID-19 masks are a must as spread is likely outside the home.
WARWICK, RI — “People die, if we don’t follow the rules. And the people who die are loved ones,” said Governor Gina M. Raimondo Wednesday as she urged Rhode Islanders and visitors here to follow COVID-19 fighting rules.

Raimondo pointed out two new deaths reported during her Wednesday pandemic press conference. She also pointed out positive trends in a low number of positive cases, 17,204, and a low number of people hospitalized by the disease, 56, and only 41 new reported cases.

But the deaths caused by the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 give Raimondo constant pause in her thinking about the pandemic.

“It’s a reminder to me that we are not out of the woods, and every single day people die from this virus,” Raimondo said, “So that ought to be a reminder to each and every one of us, stark and harsh reminder, that people die if we don’t follow the rules.”

Raimondo acknowledged the toll the pandemic has exacted on Rhode Island as a whole in suffering, anxiety, financial insecurity and depression. “There isn’t a person in Rhode Island who isn’t struggling in some way,” she said of the effects of the last four months.

The state’s progress can be easily lost very quickly if people don’t take the rules seriously, she said.

Beaches & Businesses on the Fourth

Beaches were busy this past weekend, but didn’t reach capacity in parking lots, Raimondo said. In general, folks were improving on social distancing.
State officials gave away thousands of masks and saw much better mask wearing compliance. In businesses, state inspectors saw more than 95 percent compliance with high-touch cleaning and more than 90 percent compliance in making hand washing options and hand sanitizer available.
“But we have work to do. More than 20 percent of the restaurants we inspected were not taking names and numbers of a member of the party for contact tracing purposes. In more than 10 percent of the restaurants we inspected, we observed crowding and mingling. We must do better if we’re going to maintain some sense of normalcy this summer,” Raimondo said.

Inspectors at the Department of Business Regulation will be stepping up enforcement efforts.

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Compliance orders for businesses are posted at dbr.ri.gov. If you have a concern about a business, you can also report it on that website.

Visiting the Rhode Island scene? Quarantine.

  • If you are coming to Rhode Island from outside the United States, you need to quarantine for two weeks after arriving in Rhode Island. That means no social visits, no trips to the beach, no outdoor dining at one of our fantastic restaurants. You can do all of that once your 14 days of quarantine are done.
  • If you are traveling from one of the 28 states with a 5% or greater test positive rate you need to quarantine for 14 days. The only exception is providing a negative COVID-19 test. You can do that in two ways: you can get tested in your home state in the 72 hours before you travel to Rhode Island or you can get tested once you’re here. If you get tested in Rhode Island, you will still need to quarantine until you receive a negative result.
  • If you get tested in Rhode Island and are not a Rhode Islander, you should expect to have to pay out-of-pocket. Not all testing sites are open to non-Rhode Island residents. A list of 10 locations that will test non-residents, as well as the list of states that are required to quarantine, is available on health.ri.gov/covid.
The self-quarantining and testing requirements don’t apply if you are a public health, public safety or healthcare worker traveling for your job. They also don’t apply if you’re traveling for medical treatment, to attend funeral or memorial services, to get necessities like groceries, gas or medication, or to drop off or pick up your children from day care or summer camps.
Rob Borkowski
Author: Rob Borkowski

Rob has worked as reporter and editor for several publications, including The Kent County Daily Times and Coventry Courier, before working for Gatehouse in MA then moving home with Patch Media. Now he's publisher and editor of WarwickPost.com. Contact him at editor@warwickpost.com with tips, press releases, advertising inquiries, and concerns.

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