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Coronavirus live blog, Nov. 28, 2020: 7,873 new coronavirus cases reported despite low number of tests being processed over holiday weekend

Here’s Saturday’s news on how COVID-19 is impacting Chicago and Illinois.

The coronavirus has killed an additional 108 Illinois residents and spread to 7,873 more, public health officials announced Saturday.

Here’s what happened today in coronavirus-related news.


News

5:00 p.m 108 more Illinois coronavirus deaths, 7,873 new cases

The coronavirus has killed an additional 108 Illinois residents and spread to 7,873 more, public health officials announced Saturday.

The daily caseload was among the state’s lowest during a resurgent month of November, but that’s mostly because a relatively low number of COVID-19 tests are being processed by Illinois laboratories over the holiday weekend.

The new infections were detected among 79,055 tests, holding the state’s average positivity rate over the last week at 10.1%, as low as it’s been in three weeks.

But the latest deaths attributed to the virus were logged at a rate that’s risen to a troubling average for the state following a drastic rise in outbreaks this fall. The virus has claimed about 106 lives per day over the last two weeks — almost three times the rate this time last month.

Read the full story here.

2:04 p.m. Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart tests positive for coronavirus

Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart is at home recovering after testing positive for COVID-19, his office announced Saturday.

Dart last worked Nov. 19, began feeling symptoms the next day and then immediately self-quarantined, according to a statement from Dart’s office.

He was tested Tuesday and received results Friday confirming he had contracted the virus, the sheriff’s office said.

Dart remains symptomatic and is under the care of a physician while recovering at home, the sheriff’s office said. He is unsure how he was infected.

Read the full story here.

1:18 p.m. Illinois surpasses 12K coronavirus deaths, 700K cases

Ashlee Rezin Garcia/Sun-Times

Eight months into the coronavirus pandemic, COVID-19 has killed 12,029 Illinois residents while spreading to at least 705,063 people, according to the latest figures released by public health officials Friday.

It only took nine days for the state to pass its latest troubling milestones, after the death toll surpassed 11,000 and the case tally eclipsed 600,000 Nov. 18.

The virus has claimed almost 2,300 lives this month alone and is the currently the state’s third-leading cause of death behind heart disease and cancer. Forty-one Chicago-area victims were among the latest 66 deaths that officials have attributed to the virus.

Read the full story here.

1:08 p.m. Small Brewery Sunday: Love, or possibly lose, your local brewpub as pandemic slows down sales

The country’s expanding craft beer industry runs the risk of going flat with brewpubs and microbreweries facing a winter of siphoned sales, spurred by expected shutdowns to slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

Among the more than 8,300 independent breweries in the U.S., the vast majority of them — about 6,000 — are small-producing microbreweries and brewpubs, which thrive off of their on-premise beer sales. Beer sales on location have plummeted during the COVID-19 pandemic.

To raise awareness about local independent beer makers’ plight, the Brewers Association, the trade group representing breweries, on Nov. 29 is promoting Small Brewery Sunday — slotted between Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday.

Read the full story here.

9:22 a.m. ‘Shop Black’ campaign brings customers to Chatham businesses

Black Friday shopping on the 75th Street Boardwalk in Chatham was going to be an event, with an assortment of activities designed to lure shoppers who would spend their holiday cash in Black-owned businesses.

But after the recent surge in coronavirus cases, the festivities were canceled, though some shops stayed open, and customers continued to trickle in.

Stephanie Hart, owner of Brown Sugar Bakery, 233 E. 75th St., understood why the Greater Chatham Initiative canceled “Shop Black, Shop Local,” fearing it could become a super-spreader event. Still, she said, during the pandemic, it is more important than ever to support Black-owned businesses.

The city recently launched Black Shop Friday, with the help of community partners, to promote those businesses, listing 500 of them on a new website, blackshopfriday.com.

“I think supporting Black-owned businesses, especially if you live in a Black community, is so important. Why? Everyone that works here, is from here,” Hart said Friday afternoon. “We are providing jobs in this community.”


New Cases


Analysis & Commentary

9:14 a.m. COVID-19 forces the question: How can we keep from warehousing the elderly?

Every once in a while, the governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo, says something I absolutely agree with.

At the beginning of the pandemic, he went on and on about how every human life matters. I prayed: If he means this, maybe we can see that reflected in our politics. As it happens, with all the death this year, my friends in the religious order Sisters of Life tell me that some pregnant women are rejecting abortion because the last thing we need is more death.

Wouldn’t a newfound commitment to protecting human life be something healthy to come from the COVID-19 ordeal?

But we seem to be heading in the wrong direction.

The Associated Press recently reported on the staggering number of Americans dying in nursing homes during the pandemic, not just from the coronavirus, but from neglect.

“As more than 90,000 of the nation’s long-term care residents have died in a pandemic that has pushed staffs to the limit,” the AP reports, “advocates for the elderly say a tandem wave of death separate from the virus has quietly claimed tens of thousands more, often because overburdened workers haven’t been able to give them the care they need.”

Read the full column here.