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New Haven Mayor dispels school closure rumors


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    NEW HAVEN, Connecticut (WFSB) — Mayor Justin Elicker is speaking out about false rumors on the internet about school closures and talking about COVID affecting first responders.

COVID continues to be a struggle in New Haven like many other places in the state, but the mayor is quick to shut down false rumors about schools closing indefinitely.

He says it’s just not true, “I want to talk about a rumor going around on social media about New Haven Public Schools being closed because that has been getting traction, that is not true. We have every intention, as I said yesterday in the press conference outside city hall, of opening schools next Monday.”

The mayor is referring to an old press release issued more than a year ago now circulating on the internet.

He did say while schools are returning after the Christmas break, that they do anticipate seeing COVID cases in the community that might cause some children to learn remotely, but that would be on a classroom-by-classroom basis and not school wide. He also further reiterated the importance of testing to keep kids in school.

“We are working hard to develop a strategy around test and stay. Which the CDC has endorsed. It’s clear that we need rapid tests to make that work. Our expectation is that testing will become much much more a part of life and that people will proactively test. We are anticipating and recommending that people do that before next Monday for the students,” said Elicker.

Renee Dominguez, the acting police chief also talking about the rise in cases in the police department.

“Right now we definitely have covid in the police department. We’ve had covid throughout. We are seeing a spike,” said Dominguez.

New Haven’s Police Department is currently seeing more than 8 percent of its staff out with COVID and the fire department, 14.3 percent.

The mayor says the city working hard not to be understaffed, “each department has different contingencies, but for example the police department would hold officers over that do not have COVID and make them work longer hours. Unfortunately, that may be the situation we are in if we continue to see these number rise.”

New Haven will be giving out rapid tests that the state has provided to the city on Friday and Saturday.

We are still waiting on details of specifically when and where rapid tests will go out.

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