COVID-19 leaves Illinois in lock down

With the spread of COVID-19, Governor of Illinois and other authorities decide to put Illinois on lock down to stop the spread of the virus


Belleville News-Democrat

With Chicago mayor Laurie Lightfoot at his side, Governor J.B. Pritzker issues a directive to all Illinois residents to stay at home during a Friday press conference.

Kyla Henige, News Editor

On Friday, March 20, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker made an announcement issuing a “rule” that residents must remain in their households, as a way of slowing the damaging COVID-19 virus.

Pritzker made the official announcement that starting on Saturday at 5 p.m. that residents must stay in their households through April 7. The government is taking drastic measures to slow down the virus so that it can be contained, and as an attempt to stop it. 

“I didn’t come to this decision easily,” said Pritzker. “I fully recognize that in some cases I am choosing between saving people’s lives and saving people’s livelihoods.” 

Pritzker and his team met with several science-based groups before making his final decision. Although everyone will be on lockdown, grocery stores, gas stations, doctors, certain companies, and pick-up restaurants will remain open. Along with this, the governor is allowing people to go on walks outside and around parks.

The Superintendent of District 156, Ryan McTague, sent out an announcement on Thursday, March 19, informing parents, staff, and students to prepare for more e-learning days the Monday and Tuesday following Spring Break. This decision was made before any announcements of a lockdown occurring, and was yet again, another hard decision to make.

With everything going on, residents of  Illinois, are all panicked about these changes, and have been going to local stores and buying excessive amounts of food, supplies, and necessities.

“There is absolutely no need to change your normal, purchasing patterns,” said Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot. “What I mean is, do not take this direction as a reason to run to the stores, buy everything in sight, and hoard vital supplies.” 

By this, Lightfoot encouraged citizens not to bulk buy because the state will not be in full lockdown.

“This is not a time for every man for himself,” said Lightfoot. “This is a time for every man, woman, and child to be united together.”

Along with the physical concerns of this disease, there is also the major concern of the economy. According to Forbes, the four major economic hits that will be taken by COVID-19 is supply chain failures, lost work for workers, restrictions, and closure, all in which there will be a profit loss.

Both Lightfoot and Pritzker added that police and the National Guard will be patrolling the streets and that they don’t want to have to arrest anybody. Therefore, if out, the police may approach a civilian and ask them to go home. Along with this though, if a person disobeys any of the rules given, they may be charged.

As COVID-19 spreads, McHenry County citizens are at greater risk. There have been a total of 585 cases of this virus in Illinois, and a total of five deaths.