Ohio and Illinois Announce Closure of Restaurants and Bars amid Coronavirus Pandemic

A waitress is holding a tray with dirty dishes and leftover food. Waitress cleaning the ta
Igor Vershinsky/Getty Images

Officials in Ohio and Illinois on Sunday announced the closure of restaurants and bars amid growing fears of the Chinese coronavirus.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine confirmed the decision to close restaurants and bars, effective Sunday night.

He added that the state will be “issuing guidance shortly to close Ohio’s senior centers and adult daycare facilities” due to the virus’s severe affect on older people.

“We aren’t ordering that today, but it will be coming up. We will work to ensure all elderly adults continue to receive meals,” he added:

Additionally, DeWine signaled that the state will likely extend the state’s three-week school closure.

“What we’ve done this week is drastic action, but we’re taking these steps to save lives. W/ no intervention we could expect 40%-70% of our population would contract this virus. We’ve made dramatic interventions to make a difference & stop our healthcare system from imploding,” he said, assuring Ohioans that “we will get through this.”

“If we don’t take these actions now, it’ll be too late. This is a matter of life and death. We have to do this to save lives,” he added:

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker also confirmed that his state will take similar measures, closing bars and restaurants, effective Monday evening. However, he said officials are attempting to find middle ground and may allow food delivery service.

“We are working with restaurant owners and food delivery services across the state to see if restaurants can safely keep their kitchens open, so the restaurants can continue food delivery to people at their homes,” Pritzker said on Sunday, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

“The time for persuasion and public appeals is over. The time for action is here. This is not a joke. No one is immune to this, and you have an obligation to act in the best interests of all the people of this state,” he added.

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam also took action on Sunday, announcing a ban on gatherings of more than 100 people.

The news comes as the number of those testing positive for the virus in the United States surpasses 3,000.


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.