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COVID-19 Increases in America By Cassiette West-Williams

As the COVID-19 virus continues to increase in America, more families are dealing with their losses in multiple numbers. The United States has surpassed more than five million cases nationally, and the Illinois numbers are on the rise.

The Center for Disease Control has indicated that more people have the virus than those who have been tested. Free testing sites have been closed down in some areas, but several are open throughout the state.

Natasha McClendon knows about the heartache of COVID-19 deaths. Two months ago, the Traveler Weekly empathized with her, when her younger brother and cousin made their transitions. Then her father died in July. Three deaths in one month, in the same family, have taken a toll on Mrs. McClendon, but she is most worried about how the state is managing the ever-increasing statistics of young people with COVID.

With local schools reopening, McClendon is keeping her three school-aged children at home to avoid further issues with the virus. Some private schools in Illinois are opening in person, while places like Chicago Public Schools will be virtual until mid-November.

The American Academy of Pediatrics says that more than 100,000 children had COVID in July. Some children are not required to wear a mask in school, and social distancing is not enforced.  A teenager in Georgia posted pictures of her crowded hallways in her school, and she was suspended for posting “Good Trouble.” (A term Congressman John Lewis used to do the right thing.) After she posted her photos, nine people at the school (staff and scholars) came down with COVID-19.

The awareness of what is actually happening in today’s schools has caused trauma, stress, and anxiety in many American families, as the virus continues to increase. At press time, the college league is making a decision to have a sports season or cancel it until 2021.

Governor J.B. Pritzker has asked private businesses, public entities like schools and entertainment venues, to mandate that all customers wear masks. Pritzker said instead of shaming and punishing individuals regarding the lack of wearing masks, business owners should be encouraging of people who wear the mask.

National health expert, Dr. Fauci, insists that this country should have an universal mask-wearing enforcement and that students should wear masks. However, Dr. Fauci said that local officials need to make the mask decision on a local level. He said that this virus can be beat if these factors are enforced:

*Masks are worn daily

*Social distancing is enforced

* Avoid crowds in large groups

*Sanitize and clean regularly

Dr. Fauci said that there may be a vaccine available by the end of the year.