Nearly 3,000 more cases, 63 more deaths after record day of testing in Illinois
Gov. J.B. Pritzker reported 2,994 new cases of COVID-19 in Illinois on Sunday and 63 additional deaths, following a single-day record of 19,417 tests performed in the previous 24 hours.
The new numbers bring the state's death toll from the coronavirus to 2,618 and the total cases to 61,499.
As of midnight Sunday, 4,701 COVID-19 patients were receiving treatment in state hospitals, 1,232 of them in intensive-care units and 759 on ventilators.
The new numbers come as the number of people protesting or ignoring Pritzker's stay-at-home guidelines continued to grow over the weekend.
About 100 protesters lined Randall Road in Algonquin on Sunday, a day after a demonstration in Fox Lake focused on restrictions limiting boat capacities to two people.
"The enforcement is up to local enforcement," Pritzker said when asked about those measures Sunday. "And I would remind the people that are doing it that, look, it's the data that tells us that if you're in a large group of people in a small space, if you can't maintain a six-foot distance between each person in a party, then you shouldn't be together in that space."
Pritzker continued to rail against those holding parties after more videos of large gatherings in Chicago emerged Sunday.
"The fact is people need to follow the rules," he said. "People will get sick if they don't follow the rules. We need local government and local police to make sure that people are following these rules.
"We are not looking to have police crack down on people, arrest people. That is not the intent here. But it is true that police can break up a party and should," he added.
With stimulus checks arriving for some, Pritzker announced Sunday that the Illinois Department of Professional and Financial Regulation has reached agreement with Illinois banks that will allow non-customers to cash their checks for free. Banks participating include Wells Fargo, J.P. Morgan Chase, U.S. Bank, Fifth Third and First Midwest, he said.
He also warned those receiving checks to be aware of scams.
"Reprehensible, bad actors continue to use this public health emergency to prey on others," the governor said. "We're hearing reports of cyberscams, telephone, email and text messaging scams, counterfeit COVID product offers, bogus door-to-door offers of COVID tests and of COVID products relating to coronavirus, solicitations for donations to phony charities related to COVID-19, and fraudulent efforts to obtain federal relief funds."
Pritzker also addressed the reasoning behind allowing pet groomers to operate during the stay-at-home order while keeping salons and barbershops closed.
"The idea is that dog and pet groomers don't have to come within six feet of a human being that may have COVID-19, but at a hair salon it would be nearly impossible for somebody to perform a haircut on somebody without being very very close to them," he said.