Mayor Quinton Lucas gives update on city's fight against COVID-19

mayor quinton lucas
Posted at 12:47 PM, Mar 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-30 13:47:04-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City, Missouri, Mayor Quinton Lucas said Monday that while he is proud of all of the businesses shutting down to do their part in preventing the spread of COVID-19 like his stay-at-home order directs, he also believes that overall, the city could do better.

Some non-essential businesses are still operating, and groups larger than 10 are still gathering without practicing social distancing guidelines, the mayor said.

Lucas asked that anyone who sees a business that should not be operating or gatherings such as house parties or other events should call 311 and ask for a community interaction officer to check it out.

The Kansas City Health Department issued 200 letters asking non-essential businesses to cease operations just last week.

Small businesses that are struggling can call 815-513-1120 for resources.

Lucas said he hopes a small business emergency relief fund will be up and operating next week to help businesses with 20 or fewer employees.

Kansas City is not extending its stay-at-home order at this time.

Over the weekend, President Donald Trump extended social distancing guidelines to last through April 30.

At this time, Kansas City's order still goes through April 24.

Lucas said he is not extending it right now because he doesn't want to give people a false hope of a "magic date" where everything is okay and back to normal.

He said the city will continue to operate with pandemic-related rules until cases are no longer spreading widely and the local health system is stronger.

When asked what the city's plans were should cases of COVID-19 become prevalent in the homeless population, Lucas said officials have already been in contact with hotels, apartments and aid groups to prepare to house homeless individuals who may be awaiting test results or placed under quarantine.