Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot has tested positive for COVID-19 and says she will be working from home during her isolation period after experiencing mild symptoms.
The mayor’s breakthrough case comes one day after she struck a deal with the Chicago Teachers’ Union (CTU), which kept schools closed for four days as they demanded better COVID-19 safety policies amid the Omicron surge.
In a tweet Tuesday afternoon, Lightfoot revealed she had tested positive and will be in quarantine until she tests negative.
‘I am experiencing cold-like symptoms but otherwise feel fine which I credit to being vaccinated and boosted,’ Lightfoot wrote on Twitter.
‘I will continue to work from home while following the CDC [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] guidelines for isolation.’
Lightfoot warned that her case was a reminder for people to get vaccinated and boosted.
The Windy City reported 4,793 new COVID cases on Tuesday, a slight drop from the average 5,189 cases a day the city saw last week. Deaths remained low at 17 new cases.
Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady warned residents that the Omicron surge is still on going despite the drop in daily cases.
‘This is still a very bad surge and I don’t want people to think otherwise,’ Arwady said on Tuesday.
‘I really don’t want people to think sort of it’s over, it is extremely not over.’
Arwady has said that while the city is experiencing a rise in cases, students are relatively safer in schools and advised that schools not shutdown over COVID.
The winter Omicron surge led to the Chicago Teachers’ Union to enact what the mayor and school officials called ‘an illegal strike’ as they demanded the city implement additional COVID-19 regulations for in-person classes.
The union struck a deal with Lightfoot and Chicago Public Schools on Monday to enact a plan that would bring back in-person learning on Wednesday.
The plan also set conditions by which any individual school would go back to remote learning, which would be determined by staff absences, students in quarantine or a high community transmission of COVID.
During her last public appearance on Monday, Lightfoot struck a conciliatory tone after previously refusing to pay teachers who had refused to show up in school after claiming the latest COVID surge was putting their health at risk.
Meanwhile, CTU leaders on Monday night hailed new measures to increase testing for COVID in schools and secured new KN95 masks for staff and students.
However, they were disappointed with the inability to get opt-out testing and some other aspects into the agreement.
Currently, students aren’t forced to test and can opt in to do it. The union wants testing to become mandatory, with students forced to opt out of it if they wish to avoid being swabbed.
‘It was not an agreement that had everything, it’s not a perfect agreement, but it’s certainly something we can hold our heads up about, partly because it was so difficult to get,’ said controversial CTU President Jesse Sharkey, who had called Lightfoot ‘relentlessly stupid.’
CTU Vice President Stacy Davis Gates hailed the agreement as ‘the only modicum of safety’ in schools but called Lightfoot ‘unfit to lead.’
‘The Chicago Teachers’ Union once again, in this pandemic, has had to create the infrastructure for safety and accountability in our school community,’ Davis Gates said.
‘This is the second January in a row where we have had to be held hostage, quite frankly, in hostage negotiations.’
Lightfoot and other city officials, including Arwady and Chicago Schools CEO Pedro Martinez, have continued to insist that in-person classes remain the best option for students but have agreed to negotiate with the union.
Parents have slammed the socialist leader of the CTU as he continues to defend the last-minute decision to shutter schools last week by claiming ‘going in puts students and families at risk.’
Just 400 positive COVID cases – about 70 percent students and 30 percent staff – were reported last week after classes returned following the winter break. There are more than 350,000 students and 25,000 staff members in the Chicago Public Schools district.
Source: Thanks msn.com