Concerns over protests and the COVID-19 pandemic in Birmingham

Local News

BIRMINGHAM Ala. (WIAT) — Ongoing mass protests and rallies taking place in Birmingham and throughout the country over the death of George Floyd have added an extra layer of concern for people going through the COVID-19 pandemic.

For many throughout the community they have mixed reviews on these gatherings.

“Sometimes a protest is not conducive to social distancing, sometimes you just have moments where you are going to embrace somebody or you are going to get really close to somebody so its tough,” Birmingham resident Matt Lewis said.

“People are really close right now, I don’t agree with that just because the 6 feet thing. I mean that’s for a reason and a lot of people are close without masks,” Birmingham resident Dejane Hester said.

With these protests so far without an end in sight, its left residents wondering the aftermath people congregating in these large numbers will leave.

 “A lot of these people were close together they were taking their masks off to talk, sharing the microphone, sharing the bull horns, all of these things continue to further increase your risk of getting coronavirus,” said Dr. Kre Johnson of Brownstone Healthcare & Aesthetics Family Medicine

There is also a concern some medical professional say communities will most likely start to see very soon.

“In the next seven to 14 days, I expect to see these numbers to start to trend up. I do think that will be a rise across the nation in number because of so much gathering. Remember we have been seeing a trend down in a lot of states, but that’s been because of social distancing. The suggestion is to watch your symptoms if you feel yourself start to get a little sick go get tested,” Johnson said.

Johnson suggests that when attending rallies or protests, do your best to maintain a six feet distance, wear masks, and wash your hands.


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