BOSTON (CBS) — Boston Mayor Marty Walsh reminded residents, and directly called out millennials, to continue social distancing despite the weekend’s warm forecast. Speaking to reporters on Friday, the mayor said the city was still in the middle of the coronavirus surge.
“This weekend we’re expected to see beautiful weather, in the high 60s and sunny… If you’re going to go for a walk in a park and you see a crowd around there, we’re asking you to turn around and leave. It’s that simple,” said Walsh. “Please do not gather in any type of groups. I know a lot of people aren’t meeting, but what happens is when you go for a walk two people see two people, you stop and talk, they talk to four other people, and before you know it, there’s a bunch of people talking in a circle. That’s social gatherings we’re asking people not to do them.”
“I want you to be smart and do your part.”
Walsh said to younger people: “If you’re a millennial and you don’t want to wear a mask because it doesn’t look cool, well I really don’t care about that. What I want you to do is make sure that you take care of the people around you and put a mask on.”
“There’s still too many reports of people going into supermarkets and coffee shops, not wearing masks, particularly younger people. Well, I don’t know really what to say about that, other than you’re not helping yourself and you’re not helping the people that are delivering services to you,” he said.
Walsh also mentioned a “potential correlation” between the rise of coronavirus cases in South Boston and a large number of complaints about the lack of people wearing masks in the area.
Evidence has shown social distancing is helping slow the spread of coronavirus, according to the mayor.
Testing has increased across the city, particularly in East Boston this week. About tested 28,000 have been tested for coronavirus across the city. Walsh said about 32% have tested positive, which is slightly down from last week. New testing sites are coming to Jamaica Plain and Charlestown soon.
There are 9,271 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Boston as of Thursday.
While the pandemic has many people working remotely, traffic in Boston has decreased significantly. Walsh said this has led to an increase in speeding and an increase in severe crashes.
“Even an increase of four to five miles per hour can make a big difference in the terms of injuries, and even possible death,” Walsh said. “To everyone who uses our roads, whether you’re driving, cycling, walking, or running, we want you to be attentive. We want you to be visible. We want you to be aware of your surroundings. Our medical community has enough on their hands right now.”