MIAMI (WSVN) – City of Miami Police have begun enforcing the curfew order currently in place as a measure to help stem the spread of COVID-19.
7News cameras captured a line of people standing fairly close together in Wynwood, Saturday night, less than an hour before the curfew went into effect at midnight.
Passers-by sounded off on the citywide curfew.
“It’s a good idea because it halts people from coming outside,” said Crystal McDougle. “Curfew’s a good idea in this area, because we do have a big influx of people, especially tourists, that come out during the day, like late at night.”
But not everyone shares her opinion.
“I think it’s pointless to have a curfew, honestly,” said Kandyce Blackwell.
Jahfar Campbell, meanwhile, expressed ambivalence about the effectiveness of the curfew, at least under the hours it currently covers.
“I think a curfew should be implemented maybe, like, earlier, maybe like 8, 9, something like that, if you actually want to take it seriously,” he said.
Miami commissioners voted Thursday in favor of aggressively enforcing the curfew, which extends from midnight until 6 a.m.
Miami Police Chief Jorge Colina said he and other officers were out on Thursday and Friday educating people and businesses about the curfew.
The enforcement comes as Florida health officials reported more than 10,400 new coronavirus cases on Saturday. More than 2,000 of those cases were reported in Miami-Dade County, with an 8.17% positivity rate.
City leaders said the curfew won’t be lifted until the positivity rate drops to 5.5% in a two-week rolling average.
Earlier on Saturday, passers-by near the Wynwood Walls and local business owners expressed mixed feelings about the curfew.
“I believe it’s a good idea because, I mean, that’s when a social life is basically more empowering,” said Timothy Brooks.
“We make a large portion of our profits on weekends and late nights,” said Dahmiec, a local business owner. “That’s what all that is culture all around you is, a late night vibe that you can come and enjoy, and these regulations are putting a hampering on that.”
Miami Mayor Francis Suarez said business owners found operating past the curfew are subject to fines and may be shut down.
Anyone with questions and concerns about the coronavirus can call the Florida Department of Health’s 24-hour hotline at 1-866-779-6121.
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