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> Lp County has first COVID death
Southsider2k12
post Apr 2 2020, 02:12 PM
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LaPorte County recorded its first official death due to COVID-19 yesterday, at this time there are not any details of who or where.
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diggler
post Apr 3 2020, 05:21 AM
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Just STOP BREATHING:

https://tinyurl.com/qmc4b3g

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diggler
post Apr 5 2020, 09:21 AM
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Over 30 new COVID-19 cases confirmed across Region, officials say

Times Staff Apr 5, 2020


Thirty-four new COVID-19 cases were confirmed across Lake, Porter and LaPorte counties on Sunday by the Indiana State Department of Health, the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention and private laboratories.

Lake County has 335 cases, up from 313. Porter County has 59, up from 49. LaPorte County has 21, up from 19. No new fatalities were reported by officials.

Ten have died from the respiratory disease in the Region: eight in Lake County and two in LaPorte County.

To the south, Jasper County has 12 cases and Newton County has one. One person has died in Jasper County.

To the east, St. Joseph County has 102 cases, up from 89. The county has one death.

Indiana has 4,411 confirmed COVID-19 cases. All but 4 of Indiana's 92 counties are impacted by the disease. There have been 127 deaths across the state. A total of 22,652 have been tested.

Marion County remains the most-impacted with 1,760 confirmed cases and 37 fatalities. Lake County is the second highest by amount of cases.

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diggler
post Apr 6 2020, 04:24 AM
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LaPorte mayor limits customers inside essential retail businesses, closes golf course

Sarah Reese Apr 5, 2020

LAPORTE — Mayor Thomas Dermody on Friday ordered all essential retail businesses to implement social distancing measures and shut down the Beechwood Golf Course.

Retail establishments deemed essential must limit the number of customers per square foot, Dermody's order states.

Establishments with 1,000 square feet must limit the number of customers to two.

Those with 2,000 square feet must limit the number of customers to five.

Businesses may allow one additional customer to enter for every additional 1,000 square feet of space, and businesses will be permitted to round up.

For example, a business with 2,350 square feet may allow six customers inside at a time, the order states.

Businesses with 62,000 square feet of space or more may allow no more than 125 people inside.

Dermody also ordered that only one family member may enter an essential retail business at a time.

Essential businesses must continue to practice social distancing and sanitation, including allowing people to remain at least 6 feet apart, washing hands with hot water for at least 20 seconds, using hand sanitizer and sanitizing all surfaces.

The elderly and people with underlying health conditions, such as heart and lung disease or diabetes, should avoid all public gatherings and minimize travel for essential activities as much as possible, the order states.

Dermody also declared a local emergency because of the global coronavirus pandemic from Saturday to April 10.

If the City Council approves, Dermody's order will be extended to May 1.
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diggler
post Apr 8 2020, 08:06 AM
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Mayor declares local disaster emergency for Michigan City; instates curfew

Anna Ortiz Apr 7, 2020

Following a tripling of coronavirus cases in LaPorte County, the Michigan City mayor declared a local disaster emergency and issued an executive order instating a curfew.

On Tuesday Mayor Duane Parry announced Executive Order 04-2020 that was to go into effect at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday for Michigan City residents, according to the mayor’s office.

“To the citizens of our community, over the past week the number of people living in LaPorte County that have become infected with the COVID-19 virus has increased over 300%,” Parry said. “As your mayor, I cannot stress enough that the actions we take now through the next several weeks will help curb the spread of this virus and save lives. There is nothing that I won’t do as mayor to protect our residents at this very critical time.”

LaPorte County has a total of 25 coronavirus cases as of Tuesday. On March 31, LaPorte County had recorded eight positive cases.

During this time, Michigan City police are empowered to disperse gatherings and can order residents to vacate closed areas of the city’s parks, the executive order said.

It also further enforces the stay-at-home order with a mandatory curfew from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m., in which no one is allowed to remain on or loiter in a vehicle on city streets or public places during this time. Those exempted are residents traveling for essential work purposes, people seeking services of a health care operation or anyone engaged in essential travel, officials said.
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diggler
post Apr 15 2020, 06:54 AM
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7 new cases in LaPorte County, total at 42

Posted: Wed 1:39 AM, Apr 15, 2020

LAPORTE COUNTY, Ind. (WNDU)- The LaPorte County Health Department announced on Tuesday there's 7 new cases in the area, bringing the total to 42.

According to their website, Michigan City has the most in the county right now with 17 and LaPorte in second with 15 cases.

There's also 6 confirmed cases at Westville Correctional, 2 in Westville, and one confirmed case in Union Mills and in Rolling Prairie.

https://tinyurl.com/tz25o2e

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diggler
post Apr 17 2020, 07:14 AM
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Number of COVID-19 cases spike at Westville Correctional

Prison cases jump from 11 to 87 in one day, 75% of IDOC's reported
STAFF REPORTS 14 hrs


WESTVILLE — Nearly 175 people, including inmates and staff, have contracted the COVID-19 disease at Indiana correctional facilities, the majority at one La Porte County prison, according to state officials.

The Indiana Department of Correction reports that as of Wednesday, a total of 116 inmates and 58 staff members have contracted the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

Among inmates, the Westville Correctional Facility topped the list with 87 cases, up from 11 on Tuesday, or about 75 percent of the state inmate total. The prison houses about 3,000 offenders.


The only fatality reported was also at Westville, where an inmate over the age of 70 died Monday after being taking to a hospital with breathing problems. The man had shown no signs of illness prior to being hospitalized, and was tested after dying at the hospital Monday evening, according to IDOC.

“Westville Correctional Facility is seeing a large increase in positives,” La Porte County Commissioner Sheila Matias said in a Facebook post.

“The staff there and at ISP are our neighbors and family members; please keep those in both Westville and ISP, as well as in health care facilities across the county in your thoughts and prayers.

“State DOC, state Health Department and state leaders are hearing our concerns loud and clear and are taking action,” she said.

Thirteen inmates at the Indiana Womens Prison in Indianapolis have tested positive, along with 11 at the Plainfield Correctional Facility and 2 at the Branchville Correctional Facility. There has been one positive test confirmed at the Indiana Boys School in Plainfield, and IDOC facilities at Pendleton, Edinburgh and Heritage Hills.

No cases have been reported at the Indiana State Prison in Michigan City, La Porte Juvenile Facility or South Bend Community Re-Entry Center, according to IDOC.

The IDOC did not break down where the confirmed cases among staff members were located.

In an open letter sent last week to “family and friends of incarcerated individuals, IDOC Commissioner Rob Carter called the virus the “challenge of our times.”

He acknowledged the uncertainty of the coming days and weeks ahead, and said, “Having a loved one in prison only adds to that uncertainty.”

He outlined the “steps we are taking ... to resist the spread of COVID-19, and limit its impact on those incarcerated within IDOC’s juvenile facilities and prisons,” adding “our goal is the same as yours; to keep your loved ones safe and healthy.”

IDOC efforts are closely aligned with the CDC’s guidelines, he said.

Among the measures being taken are social distancing by preventing visitors, volunteers and unapproved persons from entering facilities, and carefully screening all others before they are admitted, according to Dr. Kristen Dauss, IDOC chief medical officer.

New inmates begin in a quarantine-like status until it is confirmed they do not have signs of the disease; and there is a “cleaning campaign in which inmates and staff alike are continuously deep-cleaning and sanitizing areas throughout facilities,” she said in a court filing.

A specially trained response team is ready to disinfect any area that might be exposed; and all medical co-pays are waived if the illness is associated with the coronavirus, according to Dauss.

“We are prepared to handle any case of COVID-19 that may infiltrate our facilities; and staff are prepared to take the steps necessary to ensure those incarcerated receive appropriate medical care,” Carter said.

He acknowledged the situation will “likely get worse in the coming weeks before it gets better,” and advised anyone concerned to check the IDOC website and social media accounts for the most up-to-date information.

“I encourage you to continue to contact your loved ones to offer them encouragement, support and reassurance; just as I expect them to provide the same level of support and reassurance to you,” he said.

Telephone and video services have been contacted to allow eligible inmates the ability to make, free of charge, two 5-minute phone calls each week, and a weekly 10-minute video visit.

He encouraged family and friends to remind inmates to “observe good self-care practices, maintain good mental heath, and continue their ongoing efforts to complete treatment and programming expectations...”

In late March, the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana submitted an emergency petition, requesting the Indiana Supreme Court take immediate action to stem the progression of COVID-19 in state prisons and county jails.

“The U.S. Constitution requires that the safety of people who are incarcerated be protected and this need is heightened in the current pandemic,” said Ken Falk, legal director at the ACLU of Indiana.

“Indiana law allows for steps to be taken to release both those awaiting trial and those convicted, to safer environments.”

People in prisons and jails are highly vulnerable to outbreaks of contagious illnesses, Falk said, adding “social distancing is impossible in Indiana’s jails and prisons.”

But while the Indiana Supreme Court has authorized courts to review sentences for non-violent offenders, and judges to consider health before incarcerating an offender, it denied the ACLU petition.

The petition asked the court to issue emergency steps to identify pretrial detainees and incarcerated people who are at high risk of death from exposure and allow them to be released on home detention.

The ACLU also asked the court to waive bail requirements for pretrial detainees who do not pose an immediate threat, and determine whether a sentence reduction or suspension is warranted.

Falk called it “not only a humanitarian necessity, but a constitutional requirement,” saying subjecting detainees to unreasonable risk of harm violates their 14th Amendment rights.

Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill praised the court’s decision, calling the ACLU petition an attempt to “assume unprecedented rulemaking authority” to facilitate the release of certain inmates.

“The ACLU’s unprecedented request for the court to assume the power to manage prisons and jails is constitutionally and procedurally improper,” he said. “Administration of the Indiana Department of Correction and Indiana’s prisons belongs in the executive branch of state government.”

The Indiana Constitution expressly recognizes the separation of powers, Hill noted, and stipulates that “no person, charged with official duties under one of these departments, shall exercise any of the functions of another.”

On a practical level, Hill said, IDOC has closely followed guidelines established by the CDC.

“IDOC has for several weeks adopted policies, protocols and practices designed to ameliorate the risks of COVID-19 in Indiana prisons,” he said.

“By its request, the ACLU demonstrated a disregard for the extraordinary steps that have been taken ... to protect the incarcerated population during this time.

By its decision, the Supreme Court “demonstrated both a fidelity to the rule of law and an appreciation for public health considerations. All Hoosiers should be grateful for the court’s judgment in this case.”

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