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Virus hits hard in Minneapolis’ Cedar-Riverside neighborhood

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Virus hits hard in Minneapolis' Cedar-Riverside neighborhood

The Minneapolis Health Department, in a statement, said some of the Cedar-Riverside cases are “spread out over several high-rise buildings in the area.” At least 150 people in the densely populated, predominantly black Cedar-Riverside neighborhood in Minneapolis have tested positive for COVID-19, prompting local leaders to call for more testing and outreach.

The high number of cases — roughly 6% of the city’s total — fall in a neighborhood known for its vibrant East African community, many of whom live in high-rise apartments. The cluster raised alarms for public officials who had been watching to see if racial disparities seen in other parts of the country would play out in Minneapolis.

“I’m concerned,” said Council Member Steve Fletcher. “Anywhere that we hear about a cluster developing where there is potential for community spread, we’re concerned.”

Minneapolis health officials, citing privacy laws, would not provide further details about the cases. City Health Commissioner Gretchen Musicant attributed the number, in part, to the fact there is “a lot more testing going on, which is good.” She referred further questions to city spokespeople.

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As infection rates fall in other urban areas, the Twin Cities’ rate of coronavirus infections are standing out nationally. In a briefing Friday, White House coronavirus task force coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx identified Minneapolis, along with Washington, D.C.; Baltimore; and Chicago as the four metro areas in the nation where infection rates are persistent or rising.

Minneapolis had 2,339 confirmed cases as of Friday. Of those patients, 36% are black, 24% white, and 24% have their race listed as “unknown.” The race is listed as “unknown” when people decline to share their race or […]

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