Orleans Parish is Now the Only Parish in Louisiana that is Allowed to Have Indoor Bar Service

New Orleans Mayor Latoya Cantrell

At a news conference held by Mayor Latoya Cantrell and The New Orleans Health Department Director Jennifer Avegno this week, they addressed whether there would be any new COVID-19 restriction in New Orleans. 

Last week, New Orleans reached a 5.2% positivity rate, with 5 times the amount of COVID-19 cases that the state had a month ago. Avegno explained that if the city’s positivity rate remained above 5% new restrictions would be put in place, including ending indoor bar service. 

This was because Governor John Bel Edwards put into place statewide COVID-19 restrictions that bars could only stay open for indoor service if their parish had a positivity rate below 5% for at least 2 weeks in a row. 

Since mid-November, the city has been in a “red” COVID-19 threat level which means there were active outbreaks in the community. However, this week New Orleans’ positivity rate lowered to only 4.75%. 

Because the positivity rate is trending down, Cantrell announced that there will be no further restrictions added to the city. Her declaration, and Edward’s rule, mean that bars will be safe from further restrictions for the next two weeks at least. 

She did take time to remind residents that although some progress has been shown, the city is “not out of the woods, at all. This is time to continue to double down on what we know works. Mask up, be socially distant, and avoid large gatherings.”

Avegno reminded residents that the holidays could be a dangerous time and that people need to continue to wear masks, socially distance, and not hold gatherings with people outside their immediate household. 

Orleans Parish is currently the only parish in Louisiana that can keep bars open for indoor service based on Edward’s restrictions. When the restrictions originally went into place on November 25, only 7 parishes were allowed to keep bars open for indoor service. 

Now, all 6 of those other parishes have had positivity rates rise above 5% for the last two weeks, including St. Bernard Parish. Orleans Parish is the only place in Louisiana where the good times will continue to roll indoors-for now. 

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