PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — There are new signs of hope that Philadelphia is turning the corner, but the city is still struggling amid the pandemic. While health officials and city leaders continue to battle the coronavirus outbreak, another battle is taking place on the streets of Philadelphia as shootings rise.
Five people were shot and one stabbed during a violent Mother’s Day weekend.
“I wish people would put aside their beefs, put aside their anger towards each other, keep our intensive care beds open and do something right for your family, your friends and your neighborhood by just putting the guns down and stopping,” Mayor Jim Kenney said.
Gun violence is continuing to plague Philadelphia even as the coronavirus continues to jeopardize lives. Nearly 495 people have been shot in the city so far this year.
City officials are trying to balance a pandemic along with an epidemic of gun violence, which is both claiming lives.
“In the meantime, we will continue to arrest people that are violating or carrying a gun. Obviously, anybody shoots at anyone or kills somebody we’re going to arrest them,” Kenney said. “Sometimes I’m at my wits end with this because it seems like the time when people would put their beefs aside, but we’ll keep working at it.”
Meanwhile, Philadelphia health officials are touting good news and a downward spiral in the fight against COVID-19.
“We have zero new confirmed deaths from this time yesterday, bringing us to a total of 893 deaths since the beginning of the epidemic,” Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley said. “Now that zero is a good number, but also remember that if we get fewer test results, then we have fewer people who are having confirmed as died from the coronavirus infection, so we would expect to have more deaths recorded for us in the coming days.”
The city reported 102 new positive cases, with a total of more than 18,300. It’s still a far cry from a plan to reopen Philadelphia.
“We’re still seeing hundreds of cases per day, the epidemic is still here, there’s plenty of cases here in the city, so we’re not safe yet,” Farley said.
The number of COVID-19 cases in Pennsylvania climbed above 57,000 on Monday, as the statewide death toll rose to 3,731.