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Morning Briefing: The Real Impact Of The Coronavirus

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Pedestrians wearing face masks walk across a busy street in Boyle Heights. (Chava Sanchez / LAist)
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In L.A. County, 2,151 people have died from the coronavirus. In her story about a family that has been ravaged by the disease, Josie Huang turned that number into much more than a statistic.

Arlene Aquino was a nurse at Mission Community Hospital in Panorama City who immigrated to the U.S. from the Philippines a decade ago. She’d recently moved her family – grandparents, kids and all – into a house together. But just over a week ago, her father passed away from the disease. Arlene died a week later, and her mother is clinging to life on a ventilator.

The deaths leave Arlene’s children on their own, with her 22-year-old daughter likely to become Arlene’s 11-year-old son’s guardian.

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This is the reality of COVID-19 – not numbers, not statistics, but the stories of people and families.

Keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A. today, and stay safe out there.

Jessica P. Ogilvie


Coming Up Today, May 28

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California politicians are worried Wall Street will swoop in and buy up single-family housing, just like they did after the 2008 financial crisis. Aaron Mendelson has the story.

The way people give birth is changing during coronavirus, reports Mariana Dale. Prenatal doctor’s visits might be less frequent and done via telehealth, hospitals are limiting the number of people in the room when a baby is born, doulas are trying to figure out how to support parents virtually and researchers are looking into how all this added stress is impacting parents psychologically.

Backlash to Mayor Garcetti's new city budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1 has spurred some activists to call for a "people's budget" that spares more social services, reports Libby Denkmann, especially since police and fire unions recently got raises.

Gov. Gavin Newsom met online today with gym owners whose businesses have been shut down for months. He said guidelines for reopening health clubs would come out in about a week. But for some owners, that’s not soon enough. Sharon McNary has more.

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The Past 24 Hours In LA

L.A., California, The World: There are now 47,936 coronavirus cases and 2,151 deaths in L.A. County, and at least 101,031 cases and 3,894 deaths in California. Worldwide, there are more than 5.6 million cases and over 354,000 deaths.

Protesting Police Violence: At least one person was injured as people flooded the streets of DTLA to protest the death of George Floyd at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer.

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California Kids: School may be out indefinitely for L.A. kids, but Mayor Eric Garcetti told KPCC’s Take Two that he’s looking into a way to use federal funds to reopen recreation centers for childcare. A task force of 25 district leaders developed a framework for reopening L.A. County schools in the 2020-21 academic year.

Helping Hands (And Vehicles): Some house-bound RV owners, unable to go on road trips, are finding new ways to help out frontline workers. A no-panic guide to local mental health resources. County officials have asked the coroner to offer wider coronavirus testing of people who've died recently.

Reopening California: After a two-month pause, the Orange County Sheriff is resuming evictions. L.A. salon owners aren’t happy about being excluded from reopening.

SoCal, This Is Your Government: A former aide to an L.A. City Councilmember has agreed to a plea deal, the latest in the city hall corruption probe. Officials in Santa Barbara County left out incarcerated people in their count of coronavirus cases in order to reopen faster. Californians in Congress are leading efforts to get Census 2020 deadlines extended.

Money Matters: A fund to help L.A. tenants struggling to pay rent during the pandemic started out with a couple million bucks, but it could receive a big infusion of cash.

A Family’s Tragedy: COVID-19 has torn apart the family of Panorama City nurse Arlene Aquino, who died from the virus along with her father and whose mother clings to life on a ventilator.


Your Moment Of Zen

Visual journalist Chava Sanchez captured this musician serenading people waiting for food pick-up near a restaurant in Boyle Heights.

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(Chava Sanchez / LAist )

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