Coronavirus: House considers voting by proxy amid virus outbreak

Nearly 350,000 people worldwide -- including more than 35,000 people in the United States – have been infected with the new coronavirus, and the number of deaths from the outbreak continues to rise. Officials are attempting to contain the COVID-19 outbreak in the U.S. as schools, businesses and public events are closed or canceled.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is tracking cases in the U.S. here.

>> Coronavirus: Know the facts directly from the CDC

Live updates for Monday, March 23, continue below:

House considers voting by proxy amid virus outbreak

Update 10:30 p.m. EDT March 23: Members of the House could be allowed to designate a colleague to vote for them in the event they are unable to return to Washington amid the coronavirus outbreak under a proposal from the chairman of the House Rules Committee.

Committee Chairman Jim McGovern, D-Mass., sent a staff report to colleagues late Monday that said voting by proxy could be made available for any members who are unable to return to Washington and cast an in-person vote due to the pandemic. This could include members who are under self-quarantine after testing positive for the coronavirus or had contact with someone who tested positive, those who are caring for someone who is ill or those who have reservations about traveling.

“This is a moment of national emergency,” McGovern wrote in a letter accompanying the report. “It is imperative that we act swiftly in the weeks and months ahead in a way that preserves the integrity of the institution so that we can continue to respond not just to this crisis, but future emergencies as well.”

The proposal came as members of the House were away from Washington, awaiting an agreement in the Senate on a nearly $2 trillion economic rescue package that could come up for a vote this week.

Washington Governor issues two week stay-at-home order

Update 8:30 p.m. EDT March 23: Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced a statewide stay-at-home order Monday effective immediately, with some exceptions for essential activities and business.

Every resident is required to stay home unless going shopping for groceries, going to a doctor’s appointment or going to work at an essential business, as defined in Inslee’s executive order.

All public and private social, spiritual and recreational gatherings are banned. All non-essential businesses are closed.

#BREAKING: The order is effective for a minimum of two weeks. Here's what's still allowed:

Posted by KIRO 7 News on Monday, March 23, 2020

Virus attacking nearly 1 in 1,000 in NYC metro areas

Update 7:30 p.m. EDT March 23: COVID-19 is attacking nearly 1 of every 1,000 persons in the New York metro area of New Jersey, New York City and parts of Long Island.

Deborah Birx, coordinator of the U.S. coronavirus response, says that’s five times what other areas are seeing.

She says that 28% of the specimens from the New York metro area are testing positive, compared with less than 8% in the rest of the country. New York officials are asking that only people with severe symptoms get tested.

Birx says clearly the coronavirus has been circulating in the New York metro area for a number of weeks for it to have that level of penetration into the general community.

Trump says ‘America will soon be open for business’ in press briefing

Update 6:15 p.m. EDT March 23: President Donald Trump said in a press briefing Monday that “America will again and soon be open for business." He also said that the United States was not “built to be shut down.”

Trump said that the Federal Emergency Management Agency is distributing 8 million N95 respirator masks.

Clinical trials in New York will begin on existing drugs that prove effective on Coronavirus.

Trump signed an executive order making it a crime to excessively stockpile personal protective equipment that is needed by medical personnel fighting the coronavirus pandemic.

Attorney General William Barr says the Justice Department has already launched investigations into people who are hoarding supplies and price gouging. He says investigators will go after people who are “hoarding these goods on an industrial scale for the purpose of manipulating the market.”

Dr. Deborah Brix said that 250,000 tests have been run in the last seven days.

Birx also said that self-swab test would be available this week.

Dr. Birx said that 28 percent of the Coronavirus tests in the New York City, Long Island and Newark areas are coming back positive, versus 8% in the rest of the country.

Oklahoma schools to remain closed for remaining school year

Update 5:10 p.m. EDT March 23: Oklahoma State Superintendent Joy Hofmesiter said she will propose to the Board of Education that all school buildings remain closed for the rest of the school year and that distance learning be implemented for students starting April 6.

“Student learning needs to resume and will continue— but with distance learning so that we can follow the CDC guidance, slow the spread of the virus immediately, and keep students and our communities as safe as possible. School buildings won’t reopen for traditional classes but learning continues.”

—  Joy Hofmeister

“I have faith in the commitment, innovation and creativity of Oklahoma educators and administrators,” Hofmeister said. “Many districts across our state have utilized online instruction already and likely will be able to hit the ground running. Other districts have significant technology limitations, while some might opt for instructional materials delivered to students. There will be a wide range of approaches and it will be far from ideal, but necessary as we embrace these changes and even sacrifice to protect the public health of our communities.”

The board will virtually meet on Wednesday to finalize the plan.

Britain’s Boris Johnson tells citizens to 'stay home’

Update 4:39 p.m. EDT March 23: Saying there “are no easy options,” British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told citizens in a televised address to “stay home” and ordered the closing of nonessential businesses. Johnson also said public gatherings will be limited to two people, and social gatherings including weddings will be prohibited. Johnson said parks will be open for exercise, but groups “will be disbursed.”

“Without a huge national effort to halt the growth of this virus, there will come a moment when no health service in the world could possibly cope; because there won’t be enough ventilators, enough intensive care beds, enough doctors and nurses,” Johnson said.

Stocks decline as stimulus bill remains in limbo

Update 4:10 p.m. EDT March 23: The stock market dropped Monday as the nearly $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package remained in limbo as lawmakers failed to pass the aid measure, The Wall Streer Journal reported. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 583 points, or roughly 2.8% in trading, the newspaper reported. The S&P 500 lost 2.6%, while the Nasdaq fell 0.4%.

Toronto declares state of emergency

Update 3:43 p.m. EDT March 23: Toronto Mayor John Daly declared a state of emergency in the city, the Toronto Star reported. Daly said he made his decision regarding Canada’s largest city after receiving advice from the medical officer of health and head of emergency operations, the newspaper reported.

Zimbabwe closes its borders

Update 3:30 p.m. EDT March 23: Zimbabwe President Emmerson Mnangagwa said the country’s borders will be closed, effective immediately, CNN reported. The closings will make exceptions for returning residents and cargo effective immediately. Mnangagwa also said a ban was placed on gatherings with more than 50 people.

Virginia schools close for rest of academic year

Update 2:45 p.m. EDT March 23: Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced that schools will remain closed for the rest of the academic year. WTVR reported. Essential businesses, including grocery stores, pharmacies, and banks, will remain open, the governor said during a news conference. Gatherings of more than 10 are banned, Northam said, and public gathering restrictions will be in effect for the next 30 days.

Democrats again block stimulus bill

Update 2:15 p.m. EDT March 23: For the second straight day, Democrats in the Senate blocked a $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus bill for the second day, as both parties clashed over provisions in the legislation.

The bill originally was blocked Sunday by Democrats, who demanded stronger protections for workers, The New York Times reported.

The procedural vote Monday failed to receive the 60 votes needed to pass. The vote was 49-46, mostly along party lines. Doug Jones, D-Alabama, joined Republicans in voting for the bill.

Earlier Monday, senators clashed angrily over delays that had kept the bill from coming to a vote, The Washington Post reported. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell accused Democrats of bogging down the stimulus package by adding extraneous provisions coveted by special interests, the newspaper reported.

West Virginia implements stay-at-home order

Update 2:01 p.m. EDT March 23: West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice issued a stay-at-home order in response to the coronavirus, WSAZ reported. The order will go into effect at 8 p.m. effective 8 p.m. Tuesday, the governor said. The order will not prevent people from going to grocery stores, pick up carry-out orders at restaurants, or care for family members or friends in need, Justice said.

Veteran IOC member says Olympics will be postponed

Update 1:39 p.m. EDT March 23: Dick Pound, a longtime, influential member of the International Olympic Committee told USA Today that the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games are going to be postponed. Dick Pound said the Games were likely to be shifted to 2021, with the details to be worked out in the next four weeks.

“On the basis of the information the IOC has, postponement has been decided,” Pound told the newspaper in a telephone interview. “The parameters going forward have not been determined, but the Games are not going to start on July 24, that much I know.”

Pound told USA Today the postponement will come in several steps.

“It will come in stages,” Pound told the newspaper. “We will postpone this and begin to deal with all the ramifications of moving this, which are immense.”

IOC President Thomas Bach said Sunday he was going to take the next four weeks to decide the fate of the Tokyo Olympics, which are scheduled to begin July 24. Bach said in a letter to athletes he has ruled out canceling the Games.

Secretary of Defense suggests field hospitals for affected cities

Update 1:24 p.m. EDT March 23: Defense Secretary Mark Esper said at a news briefing Monday the military is considering the deployment of field hospitals and personnel this week to affected cities, including New York and Seattle. “We are looking at hospitals and equipment and medical professionals, and my aim is to get them out this week,” Esper said, adding he was waiting to hear from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to validate this deployment. “We’ll be moving out this week,” Esper said.

Boeing to suspend production in Washington state

Update 1:14 p.m. EDT March 23: Boeing announced it will suspend production at its facilities in Washington state for two weeks, CNN reported. beginning Wednesday. The suspension will go into effect Wednesday. Boeing added that employees who can work remotely will be able to do so, while others would be paid 10 working days, according to CNN.

Stay-at-home order issued for Wisconsin

Update 12:53 p.m. EDT March 23: Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers issued a stay-at-home order, but residents will still be allowed to go to grocery stores and pharmacies, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.

Indiana governor issues stay-at-home order

Update 12:44 p.m. EDT March 23: Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb announced a stay-at-home order to slow the spread of coronavirus, WXIN reported. Holcomb made the announcement during a statewide address, the television station reported. The order goes into effect Wednesday and will last through April 7, the governor said, adding the order could be extended.

“Because both the infection rate and the death rate continue to climb, Indiana, we need to do more,” Holcomb said.

Maryland closes all nonessential businesses

Update 12:32 p.m. EDT March 23: Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan announced the closing of all nonessential businesses in the state, including retail stores, The Baltimore Sun reported. The order takes effect at 5 p.m. Monday, the newspaper reported.

“I know how incredibly difficult this is on each and everyone one of you," Hogan said at a news conference. "There is a great deal of fear and anxiety. The truth is, none of us really know how bad it’s going to get or how long it’s going to last, but I can promise that there are a great deal, a great many dedicated people doing some tremendous things, working around the clock, doing their best to help keep the people of Maryland safe.

“We are all in this together. Together we will get through this,” he said.

McConnell to Democrats: ‘Are you kidding me?

Update 12:22 p.m. EDT March 23: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell criticized Democratic senators for holding up passage of a massive $2 trillion stimulus package over environmental issues.

“Are you kidding me?” McConnell said on the Senate floor. "They are holding up the passage of this bill over a tax credit for solar panels.

“They should be embarrassed.”

McConnell also criticized Democrats, saying, “This is not a juicy political opportunity. This is a national emergency.”

In response, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said, “We Democrats are trying to get things done.”

After offering prayers for Sen. Rand Paul and the husband of Sen. Amy Klobuchar, who both tested positive for COVID-19, Schumer said he was confident the stimulus package would be passed Monday.

“These are trying times for all of us,” Schumer said. "But the American people will prevall.

“We are very close to reaching an agreement, and we are hopeful and even confident that we will meet that goal.”

Cuomo: NY has more than 20,000 positive cases

Update 11:38 a.m. EDT March 23: At a news conference, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said more than 20,000 people across the state have tested positive for COVID-19. “In absolute terms, New York has by far the greatest need in the nation,” Cuomo said. Out of nearly 78,000 people tested, there have been 20,875 positive cases, Cuomo said. The governor also said at least 157 people who tested positive for COVID-19 have died.

Florida state parks ordered to close

Update 11:28 a.m. EDT March 23: State parks in Florida state parks will officially close Monday, Gov. Ron DeSantis said. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection said all state parks would not welcome any visitors in order to “successfully uphold [Centers for Disease Control] guidance to maximize social distancing and avoid gatherings larger than 10 people,” the Tampa Bay Times reported.

“Unfortunately, this has not resulted in the reductions needed to best protect public health and safety as Florida continues to mitigate the spread of COVID-19,” the Florida Department of Environmental Protection said in a statement. “We appreciate the public’s cooperation and understanding as we work to prioritize the welfare of our communities and staff.”

Michigan governor issues stay-at-home order

Update 11:18 a.m. EDT March 23: Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer issued a stay-at-home order that will go into effect at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday. The order will prohibit public and private gatherings of any number of people outside of a single household. the Detroit Free Press reported.

"In just 13 days, we’ve gone from 0 to over 1,000 COVID-19 cases,” Whitmer said at a news conference. “This is an unprecedented crisis that requires all of us working together to protect our families and our communities. The most effective way we can slow down the virus is to stay home. I know this will be hard, but it will be temporary. If we all come together, get serious, and do our part by staying home, we can stay safe and save lives.”

Brother of Minnesota Lt. Gov. dies from COVID-19

Update 11:02 a.m. EDT March 23: Minnesota Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan said her brother has died after contracting COVID-19, the Star-Tribune reported. Flanagan said her brother, Ron, who lived in Tennessee, was diagnosed with cancer several weeks ago and his immune system was compromised after he tested positive for coronavirus.

“To many, he’ll be a statistic: Tennessee’s second COVID-related death. But to me, I’ll remember a loving, older brother, uncle, father, and husband,” Flanagan wrote in an Instagram post Sunday.

Amy Klobuchar says husband tests positive

Update 10:50 a.m. EDT March 23: U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar announced on Twitter that her husband, John Bessler, tested positive for coronavirus. “I love him and not being able to be by his side is one of the hardest things about this disease,” the Minnesota Democrat, who recently ended her bid for the presidential nomination, wrote Tuesday morning.

Klobuchar said she and her husband have not been in the same place over the last two weeks, and has communicated with him by “calling, texting and emailing.” Bessler has also been “cut off from all visitors,” Klobuchar said.

Klobuchar said in a statement that her husband is on oxygen in a Virginia hospital after he was admitted. Bessler went for a test after he started coughing up blood. Klobuchar said.

Massachusetts governor issues ‘stay at home’ order

Update 10:44 a.m. EDT March 23: Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker issued a stay-at-home advisory for the Commonwealth beginning at noon Tuesday.

All non-essential businesses have been ordered to close and residents are urged to stay at home during this time period, which will expire April 7.

Treasury secretary vows stimulus package will get done ‘today’

Update 10:38 a.m. EDT March 23: Steven Mnuchin said the massive stimulus package, which is stalled in the Senate, will get done Monday, the Treasury secretary told reporters. Mnuchin said he and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer “knocked off a bunch of things on the list.”

Democrats blocked movement on the stimulus package Sunday night.

“We’re going to get this done today. Everybody is working very hard, so we look forward to a big vote today," Mnuchin said.

GE Aviation announces 10% layoffs

Update 10;31 a.m. EDT March 23: GE Aviation, a division of General Electric, announced it is cutting 10% of its U.S. workforce to offset the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

“The rapid contraction of air travel has resulted in a significant reduction in demand as commercial airlines suspend routes and ground large percentages of their fleets,” Larry Culp, CEO of General Electric, said in a statement.

Culp said he would forgo his full salary for the rest of the year, CNN reported. David Joyce, CEO of GE Aviation, will stop receiving his salary beginning April 1.

India grounds all domestic commercial flights

Update 9:56 a.m. EDT March 23: India announced it was grounding all domestic flights as it ordered restrictions on movement across the world’s second-most populous country, The New York Times reported. According to a news release from India’s Civil Aviation Ministry, the flights will halt operations beginning Wednesday, CNN reported.

Spanish pro soccer leagues suspended indefinitely

Update 9:42 a.m. EDT March 23: La Liga announced the indefinite suspension of professional soccer in Spain because of the coronavirus, the league said in a statement. League officials met with the Royal Spanish Football Federation and said matches would not resume until the Spanish government said it was safe to do so, ESPN reported.

“The Monitoring Commission established by the current RFEF-La Liga Coordination Agreement agrees (to)the suspension of professional football competitions until the authorities of the Government of Spain and the General Administration of the State consider that they can be resumed without creating any health risk,” the league said in its statement.

Federal Reserve announces major expansion of lending programs

Update 9:20 a.m. EDT March 23: The Federal Reserve said Monday it will expand lending programs in order to keep credit markets running, The Wall Street Journal reported. According to officials, the purchase of Treasury and mortgage securities, approved last week, are basically unlimited, the newspaper reported.

The Fed will also buy $375 billion in Treasury securities and $250 billion in mortgage securities this week, according to The Wall Street Journal. The central bank will also start buying commercial mortgage-backed securities issued by government-supported entities.

“While great uncertainty remains, it has become clear that our economy will face severe disruptions,” a bank official told The Wall Street Journal. “Aggressive efforts must be taken across the public and private sectors to limit the losses to jobs and incomes and to promote a swift recovery once the disruptions abate.”

Pompeo criticizes Iran’s leader over coronavirus

Update 9:06 a.m. EDT March 23: U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo released a statement Monday that criticized Iran’s leader, Ali Khamenei, and his government’s handling of the COVID-19 outbreak.

“The Iranian regime ignored repeated warnings from its own health officials, and denied its first death from the coronavirus for at least nine days," Pompeo said. “The regime continues to lie to the Iranian people and the world about the number of cases and deaths.”

UK official: People who don’t practice social distancing 'selfish’

Update 8:52 a.m. EDT March 23: Matt Hancock, the United Kingdom’s health secretary said citizens who fail to practice social distancing are “very selfish.” Hancock made his comments Monday as government officials prepared to step up actions to keep people apart. According to a spokesman for Prime Minister Boris Johnson, officials will look at data in the wake of the closure of pubs and restaurants, CNN reported. Citizens still continued to visit parks and beaches over the weekend, despite advice from the government to stay home.

“We will look at data to see if people have been interacting. If they have then we will need to take further measures. We are getting data all the time. Discussions are taking place all the time. If we do need to take further measures then we won’t hesitate,” the spokesperson said.

Bangladesh officials declare 10-day general holiday

Update 8:28 a.m. EDT March 23: Officials in Bangladesh declared a 10-day general holiday that will begin Thursday and run through April 4, in an effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the country, The Guardian reported. The country’s military will be deployed to ensure local distancing, officials said.

US Surgeon General has dismal outlook for this week

Update 8:11 a.m. EDT March 23: Jerome Adams, the U.S. Surgeon General, gave a pessimistic outlook about the coronavirus for the coming week, warning, “it’s going to get bad.”

“I want America to understand — this week, it’s going to get bad,” Adams told NBC’s “Today” show. “This is how the spread is occurring. So we really, really need everyone to stay at home. I think that there are a lot of people who are doing the right things, but I think that unfortunately we’re finding out a lot of people think this can’t happen to them.”

Global coronavirus deaths top 15K, worldwide cases near 350K

Update 7:53 a.m. EDT March 23: The global death toll attributed to the novel coronavirus approached 15,000 early Monday, according to a Johns Hopkins University tally.

In the three months since the virus was first identified in Wuhan, China, it has infected at least 349,211 people worldwide and claimed at least 15,308 lives.

Italy has confirmed 59,138 cases, resulting in 5,476 deaths.

• The United States has reported 35,224 confirmed cases, resulting in 414 deaths.

Spain has confirmed 2,182 infections, resulting in 1,813 deaths.

Germany has reported 26,220 cases, resulting in 111 deaths.

Iran has recorded 23,049 cases, resulting in 1,812 deaths.

France has confirmed 16,257 infections, resulting in 674 deaths.

South Korea has recorded 8,961 cases, resulting in 111 deaths.

Switzerland has confirmed 7,776 cases, resulting in 100 deaths.

• The United Kingdom has reported 5,748 cases, resulting in 281 deaths.

Japan’s Abe concedes Tokyo Olympics might face postponement

Update 7:29 a.m. EDT March 23: Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe admitted finally that the novel coronavirus epidemic might force the postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, multiple media outlets reported.

According to NPR, Abe reacted to a Sunday statement by the International Olympic Committee, which said that over the next four weeks it would consider alternative scenarios for the Games, including postponement, but not cancellation.

"This decision by IOC is in line with what I have said, about holding the games in their entirety," he told members of Parliament on Monday, adding, "In case this becomes difficult, in order to make the athletes our top priority, we may have no choice but to decide to postpone the Games."

Yoshiro Mori, president of the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee, said on Monday the decision to consider a postponement, but not a cancellation, of the Games had been agreed to with International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach on Sunday, The Washington Post reported.

The Games were originally slated to begin four months from now.

Nigeria issues chloroquine warning after 3 hospitalized days after Trump says approved for coronavirus treatment

Update 6:08 a.m. EDT March 23: Health officials in Nigeria are warning residents against the use of chloroquine to treat the novel coronavirus following three weekend hospitalizations linked to the drug, CNN reported.

The warning comes after U.S. President Donald Trump claimed in a White House press briefing late last week that the Food and Drug Administration had approved the “very powerful” chloroquine to treat the virus that his killed nearly 15,000 people globally since December.

According to CNN, the FDA clarified after the briefing that it has not approved the drug for use against COVID-19, the infection caused by the novel coronavirus.

Read more here.

US coronavirus-related deaths hit 414, cases swell past 35K

Update 5:44 a.m. EDT March 23: The number of novel coronavirus cases in the United States surpassed 35,000 across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands early Monday morning.

According to researchers at Johns Hopkins University, there are at least 35,224 confirmed U.S. cases of the virus, which have resulted in a total of at least 414 deaths.

According to CNN, at least seven states have 1,000 confirmed cases or more:

New York: 16,887 cases, 114 deaths

Washington: 2,025 cases, 95 deaths

New Jersey: 1,914 cases, 20 deaths

California: 1,488 cases, 32 deaths

Illinois: 1,049, cases, 9 deaths

Michigan: 1,035 cases, 8 deaths

Florida: 1,001 cases, 2 deaths

1st California state prison system inmate tests positive for coronavirus

Update 3:32 a.m. EDT March 23: A California inmate has tested positive for the novel coronavirus, signaling the first COVID-19 patient within the state’s prison system.

According to a news release from the California Department of Corrections, the unidentified prisoner is in stable condition and being treated on site at a Los Angeles County facility.

The state of California has confirmed a total of 1,468 coronavirus cases to date, resulting in at least 32 deaths.

According to CNN, the coronavirus pandemic has caused tremendous upheaval in correctional facilities across the globe. For instance:

Colombia: At least 87 prisoners were injured and 23 died following nationwide prison riots.

Italy: At least 11 inmates have died in coronavirus-related riots.

Iran: Some 85,000 prisoners were sent home to blunt the virus’ spread.

India’s major cities enact coronavirus lockdown through March 31

Update 3:14 a.m. EDT March 23: Seventy-five Indian districts – including the nation’s capital of New Delhi – are on lockdown until March 31, according to India’s Press Information Bureau.

The measures, in response to the coronavirus pandemic, extend an initial 14-hour lockdown that took effect Sunday. The lockdown also affects large metropolises such as Mumbai, Bangalore, Pune, Hyderabad and Kolkata, meaning millions of workers – especially in the technology and financial sectors – must work out the remainder of March from home.

Essential services only will be allowed to remain operational.

To date, India has confirmed 341 coronavirus infections, resulting in five deaths.

US Secret Service employee tests positive for coronavirus

Update 3:08 a.m. EDT March 23: The U.S. Secret Service confirmed early Monday that an employee has tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

“The Secret Service has conducted a comprehensive contact trace assessment and determined that the employee has not had contact with any Secret Service employee or protectee for nearly three weeks,” the agency said in a prepared statement.

The unidentified employee has been quarantined.

Tito’s Vodka shifts focus to hand sanitizer to help fight coronavirus spread

Update 2:47 a.m. EDT March 23: Tito’s Vodka has become the latest American spirits company to shift its attention from alcohol to hand sanitizer production in the midst of the national coronavirus crisis.

"While we don’t have all of the details quite yet, we do know we will be giving it away for free to our community and those most in need,” the company said in a statement.

Cruise ship Norwegian Jewel granted safe harbor as coronavirus crisis limits ports

Update 2:26 a.m. EDT March 23: The cruise ship Norwegian Jewel has found safe harbor off the coast of Hawaii, The Associated Press reported early Monday.

The ship, which was forced to shorten its trip due to the coronavirus pandemic coupled with mechanical problems, docked Sunday in Honolulu’s harbor. The vessel is carrying about 2,000 passengers, the AP reported.

“A detailed plan is being developed with Norwegian Cruise Line that keeps passengers isolated to avoid any potential strain on Hawaii’s resources, while also addressing the well-being of the cruise line passengers who have been at sea for a very long time,” said Jade Butay, director of the Hawaii Department of Transportation.

Walmart warehouse staff receive hourly pay raise amid coronavirus pandemic

Update 2:14 a.m. EDT March 23: Walmart Inc. is raising pay for workers in its e-commerce warehouses, The Wall Street Journal reported early Monday.

Big-box retailers have been jockeying for weeks to attract new employees to meet surging demand in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, and Walmart’s latest move means hourly workers in e-commerce warehouses will receive an additional $2 per hour through late May.

According to the Journal, the temporary raise brings starting wages for e-commerce workers to between $15 and $19 per hour.

State-by-state breakdown of 32,432 US coronavirus cases, 410 deaths

Update 12:42 a.m. EDT March 23: The number of novel coronavirus cases in the United States surpassed 33,000 across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands late Sunday night.

According to researchers at Johns Hopkins University, there are at least 33,276 confirmed U.S. cases of the virus, which have resulted in a total of at least 410 deaths.

Of the confirmed deaths, 114 have occurred in New York, 95 in Washington state and 32 in California.

In terms of diagnosed cases, New York is the hardest hit with more than 15,000 confirmed cases – more than six times any other state – followed by Washington with 1,996 and California with 1,468.

The figures include 21 people aboard the Grand Princess cruise ship and 49 repatriated citizens. The repatriations include 46 sickened aboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship and three others retrieved from the outbreak’s epicenter in Wuhan, China.

The state-by-state breakdown – including presumptive cases – of the 32,432 cases detected on U.S. soil is as follows:

Alabama: 157

Alaska: 14

Arizona: 152, including 2 deaths

Arkansas: 165

California: 1,468, including 32 deaths

Colorado: 591, including 6 deaths

Connecticut: 327, including 5 deaths

Delaware: 47

District of Columbia: 98, including 2 deaths

Florida: 1,001, including 12 deaths

Georgia: 620, including 25 deaths

Guam: 14, including 1 death

Hawaii: 56

Idaho: 47

Illinois: 1,049, including 9 deaths

Indiana: 201, including 6 deaths

Iowa: 90

Kansas: 64, including 2 deaths

Kentucky: 103, including 3 deaths

Louisiana: 837, including 20 deaths

Maine: 89

Maryland: 244, including 3 deaths

Massachusetts: 646, including 5 deaths

Michigan: 1,035, including 8 deaths

Minnesota: 169, including 1 death

Mississippi: 207, including 1 death

Missouri: 90, including 3 deaths

Montana: 27

Nebraska: 42

Nevada: 190, including 2 deaths

New Hampshire: 65

New Jersey: 1,914, including 20 deaths

New Mexico: 65

New York: 15,168, including 114 deaths

North Carolina: 254

North Dakota: 30

Ohio: 351, including 3 deaths

Oklahoma: 67, including 2 deaths

Oregon: 161, including 5 deaths

Pennsylvania: 479, including 2 deaths

Puerto Rico: 23

Rhode Island: 83

South Carolina: 195, including 3 deaths

South Dakota: 21, including 1 death

Tennessee: 505, including 1 death

Texas: 334, including 6 deaths

U.S. Virgin Islands: 6

Utah: 181, including 1 death

Vermont: 52, including 2 deaths

Virginia: 219, including 3 deaths

Washington: 1,996, including 95 deaths

West Virginia: 16

Wisconsin: 381, including 4 deaths

Wyoming: 26

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