Morning Headlines: Ohio Coronavirus Cases Back on the Rise; UA to Move 50% of Fall Classes Online

Jun 25, 2020

Here are your morning headlines for Thursday, June 25:

  • Ohio coronavirus cases back on the rise
  • Summit County Asian communities hardest hit by coronavirus
  • Dance studios sue the state over pandemic shutdown
  • Quinnipac poll: Most Ohioans still support pandemic response
  • Cleveland’s civil emergency declaration extended to July 31
  • University of Akron to move 50% of fall classes online 
  • Cleveland spent $3 million in overtime to respond to protests
  • Protesters may greet Akron Art Museum's reopening
  • Cleveland Clinic Akron General loosening visitor restrictions
  • Akron-based artist chosen for airport art installation

Ohio coronavirus cases back on the rise
Ohio is still seeing an uptick in coronavirus cases. After beginning a downward trend earlier this month, the daily count of COVID-19 suddenly jumped last week and remains above average with more than 630 new cases registered Wednesday, bringing the total to nearly 47,000. There were 20 deaths reported Wednesday. Meanwhile, the state’s updated nursing home numbers show nearly 1,950 residents have died with the coronavirus, accounting for 71% of all known COVID-19-related deaths in the state.

Summit County Asian communities hardest hit by coronavirus
Summit County health officials are reporting that the Asian immigrant community has been hard hit by the coronavirus. The Beacon Journal reports the latest numbers show 1 in 5 cases in the county are among Asian residents, which make up just 4% of the population. Summit County’s African-American communities have also seen higher rates accounting for around one-fourth of positive cases.

Dance studios sue the state over pandemic shutdown
Several Northeast Ohio dance studios are part of the latest lawsuit accusing state and local health officials of overstepping their authority during the stay-at-home lockdown. The DanceAble Ballroom studio in Minerva along with others in the Cleveland area are part of the lawsuit filed in Lake County. The suit joins those filed by day cares, gyms and amusement parks against the health orders signed by former state health director Dr. Amy Acton and Gov. Mike DeWine. Dance studios, gyms, and fitness centers, were among the businesses allowed to reopen on May 26.

Quinnipiac poll: Most Ohioans support pandemic response
Despite protests, lawsuits, and shouting on social media, a new poll shows most Ohioans continue to support health and safety measures put in place by state leaders. The poll released Wednesday by Quinnipiac University shows 60% of voters say Gov. Mike DeWine’s timing for reopening businesses was “about right”. One fifth of respondents say he reopened the economy too fast, and one fifth say it was not quick enough. More than three fourths of voters approve of DeWine’s overall handling of the crisis. 70% of Ohioans think it’s very or somewhat likely that there will be another wave of infections that will cause businesses in the state to close again. 53% of respondents are very or somewhat worried about becoming seriously infected and ill with the virus. This latest findings track well with a similar poll from April.

Cleveland’s civil emergency declaration extended to July 31
Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson has extended the city’s civil emergency proclamation through July 31. The proclamation, which was first declared in March, allows city departments to collaborate to recommend steps the city should take to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic and quickly release money and resources for the city’s response.

University of Akron to move 50% of fall classes online
The University of Akron announced Wednesday that it will move about 50% of its fall classes online to accommodate for social distancing amid the pandemic. Kent State recently announced about 60% of classes would be remote. Like Kent, Akron will send out an announcement on or around July 10 when the schedule is complete, at which time students can modify their courses.

Cleveland spent $3 million in overtime in response to protests
The city of Cleveland has spent more than $3 million in overtime responding to protests and rioting in the downtown area at the end of last month. Cleveland.com reports the biggest portion of that was for safety forces, but the cleanup by street crews and parks workers also involved overtime.

Protesters may greet Akron Art Museum's reopening
The Akron Art Museum’s reopening during the pandemic may be met with protests. The museum announced that it will reopen with limited capacity for members July 16, with a public opening July 23. Admission will be free through October. The museum has been the focus of racism, sexism and intimidation accusations from current and former employees against former director and CEO Mark Masuoka, who resigned in May. On Tuesday, Akron Art Museum Accountability, an anonymous Twitter account, called for demonstrations at the museum when it reopens.

Cleveland Clinic Akron General loosening visitor restrictions
Cleveland Clinic Akron General is easing visitor restrictions put in place during the pandemic. The system is now allowing one visitor per patient. The previous policy did not allow for visitors except in some circumstances, such as end of life. Visitors will have their temperature checked upon arrival and face masks are required.

Akron-based artist chosen for airport art installation
The Akron-Canton Airport has selected an Akron-based artist to design its atrium floor as part of the airport’s concourse expansion project. Lenny Spengler's tree design features leaves depicting historical images from the region, including the Goodyear Blimp and All-American Soap Box Derby and portraits of LeBron James and Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys. It's expected to be complete in November.