Coronavirus: 2 Deaths, At Least 155 Confirmed Cases In Wisconsin
For the most up-to-date information, read WUWM's March 20 coronavirus post.
Updated at 7:07 p.m. CT
Two people in Wisconsin have died from the new coronavirus, Gov. Tony Evers and health officials announced Thursday night. The first was a man in his 50s from Fond du Lac County; the second was a man in his 90s from Ozaukee County.
“Our hearts go out to all the loved ones affected by these deaths, and to all those suffering from this virus,” said Evers in a statement. “We are committed to fighting the spread of COVID-19 in Wisconsin and I want to recognize the hard work and bravery of our nurses, doctors, state health officials, and all those on the front lines in the effort to save lives. Together we will get through this historic health challenge.”
State health officials reported 155 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Wisconsin, with 62 in Milwaukee County, on Thursday. But later in the day, Milwaukee County reported there are 64 confirmed cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus.
Below is a map of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Wisconsin by county, using numbers reported by the state Department of Health Services:
About 300 members of the Wisconsin National Guard have been mobilized to support the state during the coronavirus outbreak.
“Over the coming days and weeks, you will likely see our citizen soldiers and airmen out in our communities serving our state,” said Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp, Wisconsin’s adjutant general, in a news release. “Wisconsin’s response to COVID-19 is a unified whole-of-state effort, and our National Guard is here and stands ready to support our fellow Wisconsin citizens.”
Many industries are making adjustments to their operations to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus. The Wisconsin Department of Motor Vehicles announced Wednesday it will close all of its locations on Friday to "deep clean" and prepare them for more social distancing. Locations will open March 23, but with restrictions: The DMV will only issue new driver's licenses and I.D. cards, and you must make an appointment.
“All DMV services related to vehicles can be done online. We encourage our customers to visit wisconsindmv.gov for this information and avoid an unnecessary trip to a service center," says Wisconsin Department of Transportation Secretary-designee Craig Thompson.
In wake of the global pandemic, Wisconsin's April 7 election is still moving forward. Milwaukee election officials are encouraging people to vote early and vote absentee.
If you still need to register to vote, Wednesday was the last to do so online and by mail. But the Democratic Party of Wisconsin is trying to change that. The Party filed a lawsuit against the Wisconsin Election Commission is an effort to expand voting by extending online and mail registration to April 3, among other things.
“Nobody should have to choose between exposure to COVID-19 and disenfranchisement. The court should immediately strike down the barriers to full participation in voting by mail. Our democracy depends on our ability to conduct free, safe, and fair elections, no matter what — even during a pandemic," said Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair Ben Wikler in a press release.
For the time being, WUWM's Bubbler Talk is focusing on the coronavirus and its impact on the Milwaukee area. If you have a question, submit it below.