COVID Surge; Crisis In The Caribbean

Jul 16, 2021

The number of COVID-19 cases in Florida has nearly doubled since last week.

And yet, as the COVID numbers in Florida are rising, the pace of vaccinations has slowed. In the midst of the surge, the CDC is saying that the highly contagious Delta variant is now accounting for upwards of 50% of all new COVID cases. The spike in cases is mainly being seen among the young and the unvaccinated, with the vast majority of hospitalizations in the state among those who are unvaccinated.

The resurgence of COVID comes amid Gov. Ron DeSantis’ re-election campaign, which ran into controversy for its “Don’t Fauci My Florida” merchandise. Meanwhile Norwegian Cruise Lines filed suit against Gov. DeSantis and his administration due to a law that prevents business from requiring customers to show proof of their COVID-19 vaccination, or using "COVID passports." The suit claims that Florida’s law bars the cruise line from preventing COVID outbreaks aboard its ships. 

Dr. Ali Mokdad, the chief strategy officer for population health at University of Washington, and A.G. Gancarski of Florida Politics joined us to discuss the surge in COVID cases. 

Crisis in the Caribbean 

Haiti and Cuba are in crisis. The assination of Haitian President Jovenel Moise has left Haiti in a state of emergency at the same time protests have errupted against Cuba's Communist regime, and the protests against have carried over into Florida.

Despite the turmoil in both Caribbean nations, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas this week warned residents of both countries not to flee to the U.S.

Tim Padgett of WLRN Danielle Clealand, Latina/o studies professor at the University of Texas at Austin, and Calvin Hughes of WPLG joined us to discuss the state of the two countries. 

 Mackenzie Guiry can be reached at newsteam@wjct.org