New Orleans, Mardi Gras, Federal Government discussed on Amanpour
Some news that we adjust learning and that is apparently the British prime minister. Boris Johnson has left intensive care. And he's being moved back to a hospital ward where he received close monitoring during the early phase of his recovery. Now later in the program we look at how some countries like Israel and Hungary a seizing emergency powers during this pandemic. They say to better deal with it. But critics say is just an old fashioned assault on democracy. I'll be speaking to the Hungarian Foreign Minister. But First Corona virus has hit Louisiana hard and new data reveals that the viruses hitting african-americans hardest with the state's black community accounting for seventy percent of deaths. Even though they only make up thirty three percent of the population the mayor of New Orleans Latorre Cantrell says this disparity is reflected nationwide because of systemic problems like poverty traps and lack of resources. Meantime critics say New Orleans should've locked down earlier. The mayor tells Walter Isaacson. Why Mardi Gras went ahead madame? Mayor that joining us. Thank you for having me. We've seen over the past few days now. A decline in the amount of hospitalization Decline in the use of respirators. Have we reached the point? Where your stay at home? Measures seemed to be flattening. The core We have reached a point to where are stay at home efforts. In mandates they are working We have to maintain the mandates the stay at home orders. This is the time that we do not let up that we get more aggressive as it relates to the stay at home mandates we do not want to regress. We want to continue to make progress in so we're not claiming victory at all And we are just now starting to see the curve. So we're not in the situation where we're flattening we are approaching the Kerr and We're shifting in pivoting really into not only more care but stopping people from dying and that's the focus. We want to stop the deaths from happening. You know we're New Orleans not very good at social distancing and I'm here in the French quarter and I looked outside. Now see that you have police cars at breaking up anybody. Who's in a crowd walking around trying to go? How have you been trying to enforce this? Stay at home order. Well the biggest level of enforcement is one having the presence of the law enforcement but at the same time pushing for personal responsibility and we as we look at the mobility data from cell phone usage. We know that seventy three percent of our people in terms of moving around. They're not so they are are adhering to the mandate taking a very seriously and we are as well as a city because we cannot allow people to move about a break the law and do nothing about it so when we act swiftly it really sets the tone that not only do we mean business but this crises is it serious people are dying and people are sick when you have cell phone data you have the cameras traffic cameras around the city. How do you balance the concerns? People might have about privacy with the need to look at it as much information as possible to see who's moving around well one. We're not all we're looking for and we're not using our traffic cameras award took up to follow people. That's not what we do As a relates to the cell phone data it strictly around mobility how you can see and you don't even the individualize is just really the traffic and so we're not Cross the line with people's personal information or data points but we are using it to see if people are following the rules and they are staying put and that's a good thing with the recent decline in the need for hospitalization in New Orleans. And the reduction of the need for ventilators. Do you think that's going to change how we use the Convention Center in our emergency preparedness? Well first of all our people are still in the hospital. I don't want to give the sense. That folks are not hospitalized. They are and they are still at record numbers. But what we're seeing is that our people are one coming off those ventilators sooner rather than later. the surge capacity at the Convention Center our Medical Monitoring Facility opened on yesterday. We opened up with fewer than twenty patients there We are saying that based on how well our healthcare workers are doing the best job ever within those hospitals. It does make us feel that we will not have to surge up to the capacity of three thousand so right now. It's at one thousand. We believe that that will be sufficient but again the convention center is for region one and that's multiple parishes that make up region. What so we may find ourselves being a much greater service to our our our Regional PARISHES THAN JUST ORLEANS. Our family homes or in the same neighborhood right in the heart of New Orleans called Broadmoor during Katrina. You worked with my father and others in trying to make sure. We came back neighborhood by neighborhood. Reflect on that for a moment and how that's helping you organize neighborhood recovery's come out of this well why it is engaging the people who are on the ground meaning these neighborhood leaders you know they have a role to play so. I have been engaging them multiple ways whether that is having a consistent conference calls with them calling them to task with helping. What'S FEEDING CLEANING UP? Even their their communities their areas knowing their neighbors you know a disaster is not the time to to to to start learning. Who People are. You should know that and we have been trained to do this particularly in the Post Katrina Environment. So reminding people that you know. Your neighbors are your first responders. And you have to be organized. And and so Organized a government organized community in many ways like I did post Katrina have over thirteen active committees that engages. The business community the hospitality tourism made. It just goes on and on the death care community of course neighborhoods a public schools. I mean all of these different Mechanisms it helps want to give people accurate information which is essential and also keeps them not only informed but it empowers them to be a part of the solution and end to get out of the way you know. Don't don't hurt us was we. Were preparing for Mardi Gras. You worked very closely with some of the feds the FBI. Everybody else to make sure that the security was great during Mardi Gras did anybody from homeland security or the federal government. One you about the pandemic and say you should do something differently. Oh No not at all. Well there were no red flags are given to the city of New Orleans through our unified command and leading up to up to Mardi Gras We had increased our rating with the federal government sear to rating for Mardi Gras. Which we've never had before which means additional resources that will flow through the federal government as well as people on the ground so I- special agents on the ground in the community walking with the chief in our public safety team every parade so nobody ever recommended. You should cancel. Mardi Gra Ono. One recommended that we cancel Mardi Gras and In a even when I moved to cancel Saint Patrick's Day and and Super Sunday march a nine All Hell broke loose with that as well being ridiculed at the state level and all but it was the right thing to do and when I look at the forecast of data not only. Did we do the right thing? We saved countless lives. And we'll continue to do that. Would have you asked for from the federal government or the state government that you've not received. What are your priorities? Now well the priorities you know have been a definitely around the PPA getting the protective equipment. That are frontline workers. Our employees our first responders that they desperately need and consistently. That's been a continued struggle. But we're saying things come come in. Testing wasn't issue initially but we're testing more than any other city in the country and we're second to Iceland right now which is a real reflection in the numbers in the cases. But you have to. You have to have the data to know where you are and how you're doing so I'm happy about that as relates to the Stanley Stimulus package we Were very aggressive. On the front end of galvanizing our federal delegation as well as our state delegation for advocating for the needs of the city which led to assume infusion of of stimulus dollars even set aside for Orleans through Hud. Amer like so things are moving. We just need to make sure that the city is at the table as resources will flow from the federal government to the state because the city will not receive directly because of our population sought. WanNa make sure we're in line to get our fair share. You know we our economy again driven by half metality. We have over one hundred ten thousand workers that are attached to that and more of the the GIG economy and the resources that they need gap financing the you know their family. Steady is huge We believe that we're going to need to feed over two hundred thousand over the over the next couple of weeks daily and so these continue to be some needs but I'm hopeful based on the response of our federal delegation coming together working across those by partying being across lines to deliver seventy percent of corona virus cases in Louisiana among African Americans. Even though African Americans only thirty three percent of the population. Why is it affecting the black community more? Well I think what this pandemic has exposed particularly in the United States. And it's not that we don't know right but it has absolutely Exposed for job the fragility Within our community the black community the working Within working families the disparity gaps that existed that we knew were prevalent not only in New Orleans but the United States of America but it It brings it home in these instances. So it's a public health disparity issue and public health touch everything from housing to employment to physical health to wellness The economics it all matters end so black folks in regards to the disparity gap that exists in this country. Make up the majority that fall in that gap and so are most vulnerable. So when you're in a when you're faced with the crises like we're in it's your most vulnerable people within your population who suffer the most so we will continue to see this if we don't address These disparity needs that we've known about you know for decades for generations but No longer I believe that we can continue to avoid a meeting where they are when we know that their needs are there which steps are being taken for the poorest in the city of for the poorest this is our most vulnerable what. I say is My street homeless. You know and getting them off the street. We have been able to do some of that. I still have about one hundred and forty that still remain on the street that I need to find housing or accommodations for and we're working towards that every single day and then having to also deal with residents in their neighborhood to want to try to embrace this not my backyard a type of concept but in a crises that will not fly and And even outside with crises from my perspective but were managing it through Speaking directly with residents with their concerns and alleviating their concerns everyone matters in this city in our most vulnerable absolutely but a part of that.