Illinois temporarily closes state-operated COVID-19 testing sites
The 10 state-operated COVID-19 testing sites are temporarily closed due to protests in Chicago and other Illinois cities.
The facilities were closed on Monday, in part because the Illinois National Guard members who helped run the sites have since been called on to assist cities with their response to protests related to the deaths of George Floyd and other African Americans.
“Let me just be clear, we would not have the kind of testing numbers that you have across the state if the guard wasn’t manning these posts,” Gov. JB Pritzker said during a Monday press conference. “But unfortunately, this situation has forced us to shut down some of those temporarily.”
A spokesperson for Pritzker’s office said their closures would be determined on a daily basis. The Illinois Department of Public Health announced Monday night that sites would remain closed on Tuesday.
The department is not tracking if other testing sites have closed.
Pritzker said Monday an additional 250 members of the Illinois National Guard have been called up to assist municipalities across the state in their response. An additional 375 guardsmen were called up over the weekend to assist the city of Chicago.