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Gov. Pritzker continues to urge Illinois residents not to travel, gather for Thanksgiving

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker speaks during his daily COVID-19 press briefing on Tuesday. | Screenshot.

Gov. Pritzker continued to urge Illinois residents not to travel or have any family gatherings for Thanksgiving amid a surge in COVID-19 cases.

“If you are planning on traveling, it is Tuesday, Thanksgiving is just two days away. If you are planning to travel right now, I urge you to rethink that. To decide that maybe this year you could do it by Zoom,” Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said at his Tuesday COVID-19 press conference.

“It’s not as much fun, I get that. It’s different, you might try something different this year. And it certainly will be much, much safer for you because you won’t be traveling with other people packed into whether it’s an airplane or bus or some other transportation,” he said.

Pritzker said he encourages everyone to wear a mask and keep their distance if they cannot change their plans.

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“I believe it’s the only year you’re gonna have to do this. And I just urge you, urge to do the right thing,” he said.

Illinois Department of Public Health Director Ezike Ngozi said that officials are excited about the prospect of having a vaccine that will be available to ship to Illinois soon.

She said the state has been working on a vaccine distribution plan and working with local health departments on how to distribute vaccines.

“Please, we just don’t want this Thanksgiving to be a tragedy and that every Thanksgiving after that, that will mark the anniversary of when a loved one was infected and maybe even worse. We don’t want that memory to be a Thanksgiving memory. Let’s do it different in 2020, please,” Ezike said.

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) announced 9,469 new confirmed and probable cases of coronavirus in Illinois on Tuesday, including 125 additional deaths.