COVID-19 update: Gov. Pritzker closes all bars and restaurants in Illinois

By Kallie Cox, News Editor

Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced that all restaurants and bars in Illinois will be closed until further notice beginning at close of business Monday night through March 30.

Drive thru and curbside pick up options will be permitted.

Pritzker also addressed the growing shortage of food and hygiene supplies that is being seen across the state.

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Chloe Schobert | @chloscho_art2020
Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced all Illinois restaurants and bars will be closed, effective March 16 through March 30. Restaurants will still be able to provide delivery and carryout services.

“Please do not hoard food,” Pritzker said. “Buy what you need but please be reasonable. Think of your friends and your neighbors, there is enough food to go around but we need people to not be selfish.”

Pritzker said Illinois has one of the best food supply chains in the nation and he is committed to keeping it that way.

Pritzker spent most of the press conference discussing food options for children who received free or reduced lunches at their schools.

Pritzker said schools have received the necessary waivers to continue serving two meals a day to children who qualify for free or reduced lunch statewide starting Tuesday.

“Local districts will contact students, parents and guardians directly with more information about what distribution looks like in their communities.,” Pritzker said.

Pritzker said he reached out to the largest food producers in the state including Kraft-Heinz, Conagra and Pepsico and asked that they donate specific critical items to food banks statewide to help provide a third meal to children who get most of their meals at school. 

“Those manufacturers provided a resounding willingness to help,” Pritzker said.

Tuesday’s election will continue as planned, Pritzker said. 

“Democracy must continue,” Pritzker said. “We must continue to elect leaders even in less than ideal circumstances.” 

News Editor Kallie Cox can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter at @KallieECox.

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