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New Niagara Region coronavirus cases trending in people under 30 years old

Clifton Hill

While the numbers aren't huge, new COVID-19 cases in Ontario's Niagara Region are showing one trend: the cases are turning up in young people.

The virus has been mostly taking Ontario's old, infirmed and ailing. However, in six days, there were 40 new cases and 23 were in people aged 30 or younger. On Tuesday, there were 21 new cases in the Niagara Region.

Acting Medical Officer of Health Dr. Mustafa Hirji said there are a lot of theories, revolving around beach parties and the attraction of Niagara Falls' Clifton Hill.

"In Niagara, we're not really seeing any particular events that link back to infection transmission," Hirji said. "We have seen that there have been relatively big parties at beaches and so it's possible that might have something to do with it. We've also seen that in the Clifton Hill area of Niagara Falls, where there's lots of those tourist attractions, there's a lot of people congregating."

Hirji said those found to be positive seem to be relatively healthy and often showing no signs of the virus. He said some came in for testing because friends had been found to be afflicted with the virus.

"People are tired, for four months, of really being on their best behavior and being really vigilant to the risks of COVID-19," Hirji said, "and behaviors are becoming a little bit more relaxed and probably it's more so among young people. Young people also are out of school, out of university right now. So they're more likely to maybe be out socializing than older people who might be working."

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.
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