Coronavirus coverage

Coronavirus coverage

We’re continually covering the impact of the novel coronavirus on our community–this page includes all our prior news coverage.

The first case of COVID-19 in Charlottesville was confirmed on March 16. As of June 9, there were 649 reported cases in the Charlottesville area, and 19 deaths. Statewide, there were 51,251 cases and 1,477 deaths. See the latest Virginia DOH numbers, including a map of cases, here.

On 3/30, Governor Ralph Northam ordered everyone to stay home unless they are seeking medical attention, buying food or other essential supplies, caring for a family member, or “engaging in outdoor activity, including exercise.” The executive order—in effect until at least June 10—also required all public beaches and campgrounds to close, and allowed in-person gatherings of 10 or more people to be punishable by a Class 1 misdemeanor. The governor had previously ordered the closure of all schools until the end of the academic year, and many nonessential businesses—including gyms, barber shops, and salons—for at least 30 days.

The city and county schools are providing to-go breakfast and lunch bags for students who rely on the public schools for breakfast and lunch each day. Delivery sites and more info at

The University of Virginia moved all classes online and announced Final Exercises will not happen as scheduled, as the school looks for “creative alternatives.” On March 17, the school closed all gyms, libraries, and other facilities, and promised to “honor existing commitments to compensate” its employees “for the foreseeable future.”

For more local news updates, follow us on Twitter, and check out Charlottesville Tomorrow’s “Ask a Reporter” community Facebook page.

United university: UVA employees organize for better treatment

By Sydney Halleman It’s been over a decade since the University of Virginia has seen a serious attempt at unionization. The Staff Union at UVA dissolved in 2008 after failing to keep its membership count high enough, and a 2011 union effort fizzled before it could get off the ground. Now, as the coronavirus pandemic […]

In brief: Johnny Reb’s coming down, Kanye’s off the ballot, and more

In brief Officer arrested Charlottesville police officer Jeffrey Jaeger was charged with misdemeanor assault and battery last week. The charges stem from a March 3 incident in which three officers, including Jaeger, who is white, arrested an unnamed Black defendant for being drunk in public. After showing body camera footage during the trial, the defendant […]

In brief: Activist fined, white supremacist jailed, and more

Cracking down Just days after a Kenosha police officer shot Jacob Blake seven times in the back, sparking national outrage and protests, City Manager Tarron Richardson decided to crack down on gatherings in Charlottesville—targeting those organized by Black residents. While Richardson supports the right to “peaceably assemble” amidst the pandemic, he explained in a press […]

Backed up: As evictions loom, local assistance hotline struggles to meet demand

Nearly three weeks ago, the Virginia Supreme Court granted Governor Ralph Northam’s request for a statewide ban on evictions until September 7. While the order allows eviction cases to still be heard in court—and judgments to be made—tenants cannot be forced out of their homes for not paying rent. As state lawmakers continue to debate […]

Reaching out: With much on the line, voter registration groups push through the pandemic

By Carol Diggs In each of Virginia’s last five national elections, voter registration around the state has surged anywhere from 6 to 10 percent. This year, coronavirus has made voter registration (like so many things) just a little harder. Registering online, available throughout the pandemic shutdown, requires a Virginia driver’s license or DMV-issued ID—things that […]

In brief: Students test positive, Dem Convention hits downtown, and more

Biden busted The Democratic Convention won plaudits for its creative all-virtual roll call vote last week, as viewers were taken on a hokey, state-by-state tour of the country. Charlottesville local and Gold Star father Khizr Khan, who made a name for himself by delivering an impassioned speech at the 2016 convention, represented Virginia in the […]

At what cost?: Bewildering financial aid changes have left UVA students in the lurch

By Sydney Halleman The University of Virginia is sticking with its plan to allow students back on Grounds September 8, two weeks later than its initial August 25 start day—though many students are facing a virtual fall semester with significantly less financial aid than in previous years. Sean Dudley, a rising fourth-year, decided to continue […]

Desperate: Drug overdoses increase locally since onset of the pandemic

By Claudia Gohn From April 1 to July 31 of this year, emergency teams responded to 27 opioid overdoses in Charlottesville—a 200 percent increase in cases compared to the same time frame in 2019, reports the Charlottesville Fire Department. Health professionals believe the stress of the pandemic is one factor responsible for the increase. Other […]

In brief: Coronavirus clusters, CRB concerns, and more

Rogers that A statue of an old racist general in Charlottesville has once again been recontextualized—UVA’s George Rogers Clark monument was splattered with an impressive arc of red paint in the middle of the night on Sunday. Clark was a general during the United States’ violent westward expansion in the 19th century. The statue shows […]

Unsettled: The Haven, PACEM face challenges housing guests during the pandemic

As the number of coronavirus cases continue to rise in our area, life has become increasingly dangerous for those who do not have a place to call home. To protect these vulnerable community members, local shelters have pivoted from their usual operations and redoubled their efforts over the past several months—but not without challenges. For […]

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