Coronavirus Fallout: Long Beach Postpones Its Gay Pride Festival Amid Growing Pandemic

LONG BEACH (CBSLA) — The city of Long Beach Saturday announced the postponement of its gay pride festival over coronavirus concerns.

The event draws thousands of people within close proximity, and was scheduled to occur May 16-17. Los Angeles earlier had postponed its gay pride parade, scheduled for June.

Long Beach officials say four people have tested positive for the virus within the city and approximately 70 others were currently being monitored.

“It is with an abundance of caution that the Long Beach Pride Board has decided to postpone the 2020 Festival and Parade,” said Denise Newman, President of Long Beach Pride. “Our commitment to the city of Long Beach and our entire community includes ensuring the health and well-being of citizens, attendees, artists, volunteers, staff, and vendors. We look forward to celebrating with our amazing LGBTQ+ and ally family, neighbors and friends at a later date, and encourage everyone to celebrate their Pride each and every day.”

In addition to that closure, the city announced that its City Council meetings would take place via teleconferencing, starting next week.

Meanwhile, the Long Beach Water Department has joined Southern California Edison in temporarily suspending shutoffs for those who cannot pay their bills. The city has established a coronavirus-related hotline for businesses, workers and employers at (562) 570-4249.

(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)