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March 24, 2020 9:55 am
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Orthodox Jewish Leaders in Florida Dissuade Passover Visitors Due to Coronavirus

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The mouth of the Miami River at Brickell, a neighborhood in the city’s financial district. Photo: Marc Averette via Wikimedia Commons.

JNS.org – Ahead of Passover and deep into the coronavirus pandemic, Orthodox Jewish leaders and medical professionals in Florida have warned against an exodus of visitors from their homes to the Sunshine State to celebrate the Jewish holiday, to visit family, or stay at the all-inclusive Passover hotel and resorts.

In a letter to their communities late last week, 35 Orthodox Jewish leaders and nine medical professionals in Florida wrote, “To all those from out of state considering spending Pesach here in Florida: It’s halachically prohibited and medically irresponsible to come for Pesach.”

Passover begins at sundown on April 8 and ends at nightfall on April 16.

The letter, first reported on Thursday by COLlive, mentions that Florida’s health-care system “is currently overburdened, and an influx of new patients can lead to deaths. In addition to being a chilul Hashem, we have a halachic requirement to keep our communities safe.”

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“If you choose to come anyways, jeopardizing the lives of many in Florida, you must quarantine for 14 days. This means no leaving the house, no excursions, no beach, no pool, no restaurants, etc.,” it said.

Finally, the letter notes that the Jewish institutions, including synagogues and kosher restaurants, will not be accommodating visitors this year.

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