Bronx Councilman Ritchie Torres tests positive for coronavirus

City Council Member Ritchie Torres, D-Bronx ( Official City Council photo )

New York City Council Member Ritchie Torres has tested positive for the novel coronavirus, the Bronx politician announced on Twitter.

Torres, a Democrat and a candidate for U.S. Congress, said that he learned over the weekend that a staff member had tested positive after having symptoms for a few days. So he and his staff are under voluntary quarantine and are "closely monitoring their health," he said.

"I will be under quarantine in my Bronx apartment for the next few weeks to avoid spreading the virus to others, especially to seniors like my mother who suffers from chronic health conditions," Torres tweeted. "I'll be working from home and resting as much as possible."

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Confirmed COVID-19 cases in New York state topped 1,300 on Tuesday, according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo. More than 10,000 residents have been tested so far.

"Social distancing, and isolating yourself, especially if you're experiencing symptoms or have been in contact with someone carrying the virus, may be painful, but it's absolutely essential," Torres said. "It's about saving lives and protecting loved ones. We must all take it seriously."

Torres, 32, represents parts of the Bedford Park, Fordham, Mount Hope, Bathgate, Belmont, East Tremont, West Farms, Van Nest, Allerton, and Olinville sections of the Bronx.

He is running in a crowded Democratic primary field to replace U.S. Rep. Jose Serrano, who has been in Congress since 1990 and is not running for re-election.

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