Ald. Napolitano on Pandemic Response on Northwest Side


41st Ward Ald. Anthony Napolitano says he’d like to see Chicago move faster to reopen its economy, even as COVID-19 cases remain high in the city. 

“I would love to see a quicker reopening, I really would. And I say that as a father and a husband, and I had two siblings that caught the virus, I lost a friend to the virus as well, so I get all sides of it,” he said. “But I also get how society reacts, and how we feel like this is not healthy in general, and I’d love to see things open at a quicker rate.” 

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Interactive: More from our series, COVID-19 Across Chicago.

Located on Chicago’s Northwest side near O’Hare Airport, the 41st Ward is home to many cops and first responders, including Napolitano himself, who is a former CPD officer and firefighter. 

“You can’t swing a dead cat in any direction up here without hitting a cop, fireman, union worker, tradesman or a nurse or a doctor. The attitude is here, let’s just get at it, let’s do it, do what we gotta do to get through it. They want to be done with it,” he said. 

Napolitano says he respects Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s responsibility to “see it from a bigger perspective than we do” when it comes to allowing businesses to reopen, but hopes she’ll act soon to loosen some restrictions. 

“I think they’re doing their due diligence, but at the same time, I would love to see our city and our state follow suit with the other states around us, and get the city open, and get the state open and running, at a quicker pace,” he said. 


Covid Across Chicago

How is the novel coronavirus impacting local businesses, residents and social service agencies across the city and region? And how are local leaders handling the crisis? We hit the streets to answer those questions and more in our ongoing reporting series, COVID-19 Across Chicago. See where we’ve been and what we’ve discovered in this overview. Listed is the official Chicago community area with the neighborhood in parenthesis where appropriate.


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