Cuenca hits new high in daily Covid cases; Marijuana use normal among city’s youth; Crime rises; Drive-in theater to open at Oro Verde

Jul 21, 2020 | 1 comment

Lunes, 20/7/2020

Hola, Todos –

Actividades –
Del cuerpo del periodico – From el periodico del sábado –

Drive in theater – The parking lot of the Hotel Oro Verde will become a drive in theater el próximo 31/7. The hotel joined with a company that provided technical support, and the autocine has been approved by local authorities. At first, there will be space for 50 cars in the 260 space parking lot. There will be a snack bar <If you don’t want to make your own popcorn. No matter what the jovenes (young people) say, you’ll probably need to bring your own pot, too.> The screen will be a 4K and is 12 m. wide by 3 m. high. The audio will be broadcast on an FM frequency. Tickets are available on for $15 per vehicle. There is a maximum of 4 people allowed per car. You need to enter the lot from calle 3 de Noviembre. Hours will be from lunes a viernes from 16-20:00. More information will be added to the autocine Hotel Oro Verde web pages. <Like what movies will be shown and will they be in English with Spanish subtitles?>

Otras cosas –

Marijuana use is widespread among Cuenca’s youth. (El Mercurio)

Titular – Cuenca: drogas con cifras en rojo (Cuenca: drug numbers in red) – According to the Segunda Encuesta sobre el Consumo de Alcohol y Tabaco (Second Survey on Alcohol and Tobacco Use), marijuana is considered a social drug among young people. <And I bet among a lot of people who came of age in the 60’s too.> The Consejo de Seguridad Ciudadana (CSC – Citizens’ Security Council) convened focus groups where young people talked about the ease of getting marijuana and that its use is accepted and normal. The Council also published data about violent deaths, traffic accidents, intrafamilial and sexual violence, and robberies. It assembled maps showing “hot zones” for crime. Robberies increased 12% from 2018 to 2019 with 144 victims of robbery for each 100,000 in population. Vehicle theft statistics showed that in 2019, 49% of stolen vehicles were motorcycles and the make of car most stolen was Chevrolet. Vehicles were stolen most in the area around the Carlos Crespi school at Pio Bravo y Tarqui. Statistics about sexual violence showed an increase in cases 2019 compared with the previous 3 years. Of the 725 complaints, 92% were sexual crimes against women with 46% of those against girls between 13 & 17 years old. A large part of the sex crimes were committed in homes, followed by schools.

Alimony payments down by 36% – Layoffs due to the health emergency have left many fathers unable to pay pensiones alimenticia (alimony/child support). The Ley Humanitaria does not require a reduction of alimony, but does allow the Función Judicial to reduce the amount if the recipient also agrees. Nationally, payments have been reduced by 36%. According to SUPA (Sistema Único de Pensiones Alimenticias) statistics, 84% of alimony payments are less than $129.53, the basic amount with a basic salary; 8% are less than $80; and another 2% an average of $34, an amount irrisoría (ridiculous/paltry/trifling – our word for the day) for maintaining a minor child.

Covid tests – Over the weekend, the lab at the “José Carrasco Arteaga” IESS hospital received 2,000 PCR tests. The medical staff at the hospital has also done some 10,000 x-rays and tomography tests to determine if suspected or confirmed Covid patients have other conditions that would affect treatment decisions or make recovery more difficult. <Nice to know that doctors aren’t practicing one “size fits all” medicine.>

Patients being tranferred to Cañar – Cuenca reached a daily high of 108 new cases since the beginning of the health emergency. On the weekend, ICU beds in the public hospitals were full with 49 patients for the 41 beds. For that reason, patients were transferred to Cañar. Julio Molina, Zone health coordinator said that they are waiting for an additional ventilators to be activated in the next few days. The equipment is in the city and being installed. Staff to operate them are being delegated.

Mayor Palacios will meet with Rommel Salazar, the national director of the Gestión de Riesgos (Risk Management), who presides over the Comité de Operaciones de Emergencia (COE). The cantonal COE is hoping that it can change the toque de queda (curfew) back to 21:00, restrict alcohol sales, allow the moderate consumption of drinks in restaurants only, and prohibit social and business meetings. <Sounds reasonable unless you’re one of those people who like to stay out drinking until the bar kicks you out.>

Infocentros at risk of closing – There are 52 infocentros and 1 megainfocentro in Azuay that could disappear since the parish juntas do not have the money to administer them without support from the national government. These computer centers are also used as meeting places for people in the communities they serve.

Sales & manufacturing drop – Year over year sales in May by the private sector dropped by 36.6%, or 5.173 billion according to SRI information. <Would it be a complete coincidence that alimony payments have dropped by 36%?> Manufacturing sales fell by an accumulated $1.833 billion in the months of marzo-mayo.

And that’s all for today so hasta ? –



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