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South Florida lawmaker tests positive for COVID-19

Jones, 36, said he got tested at Memorial Regional Hospital in Hollywood on Tuesday and received his results the same day.
Rep. Shevrin Jones
Rep. Shevrin Jones [ Florida House of Representatives ]
Published Jul. 1, 2020

State Rep. Shevrin Jones tested positive for coronavirus Tuesday after feeling symptoms like an achy body, fever and a congested nose.

“It’s basically all of the above,” the West Park Democrat told the Miami Herald Wednesday.

Jones, 36, said he got tested at Memorial Regional Hospital in Hollywood on Tuesday and received his results the same day.

In a tweet Wednesday, Jones wrote: “Transparent Moment: For those who think it’s a game, it’s not, I have tested positive for Covid. I feel awful, and I don’t wish this on anyone.”

Jones, who is running in a competitive race to replace Democratic Sen. Oscar Braynon in the state Senate, has been a consistent presence at recent protests against police brutality in Fort Lauderdale and around Broward County.

He said at the protests, he always wears a mask and is careful not to touch anybody. He usually lives alone, but is currently staying with his partner in Hollywood.

Jones’ House District 101 covers southern portions of Broward County near the Miami-Dade border including West Park, Pembroke Park, and Hallandale Beach. South Florida remains the epicenter of the state’s coronavirus cases. Miami-Dade County reported 1,141 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 and nine new deaths Wednesday. The county now has 37,961 confirmed cases and 1,000 deaths, the highest in the state.

Broward County reported 531 additional confirmed cases of the disease and two new deaths. The county now has 16,155 known cases and 385 deaths.

The symptoms are “terrible and awful,” he said, and he is frustrated seeing people calling the virus a “hoax” on social media. Jones said he hopes his constituents and others take his infection as a warning and stay home during the July 4th holiday weekend.

“You don’t know where you could get this from,” he said. “Just stay home. It’s a feeling they wouldn’t want.”

In a tweet, his legislative aide Jessica Garafola wrote that she will get tested for a second time because she just saw Jones Friday.

Jones is not the first elected official in South Florida to get the virus. U.S. Rep. Mario Díaz-Balart and Miami Mayor Francis Suarez both tested positive since coronavirus cases were reported in Florida in early March.