Return to Transcripts main page
Top Officials Contradict Each Other On U.S. Economy; COVID-19 Disproportionately Affecting Communities Of Color; Spain Eases Restrictions, Lets Children Exercise Outside; Some U.S. States Eases on Lockdown Measures; Italy Announces Gradual Easing on Lockdown Restrictions; Status of the North Korean Leader; U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson Back to Work Since Hospitalization. Aired 2-3a ET
Aired April 27, 2020 - 02:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANNA COREN, CNN HOST: Hello and welcome to our viewers in the United States and around the world. I'm Anna Coren live from Hong Kong. Coming up on "CNN Newsroom," despite warnings from coronavirus experts, more U.S. states are set to loosen up on the lockdown in the coming hours.
Hard hit Italy is already easing restrictions, the government's gradual plan to open up the economy. Also ahead, no word from North Korea about Kim Jong-un's recent absence, but South Korea is weighing in. We will go to Seoul for the very latest.
Right now, the U.S. is fast approaching 1 million confirmed cases of the coronavirus, which is about a third of all infections worldwide. Over the weekend, thousands of new fatalities were reported, bringing the American death toll to just shy of 55,000. Well, that is according to Johns Hopkins University.
Critics point to the sharp increase we have seen since early Marc and say it doesn't look like state should be reopening. Yet some are taking small to large steps in that direction with stay-at-home orders set to expire in a few more states in the coming hours each with different circumstances.
Well meanwhile, the White House response coordinator says what the U.S. really needs to do is slow the spread of a breakthrough - I beg your pardon -- needs to do to slow the spread is a breakthrough in testing so that large numbers of people can be screened.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DEBORAH BIRX, WHITE HOUSE CORONAVIRUS RESPONSE COORDINATOR: We have to have a breakthrough innovation and testing. We have to be able to detect antigen rather than constantly trying to detect the actual live virus or the viral particles itself and to really move into antigen testing. And I know corporations and diagnostics are working on that now. We have to have a breakthrough. These are in a testing will carry us certainly through the spring and summer, but we need a huge technology breakthrough and we are working on that at the same time.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COREN: Well, in a few hours, another round of businesses will reopen in the state of Georgia. The governor has cleared restaurants and movie theaters to open their doors on Monday.
On Friday, gyms, nail salons, barbershops and bowling alleys were allowed to reopen. While the government has confidence in this rollout, Atlanta's mayor is worried that it is far too early.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KEISHA LANCE BOTTOMS, MAYOR OF ATLANTA: I am extremely concerned, and as an elected official, we often want to be right, but I can tell you that this is one that I'm hope that I'm wrong about. And I've said it before and I'll say it again, I hope that the governor is right and I am wrong, because if he is wrong, more people will die.
And this notion that we can somehow deal with more people who are sick is ludicrous because we do not have a cure, and there are healthy people walking into hospitals dying from this illness. And so simply because we may have a bed to offer them or a hospital room for them, that does not mean that we can save their lives. And I think therein lies the problem.
I understand that people are hurting economically and people do not want to have to make this choice, but it is important so that we can flatten this curve for a sustained period of time. When I look at the numbers, the numbers that I have received from this afternoon, our deaths are up 32 percent from this time last week.
Our positive tests, up 26 percent from this time last week. We are not heading in the right direction and my fear is that we are compounding this problem.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COREN: Well, the governor of Colorado is still urging residents to stay at home as much as possible. He has officially relaxed restrictions. His plan is to allow businesses to reopen the first week of May with a reduced workforce. As Gary Tuchman shows us, some shop so they are ready for business.
GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Retail businesses that are nonessential businesses that follow the proper safety protocols will be allowed to open, but customers will have to pick up the goods on the curbside. On Friday if they're still following the safety protocols, those retail businesses can then have customers inside.
Also on Friday, barbershops, beauty salons, other personal care businesses will also be allowed to open, but what is confusing here in the state of Colorado is all 64 counties in the state has some prerogative to make their own decisions.
For example, Denver City and Denver County don't want everything to open right away. They don't want anything to happen tomorrow. They are allowed to do that. Other counties want more to open like Weld County, but you have to ask the governor, according to the, state for a waiver if you want to open more.
As of now, this county has not asked for waivers, but has told business leaders here that they can open their businesses tomorrow. So this place, right here, this caller "The Bar.Ber.Shop." It's literally the name of this barbershop inside.
Two hours ago, a cleaning crew came here and you can see their sticker they put on here, 04/26/2020. They were inside. They came here and put on outfits that looked like they were going into outer space, but obviously to be careful. They sprayed this place down.
And this place, according to the owners, is ready to open tomorrow. And they say they actually have a book full of reservations between 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. This gentlemen right here is one of the barbers. This is Ty Salzman.
What's interesting, we were in here a while ago. They got a call from the governor's office after one of our reports, that they should not be opening tomorrow, that they don't have the authorization to open. And they said, you and your owners said, the county said you can be open, correct? So, are you staying open?
TY SALZMAN, BARBER: Yes, sir. Yes. We plan on being open tomorrow at 9:00.
TUCHMAN: Okay. We're going to stay a little distance from you to be safe, that's the way that we should play it. But here's what I need to ask you. Are you confident that you're going to be safe and your customers are going to be safe?
SALZMAN: Oh, 110 percent. We practice safe practices 24/7, 365 continually.
TUCHMAN: Right, but tomorrow what are you going to do that's different?
SALZMAN: So, tomorrow what we plan on doing is we ask that customers if they have mask or would like to wear a mask, bring those in with them. We'll be offering gloves, hand sanitizer, I mean, all sorts of precautions to our customers. But then also, we as well, will be doing that personally.
TUCHMNAL: If the county asked you tomorrow, if they change their mind, the commissioner said you should not be open, would you close?
SALZMAN: Absolutely. No, what I mean, well, we have to follow whatever guidelines are put in place and we have to listen to whatever we are being told. We are just trying to make sure that the client and the customer, safety comes first.
TUCHMAN: Ty, thanks for talking with us.
SALZMAN: Absolutely. Absolutely.
TUCHMAN: Well, we do want to tell you this. This is a really nice salon. They put a lot of space in between the chairs. They also have a bar that will not be open, a pool table that is usually here, they've taken out to create more space, but restaurants and bars, there is no plans right now to reopen them at least for now in the state of Colorado.
COREN: Gary Tuchman reporting there. Well, they won't be opening in New York either. Not much of anything will, until mid-May at the earliest. And that's only in parts of the state that have seen a 2- week decline in hospitalizations. New York's governor says when the time is right, the construction and manufacturing industries will be the first to get the green light.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANDREW CUOMO, GOVERNOR OF NEW YORK: The overall hospitalization rate is down, the number of intubations is down, even the number of new COVID cases is down, still not good, still 1,000 new COVID cases yesterday, to put it in focus.
The descent continues and that is a very good starting place. We are now back to where we were on March 31st, before we started this dramatic increase in the number of cases. We are still watching. Big question is how fast is that number continue to come down.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COREN: And joining me now in New York, CNN medical analyst, Dr. Kent Sepkowitz. Doctor, great to have you with us. I think it's fair to say there is real confusion about what should be happening in the U.S. right now.
Obviously, some states are reopening, are relaxing social distancing restrictions and then you have Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus task force coordinator come out and say that social distancing will remain in place through summer. Who should the public be listening to?
KLENT SPKOWITZ, CNN MEDICAL ANALYST: The public should listen to the physicians. I'm a physician, so I'm biased, but I think that Dr. Birx has often showed candor and directness, not always, unfortunately, but I think her advice is appropriate.
And I think that the sense that we have suffered enough and therefore we get a snow day or something like that to go and have fun is mostly immature and sort of disappointing to see (inaudible).
COREN: Because Dr. Birx has also said that a testing breakthrough is needed before the economy reopens. SO why are governors doing this? SEPKOWITZ: I think that they have real pressure. I mean, nobody wants
to have to do this, right? Nobody enjoys social distancing. It was maybe a little bit interesting for a week or two. Now we're, you know - in New York we're about hitting into two months.
You know, a crashing economy is a terrible thing. People complaining every second of the day is a terrible thing, the voter base complaining. It's a very terrible thing. It ain't easy. You know, none of these is easing.
Taking the path of less immediate resistance, which is open it up. It's going to look good for a few weeks, and then there will be cases, and how many cases? Where the cases are? And, importantly, will we be able to see the association between a surge in cases and the relaxation of the stay-at-home rules?
COREN: You would have to assume that these conflicting messages and the confusion are very dangerous and that a second wave is inevitable?
SEPKOWITZ: Yes, totally so. A second wave connotes the notion that we handled the first wave, which this would actually be a lack of handling of the first wave. I think it would be a continuation, which is, you know, tragic.
It really wastes all of the work of these months and, you know, I think three-fourth of the country indoors all this time trying their best. We set the dial back to zero. We don't get any credit in the bank for all these days we've been in isolation.
COREN: Vice President Mike Pence has said that by Memorial Day weekend, which is a month away, the U.S. will largely have the coronavirus epidemic behind us. Do you agree?
SEPKOWITZ: Not at all. The death rate will be lower, so we could claim that is a victory I suppose. It's odd that they keep making these easily disprovable pronouncements. They have been saying them since Trump did this with the 15 cases and it's a miracle.
And why they keep setting themselves up to look like idiots, I don't know. As Dr. Fauci said, you know, brilliantly, a while ago, the virus will decide when this ends. We don't decide. It's crazy that we keep doing this.
This is what, you know, this is what my kids would do, you know, when they were younger. You know, can we open the presents now? Come on, come on, come on. And adults are supposed to say no, this is hard and I know, but we have to wait. You know, that's sort of the adult voice that we are supposed to adopt.
But it seems that we are giving into the adolescent, you know, make a mess and screw it sort of approach. It's just the height of immaturity and inability to delay gratification.
COREN: Well, Dr. Kent Sepkowitz, great to get your insight. Thank you so much for joining us from New York.
Well, days after President Trump made his disastrous comments about disinfectant, a lot of people are still angry and confused. You will remember during his briefing Thursday, he suggested coronavirus could be treated with an injection of disinfectant.
Doctors and disinfectant manufacturers say that's just dangerous. The White House coronavirus response coordinator is trying to soften the impact of Mr. Trump's words.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: What should the American people know about disinfectants and the human body?
BIRX: Well, first, that was a dialog he was having between the DHS scientist and himself for information that he had received and he was discussing. We have made it clear, and when he turned to me, I made it clear, and he understood that it was not as a treatment. And I think that kind of dialog will happen.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COREN: Well, here is why state leaders say it's necessary to keep talking and keep debunking the president's comment.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LARRY HOGAN, GOVERNOR OF MARYLAND: We had hundreds of calls in our hotline here in Maryland about people asking about injecting or ingesting these disinfectants, which is, you know, hard to imagine that people thought that that was serious. But people actually were thinking about this, was this something you could do to protect yourself.
NGOZI EZIKE, ILLINOIS PUBLIC HEALTH DIRECTOR: Injecting, ingesting, snorting household cleaners is dangerous. It is not advised and can be deadly. In the past two days, there has been a significant increase in calls to the Illinois Poison Center, compared to this same time last year, associated with exposure to cleaning agents.
(END VIDEO CLIPS)
COREN: Well, Italy is preparing to loosen its lockdown restrictions in phases in the coming weeks. The prime minister announced some travel limits will be eased and there will be more access to parks and guidance.
Funerals will be allowed to be held with up to 15 people attending. This comes as Italy reported its Sunday death toll was 260, the lowest since March 14th.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
[02:14:57] GIUSEPPE CONTE, PRIME MINISTER OF ITALY (through translation): So by May 4th, attention will be focused on wholesale trade. SO it is clear that a commercial network will be needed. We have set May 18th for retail. We still have in mind to reopen with all due care and caution on May 18th, museums, exhibitions, and libraries. We have also talked about the training of team sports on the sports field.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COREN: Well, CNN contributor Barbie Nadeau is in Rome with more. Barbie, what has been the reaction of Italians to the easing of restriction in what is Europe's longest lockdown?
BARBIE NADEAU, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, I think people are very optimistic that this is going to work. You know, on May 4th, people can exercise away from their homes. We haven't been able to leave our homes for more than 300 meters, about 980 feet, for the last two months.
People will be able to go, restaurants will be able to offer take out. that is something we haven't had here either. And people, you know, are optimistic this is going to work. On the 18th, those retail stores opening will help the economy.
And, you know, by June 1st, they are really, really, really hoping that they will be able to open restaurants, perhaps, open beaches and really get this economy back on track. Everyone is optimistic, but, of course, all of these new openings are going to be under the guidelines of strict social distancing.
Even when those retail stores open, they're going to have to be able to disinfect the clothing and the shoes if anyone tries them on. So there is a lot to work out, but people are ready for this, Anna.
COREN: Barbie, please keep safe. Thank you for the update. Well, this story just in, starting on Monday, people in almost all of Germany will be required to wear masks in public -- that decision coming from the German federal state.
Each state has its own set of rules, but all of them now require face coverings in at least some public spaces. Berlin, however, only requires masks when riding public transit.
Officials in South Korea say North Korea's leader is "alive and well." Well, questions about Kim Jong-un's health have been floating around for days now after he missed the celebration of his grandfather's birthday on April 15th -- North Korea's most important holiday. Paula Hancocks has been closely following this story in Seoul. And Paula, what is the latest?
PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anna, we've just been hearing the South Korean president, Moon Jae-in, speaking today which is the second anniversary of that key summit between North and South Korea at Panmunjom at the DMZ. And he really didn't mention Kim Jong- un's health at all as far as we can tell. He did talk about a shared future for more cooperation based on
willingness for peace and shared trust between him and Kim Jong-un, but really not referring to the elephant in the room, which is this remarkable amount of speculation as to what the health of the leader is.
Now, when it comes to that, what we do know at this point is that he did miss the April 15th celebration of the birth of the founder of North Korea, and his grandfather, Kim Il-sung, a key date, if not the most important date in the North Korean calendar.
Many experts believe and agree that that is a significant absence of the North Korean leader. He has not been seen since either. But of course, there are a number of conflicting reports as to where exactly he is and what his health is at this point.
We did hear from one adviser to President Moon, Chung In-moon, just Sunday evening saying that he believes that Kim Jong-un is alive and well, but we are hearing differing views from others.
Now, I've just spoken to Thae Yong Ho who is a former high-level North Korean elite. He's now become a South Korean lawmaker, and he says that he does believe that there must be some health issue for Kim Jong-un for him to have missed his grandfather's memorial and that ceremony on the 15th.
But he also says that you should be careful of believing these other rumors and speculations about what's happened to him because quite frankly, and he knows North Korea better than most, there are only a very few number of people who will know where Kim Jong-un is and what his condition is.
He mentioned his wife, his sister, his chief aides, and he said beyond that, the knowledge of what has happened to him simply wouldn't be there. But he did mention that he believes those within North Korea do now know, that there is gossip and rumors regarding his health. So he says the longer the silence goes on, the more significant that is, Anna.
COREN: Paula, as someone who is lived in South Korea for the many years that you have now closely following the story, what would happen if something were to happen to Kim Jong-un? Who would take over and where would that leave North Korea?
HANCOCKS: Well, it's a question we have asked many people, and many experts, many officials, and at this point, the overwhelming answer is that the sister, Kim Yo-jong, could well be in the running. She is the one that clearly Kim Jong-un trusts.
She is one that has -- had her profile raised over the past couple of years by Kim Jong-un. And she has been by the side of Kim Jong-un when meeting Donald Trump, the U.S. president and also South Korean president, Moon Jae-in. But then there is also other family members, for example, an uncle,
Kim Pyong-il, who has been an ambassador in different European countries over the past 30 years. He is the son of the founder, Kim Il-sung, and he is certainly a contender especially according to Thae Yong Ho as well.
Now, there is an expectation it will be kept within the family if of course this does happen. Although, some say that those with a power base in North Korea could certainly be a contender as well. But we should mention that this is one step beyond where we are at this point, Anna. We simply don't know what has happened to Kim Jong-un.
COREN: Yes, of course. A fascinating story nonetheless. Paula Hancocks, great to see you. Many thanks for the update.
Well, the British prime minister is back on the job after recovering from the coronavirus. Just ahead, we'll take a look at the growing pressure on Boris Johnson to determine what's next in tackling the pandemic.
COREN: Welcome back. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has a lot on this plate as he returns to work. Monday marks his first day back after battling a debilitating case of the coronavirus. And it will be a very busy first day.
The government is working on rolling out more testing and the opposition Labour Party is putting pressure on Downing Street to reveal an exit plan for the lockdown. For more, let's turn to CNN's Isa Soares joining us from London. Isa what are we expected to hear from Boris Johnson? Is he believed to address the media today?
ISA SOARES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning Anna. That is a speculation that is still not been confirmed from Downing Street, but we do know it's going to be a very busy day for the prime minister, Boris Johnson, as you said, back in charge, back at Downing Street, two weeks after being discharged from the hospital with COVID-19.
And his inbox, Anna, and you believe it, will be very packed up. He has a meeting today we know with senior ministers, senior ministers from his own party, as well as a scientist who get an update on the COVID-19 on how the country is battling it.
We have seen some of the lowest numbers in a month more than 413 people have died -- 413 too many of course. Every number is a loss, a family that will never be the same, worth bearing that in mind. But it is important also not to over interpret these numbers because these numbers tend to dip at the weekend and then slightly higher during the week.
The prime minister will be getting a briefing on COVID-19, and he is facing so much pressure from so many angles within his own party, tensions within his own party. Some conservative donors who want to see the lockdown measures lifted or eased because they believe that it is being harmful to the economy.
They want to see the economy getting going again. Then, pressures as you mentioned, from Keir Starmer, the leader of the opposition Labour Party. Now, he does not want to see measures lifted, but he wants to see a lockdown strategy, a lockdown exit plan from the government, which so far we have not heard.
And then, he faces pressure as well from the population here that after five weeks of being in lockdown, people feeling incredibly restless. We heard yesterday from the NHS medical director here who said, look, he has seen an uptick and people getting in cars and motor vehicles on the road and he is worried about that.
Because people are looking at the numbers, and while hospitalization numbers have decreased, and there is a fantastic sign particularly in London, he says that this is not a moment. This is not the time to be going out.
And the government, of course, will be putting, looking at this, Boris Johnson, are we trying to make a decision, and it will be a colossal decision that he has to make, Anna, or whether to ease restrictions, to lift the lockdown. And I do wonder how his brush with death, his own brush with death, how that will impact his decision-making.
But from what we heard from different members of his own government in the last few days, is that the country is not there yet, asking people to really stay the course, Anna.
COREN: Yes, there was a great deal of criticism at Boris Johnson prior to him getting COVID-19 that he wasn't taking it seriously enough. SO, certainly it'd be interesting to see what measures he will be implementing. Isa Soares, as always, lovely to see you. Many thanks.
Well, still to come, the worst blow to the U.S. economy since the Great Depression. What the daunting road to recovery looks like, next.
ANNA COREN, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Welcome back. I'm Anna Coren. Let's update you on our top news this hour. The United States is quickly approaching one million cases and 55,000 coronavirus deaths.
Several states are easing state home restrictions this week going against the recommendations of health researchers and even the White House. During many of these soft openings, social distancing rules are still required. Dr. Deborah Birx of the White House Task Forces says that new normal needs to stay in place throughout this summer.
For five weeks in a row, tens of millions of workers have applied for unemployment benefits and now they're getting mixed messages from the White House about whether they'll ever get those jobs back. Take a listen to the Treasury Secretary and the White House Economic Advisor.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STEVE MNUCHIN, TREASURY SECRETARY, UNITED STATES: I think as we begin to reopen the economy in May in June, you're going to see the economy really bounce back in July, August, September. And we are putting in an unprecedented amount of fiscal relief into the economy. You're seeing trillions of dollars that's making its way into the economy. And I think this is going to have a significant impact.
KEVIN HASSETT, WHITE HOUSE ECONOMIC ADVISER: This is the biggest negative shock that our economy I think has ever seen. We're going to be looking at an unemployment rate that approaches rates that we saw during the Great Depression -- during the Great Recession.
Remember, that was the financial crisis around 2008 that we lost 8.7 million jobs and the whole thing. Right now, we're losing that many jobs about every 10 days. The next couple of months are going to look terrible. You're going to see numbers that are as bad as anything that we've ever seen. I think the unemployment rate is going to jump to a level probably around 16 percent or even higher in the next jobs report.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COREN: Well, restaurants were especially available to the economic fallout from the pandemic. They face an uncertain future even as social restrictions that begin to ease. A restauranteur in Maryland showed us what's left of his business.
SHERIF SALEM, OWNER, HOOCH AND BANTER RESTAURANT: It's a ghost town. It's depressing. It's scary. The week before Hogan announced restaurants should be shut down, our business dropped roughly 50 percent. And that's when we kind of got a little nervous. We just shut it down completely. Our bank account just got wiped out immediately.
We've been pretty much on the phone just with either the unemployment insurance or trying to figure out some grants and some loans to try to help us. And I see a lot of restaurants that are doing carry out and I think that they're doing very well with it.
You know, restaurant like our style, I don't think we'll do very well with carry out. It's all about presentation beyond the mixologist, behind the bar making cocktail. The only way that it would work is if we did create a completely new menu. Focus more of like burgers and chicken wings as opposed to filets and crab cakes.
It's depressing when I come to the restaurant and I see it the way it is right now. You know, you see all these empty seats. You see the dust collecting on the chairs and the globes. It doesn't seem very promising. There's a lot that's on our books that we need to pay up before we can even reopen. We're about two months of survival. The unknown is what's scary.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COREN: Scary indeed. Well, CNN's John Defterios joins us now for some analysis as we begin a new working and trading week. John, good to see you. The start of a tumultuous trading week certainly for oil, what is running it?
JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNN BUSINESS EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: Well, you know, it's oil linked to the lack of demand in the economy and exactly what these owners of businesses in the United States are talking about, Anna. This is a week after Black Monday when we saw oil prices in the United States dropped to negative $37.00 a barrel.
In fairness, you can call it Black April because the whole month has been a downward spiral. And there's this obsession with inventories in the United States. They crossed over a half a billion barrels of extra crude and there's no place to put it. The record was in March 2017. And we're quickly approaching it.
So if we look -- take a look at the prices now, we have WTI down by another say 11 percent. Brent was down three percent and falling even further. And most importantly, this is about less than half the price needed by U.S. producers to make a profit.
Now we have OPEC plus cuts coming into place here, the major producers where I am in the Middle East and including Russia. They're going to take about 10 million barrels off the market starting on Friday. But the drop in demand that I was talking about is roughly 30 million barrels according to the International Energy Agency in Paris.
So you see that huge glut forming. And we even have -- and we have these supertankers here in the Middle East, Anna, as you know, carrying 160 million barrels around the world because there's no storage onshore, It's been booked up now for the next two, three months.
COREN: Such an excess. Really, it's quite extraordinary. How is the oil trade impacted stock markets?
DEFTERIOS: You know, there is a break between the two. You know, you look at oil or gas, you say, OK, this is directly linked to economic depression and the drop in demand, right? And they look at the stock markets, OK, they're rising again, but there's a clear reason and that is because the central banks around the world continue to provide the liquidity.
We have this when the Bank of Japan today saying it'll buy government bonds, and there is no limit to that. We're going to hear from the U.S. Federal Reserve, and also the European Central Bank. We'll get first-quarter earnings or the GDP for the first quarter United States.
We know that's going to be terrible. We know that the second quarters going to be even worse. The real question is when do we recover in the third quarter, and is it a U shape or a W, we go up and then back down and back up again? This is a big question.
But right now, the stock markets we see Japan rising better than two and a half percent, strong gains in South Korea and Hong Kong, Shanghai just marginal gains, but still it's all up vis-a-vis the demand barometer which is oil today.
COREN: We are not off the roller coaster yet. John Defterios, I appreciate the update. Many thanks. Well, health inequality is in the midst of a pandemic. When we return, we'll take a look at the devastating toll the virus is having on people of color.
COREN: Coronavirus is taking a heavy toll on minority communities. And nowhere is that more evidence than on the faces of families who've lost a loved one. CNN's Phil Black has more.
PHIL BLACK, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: A moment of painful loneliness for one man. He's a grieving son and brother need to wait in a place that can offer no consolation for his loss. A car parked under a mosque in North London now being used to deal with the unequal consequences of COVID-19.
It's become a workshop, a busy production lot, rapidly building coffins trying to keep up with the pandemics ruthless demand. This is the confronting reality, what it really means when doctors say people of color are being disproportionately impacted by the virus. So many people in this community are dying. There aren't enough coffins for.
The carpenters ports as the body is wheeled out of a nearby mortuary roof. This is what the grieving man has been waiting for, to begin saying goodbye. The mosque is closed so he has to pray here in the car park for his mother inside that casket and his brother who lies in another just meters away. The 70-year-old woman and her 32-year-old son died a few days apart. Both had contracted at COVID-19.
Across London, in a Muslim burial ground, we see more improvisation for dealing with death on an extraordinary scale. The backlog for burials is now so low, Muslim scholars were consulted to approve these trenches. Each one excavated to hold 20 bodies. Just days later, the first is already full.
Staff in Britain's National Health Service first notice the terrible numbers of black and ethnic minority people falling to the coronavirus partly because they were losing so many of their own. Like Thomas Harvey who'd worked as a hospital carer for 20 years.
TAMIRA HARVEY, LOST FATHER TO COVID-19: It's really weird not having my dad around? It hurts every single day.
BLACK: The usually strong, healthy father of seven was isolating at home with COVID-19 symptoms when he collapsed in the bathroom. His family and police broke through the door. Paramedics work to save him. His daughter Tamyra says she'll never forget the word she heard soon after. HARVEY: When he came upstairs and he was just like, the virus has got him, like, we can't do anything else. And that was just that.
BLACK: Who said that to you.
HARVEY: One of the paramedics.
BLACK: Much of the evidence is anecdotal. But in the United Kingdom, as in the U.S., it appears undeniable. COVID-19 you devastating communities of color. While reasons are researched and debated, a greater need looms clear. Protecting vulnerable people who are experiencing a desperately unfair burden of pain and loss. Phil Black, CNN, London.
COREN: Spain is beginning to relax some of its strongest confinement regulations. Children under the age of 14 are now allowed to spend an hour outside per day after weeks of being cooped up indoors. On Sunday, the country reported its lowest number of coronavirus deaths since late March, and cases have been declining. One factor the government is easing restrictions. Scott McLean shows us what it's been like for a family under lockdown.
SCOTT MCLEAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is the moment that Alejandra Granados' family has been dreaming of. It's the kids' first time outside in six weeks. For families like theirs, locked down has been trapped inside 1,000 square feet.
Alejandro and her husband had been working from home juggling their six and three-year-old sons Alex and Andres and regretting their decision to buy an apartment and not a house. We spoke a few days before the kids were allowed out.
ALEJANDRA GRANADO, MOTHER OF TWO BOYS IN SPAIN: You feel sad because you feel trapped here at home.
MCLEAN: In Spain, adults have had some excuses to leave their homes to walk the dog, go to the store, or in some cases work. Kids have had no excuse to go out at all.
GRANADOS: Psychological, yes, I think it has a big impact for me and my family. We are always fighting and yelling each other. And sometimes at night, I cry before I go to bed because I feel a freshman myself.
MCLEAN: Stuck inside, the kids have had few outlets to burn off their energy. GRANADOS: Sometimes, I notice that Alex doesn't want to talk at all.
He just go to the room and just staring the window. And I think coronavirus is after all showing us something that we haven't seen before, that we are fragile.
MCLEAN: On Tuesday, the government promised kids some freedom. But a trip to the store with their parents was not what a restless public had in mind. Facing widespread backlash, the Health Minister agreed to allow kids under 14 to play outside for an hour a day. It doesn't seem like much but after six weeks inside, it's assigned this national nightmare might soon be over.
GRANADOS: It feels great. It feels like you got a lot of space around you. Freedom.
MCLEAN: Scott McLean, CNN, Madrid.
COREN: For more on how the lock downs are affecting children, Psychologist Wendy Walsh joins us now from Los Angeles. Wendy, great to have you with us. Tell us the toll that it is taking on children being cooped up inside isolated from the community.
WENDY WALSH, PSYCHOLOGIST: Well, I think probably the most difficult part for kids is missing on out on all the social interaction. Because play, especially make-believe play is all about social learning, right, and how they grow. But I do want to -- I want it pull, you know, parents off the worry train a bit. Because with the younger children, what they really need is a secure attachment with their primary attachment figures, their parents, so they're having a field day. The parents may be a little stressed, but things are actually very normal.
I always say a baby's home is its parents' body. And so, having parents home maybe go a long way to creating secure attachments. And I also want to remind people that middle schoolers and teenagers, they've always maintained their relationships digitally. They're far ahead of it than we are.
COREN: What does have long term psychological effects on young kids do you think?
WALSH: I don't think so. I think in fact, it's good. I think it's good to have parents who aren't so busy and aren't running out for very long workdays. I think in the long run, this is teaching families about having family dinner together every night, about doing jigsaw puzzles and playing games.
And I remind those parents who are forced to homeschool their kids that baking and decorating cookies is both a math lesson, a chemistry experiment, and an art project, OK. So don't worry of neuroplasticity. They're going to catch up (AUDIO GAP).
COREN: I'm going to have to remember that next time, Wendy, when I tried to bake with my four-year-old twin boys. It was a disaster. But I guess it's not just the kids, it's also the parents because even though it is that family time and people are definitely being more connected, they are reconnecting and when we are hearing that from our friends from each other, people are feeling frustrated as we heard in that package just before.
That mother frustrated, irritated on the verge of tears, you know, the boredom sets in. It can be an unhealthy environment.
WALSH: And it can stress the marital dyad, right? The adult romantic relationship can be under a lot of strain. You have to remember, there are two great fears here, fear of a potential health risk for you or a family member, and fear of financial ruin. And these are very weird. I call them the background drumbeat to everything we do during the day.
And I think the most important thing is to discuss these fears with your spouse. And also, this is a great opportunity to practice communication skills. My favorite little trick is called a communication sandwich. It starts out with a layer of love, followed by a layer of something a little hard to chew on, and then backed up with another layer of love.
So it starts out with a compliment, and then an ask, and then a compliment again, so that the person will stay open and hear what you're trying to say.
COREN: I'm loving this advice. Wendy, what is your advice for everyone to remain sane?
WALSH: We know this will pass. I have teenagers and college students in my house, and I tell them to journal, journal, journal, journal. Besides the fact that it's really good for your mental health, because it creates space between your emotional experience and then your eyes reading it later, but also these are important documents.
You know, people have been sending me poems, letters, and photographs from the great pandemic of 1918, and I have been devouring them with so much interest. And I really encourage everybody, young people and old people alike to document their experiences, because in many generations coming up, they will look to us and go, really, you lived through the great pandemic of 2020. Yes, we did. And we'll have lots to tell.
COREN: Yes, it is -- it's an incredible time, absolutely. Wendy Walsh, fantastic to get your insight. Thank you for that fascinating discussion and all your advice. Great to have you on the program.
WALSH: Good to see you.
COREN: And finally, an update on Captain Tom Moore, the adorable British veteran set out to raise 1,000 pounds for the National Health Service by walking laps in his garden 100 times before his 100th birthday. Well, Captain Moore has now raised over $36 million and set two Guinness World Records. One for the most money raised by a charity walked by an individual and another for being the oldest person to reach number one on the U.K. charts.
He recorded a charity single with Western star Michael Ball. Now all mail postmarked in England until May 1st will be stamped with a happy birthday greeting to Captain Moore. He turns 100 on Thursday. Happy birthday.
Well, thank you so much for joining me. I'm Anna Coren. CNN NEWSROOM continues with the lovely Rosemary Church after a very short break. Please stay with CNN.