C.D.C. Calls On Schools to Reopen, Downplaying Coronavirus Risks

WASHINGTON — The nation’s top public health agency issued a full-throated call to reopen schools in a statement that aligned with President Trump’s pressure on communities, listing numerous benefits of being in school and downplaying the potential health risks.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published the statement, along with new “resources and tools,” Thursday evening, two weeks after Mr. Trump criticized its earlier recommendations on school reopenings as “very tough and expensive.” His words ratcheted up what was already an anguished national debate over how soon students and teachers should return to classrooms.

“Reopening schools creates opportunity to invest in the education, well-being, and future of one of America’s greatest assets — our children — while taking every precaution to protect students, teachers, staff and all their families,” the agency’s new statement said.

Mr. Trump, pummeled with criticism over his handling of the pandemic, sees reopening the nation’s

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C.D.C. Data Shows U.S. Coronavirus Infections Much Higher Than Reported

The number of people infected with the coronavirus in different parts of the United States was anywhere from two to 13 times higher than the reported rates for those regions, according to data released Tuesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The findings suggest that large numbers of people who did not have symptoms or did not seek medical care may have kept the virus circulating in their communities.

The study indicates that even the hardest-hit area in the study — New York City, where nearly one in four people has been exposed to the virus — is nowhere near achieving herd immunity, the level of exposure at which the virus would stop spreading in a particular city or region. Experts believe 60 percent of people in an area would need to have been exposed to the coronavirus to reach herd immunity.

The analysis, based on antibody tests,

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States Must Standardize Coronavirus Data, Former C.D.C. Director Says

As criticism of the Trump administration’s response to the coronavirus pandemic intensifies, a former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Tuesday called on state health officials to start reporting coronavirus data in a detailed and uniform fashion, rather than the disorganized hodgepodge most states now produce.

Other public health experts said that such guidelines were long overdue and that the agency’s current director, Dr. Robert Redfield, should have mandated them months ago.

The lack of clear C.D.C. guidance — even on simple issues like data collection — was an example of the administration’s ineptitude and ineffective leadership in the face of a growing crisis, experts said.

“We have a real vacuum of leadership at the national level,” said Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, the former C.D.C. director, who now runs Resolve to Save Lives, a nonprofit health advocacy initiative.

“Absent a national strategy, our best hope is

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C.D.C. Employees Ask Agency to Address ‘Racism and Discrimination’

More than 1,000 employees of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have signed a letter calling for the agency to address “a pervasive and toxic culture of racial aggressions, bullying and marginalization” against Black employees.

The letter, a copy of which was obtained by The New York Times, was first reported by National Public Radio on Monday. It was sent to Dr. Robert R. Redfield, the director of the C.D.C., on June 30.

“After decades of well-meaning, yet underfunded, diversity and inclusion efforts, we have seen scant progress in addressing the very real challenges Black employees experience at C.D.C.,” the letter said, pointing to a “lack of inclusion in the agency’s senior ranks” and “ongoing and recurring acts of racism and discrimination.”

The letter comes as the C.D.C. is confronting the most urgent public health emergency in its 74-year history. The federal response to the coronavirus pandemic has been

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