Covid-19 has turned us upside down.
Beginning as a health concern; it has now exploded into a vast number of devastating issues. A little more than one month into the stay home order, we now have many additional somber concerns.
Unemployment has soared; 320,000 weekly unemployment claims for Wisconsin and rising. Members of our community wonder if they can put food on their table, keep a roof over their head. How many Wisconsin family farmers can we afford to lose? How many vacant buildings will there be as small businesses are not able to survive.
There are a number of other consequences, depression, suicide, domestic abuse, unable to go into clinics/hospitals for cancer treatments and other serious procedures. What will be the cost of these?
The health concern is a serious one. For Wisconsin: over 85,000 tested, 10% were positive, of the positive tests 95% recovered. Sadly, 340 loved ones have been lost. (approx. figures DHS website). My heart goes out to those who have lost loved ones.
But this cannot be about one issue any longer! It easy to say Stay Healthy, Stay Home. But if you can’t afford food, it’s easier said than done.
For health care workers, Open Wisconsin doesn’t seem right. We cannot afford to be so singled minded. Some health care workers are disheartened/ disappointed that others wish to open Wisconsin. Many farmers and small business owners/employees may have felt the same way when the stay at home orders were extended another four weeks.
It seems right now, the health care issue rules the news. We should see equal coverage on all the effects of Covid-19. The “stay at home” ads reflect good, stable, loving homes. Sadly, this is not the picture for everyone who has been forced to lose their job and stay home.
Focus restrictions for the vulnerable and our hot spots and start to release restrictions so that Wisconsin can begin to open. Other stores could operate in the same manner as the grocery stores and home repair stores, using capacity guidelines and social distancing.
We need more than a plan with a cute name, moving at a snail’s pace before this becomes a Badger Blunder.
City of Verona