Opinion: Here's What Needs to be Done
The serious struggle continues with COVID-19
On March 16,2020 Pennsylvanians lives changed drastically. More than two weeks ago, Governor Wolf asked all of us to stay home, practice social distancing, and make efforts not to overwhelm our medical system. He asked us to do so to stop the spread of COVID-19. Have people been listening? Not as well as they should.
When people go to the stores, most of us are not practicing social distancing rules. A lot of people still give high-fives and handshakes to each other, many people are still congregating in groups and acting like they are invincible. What people need to realize is the numbers are showing us the exact opposite. As of March 30, 2020 there are now 4,843 positive cases of COVID-19 in Pennsylvania. It has now hit my home county of Erie and infected Congressman Mike Kelly. The spread has now continued beyond Erie, it has hit Crawford county with its first cases now reported.
So what should we be doing? Governor Wolf should take much stricter action, he should stop asking nicely for people to obey social distancing, he should take measures to close the state of Pennsylvania and its borders.
All Pennsylvanians need to take COVID-19 more seriously because statistics show that 50% of the positive cases in Pennsylvania are in the 19-49 age group, and 47% of positive cases in the 50+ age group. These statistics were found on the Pennsylvania Department of Health website.
What else do people that think COVID-19 is a joke need to realize? There are people around you who are forced to go to work because they are considered essential employees by the government, most of whom are risking their lives to try to keep all of us healthy and safe. These are the people that will be trying desperately to save all of us if we do not do better to stop the spread of this virus.
If you are looking for something constructive to do during the isolation period, start thinking of ways that you can help in the fight instead of making fun of it. For example, Gannon University is using 3D printers to make face shields, why not call Gannon and ask how you can help and say thank you for a job well done.
But the biggest thing people can do to help is to simply stay home, cherish the time with your family and loved ones because if COVID-19 is not stopped I guarantee everyone will feel the effects of it and those effects will not be good ones.
Everyone who can: Stay home.
I myself am a person who does not have the luxury of practicing social distancing because of their physical disability which requires contact from their Direct Care Workers (DCWs) in order to carry out basic living tasks. Every day my workers and I are risking our health in an effort just to get me to function. There is nothing more as an employer that I would rather do than give my employees the chance to stay home and spend time with their families which many Pennsylvanians are looking at as a joke. It's not a joke, it could save your life.
Who needs to stay home? Everyone!
Tanya Teglo can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.