The more we find out about COVID-19, the more contagious it reveals itself to be, with its effects ranging from respiratory failure to strokes and its symptoms from headaches to loss of smell or taste and the possibility of mutations. There is increasing evidence that staying six feet apart is relevant only when outside in fresh air. Indoors, with limited air circulation, 6 feet back is probably not enough.
At the same time, the more we live with the effects of COVID-19, the more people are scared, frustrated and stir crazy. Some protesters call COVID-19 a “hoax” and say that it’s time to go back to “normal” living even though ordinary routines can put all people at risk – you, your loved ones and family, your neighbors. In one case, it is thought that one person who behaved “normally” was responsible for a 2,000% increase in cases in their community.
Widespread testing and robust “contact tracing” initiatives are our best hope for containing this virus while being able to go about our daily lives. Unfortunately, our country is still nowhere near able to implement these life-saving programs at the necessary scale.
Ready or not, however, state governments are beginning to answer protesters’ demands by reopening communities.
What are the facts and what is best for YOU?
The places and events most prone to outbreaks?
- Meat packing warehouses
- Birthday parties/funerals/weddings
- Work places and business networking
- Indoor sports events
Enclosed spaces with a lot of people spending a long time together have the highest risk for spreading COVID-19. Read more about the risk of certain settings here.
So how do we balance the need to reopen and go back to work, versus the risk of many more people getting sick and some of those sick people dying?
The best option is a phased reopening plan, bolstered by testing, contact tracing, social distancing, and state and federal programs supplying financial and practical incentives to businesses and individuals. These programs and initiatives are still in their earliest stages. And while some states have good plans, they are relying on individuals and businesses to comply with regulations that are currently unenforceable.
How can you protect yourself and your loved ones in the meantime?
- Check both state and local safety guidelines for reopening and do your best to follow the recommendations, whether as a small business owner or employee.
- Continue to limit grocery and other essential shopping as much as possible, and keep social interactions outdoors as much as possible while keeping a 6 ft distance.
- If you feel unsafe going back to work, check out our previous blog post about what reopening means for workers here.
We have numerous other resources on our website to help you in this difficult time. Whether you need housing and bill assistance, to find your nearest food pantry or want to learn to get involved with mutual aid or volunteering, we’re here to help.
Yours in Strength,
The Take Back Control Team