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Hi, this is Mayor John Hamilton. It's Monday, April 6th, and I just wanted to reach out to the community as a whole, give you an update, and thank you so much for all that you're doing.

We are still in the middle of a pandemic as you know with coronavirus, and that is present substantially in our community. The Governor has extended the state of emergency for two more weeks at least. I would not be surprised if he does it for longer, into late this month, and perhaps beyond that. The importance of physical distancing and staying at home cannot be emphasized too much to help reduce the virus from spreading. We've had a couple of employees already in city government be confirmed cases, a firefighter and a parks department, and many others in the community. Being able to stay at home when you can and always to physical distance from others is so important.

Don't go to work if you're sick. We know there are a lot of essential workers who are working. We thank them, whether they're at the hospital or the grocery store or the pharmacy, whether it's a city employee, a police officer, fire department, sanitation worker, many others, transit worker, fixing potholes, construction workers, all of them helping make the community continue to work. But we also know that most of us should as we can stay home under the order of the Governor. Only go out for essential purposes. So thank you for doing that. It will save lives. It will protect our healthcare system.

A couple of other updates I think might be helpful. You know the CDC changed its recommendations probably on face masks, and we are embracing that to encourage everyone to use a face mask. Not the medical masks reserved for our healthcare workers in those critical situations, but homemade masks or cloth coverings. These are really ways that you who may be infectious without having any symptoms are protecting everyone around you as you go out. So that is encouraged now, directed as a good practice. There are many volunteers making hundreds of masks. We thank them like so many volunteers doing so many good things. That's important. We encourage you to use a mask now.

There are people helping deliver food to the hungry. There are people helping create housing for the homeless. There are many things happening both inside government and outside government. There's multi-million dollar supports coming, we hope, from City Council shortly to help support small businesses and their employees, nonprofits, arts, others. All these are steps we're taking both to protect our health and to help the community be in a position to support us as we move forward.

Things are going to get tougher before they get better, but we know we will get through this. There will be a tomorrow, and we're trying to prepare ourselves so that we can get there as well as we can, frankly, and appreciate all you're doing for that.

I try to communicate regularly to City Council once a week. There's a Friday afternoon press conference with a number of my colleagues. I'm on the radio. I'm happy to get your questions too through our office. You also can call 211. If you are feeling stressed or worried about your reactions and feelings these days, they can help steer you to some support. There's a great website called Helping Bloomington Monroe, and you can go to there, Helping Bloomington Monroe, all one word. They can also steer you towards some resources.

We all need each other. Please take care of each other, your neighbors, your family, your community. Do the right thing, stay at home where you can, physical distance. Reach out if you have any questions. Again, we're going to get through it. These are going to be challenging weeks, but we will come out, Bloomington, and I want you to take care of each other and take care of Bloomington. John Hamilton again thanking you and looking forward to talking again soon. Stay well.

 

 

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