Health Unit issues warnings about rallies
Grey Bruce Medical Officer of Health Dr Ian Arra at the Black History Cairn in Owen Sound
The Grey Bruce Health Unit is recognizing that some people may want to organize rallies or marches in the wake of what's currently happening south of the border and have issued a warning as well as some guidelines.
While there have been a couple of Facebook events popping up trying to rally support for marches in Owen Sound, city hall is endorsing the one we reported on earlier this week - taking a knee at the Black History Cairn in Harrison Park - as an activity that gets the message across but also allows for current health restrictions due to Covid-19.
Here is the release from the health unit ~
Racism is a Public Health issue.
Racism, in its many forms, profoundly impacts the health and wellbeing of individuals, families and communities.
We recognize that, at this time, people may want to gather to march and express themselves with respect to supporting efforts to end racism.
The Grey Bruce Health Unit has the responsibility to identify risk associated with any public health threat, including COVID-19. We remind people that gatherings increase the risk of transmission of disease.
In light of the of COVID-19 pandemic, the Grey Bruce Health Unit recommends other virtual forms of participation such as signing petitions, donating to groups, and learning more about racism and how to address it.
If you must participate in any local rallies, please be mindful that COVID-19 is still with us. Those considering taking part in gatherings are urged to do so responsibly by taking steps to keep as safe as possible to reduce the risk of transmission:
If you are sick or have any symptoms, please stay home
Spread out; maintain physical distancing of at least two metres when possible
Wear a cloth face mask at all times
Bring hand sanitizer with you and also wash your hands upon returning home
Avoid touching your face
Consider alternatives to yelling and shouting to avoid spreading droplets
Clean any materials that you carried during the march
If you are more susceptible to serious complications should you contract COVID-19 (e.g. older adult, have chronic illnesses or are immunocompromised), reconsider the need to be present in a large crowd; perhaps find alternative means to participate, such as virtually.
Social media and virtual protests remain the safest way to have your voice heard.
Those living with a vulnerable person in their household, should also consider participating virtually.
As always, while COVID-19 is circulating in the community, monitor yourself for symptoms and if any symptoms develop, get tested right away.
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