Statement from Mayor Victor Cumming on the ongoing COVID-19 situation

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On behalf of Council, I would like to take a moment to thank you – our citizens. Thank you to those who have taken this current health situation seriously and for dramatically adjusting your lives in order to help care for yourselves, your families, your neighbours, and our community as a whole.

We are currently facing an extremely unusual situation. We have not seen a global health event of this scale in more than 100 years, with the influenza pandemic of 1918. This current event is significant.

Federal and provincial health authorities have been clear over the last few days – our window to contain the spread of COVID-19 in Canada is narrow and quickly closing. This is why the City of Vernon and so many others are taking immediate and serious action. The City’s Administration is diligently monitoring the situation and has taken intentional steps to reduce the spread of infection in City facilities, promote safe and healthy practices for the public and our employees, and ensure City services are maintained in order to support you, our citizens. 

Following announcements by the federal and provincial governments, the City is reviewing its operations and making necessary changes to continue essential community services, while also providing safe spaces for our residents, visitors and employees. The changes will be announced as soon as they’re ready to be implemented.

Up to this point, a lot of work has been done to contain the spread of the virus, but we can’t stop here. I urge you to continue following the directions of health authorities to practice sound hygiene techniques, wash your hands often, stay home if you are sick, and practice social distancing. But also, stay connected with one another.

As the Prime Minister said today, keep talking to family, friends and neighbours. Call them, write them, check on them regularly. Let’s support each other and remember that we all have people we care about who could be seriously impacted.

As we move forward, I encourage you to stay active, stay socially engaged, and find new and creative ways to interact. We’re still in this together.