Caring During Coronavirus
As I sit to write this week’s Village Manager’s Blog, my reality is more surreal than most Friday afternoons. By now you’ll likely have read that our Village Hall office operations and Glencoe Golf Club will close to the public on Monday, March 16 for at least a week, maybe more. A lot of staff will work from home. Schools, libraries, park facilities – in Glencoe and all around us – are either closed already or closing. Operations are quickly shifting at healthcare facilities. Sports venues (not to mention entire leagues) are shut down. Theatres – both here at home and across the country – are dark. College campuses are empty, and grocery store shelves are getting that way too. Remote work and social distancing are the focus. Even the happiest place on earth, Walt Disney World, is shut down (to the deep sadness of my four-year-old, since our spring break trip was cancelled).
For me at least, it feels a bit like we’re in a strange dream. Only it’s not a dream. It’s a rapidly changing reality brought on by our national, state, county and local response to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.
I want to reassure you that here in Glencoe, the Village government is doing everything possible to continue providing the services you rely upon. We are a 365/24/7 operation and we’ll stay that way. Police, fire, and EMS first responders will be there for you when needed. Other important Village functions like operation of our water treatment plant and maintenance of our sanitary and storm sewers will remain under the watchful eye of our excellent Public Works employees. Even our office staff will still be there to you to assist, even if they’re not sitting behind their desk while doing so. We will rotate staff, manage schedules, work from home when and where possible, and keep the Village functioning through this unknown set of circumstances. So, when everything around you seems like it’s not working like it usually does, know that an important thing hasn’t changed – the Village will still provide you the services that preserve your safety and well-being within our ability to do so.
Each of you has a role in this too. Listening and adhering to guidelines set forth by public health professionals is the civic role we each play in times such as these. Practicing social distancing. Reasonably purchasing what your family needs from the grocery store. Checking in on neighbors that might need a helping hand. You will surely adjust work schedules, think differently about when and where you go out, and consider the needs of your family. Afterall, this is a 365/24/7 operation for you too.
My point in all this? We absolutely have to look out for each other.
If you don’t follow me on Twitter (you should BTW – my handle is @philkiraly), you might have missed a Tweet I shared earlier this week. I‘ve included it here:
As we continue to work together through the coming days and weeks, let’s keep focus on the things that make us a community. Being there for one another. Service to one another. Realizing our shared humanity. When things like what we’re experiencing happen, that commitment to the fact that we’re in this together will help a lot. I know it helps me.
The Village is here for you if you need us. The best part is, I know you’re all here for us too.