Joint Message from Kimberley Mayor Don McCormick and Brian Sondergaard, President of the Kimberley & District Chamber of Commerce

March 17, 2020

The developing situation with COVD-19 continues to build a sense of unease. We thought it would be a good time to share some information with you and reassure people in Kimberley that we will get through this anxious time.

McCormick emphasizes being both positive and cautious. “We live in the best place in the world to weather this health event. We know that keeping clear and level heads is very important. We also know that seniors and anyone with underlying health conditions are at particular risk; we need to keep these populations safe. If you have travelled abroad, you must quarantine yourself for the recommended 14 days. Please refrain from visiting friends or relatives in care homes.”

Hygiene is the key to a successful outcome. Wash hands regularly, preferably with soap and water or with 70% alcohol or higher hand sanitizer. Practice appropriate social distancing and avoid touching your face. Although the World Health Organization says more than 80% of COVID-19 infections will be mild, paying attention to hygiene recommendations prevents spread and will help keep our vulnerable populations healthy.

Sondergaard advises against the panic shopping that has left some grocery and other store’s shelves bare over the weekend. “The supply chain is not broken; trucks will be coming in on schedule to restock those shelves. Hoarding is not necessary. You must focus on hygiene, but you can still support local business. This will be resolved but we need our business community to survive it as well.”

This is difficult time for our local shops, and restaurants – most of whom remain open. They are taking extra measures to ensure their businesses are safe for patrons. Our Provincial Public Health Officer is encouraging us to visit and support them.

We also ask that you keep an eye out for neighbors. Reach out to see if they need something picked up or need help of any kind. We are all in this together and we will get through this together. It is also a good time to support the Food Bank.

A final word from McCormick: “This is a rapidly changing situation and it would be a mistake to minimize things. Stay informed, stay calm and be supportive…we will successfully ride this out.”