Welcome back blog readers,
Scientists and Medical Health Professionals/Experts that have studied and researched infectious diseases and viruses are sharing their advice and tips on how to protect ourselves and each other.
I’m taking advice from, the experts who are at the top of their field. Not social media, not religious groups and certainly not those who feel that this pandemic doesn’t apply to them. COVID-19 applies to all of us.
There is not a single country that is prepared for a pandemic that is a new strain that doesn’t have a cure or vaccine at this time. This virus is spreading rapidly, so fast that hospitals and testing facilities can’t meet the demand.
I have read several comments on social media, people are worried and concerned. I’d say that’s a healthy and normal reaction to this situation. Within reason of course. This is unknown territory for everyone.
There are not enough hospital beds, doctors, nurses, test kits, ventilators for every person. The testing facilities are backlogged and processing as many tests as quickly/accurately as they can. It’s not that your doctor or your local hospital doesn’t want to test you, they either don’t have the test available or perhaps they are screening those that ARE showing symptoms or those that know they have been in contact with someone that had tested positive. The tests may also be reserved for those working the front line to ensure the quality and safety of the patients they are caring for.
Yes, I understand, we all want peace of mind. Until adequate tests are made available, it’s best to assume that we are all carriers because there is no way to confirm every single person at this time.
That is why social distancing is so important. Assume everyone you encounter is infected, they are thinking the same about you; try not to take it personally. Do your best to stay at least 6 feet/3 meters away from them. Cough/sneeze into your elbow, or into a tissue and dispose of it properly, then wash your hands properly. Most importantly, STAY HOME.
While many businesses, schools, gatherings, events, and non-essential services are closed; the post office, grocery stores, and essential services are still open, for now. To ensure they remain open, we all need to eat and restock, it is essential that we all self-isolate and only go out when it is absolutely necessary.
I know, pandemics are such a drag, right. This one comes along and tries to ruin Spring Break and other really cool plans that we had booked months ago. All we want to do is enjoy life, spend time with our friends and have a good time. We don’t feel sick and we’re so bored being confined to our homes.
Here’s an idea! How about you watch the movies Outbreak and Contagion to visually grasp why you should STAY HOME!!!!!!!! While you’re at it, stop coming into the stores and coughing on produce for your own shits and giggles. Stop coming into the stores because you’re bored and want something to do. These stupid internet challenges have got to stop. Nobody is going to think that you’re cool because you’ve filmed yourself licking a toilet seat or threatened to cough on an elderly lady.
These are my thoughts and opinions, nothing more. I encourage you to think for yourself, do your own research and hope that you act with integrity.
As to no bombard social media with any more COVID-19 related posts, I will edit/update this one should I feel the need to vent about it in the future.
**** Edit/Update**** Sunday, April 12th
Last night I stumbled across a post on our community page (Facebook). One member of the community shared his opinion that the Big Box (non-local) retail stores should open 24/7 in order to accommodate the customer needs. In his opinion, doing so would alleviate the long lines outside as many stores are limiting the number of people that can be inside at one time (including associates). It is also his opinion that having the stores open 24/7 would create more jobs (during this crisis) and more workers mean less stress overall.
In theory, (without the worldwide pandemic) this might be a good idea for retail stores that serve a larger population, like Toronto, Ottawa, Boston, NY City.
Here is my opinion on this matter (as retail associate) in a small-town community.
1. Under normal circumstances, our small-town community doesn’t have the demand for 24/7 retail shopping. In fact, most stores in the shopping plaza are closed by 8pm or earlier on Sunday. Our store typically closed at 10pm but has changed to close at 8pm temporarily to allow the staff more time to clean/sanitize and stock without customers in the store.
2. Trust me when I say we are hiring. New associates have started but all positions have not been filled. So while people are demanding that stores open 24/7, we can’t even fill the regular positions, nevermind the hypothetical overnight positions that need to be created in order for customers to shop. Yes, there is already an overnight crew that works 11pm-7am for the sole purpose of stocking and receiving any shipments that come in during that time. They also work very hard to clean/sanitize before the store opens at 7am.
3. Allowing the stores to be open 24/7 would create more jobs, however, these temporary jobs are just that, temporary. Those filling the overnight position (hypothetically) would be laid off once the pandemic is over as those positions would no longer be needed once the store returns to their regular hours. As I mentioned previously, people are too scared to even fill the regular day shifts, nevermind the overnight shifts.
4. If home office and the CDC and WHO thought the best idea would be to allow more time to shop, they would not have suggested us to STAY HOME and only shop for ESSENTIALS. Stores would not have reduced their hours in the first place. While I understand the logic, it’s not the safest plan of action for EVERYONE.
This logic only serves the customers and offers them the convenience of shopping anytime because shopping now has become a nuisance.
There are many customers that are grateful to those of us making the sacrifice to show up to work. They only shop for essentials, they wait patiently in line outside and again to check out, they come in one at a time and wear a mask, they follow the signs in the aisles that show them which way to go and where to wait. To those customers, THANK YOU!
There are customers that still can’t/won’t follow the signs and move through the aisle in the wrong direction, they don’t wear a mask, they bring their whole family (single parent not included) into the store, they are not buying essentials, they are browsing taking their sweet time touching everything, blocking the aisles and chit-chatting with no regard to anyone around them because the world clearly revolves around them. To those customers, STAY HOME and start taking this seriously.
You will be the reason store close to the public and you will force the rest of us to shop online/pick up only. Many people have a hard time planning ahead, portioning/rationing their food to last one week, never mind two weeks. When this happens we will have no choice but to plan ahead, create meal plans, portion control, make large meals to freeze for later and stretch out the limited resources from paycheck to paycheck.
Stop taking things for granted, stop making demands (hiring more staff when you yourself are unwilling to apply for those jobs). Stop being so selfish and try thinking about more than just yourself. Right now there is no one that is immune; if you aren’t COVID+ you are likely asymptomatic ( a carrier that is infecting others) That is why it is so important to wear a mask in public.
Have you stopped to consider that your selfishness might be the cause an outbreak happens in the retail stores? You infected an associate, that infects other associates, the stores can’t fill positions as it is and the store is forced to close for 2 weeks? No online pick-up, CLOSED FOR 2 WEEKS. Let that sink in.