Arlington has a long and well-deserved reputation for neighborliness. In today’s reality of Stay Home, Stay Healthy, I get calls and emails every day from residents sharing heart-warming stories of neighbors helping each other, helping local businesses, helping our healthcare organizations.
I am always grateful and proud to be your mayor, and never more than now. Many of you have contacted me to say “How can I help? Are there others who need things they cannot get?” Your spirit of neighborliness and generosity is inspiring, and I am delighted to tell you about a new resource called Give Well Local. At their site www.givewelllocal.com, you can meet a posted need, post your need, and publicly offer up resources you have available.
For information on how to support local businesses, please visit two great new sites sponsored by the Downtown Arlington Business Association at www.arlingtonwa.org/virtual and the Stilly Valley Chamber of Commerce at https://www.stillyvalleychamber.com/coronavirus-resources/
Arlington now has 50 known positive COVID-19 cases, so we know the virus is circulating here. Our country’s response to limiting the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus has caused many changes in Arlington. We are collectively practicing physical distancing. Schools and libraries are closed. Restaurants may offer to-go options only. Gatherings are banned. Sports and entertainment events are canceled. Our goal with these changes is to “flatten the curve” of how many people are infected with the virus so that we can get back to our usual activities as soon as safely possible. Already, there are early indications that staying home is helping, so I am optimistic that lives are being saved.
Your health, our collective health, is the most important thing right now. Isolating is hard, but there are plenty of opportunities for fun. Take a walk. Order take-out. Meet a neighbor’s need (from six feet away!). Read an e-book. Play with your kids. Use video chats to stay in touch with loved ones. Together, from afar, we can protect one another, and together we can thrive in this unfamiliar time. I know we all share empathy and consideration for the hardships that the disruption may cause us and our neighbors. I encourage people to practice compassion during this time, and to make self-care a priority as well.
At the city of Arlington website, we have compiled a comprehensive list of resources for you and your family as we wait out this virus. There are business resource links, free e-clinic links, links to closures, and resources from federal, state and county agencies. Please visit www.arlingtonwa.gov/coronavirus to access these resources. We have taken many steps at the city to protect our staff and the public. We are restricting access to our buildings, we are canceling meetings, and we are encouraging our staff to work from home when possible.