Councilors encourage kindness and community amid COVID-19

JACKSON, Wyo. — Town councilors had few decisions to make after the state signed an Emergency Health Order that accomplishes just what the town’s emergency ordinance would have

Instead, councilors repealed a previously-approved emergency ordinance that gatherings of 250 or more (that number is down to 50 now), and spent the better part of the hour talking about how individuals in this community can help.

“We’re doing all we can here as a local government, and hats off to all our staff for knocking yourselves out,” said councilor Jonathan Schechter. “But we need individual actions, and common sense… We should try to do all we can as individuals to come out as well as possible.”

Those actions include socially isolating as much as possible — “I encourage every single one of us to act as if we have COVID-19 and don’t have symptoms,” Mayor Pete Muldoon said — but also include performing acts of kindness wherever you can.

Muldoon said he recognized the financial strain the emergency order will put on many people, especially in the service industry. The most tangible thing to do, he said, is to donate to the Community Foundation and One 22s’ emergency funds, which will help “struggling workers who are being laid-off en-mass now.”

He also strongly urged local landlords to allow leeway to tenants who might be struggling. There’s never a good time to be homeless, he said, but this is about as bad as it gets.

People who want to help can also donate any excess goods (too much toilet paper or hand sanitizer, perhaps?) to the Jackson Cupboard. Call to arrange a dropoff. Hole Food Rescue is also collecting donations from restaurants and grocers who might have more than they can sell. JHFoodHelp.com offers a comprehensive list of food assistance programs.

“It’s our time to come together,” Muldoon said. “Not physically, but through kindness and good deeds.”

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