Commentary: Delaware needs to work together to beat COVID-19

By A.J. Schall Jr.

Delaware is one large community that has shown its compassion over the last month. My heart goes out to those that have suffered through the illness, death of a loved one, loss of a job, canceling of a wedding, dealing with the anxiety of when you will reopen your business, or one of many other ways the coronavirus has impacted you.

What I do know is that Delaware needs to be engaged and synergized to beat COVID-19.

Most likely you have sat on a three-legged stool that has wobbled. Now is not the time for Delaware to wobble. We need to be strong.

Everyone in Delaware needs to be aligned, and each of us has a place in at least one of the legs of the stool.

A.J. Schall

The first leg is the citizens. We need to stay home, practice good hygiene, protect and help your neighbors and those that may be immune-compromised. Find a way to volunteer virtually, help the elderly, or assist one of the many great non-profits doing good work across the state with a donation if you are able.

The second leg is the health care system. I have seen firsthand how great these individuals are, from the compassion they show to the public to the assistance they are ready to lend to their partners across the region. They are heroes. The citizens need to follow the advice of the Public Health experts. By flattening the curve, we allow the health care system to adjust and provide the best care to those that need it the most.

The third leg is government at all levels. This begins with the pre-hospital EMS providers in the fire departments that I have proudly served with, and goes on to include paramedics, law enforcement, corrections, and 911 partners that are reporting to work every day to continue to serve the citizens. Our municipalities and counties are an integral part too as they have essential services they continue to provide, and they will be the ears for their constituents and provide the vision needed to bring calmness to crisis.

The state has been working diligently since January to prepare us for all the unknowns. The state will continue to coordinate across all levels of government, including our federal partners, to help guide us through these tough times, but we cannot do it alone.

This is a spiritual week for multiple religions. I ask that people take the needed precautions and follow all the stay-home and social-distancing guidance as they turn to their faith and families.

The next few weeks will not be spring like we usually know it, but we need all of Delaware to make sure the three-legged stool doesn’t wobble.

We are in this together.

A.J. Schall Jr. is director of Delaware Emergency Management Agency