Note: The following letter to the editor was written by Hellertown mayor David Heintzelman in response to the current coronavirus pandemic that is affecting the U.S.
In today’s uncharted waters we must learn to rely on ourselves, our community and our government. The sad part of these three truths is that not everyone is on the same page. We went from hearing about a virus in another country to not embracing the chance that it would come here, and now that it is here, it seems to have no end.
There is self-inflicted chaos that’s caused hoarding of essentials and rationing of certain products. We truly are better than that! Because of these uncertainties we have been asked to use extreme caution, stay at home and if we go out, to distance ourselves from others.
There are guidelines in place from the federal, state and local authorities for a reason. Please follow them.
The Borough has in place rules and regulations for a reason, but there is still judgment to be exercised by individuals with regard to them. Dimmick Park, for example, is a place where children can unwind and reduce their energy levels on the playground. Signage is placed at all locations stating facts. We cannot monitor every inch of the borough, so you should use these facilities at your own risk. I personally wish everyone would stay away from areas that could be contaminated or have a potential risk factor. Parenting is very much necessary to explain the ramifications if strict rules are not taken seriously.
I hope what we’re going through has given everyone a chance to understand that each day is a gift; a gift to be used wisely. It has also tested our patience, be it with spouses or children who are not on the same page. I also believe and hope this has brought our community closer. When one hurts, we all hurt!
I am a very positive person, but there are things that we as a community need to know. We don’t have a pulse on the outcome of this virus. The realization is that regardless of whether you get the virus or not, we are all affected by it in one way or another. The hospitality industry and other industries are all affected; probably more than what is being shared. Many of us live paycheck to paycheck. Please support all the local retailers–many of them are our neighbors–as much as possible.
As a borough, we are taking all precautions necessary and will adhere to the stringent verbiage when necessary. I truly appreciate all the Police, EMS, EMT and health professionals who have placed themselves in harm’s way for our community. We must applaud them for all their efforts in dealing with this crisis.
Finally, I want everyone to know we will get through this like our forefathers got through the Great Depression. It will not be an easy road, but together we can conquer it and be stronger than ever. Please use good judgment in your decisions. I thank God for giving us strength to battle forward to help our fellow man/woman through this difficult time. Remember: believing in ourselves and each other are the first steps of fighting this battle and winning!
Mayor David Heintzelman