LOADING

Type to search

Dear Decaturish – Gov. Kemp, why should I volunteer to help if you won’t mandate masks?

COVID-19 Editor's Pick Metro ATL

Dear Decaturish – Gov. Kemp, why should I volunteer to help if you won’t mandate masks?

FILE PHOTO USED FOR ILLUSTRATION PURPOSES: Pearson Collins wears a protective mask while sitting outdoors in DeKalb County on April 18, 2020. Photo by Dean Hesse.
Share

 

We accept letters to the editor. Letters to the editor are opinions of the authors of the letter, not Decaturish.com. Everyone has an equal opportunity to submit a letter to the editor. So if you read something here and don’t like it, don’t jump on our case. Write a letter of your own. All letters must be signed. We reserve the right to edit letters for length and content. To send your letter to the editor, email it to editor@decaturish.com

Dear Decaturish,

This letter is specifically addressed to Gov. Brian Kemp.

I am preparing to fill out a form, but as I sit here debating its submission, I want to share my thoughts with you.

I am in a difficult position; you see…I am a nurse.  I am not the nurse who is on the front lines, exhausted and suffering from PTSD after putting patient after patient in body bags and acting as a proxy for their loved ones as they died.  I am the nurse who left scrubs behind for a consulting career, wheeling suitcases instead of stretchers.   When COVID hit our world, my job turned to remotely helping hospitals develop contingency plans, backlogs of elective cases, and procuring supplies and staff.

Not being affiliated with a hospital, I signed up to volunteer with the Dekalb County Medical Reserve Corp.  This was not new to me as I was a member of the GA DMAT medical teams during Katrina and 9/11, ready to serve if called.   Throughout this Spring, we were never called upon—it seemed that the sheltering in place and essential travel restrictions were working.

Now my conundrum:  this week I received notification that our state needs my help—but my situation has changed.  You see, my 94-year-old father in law moved in with us after losing his wife to COVID in a Massachusetts memory care home.  If I submit this form, I am potentially exposing my family to COVID.  If I do not, I am forgoing my oath to serve human welfare and abandoning my community, which feels unconscionable.

The lack of a mask mandate is an untenable position.  Its absence is responsible for this situation…this spike in cases and death…the shortages of PPE, and unprecedented occupancy rates of ICUs in the entire state.  This was all preventable.

While we cannot legislate morality, we can begin to change culture by hardwiring process, which is exactly what a mask mandate, and subsequent fines, would have done.  Our ‘rights’ should be balanced with our responsibilities to community—something that is often overlooked.  This pandemic is unprecedented in our lifetime and so is the work it will take to mitigate the virus… which includes wearing a mask.  This could have been so simple.

So tell me, sir.  What would you do in my position?  Do I risk my family’s lives or leave my fellow nurses without help caring for a terrified and vulnerable state?

….Do I push ‘submit?’

Painfully,

CJ Levine

 

Decaturish.com is working to keep your community informed about coronavirus, also known as COVID-19. All of our coverage on this topic can be found at Decaturishscrubs.com. If you appreciate our work on this story, please become a paying supporter. For as little as $3 a month, you can help us keep you in the loop about what your community is doing to stop the spread of COVID-19. To become a supporter, click here

Want Decaturish delivered to your inbox every day? Sign up for our free newsletter by clicking here

 

Decaturish needs your support!

Help us provide you with free, quality local news. Become a Decaturish.com supporter today

To chip in $3 a month, click here.

To chip in $6 a month, click here.

To chip in $60 a year, click here.
* Decaturish.com is not a 501-c-3 organization. Support of Decaturish goes toward our newsgathering efforts. Decaturish does not have a print edition.
close-link