Mayor Buckley: Statement On Corona Virus Situation

March 15, 2020

HORNELL, NY – From Mayor John Buckley:

The City of Hornell, like all communities across the State, country, and globe is facing the challenge of a pandemic with the Coronavirus (COVID19). At a time like this, it’s important to stay proactive and informed, as the situation is ever changing and evolving, but it’s also important not to panic, foster panic or create hysteria.

I have been in frequent contact and coordination with several State and County representatives as well as local physicians, community leaders and department heads to ensure our City provides the most appropriate responses and works to mitigate risks to all in our community related to COVID-19. School Superintendent Jeremy Palotti and St. James CEO Bryan O’Donovan will join me at the Common Council meeting tomorrow (3/16/20) to address and update the public. It’s important to me that you know the City of Hornell is taking this situation seriously, but calmly and rationally, as we work to prepare and provide our community services. Our City Fire and Police Departments are informed and prepared to respond appropriately.

With the closings of schools, college campuses, travel and gathering restrictions, and the cancelation of our beloved St Patrick’s Day parade, it’s easy to fall prey to anxiety and panic. It’s also easy to get swept up in the hysteria when you see the runs on the grocery stores of toilet paper, disinfecting wipes, soaps and hand sanitizer. I’m asking you to be prepared, but not panicked.

Certainly, buy what you need, but hoarding or “stocking up” creates disruption in supply lines and production capacity. It’s important to recognize that your own safety and the safety of all is best kept when all can be prepared and disinfect appropriately.

Hoarding reduces that capability and is harmful to the community.

The social distancing recommended is a known beneficial response that has shown to be effective in containing the spread of COVID-19. I ask that you please follow the recommendations put in place by the CDC and work together as we get through this challenging time. The cost to the individual can be great with canceled vacations, missed family gatherings, and disrupted routines and work schedules. I know it’s frustrating and difficult. I know this situation will likely appear to get worse before it gets better, but please know that with following these recommendations and practicing good hygiene, we will get through this with hopefully the least amount of disruption.

The sanitary precautions we are taking now should be a regular practice. Contagious viruses are not a new trend. It’s important to remember Influenza also remains a risk to our community at this time and these universal precautions go a long way to keep us safe from all of these risks. The concern with COVID-19 is its novel nature, serious effect on those compromised and spreadable nature.

It’s important we embrace what makes Hornell so special. Please be cognizant of the needs of others. Take care and be mindful of those most at risk (anyone over the age of 60 or compromised). If you have a fever, cough, sneezing or sore throat, please stay home, practice good hygiene and keep isolated. Check in on your loved ones and keep up to date on the latest recommendations. Please don’t overwhelm the health care system unless medically necessary and remember we are all in this together and we will all get through this together. We have top notch community service providers here to keep us safe, phenomenal medical care and most of all a resilient and compassionate community.

Don’t be paralyzed by fear, but stay vigilant. Thank you and God bless!