Mayor Junie White Issues Statement on COVID-19 Response in Spartanburg

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Mayor Junie White has released a statement regarding the latest COVID-19 developments in Spartanburg. He urges social distancing in response to the coronavirus crisis.

My fellow Spartanburg residents,

As our community navigates the trying and uncertain days ahead, I want to speak directly and plainly about your City’s efforts to limit the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in Spartanburg and to reassure you that these efforts are part of a broader strategy that requires all of us as individuals to do what we can to limit the damage this virus can do to our city, our state, our country, and our planet. Much of this will have already been communicated to you in various ways, but I believe it is important to share it comprehensively with our residents here as well.

As any changes occur, we will be sharing that information widely and compiling it on our website at www.cityofspartanburg.org/coronavirus.

In recent days, we at the City have taken the proactive steps of closing all of our indoor recreation facilities for regular use, canceling or postponing all City events until May 10, and instituting changes that will maintain the consistency of service we owe to our residents while allowing our employees more flexibility to take care of themselves and their families during this uniquely difficult and uncertain time. While all of our essential City services will continue as usual, these changes were not made lightly, and indeed there is much we do not yet know about the ultimate course this pandemic will take in Spartanburg and what steps may need to be taken as this fluid situation progresses.

However, that uncertainty cannot become the reason for inaction now. This event is unlike anything our city has faced before, and when faced with an unprecedented crisis, it is incumbent on all of us to seek out the best information available to confront that crisis.

In this case, the best information is clear and unambiguous: reducing person-to-person contact is the best method we have to stop the spread of COVID-19. Healthcare professionals at every level are in universal agreement on this fact. Social distancing measures, while often burdensome and stressful for the individual, are the most important actions you and I can take on a personal level to promote the greater good. Your actions right now will have an enormous impact on those you love, your neighbors, and the larger community.

In concert with new regulations from Governor McMaster restricting dine-in service at restaurants and bars, I’m asking all of our residents to please take the following steps to reduce person-to-person contact.

• For City business, take advantage of our online payment options and contact City personnel by email or phone instead of doing business in-person.
• Use our HeySpartanburg! mobile app or our website contact form to submit requests for service.
• Take advantage of any work-from-home options available to you.
• Buy essentials online, take advantage of local delivery options, or shop during hours when stores are less crowded.
• Do not gather in groups larger than 10 if at all avoidable.
• Keep a distance of at least six feet from others at all times when in public.

The seriousness of these recommendations is a reflection of the seriousness of the crisis they are meant to mitigate, and while some may question the need for these kinds of drastic changes in their personal behavior, the consequences of inaction are laid bare for us in the headlines we all have seen from communities around the world that have been devastated by COVID-19.

Spartanburg is dynamic and proud city, and our residents understand fully the importance of sacrifice and community. We will face and overcome this crisis the same way we tackle our other challenges, united in purpose and with a clear vision of the city we all want for ourselves and for our families. I want to thank each of you for doing your part to help us end this crisis and for showing the rest of the world the strength of our community.

Sincerely,

Junie White