Letter to the Editor: Strict quarantine measures — painful but necessary

We are at a critical turning point for the health and safety of Cordova. In the coming weeks, the commercial fishing season will begin. Hundreds of seasonal workers will arrive in town, and Cordova will be one of the first Alaskan fishing communities to be made highly susceptible to the COVID-19 pandemic. While this influx of people is important to the town’s economy, it endangers the lives of our high-risk community members. This is not an exaggeration; this is the science of epidemiology.

Strict travel restrictions will save lives, but I understand that they will come with complications for the city and economy of Cordova. This is a challenging problem to solve, but I hope that those making decisions for the community value the safety of our citizens over economic gain. I believe that enacting travel restrictions and strong quarantine measures to reduce the risk to Cordova citizens is a must, and the time for action is now.

Furthermore, I do not believe that the safety of our community must come at the cost of a successful fishing season. I am proud of the fishery we have and of our management and use of our incredible natural resource. I want to see our harvest and tradition continue this season, but not at the cost of our community’s health and safety.

We are a resilient community. We protect, support, and value each other. I have no doubt that we can come together to find creative solutions to the economic trials that will follow. I urge the Cordova City Council to take responsibility for their fellow community members and continue to make decisions with the health and safety of our community as the highest priority.

Angelina Kelly
Cordova

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