The Racine City Public Health Department Moves Into Next Phase of Safer Racine

City of Racine –  Dottie-Kay Bowersox, Public Health Administrator for the City of Racine, has provided the first round of revisions to the Safer Racine ordinance that was passed June 22nd. Revisions follow an evaluation, revision, and release date of July 09, 2020. In keeping with that timeline, revisions to the ordinance have been made and will go in effect immediately. The next evaluation and potential revisions to the Safer Racine ordinance can be expected on or around July 31st.

Since March 2020, the City of Racine has identified more than 1,500 COVID-19 cases. Over 1,200 of those cases were identified since May 1st. Local and state public health policies have minimized community transmission and lead to significant decreases in the spread of the virus. Within the last 14 days, the daily percentage of total tests returning positive has been approximately 10 percent; public health staff have been able notify positive cases within a 48hrs; supplies of PPE are more accessible; and health care resources continue to remain stable.

The updated Safer Racine plan includes modifications to rules for long term care facilities, daycares, indoor recreational facilities, pools, zoos, mass gatherings, and other venues.

Copies of the updated “Safer Racine” plan can be found here: https://www.racinecoronavirus.org/reopening/

With the release of the updated plan, Racine Public Health Administrator Dottie-Kay Bowersox issued the following statement:

“There is no doubt that the necessary policies taken to limit the spread of the disease have caused adverse fiscal and day-to-day living challenges for Racine businesses and residents. The COVID-19 pandemic has also, without a doubt, presented our Health Care and Public Health experts with an unprecedented challenge not experienced in over a century (1918 Influenza).

Every resident and employer must continue do their part to slow the spread of the disease. COVID-19 remains a highly infectious disease, regardless of pre-existing health conditions and age. This requires us to aggressively adhere to social distancing, practice proper hand hygiene, employ disinfection best practices, utilize face coverings, and limit interactions with large groups. The updates to Safer Racine can only be sustained if the metrics are moving in the right direction (e.g. fewer positive cases and fewer hospitalizations). Safer Racine affirms that we have an opportunity to safely reopen and pursue the arduous journey of reinvigorating our local economy.

Restrictions have been loosened to the benefit of all, but can quickly result in more harm than good. Individual residents and businesses choosing not to engage in a unified response will only put our community in danger. A rapid rise in cases, and associated hospitalizations, will easily shatter our fragile success up to this point.  We will also most certainly experience more outbreaks at businesses or gatherings. Those outbreaks will close businesses, prevent future community events, and put employees out of work.  Frivolously wasting the sacrifices made by our community will be devastating and exhaust what little energy we may still have left to give in the pursuit of containing a second wave.

At this moment, Racine can either meet this challenge or buckle under the pressure of opportunity. Let it be through our own actions that we are allowed to remain witnesses, not careless victims, to the seemly enduring nature of COVID-19 pandemic. Stay Safe Racine.”

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