Monday, March 9, 2020

Coronavirus Contradiction

Tonight, Gossips learned the reason Tuesday night's Planning Board meeting was canceled: fear that gathering a large number of people in one room could facilitate the spread of the coronavirus.

Also tonight, someone at the Common Council meeting suggested the City needed to hold a meeting--in a large venue such as the auditorium at Montgomery C. Smith--to gather the citizens of Hudson together and educate them about the coronavirus. Council president Tom DePietro responded, reasonably, "Why? To spread the virus?" Alderman Tiffany Garriga (Second Ward) thought it was a good idea and opined that such meetings should be held in every ward. At that point, I left, to go home and wash my hands.

All the available information about the coronavirus can be found on the City of Hudson website. Click here and scroll down to "Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information Resources." There you will find links to FAQs and other guidance and information about the virus, which you can access without fear of exposure to the virus.


  1. Isn't it best to err on the side of caution? Aren't any of the boards able to teleconference? Postponements rather than unnecessary exposure? The internet is loaded with CDC advice as it is. Are meetings really necessary? I've heard about the don't bother with masks but I have to wonder why Europe and China (where they should know a thing or 2) masks are worn everywhere. Is it really due to the sold out status and not that they're not helpful? Very troubling. This country should be doing better in this regard to protect us. Likewise, the lack of wipes and gel disinfectants at retailers around here is alarming.

  2. It is my humble opinion that bringing this meeting and all of the city officials’ fears of this virus to MC Smith elementary school with such young kids taught there is a very, very bad idea. You will just be transferring this fear (and virus?)to others, and parents will react very badly. The kids will feel the fear as well. I understand the issue of having meetings in all the wards and it is a GREAT one but let this virus all settle out first. But don’t use other people’s venues when you don’t want to use yours. I live part of the year in Hong Kong and that is where I am right now. We are currently staying home most of the time, fully masked all of the time and we have all been doing the WiFi handshake for months. HK is a shell of itself and the streets are mostly empty. As I tell my family, it has been a 2 month snow day here, and you know how it feels after 2 days of a blizzard! It can drive you nuts. But we have been through SARS before and so we are used to this kind of health fright. Our Community here is tight and committed. And believe me, everyone here is still frightened. HK is on the mend though while the USA seems to be just best is to impose strict standards on yourselves to start with, take care of your health, nutrition and sleep (be careful what surfaces you touch) and above all keep an eye on loved family and friends who might be more vulnerable than you. Wear mask cuz if you start sneezing somewhere it isn’t fair. WASH WASH WASH your hands. Also, given the nature of our political system in the US, identify a reliable “point of truth” and follow their advice. Know with certainty what you should do if you feel at all exposed to the virus or are ill. Out here there are few “points of truth” as well, so we have in place the best plan, in writing, that we could put together from all the bad and good reporting, should we feel ill. As a friend said last night to us (by phone!) life has changed permanently here in HK. And it certainly feels that way. We pray that Hudson never gets to this point.

  3. The Coronavirus pandemic and recent exchange at the common council meeting exposes Hudson's lagging technology strategy to communicate in a timely manner with its residents and the greater Hudson community. A modest investment in an email service provider (Mailchimp - about $99/mo) and SMS provider would enable the Mayor's office to get important and timely updates and announcements directly to any subscribers using a smartphone.

    This has been long overdue in Hudson, and frankly there's no excuse not have this in place.