By RODNEY TANAKA, Gardena City Council
As I was taking my morning neighborhood walk, the absence of traffic, people and the sheer silence of the morning reminded me how seriously the COVID-19 pandemic has affected our communities, the county, the state and the nation.
It is surely taking a toll on all of us and is definitely having a negative impact on our economic status, resources, schools, transportation, public safety and emergency medical services. It has caused stress, uncertainty, panic and financial worries among families and businesses. Having no work due to shelter-in-place and businesses not having staff to continue staying open, all are frightened and unsure of what lies ahead.
Well, as a council member for the City of Gardena, I can tell you that we in the City of Gardena are committed to our citizens and community, insuring that all essential services will continue throughout this pandemic.
The Police Department has made strategic plans on how manpower is being used to best serve the community with the highest levels of service, while still remaining safe as they serve. The Police Station is closed but there are essential personnel inside to help you. 911 services will continue to answer calls and send needed resources as deemed necessary. Should you need service, call the station for information regarding your need for help and you will be assisted.
The Recreation and Human Services Department has limited staffing and essential personnel are continuing to assure that our seniors and shut-in residents are receiving assistance. Meals on Wheels continues delivery operation and hygiene supplies are being delivered daily to those in need.
Schools continue to remain closed and meals are still available at various schools in the county. Peary Middle School in Gardena passes out meals on 162nd Street curbside to students in the morning.
City Transportation through G-Trans bus lines continues to operate on a modified schedule and fares have been waived during the pandemic. Social distancing is practiced on all buses and is visually marked for convenience. Bus operators have requested passengers enter buses from rear doors. Handicapped will be assisted as needed.
There are many ways to stay up-to-date on the COVID-19 pandemic. The following are some of the locations you can use to follow the city, county, state and nation as we weather the storm of this worldwide virus.
Lastly, for the sake of those that are seriously affected by this virus, those 65+, those with pre-existing issues, asthma, and diminished immune systems, please practice “Safer at Home” and shelter in place.
Don’t go out unless you need supplies, are helping someone in need or have medical issues. Remember, if you don’t go out, you won’t be exposed to the virus; thus there is no chance of contracting COVID-19.
However, if you are out and about without a care about this virus and contract it, you not only are putting yourself in jeopardy but you will also be putting those you come into contact with at risk. So please practice social distancing of six feet, wear a mask if you have access to them, wash hands for 20 seconds and often, use hand sanitizer, and don’t touch your face.
Just use common sense and stay home. The life you save may be that of a loved one.
Remain safe and God bless.