CHARLESTON, W.V. (WOWK) – A new executive order is now in place for a total of six different West Virginia counties.
Kanawha, Monongalia and Harrison counties are now on stiff restrictions. It matches the one given two nights ago for Berkeley, Jefferson and Morgan counties when community spread coronavirus created clusters of contamination.
To put it succinctly, social distancing is working – but not enough.
“This is an extra tightening of those already put in place restrictions, making them tighter to protect the public,” says Dr. Sherri Young, D.O. with the Kanawha County Health Department.
The new order states essential businesses must only allow two people per one-thousand square feet in their stores.
“The businesses will be accountable for notifying the public of the limited number within their store, and posting it in at least five places, and having one entrance in and out of the area so they can maintain the number of people that are available within that area,” says Dr. Young.
Those who have tested positive for COVID-19 must quarantine.
If those people need assistance, do not go out in public. Dial 2-1-1.
“They can get assistance with food, arrange for medications to be picked up, and any other necessities while this stay at home order is in place,” says Dr. Young.
A lot of uncertainty and a lot of change is happening for West Virginia families.
“If you look too far down, it’s overwhelming,” says Betsy Shaak, a West Virginia mother of three. “It’s too much. So instead, we focus on today.”
Shaak has one child in high school, and two college kids. She says her family copes with this time of self-isolation by simply being there for each other.
“I cannot meet the needs of my children, if my needs are not met. Each one of us needs to identify ‘what gives me life right now?’ and then make sure you do it,” says Shaak. “And don’t feel selfish or guilty, because like I said, you can’t pour into other people if you’re not pouring into yourself.”
Shaak says it is important at this time to make your mental, emotional, and physical health a priority; and be patient and understanding when it comes to your family.
“As well as giving yourself a pass, give the kids a pass, because they’re dealing and struggling with a lot right now. They’re dealing with grief, they’re dealing with loss,” said Shaak.
And of course, as hard as it can be sometimes, stay positive.
“In the winter time, everything seems dead,” said Shaak. “But we know that something’s happening underneath. The spring flowers are gonna come forth and grow. So we relate that to right now. Things seem really hard right now, but even in the midst of that, we know God is working in it.”