Our Greatest Generation

As companies shutter and the economy grinds to a halt, many thousands of Americans willing to expose themselves to danger to keep the rest of us going are working on the front lines of this pandemic crisis. These people who comprise our best defense to contain and mitigate this epidemic and the social and economic challenges it brings, also face the highest risk of becoming infected themselves. According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 50 percent of people (222 of 445) exposed to confirmed COVID-19 cases as of February 26 were health care personnel. This trend has accelerated in the past weeks and months, as workers increasingly come into contact with patients and customers with COVID-19 and the shortages of masks and other personal protective equipment (PPE) has worsened.

How do we support and protect these Heroes—which includes not just physicians but also nurses, emergency responders, food service workers, interpreters, and so many more? Some companies recognize the necessity for such employees and the weight of their workload. Target, for example, announced Friday that it was boosting pay for its store employees by $2 an hour until at least May 2. Los Angeles-based UFCW Local 770 President John Grant who represents 20,000 grocery workers in several counties in California said, “I’m filled with so much respect for the sacrifice and heroism, there's almost no one as vulnerable or exposed to the virus," said Grant, pointing out that every supermarket food item has an untold number of hands-on it through the wholesale and retail process. These markets are holding our communities together."

Of course companies and organizations must encourage their workers to take appropriate isolation precautions and supply them with proper personal protective gear. But more importantly, we can be as considerate and appreciative as possible. Wash your hands on a regular basis and wear gloves and a mask, not just to keep yourself from becoming infected, but to keep from infecting anyone else, particularly these heroes who we need so much! Now in this time of such great uncertainty, when our children, many out of school, underfoot and watching the news, must be wondering what kind of world we live in, it is important that we help them to understand the importance of sacrifice and giving that is so important to our society. History tells us of the Greatest Generation, those who sacrificed for our freedom during World War II, in these troubled times, when it is incumbent upon all of us to give of ourselves to save this planet, make sure your children recognize the example of sacrifice these heroes offer, for them and your children may just be “Our” Greatest Generation!

To help talk to your child about the importance of the heroes in our community during the COVID-19 crisis, we created a gallery of books and toys to use. Click here.

Author: Brave Ulysses

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Comments (1 Response)

23 March, 2020

Dee Lupinski

Last night while sitting at my desk, a fire truck went by, lights flashing but no siren, Then another and another. I could see by the lights that they had stopped on our block. I live on a small block so we take notice of such things. I went out in the rain to see what was happening. I know we are supposed to shelter in place but we also need to be there for our neighbors.
Outside I met a fireman, one of those heroes still serving our community and asked him what was happening. He told me, someone was cooking a chicken! I noted that with this Pandemic I guess a lot of people are starting to cook. He laughed and said, come to think of it, there has been a lot of these lately!

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