From the Executive Director: Tammi Morris
With the arrival of the first positive cases of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Pennsylvania and Maryland, I wanted to personally reach out and inform you of the current position York Habitat for Humanity has taken for the safety and health of our team members and volunteers.
I, like many of you have attempted to weed through the almost panicked and numerous reports and to balance that with common-science-sense as we move through the next days and weeks! I heard a report recently that said, if we had the same media-coverage and reported on the number of deaths annually from the common flu, as we have seen with the corona virus, the general public would be responding the same way. Many of the concerns are because of the unknowns of this virus. While the fatality numbers are low, any death that can be prevented is sad loss. So it is better to err on the side of caution.
Many of you know Habitat is a volunteer driven organization that gathers thousands of people each year at our Habitat build sites and events. Our local affiliate partners with organizations, schools, businesses and churches locally and all across the United States.
If you have ever been on a Habitat site you know first hand, we take the health and safety of all our volunteers very seriously. You are precious to us! This is no different than protecting you from a work-site injury, but does require different precautions.
NON-LOCAL GROUPS CANCELLED
That being said, we have cancelled any planned groups coming from out of the South-Central Pennsylvania Region, for the next thirty days. This is simply a precautionary measure to help ensure we and they are not unknowingly exposed or exposing each other to the virus. Rescheduling will occur for those groups willing and able to do so, at a later date.
LOCAL GROUPS NOT CANCELLED
Local groups that are currently scheduled will not be cancelled at this time. Our build sites remain open and no changes are being made at this time. As we monitor this situation, we will make changes if deemed necessary. We believe that since these gatherings are generally small with no more than 12-15 people, they present no serious risk to you or your loved ones health if you are not considered at-risk.
That said,if you are in a higher risk group with an auto-immune disease, chronic heart or respiratory illnesses or are diabetic, please follow the CDC's recommendation for social distancing. Your health and safety is what matters most to us!
Business as Usual
The York Habitat for Humanity operations will be business as usual, unless/until a change is deemed necessary and beneficial. We will continue to monitor the national and state health guidance on this matter.
From all of us at York Habitat for Humanity, we pray for your continued health and safety. Thank you for all you do to help build safe, affordable,healthy housing to the most vulnerable among us! Please do not hesitate to contact us, if you have any questions!