As much of the U.S. adjusts to social distancing and shelter in place guidelines, our first responders and healthcare workers continue to fight on the frontlines of COVID-19. Every day these heroes are showing up to serve their communities- while knowingly putting themselves at risk of exposure.
Our frontline heroes are used to risk—it comes with the job—but these are extraordinary times. In many areas, their facilities are short on personal protective equipment (PPE); and a number of them have made the choice to self-isolate while working in order to protect their families.
And yet, every day they continue to help those in need, no matter how many people arrive to the ER, dial the advice line or call in distress. In hard-hit cities like New York and Detroit, police officers are working double shifts in their communities to cover colleagues who’ve gotten sick or have had to self-quarantine. First responders and volunteer departments are working hard to improve systems and protocols to stay ahead of the anticipated increase in calls. Nurses and other healthcare workers are coming out of retirement to help meet the increasing patient needs in hospitals.
Above and Beyond the Call of Duty
On top of it all, some are even finding ways to connect with their community, bringing comfort, joy, and positivity to an anxious public:
- Firefighters in Massachusetts, Missouri, Indiana and elsewhere are recording themselves reading stories and posting them online for parents to share with their kids.
- A West Virginia nurse is keeping her community’s spirits up by hosting cake giveaways.
- Peace officers in Utah organized child care services for and by families of first responders.
- Alabama firefighters are making sure kids’ birthdays aren’t forgotten. They’re driving their firetruck to lucky children’s homes and turning on the sirens and lights to celebrate.
- As a way to spread positivity, an ICU nurse started a Facebook group dedicated to sharing found or handmade rainbows.
- Police officers across the country are reaching out to their youngest community members online by hosting art projects, reading them stories and even giving singing lessons.
We rely on our frontline heroes every day—to keep us safe, to protect us, to care for us when we’re sick. There’s no better way to thank them for their service and sacrifice than to do our part in helping keep them safe and healthy.
By following local guidelines around social distancing (or shelter in place, depending on your location) you can help “flatten the curve”—which means reducing the spread of infections and, by extension, the pressure on healthcare workers and first responders.
Take time to send a (socially distant) thank you to the nurses, peace officers, firefighters, and other emergency personnel.
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