LtE bug

Letter: Alberta needs a balanced COVID approach

Like many Albertans, I am getting more and more impatient, disenfranchised and de-sensitized by Premier Jason Kenny, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, et al.

In December, we had significant restrictions imposed on us, with commitments that if certain “numbers” were achieved, we would see them withdrawn by mid-January. We’ve not only “achieved” them, we’ve blown them out of the water. And yet, no restaurants are opened, fitness facilities are closed, kids sports are shutdown, family and friends aren’t allowed in our homes. Small relaxing has been announced but, only if we’re “good” and the plan won’t see a return to early Decembers’ freedoms until April or May. Hospitalizations down to 150 province-wide?

Hinshaw needs to see “the numbers down” even further and explains that to us in daily briefings, until the fight is won? For the past 10 years, our Red Deer hospital operated at, or over, capacity over 80 per cent of the time. People needing catheterizations being transferred to Edmonton or Calgary, many not making it home. Promises from the last three political parties in power, sure but, to date, nothing has changed. That’s somehow OK?

Kenny is worried about 2,000 lost jobs due to the TC Energy pipeline, horrible news. The ones he can do something about is the 100,000-plus real jobs being risked as thousands of small businesses are having to seriously consider closing, declaring bankruptcy. I’m personally involved in one so I do know what I’m talking about. Many can’t just continue to wait and won’t be able to reopen.

Covid-19 is horrible, I get it, we get it. There needs to be science-based balance. Hinshaw has one priority, stop Covid-19. Hers’ apparently is not to consider the damage her recommendations might cause, that’s up to the elected officials. We need to have all health aspects carefully considered, without more cool catch phrases like, “We’re all in this together.” We aren’t. all in this the same. Some are losing their businesses, their homes, their dreams and their relationships. Some haven’t missed a pay cheque, have seen crazy overtime opportunities, have the opportunity to socialize daily with co-workers. I don’t begrudge any of them, we absolutely need our nurses, our teachers, our firefighters, our police officers, emergency services and many others. There are heroes everywhere.

There is going to be another new variant and more vaccine delays before this is done. Political popularity and finger-pointing, bashing by the media, etc can’t continue to be the priority considerations. Financial, mental, social and physical health all have to be considered and balanced in all decisions. We aren’t seeing that from any level of government in my opinion.

Vernon Cey, Red Deer

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