TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV)– Mayor Duke Bennett and other community leaders are encourage the public to adhere to the the governor’s orders and stay at home for the next 10-14 days.
They have come together in full support Governor Eric Holcomb’s “IN This Together” campaign, which urges the public to stay home and maintain social distancing to combat the coronavirus pandemic.
Mayor Bennett said staying home and protecting yourself and those around you should be top priority.
“If you don’t need to go somewhere, just don’t go somewhere. We understand that people want to get out and go walk in the park,” he said. “You got to go to the grocery store. You have to go to the doctor. You have to go to work, if you’re an essential business. But we want people to stop and think about ‘Do I really need to do this?’ and probably the answer in most cases can be ‘No. I can hold off on this.”
According to the Terre Haute Police Department, they’ve seen a decrease in calls for service and reports, in comparison to March 2019.
Sgt. Ryan Adamson said he believes the governor’s stay at home order could be a factor in the decrease.
“We had 721 reports last year during that time frame. This year we’e had 534. So we’re almost 200 reports less and that’s less than a month. Last year again from March 18th until April 7th, we had 3,079 calls for service. This year we’re at 2,055,” he said.
Although they have not had to break up any large non-essential gatherings, Adamson said there are consequences for those who are caught in violation.
“You can be cited for it. We hope that it doesn’t get there. We hope that if people are gathering in large groups, that we can get them to disperse without taking any kind of action.,” he said. “At the end of the day, we’re not going out and looking to write tickets or looking to write reports on people gathering we hope that everyone does it because it’s the right thing to do. “
Kristin Craig , the President of the Terre Haute Chamber of Commerce, said the message is clear.
“This is when we’re really going to start to see an influx in cases according to what we’ve heard from all of our local medical experts,” she said. “So, this is the time for everybody to really stay home and maintain that social distancing. And truly step up and be part of the solution. It will help save lives. It’ll help support the business community. It will help everyone.”
Craig emphasized that’s it better to be safe than sorry.
“You never know who you’re going to run into on a daily basis. It could be a healthcare worker who is providing care for elderly in nursing homes. It could be someone who is working in the hospitals, it could be a valuable support team member. It could be anyone. So do it for everyone. It’s not just for you it’s for everyone around you.”