Jody LaMacchia is a candidate for House Representative in Michigan's 46th district: Addison Twp, Brandon Twp, Orion Twp, Oxford Twp, and a portion of Oakland Charter Twp.
Hello friends and neighbors,
The landscape of our lives has changed so dramatically and so quickly. All of our schools have been shutdown and little by little our small slice of heaven in north Oakland (and everywhere really) is temporarily closing up shop as Governor Whitmer will announce today at 3 p.m. the closure of all bars and restaurants, movie theaters, performance venues, casinos, gyms and spas. Carry out and delivery services will still be available for the time being. She has also expanded unemployment benefits including to those who need to care for a sick loved one, first responders who get sick and those with compromised immune systems amidst the outbreak. I applaud the Governor for taking swift and decisive action in the face of this global pandemic. The business community is stepping up to the plate, too, as evidenced by Consumer’s Energy and DTE Energy halting shutoff notices to low-income customers during the outbreak. We are in this together and we do better always as a community and a country when we join forces, row in the same direction and support one another.
The first and best line of defense against this virus is social distancing. Our team has taken this directive very seriously. We are halting all campaign events for the foreseeable future. I will remain in touch virtually and we are trying to be creative about ways to stay engaged with our community and the campaign. Personally, I have cancelled my annual spring break trip to see my mom. I don’t want to inadvertently expose her or spread this virus around. We talk every day. I’ve convinced her to stay home and she has continued to be active gardening, reading and entertaining herself with her cat, Cato, and her wildlife friends (ducks, butterflies and a squirrel) who come to visit her every day. The woman is a real-life Cinderella. I have set her up with a grocery delivery service and we shop together (she tells me what she needs and I order it for her). She is 89 but as tough as nails and I feel confident that if she continues to self- quarantine, she will be ok.
I know so many of you are worried about your employment, how you will pay your bills, how your small businesses will survive this not to mention those of you with little to no healthcare being worried about the costs of the tests and treatment. I am hopeful that pending legislation in the U.S. Congress and our own state government will lighten the burden on individuals, including coverage for wage loss and ensuring that folks are able to get healthcare related to the coronavirus at no cost. There are also resources available through the Small Business Association (SBA) Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) to small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, and private nonprofit organizations in Michigan that have sustained substantial economic harm due to COVID-19. The national SBA hotline is 1-800-659-2955. Our local Michigan Small Business Administration office in Detroit can be reached at 313-226-6075.
Even if you do not think you are at risk, it is not necessarily about you. It is about us, as a community, working together to flatten the curve and stop the spread of this disease, to keep our seniors and immune-compromised friends and family safe. Flattening the curve NOW will save many lives. I know that in District 46, we care about our community and our neighbors. Wash your hands, sanitize well-used surfaces often, socially distance, stay home if you are able. We will get through this.