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Op-Ed: Thank you to essential service workers & volunteers in Peace River – Westlock



Dear Editor,


These past few weeks have confirmed the world is now a different place. The coronavirus pandemic has changed the day-to-day routine for residents in Peace River – Westlock and for all Canadians.


I would like to take this opportunity to first thank the extraordinary doctors, nurses and other health care providers in our riding, as well as emergency services personnel who are doing exceptional work to keep us all healthy and safe. I would also like to recognize the work of our farm families, foodbank staff, grocery store clerks, pharmacy and drug store staff, truck drivers, and other essential services who are doing extremely important work in these times of uncertainty.


I also want to thank the businesses and individuals who have stepped forward to help others in their communities. Businesses like West of the 5th who have started creating hand sanitizer for local medical staff and those in need. Or the La Crete organizers of window teddy bear hunts for families. Or those getting groceries for neighbours in isolation. Just a few of the many examples of our communities coming together to keep one another safe and lift each other’s spirits.


It has been a long few weeks, but now is not the time to be complacent. We have to remain vigilant in physical distancing to keep our most vulnerable citizens safe. That means no visits with extended family, no playdates, and no social gatherings. Please stay home, except for essential grocery store or pharmacy runs. Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly for 20 seconds. Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth. And finally, keep home surfaces like counters, door knobs and electronics clean.


I would like to remind residents to visit canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan for the most up-to-date information on COVID-19, as well as the federal government’s response to the crisis. With questions or concerns on this information, please contact my office at 1-800-667-8450 or arnold.viersen@parl.gc.ca.


If you have any fears about your health or feel you have symptoms of COVID-19, contact your family physician or your local health unit. You may also contact your provincial COVID-19 hotline at 811.


We’re in this together, and together we’ll get through.




Arnold Viersen, MP

Peace River – Westlock