March 24, 2020
MILBANK, S.D.–South Dakota cities big and small are dealing with the current COVID-19 pandemic, and taking steps within their communities to slow the spread of the sometimes deadly virus.
In Milbank, the city council met this week to discussion the situation there. Below is an e-mail sent out by Mayor Pat Raffety on what’s being asked of citizens of the Grant County seat:
The Milbank City Council held an emergency meeting Monday to discuss the COVID-19 virus situation in our community and surrounding area. While we still do not have a confirmed case here, there are confirmed cases in counties surrounding ours.
South Dakota Governor Noem this afternoon released an executive order containing guidelines for citizens, businesses, and municipalities. The guidelines that most affect our community are as follows:
Continue to practice social distancing. The best way to explain this is, 1 infected person becomes 2, 2 becomes 4, 4 becomes 8 and so on. It is extremely imperative that we practice social distancing to slow down the spread, so we do not overwhelm our health care system.
Restrict gatherings of 10 or more people. No exceptions.
Continued personal hygiene. Wash your hands frequently with soap for a minimum of 20 seconds, use hand sanitizer when available.
If you are sick, please call your health care professional. You must call ahead so the medical staff can be prepared for your arrival; we must be vigilant about protecting their health as much as our own.
As a result of the items listed, I would respectfully request that every business owner carefully evaluate the validity of keeping their business open or partially open. In particular, I would request that restaurants and bars, if you have not already done so, restrict the use inside your establishments. Consider carry-out, curbside delivery or home delivery. The Council and I are very concerned about the health and well-being of our community and its citizens. We also understand how the hardships of these actions will affect your business long-term, however we must be diligent in our protection of the entire community.