Jeramey Jannene

Resist Spring Fever

Practice social distancing, avoid leaving home when possible.

By - Apr 3rd, 2020 05:52 pm
A closed playground at Humboldt Park. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

A closed playground at Humboldt Park. Photo by Jeramey Jannene.

Despite the fact that the weather outside will improve in the coming days, Milwaukee officials would like you to continue to stay home whenever possible.

“Our trend in COVID-19 cases continues steadily upward,” said Milwaukee County medical services director Dr. Ben Weston during a Friday afternoon media briefing. “The high rates of COVID-19 cases that we are seeing should concern every single member of our community.” There are now 1,023 confirmed cases in the county.

Milwaukee County Parks is taking steps to add signage to the 113 playgrounds at its parks. They’re closed, as individuals touching them could unwittingly spread the disease, even though the parks themselves aren’t.

“Typically you think of Milwaukee County Parks as a department of fun, and normally we are,” said director Guy Smith.

For now, basketball courts and soccer fields are closed, no futsal games can be played, no one should use picnic tables and fitness equipment is off limits.

Smith said the parks department has placed signage at the playgrounds and will be adding bilingual signage and more informational signage.

“Hiking, walking, running and birding, those are allowed,” said Smith. Biking is also allowed under the state’s “safer at home” order.

“Social distancing, or more particularly physical distancing, is absolutely required,” said Smith. “You must keep yourself six feet from another person.”

“We don’t want to be in a situation like other cities and states that have had to entirely close their parks,” he added.

“We know that it is nice outside, that you’ve been waiting for spring,” added Milwaukee Health Commissioner Jeanette Kowalik. She said people of all ages need to practice physical distancing to prevent the health crisis from getting worse. Kowalik mentioned that the disease doesn’t just affect old people, an infant in Connecticut recently passed away after contracting the disease.

Urban Milwaukee captured the signage at Humboldt Park in Bay View. Police line caution tape had also been added to all of the playgrounds and fitness equipment.

Mayor Tom Barrett said the city plans to follow suit at its 62 city-owned parks. “We put out signage and we can put out tape if the signs are not being followed,” said the Mayor.

Why is it so important to practice social distancing? “The best projections we have right now assume 1,000 deaths just in Wisconsin,” said Weston. “And that number includes strict social distancing.”

“There is no cure, there is no vaccine,” the physician said, “and there is no vaccine that appears to be coming right around the corner.”

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Categories: Health

One thought on “Resist Spring Fever”

  1. Janet Holzhauer says:

    “Hiking, walking, running and birding, those are allowed,” said Smith. Biking is also allowed under the state’s “safer at home” order.

    Why was this not emphasized in the lead-in? Social isolation is also a cause of stress, and stress can lead to infection.

    Normally you do incredible work, but as a nurse, I feel that this was a misstep. thank you.

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