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Montgomery Place seeks residents’ wisdom during this time OF COVID-19 Dear Friends and Family, Is it over? Today, the City of Chicago moved to Phase 3 of its COVID-19 recovery plan. The trains and buses resumed service after five days of protests and looting. Sidewalk dining has begun. Stores that could opened. You can get a haircut! So is it over? No. It is not over. Yes, in Illinois and in Cook County the rate of positive cases declines. This is good news! We still are in a fragile balance zone. This article in The New York Times graphically shows the States with increasing caseloads. Nearly all had lulls and then the number of their cases increased. Right now, there are a few things in our favor which might help us keep Illinois’ caseload lower. Outside is the best place to be. Documented cluster infections are traced primarily to indoor venues, instead of outdoor venues. And increased testing capacity may help us identify cases prior to someone who is a carrier exposing many others to COVID-19. These two advantages also can tease us into a sense of false security. Being outdoors does not mean you can forgo face masks and social distancing. Increased availability of testing does not help if we choose not to be tested. Yes, protests seem to be winding down. Our underlying root challenges, however, still exist. Summer (at least historically in Chicago) creates more opportunities for interactions with police. No. It is not over. We may not be able to solve the challenges of COVID-19 or racial tensions with police, but we can do our part to move closer to resolutions. First, let’s stay alive long enough to have a vaccine. Keep wearing your mask and practice the advice given by the infectious disease experts. Second, please share your stories with today’s youth to help guide them to become part of the reform process we all so desperately need. Today, Alderman Leslie Hairston asked the seniors in our Ward to create written or video stories of their involvement in the civil rights movement, the women’s rights movement and all others taken during the last 60 years that address social injustice. Will you please share your stories so I can forward them to her? Someday, it will be over. Please call me to discuss your ideas and concerns at any time. My mobile phone number is 773-617-1317. Our stories bring us together.

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