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Montgomery Place underscores responsibilities of living in community during this time of COVID-19

Dear Friends and Family,

One of the things I enjoy most about working with residents and staff at Montgomery Place is their independence of mind and spirit. Residents are not afraid to present challenges to us. They are full of ideas and help us reach solutions that are for the good of the community, not just the few. These last weeks, I’ve heard from some through email and phone calls, but I do miss the hallway conversations and shared ideas in passing that usually occur during wine and cheese events or town hall meetings.

As I have helped with recent deliveries of food, packages, and even wine and cheese, I get to see faces, but it seems to be only for a few minutes because we are limiting our contact times. I long for the days of an engaging 10-minute conversation!

One topic that residents have mentioned a few times is the equal adoption of the procedures and rules. Or maybe I should say the “unequal” adoption of them. Guidelines have been set by us, the Mayor, the Governor, regulatory agencies and others. But as we well know, not everyone agrees with those guidelines. All around the city, people still refuse to wear masks; refuse to honor the Stay-at-Home order; and seem to feel that “just a visit with one person will not make a difference.”

Here at Montgomery Place, nearly all residents are in compliance. Yes, we have a few who just refuse and continue to go out in public and to and from the grocery store. There are a few that meet family members for walks. Each makes a choice about risks they are willing to take for herself or himself. In doing so, each person also shares that risk with others who interact with and live in the same congregate setting of Montgomery Place. So far, luck is on our side and no cases have developed. Let’s hope luck stays with us.

Several residents have left Montgomery Place for a period of time for hospitalization and visits to family. As they return, we established a procedural rule for 14 days of isolation “just in case.” As individuals return, this procedural rule will be applied. But again, individuals will have choices and can chose to put themselves and others at risk. We are not a jail (although sometimes I feel like a warden!) and residents do have a choice. Just realize that every choice you make for yourself also affects others.

In my leadership training courses that I conduct with our staff, we work on teamwork concepts. We spend time discussing trust and how a strong team has trust in all the members. When trust breaks down, the strength of team dissolves. The same is true with fighting COVID-19. If we are a team, everyone adheres to the standards. We will be strong and improve our chances of defeating the spread of this virus.

Let’s stay strong together—as a community—and set aside our personal independent natures for just a bit longer. Maintain physical distancing!

Don’t hesitate to reach out if I can answer any questions or be of further assistance. Call my mobile phone number, 773-617-1317, at any time.

Considering ourselves one of many, protects all of us.

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