March 20, 2020

Dear Friends:

On March 5, Governor Bill Lee announced the first case of COVID-19 in Williamson County. As of March 20, we have thirty-five confirmed cases in Williamson County and one in Maury County.

As you know, COVID-19 is different from the typical flu. There is currently no vaccine or antiviral treatment available for this disease, which is part of the reason that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the State of Tennessee Department of Health have been proactive in making recommendations to slow the Coronavirus’s spread. You have seen those important recommendations for several weeks now, which include:

•  The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus.

• Avoid close contact with people who are sick and limit your close contact with other people.

•  Clean your hands often.

•  Stay home if you are sick, except to get medical care.

•  Cover coughs and sneezes.

•  Throw used tissues in the trash.

•  Clean your hands often.

•  Wear a face mask if you are sick and must be around other people.

•  Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily, and

•  Clean your hands OFTEN!

We understand that this is a time of anxiety and stress for our citizens and that you want to protect both yourselves and your families to the best of your ability. We do, as well. The escalation of this situation on a global basis is unprecedented in recent times. In less than two months we have gone from no known cases of infection to a global pandemic that is disrupting our daily lives and our society as a whole. This sudden change is scary for everyone, and we need to be aware of not only ourselves and our families, but others we come in contact with as well. Our caring and compassion for each other will define us over the coming weeks.

We are committed to working with our leadership teams to care for our residents, businesses, and employees as best we can through this crisis. The Mayor and members of Spring Hill’s leadership participated in two teleconferences with other area Mayors on Friday, March 20th to discuss ways to share a unified message regarding the situation.

Each of us has a personal responsibility to take appropriate measures to prevent the spread of the virus so as to minimize its impact on not only ourselves and our families, but our community, our health care system and our economy.

We understand that social distancing will have an isolating effect on most of our community and we need to be especially sensitive to our senior citizens and those who have no families to care for them. We encourage our citizens to check on your neighbors who live alone or who are elderly and see if you can help them in some way. Sometimes a simple phone call will make a huge difference in someone’s day.

Please be considerate of others by not hoarding food and household supplies, as the extra things you purchase may prevent someone else from being able to buy a necessity. Put yourself in the position of others who are also dealing with the same stress and fear. Use compassion and reason. That bears repeating…use compassion and reason. We are ALL dealing with this.

We need to be responsive to our businesses. Many of our small businesses will suffer immensely as a result of COVID-19. Instead of dining in, call a restaurant for carry-out or delivery or use the drive-through. Offer to pick up dinner for someone else.

One more thing, please consider giving blood. There is a nationwide shortage right now and so many of our friends and neighbors (such as those with cancer) have needs that won’t go away or can’t be delayed just because of COVID-19. Please reach out to the American Red Cross or Blood Assurance and find a nearby donation location. A few minutes of your time can really save lives.

We will communicate as things change through our website: www.springhilltn.org and through social media. We understand that clear communication reduces anxiety and uncertainty.

The situation we are experiencing changes daily, sometimes hourly, and we need to be flexible, understanding, and patient as we work through the daily events. Know that your City is working diligently to adapt our operations to meet the needs of our citizens and businesses. This situation will not correct itself for some time and we have a long road ahead of us. Let’s all work the best we can to react with love and compassion instead of panic and fear and let’s not let the current situation define us unless it’s in a positive manner. We will persevere and want to able to stand tall and united when this event is over and know that we did our best to take care of not only ourselves and our families, but others during this difficult time.

Mayor Rick  Graham