The head of the Springfield-Greene County Health Department is calling on the community to “own” the response to COVID-19 and steps are taken to reopen the community after stay at home orders.
Goddard made the statement during a Tuesday afternoon press conference at the Public Safety Center.
“It’s not your public health department that protects you. We’ve got tools we use to protect our community,” Goddard said. “It’s not your City Council that protects you. They can put codes in place. It’s not your County Commission that protects you. They can put their own legal mechanisms in place. But those things are only going to be as effective as what we as community members do.”
Goddard said that it’s going to ultimately come down to individual and corporate response to the reopening of the community. He said that includes continuing to practice social distancing and good hygiene.
“I’m confident this community can continue charting the course that we’re on,” Goddard said. “Our metrics are excellent. You compare us to other similar sized cities in the midwest, we’ve got low disease incidence. That is not by mistake.”
Goddard added having any kind of large gathering is a “terrible idea.”
“Our brief history with this disease is replete with examples where a gathering that has a large group of people who have intensity in their actions are sitting together for a long period of time has spread the illness,” Goddard said. “I would rather see how other communities fare that start to loosen those types of restrictions.”