March 16, 2020
Hello MWCA Membership,
I may be the first MWCA President that has ever had to address an issue quite as unique as COVID-19. As everyone is well aware we are amidst a global pandemic with this new virus COVID-19 and currently the United States and Montana are under states of emergencies. In Montana as of this past weekend we have 6 confirmed cases across Montana, with those numbers expected to increase. After long deliberation and talks with our industry reps, my local public health nurse, and commissioners, and conversation with the Executive Committee, we made the decision to cancel the MWCA spring events in Miles City and Deer Lodge and to postpone our face to face board of directors meeting, based on the advice of our public health officials, the CDC, and local government. As of right now gatherings of 50 or more is highly discouraged, and even more so if those folks that come to the events are from all over the state. Our Governor is saying two weeks on closures, however the public health officials I have visited with say this is just a start and will most likely be longer. The CDC is currently recommending cancelling activities 8 weeks out. It is our due diligence as Montanans and MWCA leaders to protect our at risk populations, which we have in the MWCA (I for one am one of the ones in the high at risk group). Some counties are currently placing travel bans for employees, I do foresee some counties declaring states of emergencies in the near future. Word is that agencies are also implementing travel bans as well. I would hate for someone to attend one of these trainings and go home with COVID-19 and there be a lawsuit against the MWCA because we did not act in the best manner to prevent the spread of this disease. I along with the MWCA Executive Committee believe it is our responsibility to practice social distancing by canceling these events. I know this crisis is not fun. I have linked the websites from the CDC and Montana Public Health which can provide current up to date information on this crisis, answer frequently asked questions, and provide the most up to date recommendations on preventing the spread and what to do if you think you have contracted COVID-19. This seriousness of this virus is not to be taken lightly. The healthy population is what is protecting the at risk population.
If you have already paid your fee for these trainings we are working with Becky to get those refunds issued.
Please wash your hands, sanitize and stay healthy everyone!
MWCA President/Carter County Weed Coordinator
Office: (406) 775-6278
Cell: (406) 975-9791