As concerns increase surrounding the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the National League of Cities (NLC) prioritized programming, resources and precautionary measures on-site at this year’s Congressional City Conference (CCC). NLC also provided real-time updates and resources for attendees to take back to their cities, towns, and villages.
CCC Coronavirus Townhall with Lindsey Horvath and Dr. Oscar Alleyne, NACCHO
On Tuesday, NLC hosted an important town hall moderated by Lindsey Horvath, Mayor Pro Tem of West Hollywood, California and Chair of NLC’s Human Development Committee with guest, Dr. Oscar Alleyne, Chief of Programs and Services at the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO).
Dr. Oscar Alleyne gave a detailed situational summary of COVID-19, highlighting key points from public safety and preparing your home, schools and local communities. You can find his presentation here.
CCC wraps up conversations around COVID-19 with HHS and the CDC
Will Brady, Senior Advisor to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, spoke to conference attendees about the administration’s response to the coronavirus, and Dr. Mitchell Wolfe, Chief Medical Officer at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provided a high-level breakdown of the Coronavirus, symptoms, preventions, and responses that members should be aware of.
“We have engaged with state and local partners on a very regular basis and we’re always looking for opportunities to do more. I highly encourage everyone to work [directly] with their local health department.” – Dr. Mitchell Wolfe, Chief Medical Officer, CDC.
NLC Leaders Meet with Vice President Pence on the Administration’s Response
Members of NLC’s Board of Directors closed out CCC with a meeting with Vice President Mike Pence to discuss the local-federal partnership needed to address the coronavirus pandemic.
“We discussed the critical coordination needed to respond to the coronavirus public health emergency and protect the health and well-being of our residents. There are a number of issues we can work on together to serve our cities, towns, and villages, and I look forward to productive communication and partnership in the coming weeks.” – NLC President Joe Buscaino, President Pro Tempore of the Los Angeles City Council.
Michael Bloomberg announces new Coronavirus Local Response Initiative
Former Mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg announced a response to COVID-19 with a new philanthropic effort: The Coronavirus Local Response Initiative. The initiative aims to work with partners to identify, in real-time, the needs and lessons learned from cities experiencing outbreak that can be shared with other cities eager to get ahead of the virus’ spread.
NLC Board hosts a press conference to speak out on COVID-19
The NLC Board of Directors held a press conference addressing COVID-19 concerns and the importance of local-federal partnership on the 2020 Cities Agenda. Joe Buscaino, President Pro Tempore, Los Angeles City Council and President, National League of Cities, led the press conference by addressing the issue of COVID-19 head-on.
Vince Williams, Mayor of Union City, Georgia and Second Vice President of NLC also encouraged delegates to wash their hands and keep their spaces clean.
“Coordination between all levels of government is critically important in responding to a public health emergency. We each have our expertise: local leaders understand the need of their communities and are the best positioned to make emergency management decisions on resources and communication with residents.” – Mayor Vince Williams.
Mayor Williams closed with these important thoughts: “That is why I am so proud of NLC’s response to the Coronavirus. Local leaders are on the front line, but NLC is right there behind us, providing us the resources to learn, share, combat and be safe.”
No Handshakes, Only Elbow Bumps
During the conference, delegates were encouraged not to shake hands but rather, elbow bump when greeting one another to limit contact, while providing a playful greeting when networking and connecting.
For additional resources and information, please visit nlc.org/coronavirus as it is updated regularly or check directly with the CDC and World Health Organization.
About the author: Jasmine Smith is the senior digital content specialist at the National League of Cities.