JAMESTOWN – Individuals are expected to gather this afternoon at 3 p.m. in Dow Park to urge Chautauqua County officials to cancel and not extend or declare any further states of emergency based on the COVID-19 numbers in the county.
Local spokesperson and organizer for Open NY, Gerrit Cain, says the participants are expected to adhere to social distancing guidelines.
Cain released the following statement Thursday:
“We appreciate the efforts of our State Representatives to develop a plan to reopen upstate. Unfortunately, the looming possibility of more delays, more top down control, and more shutdowns as overreactions to a “spikes” in cases is cause for concern for the future of this plan.”
“Western New York has seen its livelihood nearly snuffed out, the mental health and wellbeing of its residents decline, and the divide among the community grow deeper. We have been fortunate to have not suffered severe or widespread direct health effects from the virus, but the damage done by policies to “help” control the virus has been devastating. Some precautions are prudent but overall, these top-down mandates have done more harm than good.”
“The solution we propose locally and beyond is based on restoring the liberty of individuals in western NY to live their lives and conduct business in a safe responsible manner. The role of government at every level should be to facilitate access to factual information regarding the virus, rework our budgets so emergency service and infrastructure are maintained and defend our natural rights.”
“We are responsible, intelligent adults who weigh a variety of risks as we live our lives each day in an imperfect world. Our behavior is dynamic and adaptable to our society and our environment based on the information we obtain. It is our hope that our government officials and the press will provide us with honest, accurate, unbiased information. With that we are confident we can navigate this crisis without heavy handed unconstitutional regulations and restrictions.”
“We support and encourage county and local officials including executives, legislators, DAs, local bodies and judges to in essence nullify the unconstitutional restrictions and policies of the NY PAUSE by executive action, legislative resolution, or official directives. Our Counties cannot survive another month of the PAUSE.”
Governor Andrew Cuomo’s PAUSE Initiative is set to expire next Friday. From there, the state is expected to use a region-by-region approach provided the regions meet several criteria issued by Cuomo’s office.
Related reporting: Residents Voice Concerns During Jamestown COVID-19 “Stay-At-Home” Rally