Weekly Update

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Whether you’re watching television, reading the newspaper, or scrolling through social media, I know it’s all you see on every news outlet. But, as we approach the Christmas holiday at the end of this week—I’m asking you to please stay home and not invite or attend large gatherings.

Our frontline workers and hospitals are feeling the effects from Thanksgiving, and to compound the current situation with another surge after Christmas, will be devastating.

In just the last month, we’ve seen an 89 percent increase in our daily confirmed cases, a 44 percent increase in hospitalizations, a 64 percent increase in our ICUs, and a 274 percent increase in lives lost due to this virus. That steep climb can be seen in the charts below.



The threat of this virus is real, but we have the power to stop it by continuing to practice social distancing, washing our hands, and wearing a mask. With the promise of widespread vaccinations in the coming months, the end is in sight.

Closing thoughts: In preparation for this week’s update, I came across a quote from President Franklin D. Roosevelt in his 1944 Christmas message, and it’s as fitting today as it was 76 years ago during World War II:

“But, in perhaps every home in the United States, sad and anxious thoughts will be continually with the millions of our loved ones who are suffering hardships and misery, and who are risking their very lives to preserve for us and for all mankind the fruits of His teachings and the foundations of civilization itself. The Christmas spirit lives tonight in the bitter cold of the front lines in Europe and in the heat of the jungles and swamps of Burma and the Pacific islands. Even the roar of our bombers and fighters in the air and the guns of our ships at sea will not drown out the messages of Christmas which come to the hearts of our fighting men.”

Similarly, the Christmas spirit lives on today in our hospitals across Shelby County, in the volunteers who have signed up for the Medical Reserve Corps, and in the food distribution locations throughout the city.

Additionally, I’m pleased to say that in partnership with City Council, we have spent nearly $13 million of CARES Act funds to help individuals with rent and utilities assistance, establish an eviction prevention fund, and provide much needed aid to businesses in our community. Memphians coming together to care for others amplifies the messages of Christmas.

Even though things are a bit different this year, I hope you have a wonderful holiday.

Be safe.


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