’We’re not playing games or politics. The virus is here,’ Mayor Nirenberg says in letter to Texans

San Antonio mayor joins counterparts in writing letter to Texans

Mayor Ron Nirenberg. (Illustration by Henry Keller) (Henry Keller, KSAT)

As San Antonio enters its second wave of the coronavirus, Mayor Ron Nirenberg and other Texas mayors have teamed up to craft another letter about staying vigilant in the fight against the virus.

Only this time, the letter wasn’t addressed to Gov. Greg Abbott. Instead, the mayors are writing to all Texans.

Texas mayors are back with another letter, but this time ⁠— we're writing to you. We're not here to scare you. We're...

Posted by Mayor Ron Nirenberg on Friday, June 19, 2020

Nirenberg posted the letter on Facebook Friday, reminding citizens to “Wear a mask, practice physical distancing, wash your hands, don’t throw house parties, remain vigilant,” as COVID-19 case numbers and hospitalizations are on the rise.

In the letter, the mayors said it’s up to all Texans to help contain the spread of the virus as the state moves forward with reopening by following the health guidelines put in place.

“If we want the economy to open fully and stay open, if we want to send our kids back to school from pre-k to college, if we want to watch and play sports with people in the stands, if we want to attend cultural arts events like concerts and theatre, if we want banquets and parades in the fall, if we want our lives back as Texans, we need to take this seriously.”

Residents are urged to continue practicing social distancing, washing hands frequently, wearing face coverings when out in public, staying home when possible and not attending crowded public settings.

“Our failure to do so will cost all of us,” Texas mayors stated in the letter.

Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff issued an executive order Wednesday that requires “all commercial entities providing goods and services” to implement a health and safety policy within five days.

The policy “must require, at a minimum, that all employees or visitors ... wear face coverings when in an area or performing an activity which will necessarily involved close contact,” according to the new order, as said in a previous KSAT 12 report.

Wolff’s order is in effect until June 30.

According to the letter, one key element in the battle against COVID-19 that has proven to limit the spread of the virus is wearing a mask.

“We want to leave you with this statistic to show how effective your personal conduct can be in fighting the coronavirus: Hong Kong and Taiwan have a combined population more than the entire state of Texas... Combined, their death total from coronavirus is 11. Not a daily total, but their total,” the letter states. “The difference? They resolutely wore masks.”

City leaders will hold a briefing Friday night to address the current status of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in San Antonio.

The full letter can be read below:

Read also:

New Bexar County executive order mandates face coverings at all businesses when social distancing is not possible

San Antonio VA confirms highest number of COVID-19 patients in the VA health care system

About the Author:

Cody King is a digital journalist for KSAT 12. She previously worked for WICS/WRSP 20 in Springfield, Illinois.