Puerto Vallarta, like the whole country, is going through difficult times and more complicated days are ahead due to the COVID-19 pandemic, so it is necessary for people to be disciplined, take care of themselves, protect themselves and follow the indicated protocols to overcome this health emergency, emphasized Mayor Arturo Dávalos Peña.
During the weekly meeting of the Regional Security Council, the mayor referred to the increase in cases registered in Puerto Vallarta, and to the new restrictive measures announced by the State Governor Enrique Alfaro Ramírez, and reiterated the importance of not letting one’s guard down but to redouble efforts and abide by these provisions to prevent the pandemic from continuing to grow.
“We are the barrier, if we stay at home we will prevent this from spreading,” he said, and as for the people who have to go out to work, he asked to do it with the hygiene measures and the use of masks that is already mandatory.
He specified that only essential companies and businesses can continue operating, as long as they comply with the established protocols and recommendations, those who do not respect them will be sanctioned by closing, he warned.
He said that COVID-19 is the priority at the moment, but there are also other threats that should not be neglected such as dengue, security and other important issues that are being addressed in the municipality, along with this pandemic.
The work that authorities are carrying out in this contingency, indicated Dávalos Peña, is to inform citizens about the hygiene, security, control and discipline recommendations that must be met, and he did not rule out the implementation of more stringent measures if people do not abide by these provisions, as the health and lives of others are put at risk.
He pointed out the case of many people who still do not understand or dimension the situation, and go out in groups to the river to spend the day, in the Paso del Guayabo area, in Ixtapa; La Desembocada and Boca de Tomatlán, where over the weekend several families had to be removed from these places.
He mentioned that the staff of the different operational areas of the City Council work with the necessary care, since failure to do so puts services such as public hygiene, security, traffic, firefighters, civil protection, among others, at risk, which cannot discontinue.
“We are going through difficult times and more difficult times are coming, if we do not discipline ourselves, if we do not take care of ourselves, if we do not protect ourselves, if we do not comply with all protocols, it will take us longer to recover from this situation,” said the mayor.
The challenge of getting people to understand the need to stay home is a lack of testing. Puerto Vallarta is only reporting 26 cases, or .01% of the population of COVID-19, numbers that are drastically under-reported, and make it difficult to convince the public that there is a health emergency in the community. Federal, state and local authorities need to increase testing and report with transparency in order for the public to understand the risks. Mexico has only tested 40,000 people nationwide.
To date, Puerto Vallarta’s governmental website still lacks any information about COVID-19 or daily updates on cases documented in the city.
Finally, Arturo Dávalos reported that work is already underway on the second installment of the ‘Es por Vallarta’ food support program, which helps people survive this difficult stage, especially the most vulnerable families and those from the different sectors that are unemployed due to business closings.
Pantries will be delivered to the 23 distribution centers located at different points of the city. It is expected to distribute 2,500 pantries per day to reach the goal of 10,000 families in this second installment.
All this will be done by appointment, with delivery date and time, to avoid crowds and with the necessary hygiene measures, without putting people’s health at risk.