Photo: Frances B. Wyatt Community Center
Photo Credit: Google Maps
Published July 23, 2021
The Tennessee Conservative Staff-
On Wednesday, July 21st, Chattanooga Mayor Tim Kelly temporarily closed two community centers after a single confirmed case of COVID was discovered at each facility.
Washington Hills Community Center and the Frances B. Wyatt Community Center were each ordered to close by Kelly and will not be allowed to reopen until a deep cleaning and sanitization of the facilities are completed along with quarantine protocols being followed.
The final decision on when to reopen the community centers will be made in consultation with Dr. Mary Lambert, the city’s director of community health.
“The closure of these two community centers today is a wake-up call for our community that the spread of COVID-19 among unvaccinated individuals remains a threat to our city,” said Lambert. “As our partners at the Hamilton County Health Department pointed out today, the resurgence of this virus is a real danger, and the city will take every appropriate action to keep our residents safe.”
For Washington Hills, contract tracing is underway and summer camp will not resume.
Parents and staff were notified on Wednesday afternoon and asked to take appropriate protective measures. Employees who have been vaccinated will be assigned to other locations during the closure.
For the Frances B. Wyatt Community Center, Staff and residents were also notified Wednesday afternoon and asked to take appropriate protective measures. As with Washington Hills, employees who have been vaccinated will be assigned to other locations during the closure.
Mayor Kelly said, “We are working hard alongside our partners at the Hamilton County Health Department and the nonprofit community to make vaccinations easy and convenient to access for every resident. But make no mistake, if we do not take appropriate steps to protect ourselves, our families and our friends from harm, and if this concerning spike in infections continues, we run a high risk that our city could once again face closure and lockdown.”
Kelly went on to say, “The health and safety of Chattanooga’s residents is my highest priority, and we will use every tool at our disposal to keep our city safe, and ensure that residents have access to convenient, free vaccination opportunities. I am deeply concerned that the uptick in infections among unvaccinated individuals could very well lead to more widespread closures. That’s why I urge every Chattanooga resident to get vaccinated immediately.”
All city employees are being offered a $100 incentive to get vaccinated, with a smaller incentive available for each vaccinated family member covered by City health insurance.