What we're working on - Thursday

Sorry I was away for the first part of this week. I was in Calgary for an essential appointment at Alberta Children's Hospital for my son. I'll post a column about that later this afternoon. It was strange and unsettling to be staying in a hotel in another city while everything was happening and changing from minute to minute.

Each day, I'll share with you what we're working on here at The Citizen. Although this is a global crisis and we're receiving plenty of information from a federal and provincial perspective, all of us are experiencing this at a local and a personal level. In moments like these, we know people are turning to us (and our other local media colleagues) for accurate, timely local information about how COVID-19 is affecting Prince George and area, so we're working as hard as we can to provide that.

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So here's what we're working on right now:

- Stories that were filed this morning - Regional District of Fraser-Fort George has closed fire halls, swap sheds to the public, grocery stores that have reduced hours and designated early shopping times for seniors and the challenges faced by local food banks to take care of their clients safely.

- This afternoon, we'll be filing a story after an interview with Isobel Mackenzie, the provincial seniors advocate, on the physical, nutritional and mental health challenges faced by the elder population during this crisis and how to deal with some of those challenges.

- We'll also have a story this afternoon about how to safely get some time outdoors for your physical and mental health, with some suggestions on where to go.

- We're investigating reports of people in self-isolation in a nearby community after exposure to the coronavirus (in case you didn't already know, the coronavirus is the virus that causes the illness that is COVID-19). We're gathering more information at this point as we don't want to report incorrect information or anything that will add to further stress or hysteria among residents.

- We're following up with local hotels, daycares, BC Transit and taxi companies, as well as local and regional governments, on how they are being affected and what they are doing to keep their staff and their customers and clients safe.

If there's anything you'd like us to follow up or address, please let me know. Drop me an email at ngodbout@pgcitizen.ca.

Please stay safe.

- Editor-in-chief Neil Godbout

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