The Middle Peninsula of Virginia may be the “weekend playground” of thousands of second homeowners and campers from across the Commonwealth, but amid the continued spread of novel coronavirus COVID-19 in Virginia, Delegate Keith Hodges (R-98) has implored property owners and avid campers to remain in their primary homes during this period of social distancing.
“Unless you already live here full-time, please do not come to the Middle Peninsula to go camping, to stay for the weekend in your second home or to visit,” Hodges said. “We love that you do, but right now, the most important thing we can do is limit the spread of this virus. Dr. Richard Williams, Director of the Three Rivers Health District, has encouraged us to limit all non-essential travel, stay home as much as possible and practice social distancing. We all need to stay close to our primary homes.”
Earlier this week, the first confirmed positive COVID-19 case was reported on the Middle Peninsula – a child under the age of 10.
“This did not come as a surprise, given the nature of the current outbreak,” Hodges said, “or given the make-up of our community.”
More than 30,000 residents on the Middle Peninsula work outside of the region each day, accounting for the highest out-commute rate in the state, and while many have been able to convert to telework during this time, many have also had to maintain leaving the region each day for their jobs.
“If you look at the map of the positive cases in Virginia, many are along the urban crescent that surrounds the Middle Peninsula and Northern Neck,” Hodges said. “Health officials expect the local cases to increase in coming weeks, and while that is happening, I implore you all to continue to remain calm, support each other, and adhere to all the guidance from the Virginia Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to limit the spread of this illness.”
The impact to businesses in the district has already been felt, Hodges said, as has the impact to many families across our region.
“But we can’t begin to rebuild until we stop the spread of this illness,” Hodges said, underscoring his guidance to the community to stay close to their primary homes.
“Let’s stick together,” Hodges said. “It’s together we – rural strong Virginians – will get through this all.”