Cameron Mills, the Manager of Economic and Community Development for the Town of Coaldale, says that the Town’s goal has been to proactively manage the COVID-19 outbreak in line with recommendations from Alberta's Chief Medical Officer in terms of social distancing and reducing person to person contact.
“We recognize that many of the services we provide are essential for the daily lives of our residents, such as water/sewer services or fire protection, and as such we are trying to effectively balance service delivery with public safety,” Mills says.
Mills says that local facilities including the arena and museum are now closed either for the season or until further notice. Although the Town Office will remain open for now, Mills says, the staff is currently transitioning to work from home as much as possible. The Town Office’s Facebook page has also announced that as of March 19, 2020, the Town is limiting in-person visits at the Town office to critical and/or essential servicing only to protect the health and safety of our staff and residents.
“If you believe your matter is critical and requires an in-person visit, please call (403) 345-1300 to confirm staff availability and scheduling,” Mills says.
Mills says that for non-urgent business or information, people can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 403-345-1300.
“To balance the fact that fewer employees are available at any given time, we are also ramping up our communications efforts in order to keep our residents and businesses abreast of what steps the Town is taking to help everyone get through this crisis,” Mills says.
The Coaldale Food Market and Bakery has proved to be an incredibly important resource for the community during this time, Mills emphasizes, as they have really stepped up in providing essential services. Mills says that the Market was well ahead of the curve in recognizing some of the panic buying that was occurring for things like toilet paper and their response almost immediately was to ration those supplies to make sure everyone in town could get what they need. Mills says that local pharmacists have also been doing a good job of filling prescriptions and keeping everyone in town well supplied.
“They have also been great about keeping their prices stable and not taking advantage of the situation,” Mills says. “They've been absolutely tremendous for this community and deserve to be praised for the work that they've done to keep everyone in town well supplied. The local pharmacists have also acted as a source of good, accurate information for our concerned residents who might be hearing a lot of information but not knowing what information to trust.”