Have you seen Acting-Mayor Austin Quinn-Davidson? Anchorage is experiencing a surge in COVID-19. I would call it a second wave, but the first wave never ended. Not only has the city strained from the virus itself, but also from social, political and economic side effects. Municipal leadership has been lacking and incredibly disappointing. In the beginning of the pandemic, I supported former Mayor Ethan Berkowitz’s swift action, to combat the virus. However, I adamantly disagreed when Anchorage began to reopen, and I was horrified by the Municipality’s afterthought regarding the economic impact on working-class residents in Anchorage.
Our health care capacity is becoming incredibly strained and it is at risk of being overwhelmed. Since the sudden, unexpected resignation of former Mayor Berkowitz, the Anchorage Assembly appointed Quinn-Davidson as acting mayor. While it is a milestone that Anchorage has its first woman and LGBTQ mayor, which is something that should be celebrated, this milestone is being overshadowed by the grim reality Anchorage is facing.
The new administration has been indescribably disheartening. There is a lack of communication, inaction and unwillingness to acknowledge that a huge segment of the population either ignore health mandates or outright undermine them. Acting Mayor Quinn-Davidson does not need Gov. Dunleavy to act. Anchorage is still in “Phase 2” or in the recovery phase, Anchorage is far from recovering. It boggles the mind why Anchorage is not hunkered down; let alone we are not even in “Phase 1.” Since the new administration has been put in place, it feels as if Anchorage does not even have a mayor.
I beg Acting Mayor Quinn-Davidson to put Anchorage into the hunker-down phase. With Thanksgiving approaching, it is inevitable that hundreds, if not thousands of people will gather and there will be an explosion of cases in the municipality. Stop putting business and profit before working-class Alaskans, children, marginalized communities, our elders, and front-line health care workers.
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