The El Centro City Council held a meeting entirely in Spanish for the first time ever providing information about COVID-19 and updates about the current situation.
As of March 31, there are 38 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Imperial Valley and the numbers are expected to grow as tests are made. El Centro Mayor Efrain Silva said this meeting was made to bring health experts and debunk some of the false information going around. This was the first council meeting in California to be done entirely in Spanish.
“This meeting is a mechanism by the city of El Centro to reach of our Hispanic community,” Mayor Silva said.
Meredith Garcia from the Small Business Development Center said they work to help small businesses free of charge. Garcia said one of their main goals is to help them get access to capital.
“The new stimulus package gives preferences to small businesses and we are looking at it so we can help those that need it,” Garcia said.
El Centro Regional Medical Center doctors spoke to the City Council and advised the community to stay at home and follow the recommendations of social distancing. If anyone has symptoms, they should go to their doctor immediately.
Adolphe Edward, CEO El Centro Regional Medical Center, said they are working to provide service to the community. Edward said that the Emergency Room is prepared to receive patients and will be expanding telemedicine conferences for the public.
“We don’t sleep but we are not tired, we are working together and we will get through this,” Edward said.
Mario Beltran from the Mexican Consulate in Calexico told the council that the consulate is closed to the public at the moment. Mayor Silva asked that if the Mexican government closed the border going south where people could get the information. Beltran said that the Mexican Consulate would share the information with the cities and the media.
Beltran suggested looking for organizations that helped with rent assistance during this difficult time.