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OPINION

LETTER: Leadership should lead on masks

Northwest Florida Daily News

In a time when true leadership is needed, it’s a shame that the Walton County local government can’t lead the way to helping its citizens stay safe from a real health crisis.

In voting against against wearing a mask in public, local officials show a complete disregard for the well-being of our fellow family, friends and neighbors.

Walton County continues to push for tourism but it’s obvious that our representatives care more about the almighty dollar than keeping those they represent safe. Wearing a mask in public not only shows respect for those around us, it’s also not that hard to do.

The sooner we can be unified in our efforts, the quicker we can move past this difficult time. Local officials have let us down, it’s now up to the people of Walton County to band together and seize the opportunity that our representatives did not have the courage to take.

Nothing is lost by being cautious.

Derek Robertson, Santa Rosa Beach

Time for action on pandemic

A global pandemic requires a global response. Congressional leaders and the White House don't seem to get that.

The U.S. must support lower-income countries to deal with the immediate crisis and to strengthen healthcare systems in the long run. In dozens of countries, the pandemic is not only impacting people directly, it is undermining years of progress in fighting other diseases. Many kids are already missing out on life-saving vaccines and it's getting harder to access treatment for diseases like tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS. Food insecurity and starvation are also rising fast.

Whether it's COVID-19 or other ongoing global health emergencies, we need a strong response from Congress here and around the world. I'm counting on Congress and the White House to break the current stalemate and pass an emergency response package that includes no less than $20 billion for the global response to the pandemic and focuses on the following:

-$4 billion over two years for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria

-$4 billion for Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance

-$2 billion for anti-hunger efforts, including $500 million for nutrition

We must act now.

Linda Gazzola, Navarre

Letters to the editor