Island residents are relieved that the CNMI’s social distancing sacrifices the past couple of months has finally borne fruit with the Community Vulnerability Level now downgraded to “Blue.” Saipan Tribune talked to some members of the community on their take on this positive development amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
Sheena Varias, 19, from San Antonio said, “I’m glad to know that with the community working together, we are able to be declared ‘Blue Level.’ I hope that declaring Blue Level won’t encourage others to neglect proper procedures. If we all do our part to not spread the virus, we can make it so the community can be clear of COVID-19. Hopefully in due time, we are able to be declared green.”
Fiona Bucalig, 16, from As Lito, said “I can’t believe we are actually at Level Blue. It is very encouraging to know that the social distancing and all precautions that we took have made an impact. I hope that we can get the all-clear soon. Hopefully, no one takes being declared Blue as a sign that they can go out without following social distancing. If we all do our part and get the all-clear, it will definitely be good timing for the summer.”
Christian (last name withheld by request), 20, from Koblerville says that it’s such a relief feeling that the CNMI is closer to becoming all clear. “However, even if the CNMI is closer to where we want it to be at, we should always take precaution measures. I feel like our new normal is this way. Things have changed and we should just live and work with it to be safer in the community. I hope the community will continue practicing social distancing and keeping things sanitized as much as possible.”
Ryan (last name withheld by request), 18, from Garapan thinks that being at Level Blue is both a good and bad thing. “I really hope our leaders made the right decision with this call. I still feel a little anxious to be out with a lot of people. However, it is also such a relief feeling that we are closer to Green. It is such a good sign for the CNMI. It is amazing how communities are doing their part. Stay safe CNMI.”
Maryanne (last name withheld by request), 18, from Chalan Kanoa, said that “we are finally getting there as a community. Our new normal may be different but it is the best way to live right now.” She also said that she can’t wait for it to be all clear to get back into sports. “I’ve been running in the [Beach Road] pathway, but I really can’t wait to play sports and compete with other players. We should always keep things sanitized and stay safe.”