Torres: Stay home

Posted on Mar 20 2020

The Office of the Governor reiterated its call for everyone in the community to “please stay home” and to avoid unnecessary travel as much as possible.

In a social media post yesterday, the administration said that social distancing has been determined by global health experts as the most important factor to control the COVID-19 outbreak.

The post explained that people are not being asked to stay home to protect themselves, but is meant to protect those who are most vulnerable to COVID-19.

Gov. Ralph DLG Torres stressed the importance of staying home in March 16, Monday, when he placed the CNMI under a state of public health emergency.

“Please stay home. …Stay home with your loved ones and spend time with them. The more you stay home the better chances that we will weather this virus across.

“Our elderly are the most vulnerable, and it doesn’t matter who you are, it doesn’t matter your nationality or age [is], when you get to that elderly [stage], you are the most vulnerable in getting this virus,” Torres added.

The governor also released the “COVID-19 Guidance for the Marianas—Stay at Home, Slow the Spread” last Wednesday, as an appeal for everyone to stay home.

People who are sick, those who have someone in their home who is sick, are advised to stay home, not go to work, to avoid social gatherings, and to contact their personal doctor, or the COVID-19 INFO LINE at 285-1542, 285-1672, 285-1352, or 285-1854.

Also, under the COVID-19 Guidance, the man’amko and people with preexisting illnesses such as asthma, diabetes, and heart disease, are advised to stay home and to stay away from people as much as possible.

Torres, also in Monday’s interview, advised everyone: “When there’s elderly at home, when you enter the home, please wash your hand, wash it with soap, and spend time washing it.”

“If there’s a hand sanitizer, please use it before you enter [the room where]…your mom, your grandma, your grandpa or any elderly [is],” he added.

People are also advised to work or do schoolwork from home whenever possible and reasonable, to avoid social gatherings in groups of more than 10, and to avoid eating out at restaurants and instead, to use drive-thru, to-go, or delivery options.

The practice of good hygiene practices is also advised: washing hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available; covering one’s mouth and nose with a tissue or sleeve (not hands) when coughing or sneezing; avoiding touching the face, and the disinfecting of frequently used items such as cellphones, computers, and household items.

Iva Maurin | Correspondent
Iva Maurin is a communications specialist with environment and community outreach experience in the Philippines and in California. She has a background in graphic arts and is the Saipan Tribune’s community and environment reporter. Contact her at
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