Keep our Westside schools safe

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To the Salt Lake City School District:

We are Westside residents and parents of children in the Salt Lake City School District. We are writing to tell you that we do not want our schools open for in person classes while the pandemic is raging through our neighborhood.  We know that the east side residents have the ear of the Board but please know that while they are busy making demands to reopen, we are busy keeping the grocery stores open so that they can get food, keeping pharmacies open so they can get medicine, and keeping the hospitals and clinics open so that when they get sick from this awful virus, we can help them get better.

We are the essential workers of this city and most of us do not have the luxury of working from home.  We are on the front lines keeping our city running and the sad truth is that many of us don’t have health insurance and even when we do, some of us can’t afford the deductibles and copays to see a doctor or go to a hospital.  Many of us are new Americans and don’t have access to information on how to stay safe and how to access the health care system as we face language and cultural barriers.  For some the situation is much scarier, some of us do not have documentation and a trip to the doctor feels like risking deportation. 

Please, hear us, the often-ignored backbone of this city.  Keep us safe by keeping our schools closed until we get this pandemic under control.  The east side parents should not get to decide what is best for our children, we are already sacrificing enough.