ATWATER, Kalifornia (PNN) - May 17, 2020 - In Kalifornia’s Central Valley, where farmers grow the food Amerikans eat and shops provide goods for them and their families, the coronavirus era is coming to a close, as Atwater declares itself a “sanctuary city” where businesses and churches are opening their doors.
The move is in defiance of the unconstitutional Kalifornia shelter-in-place order, but the people who live there believe it is about their survival - not from dodging the virus, but from the draconian lockdown that cost people their livelihoods.
The City Council heard from a parade of business owners, pastors and residents on Friday who described pandemic-related hardships. Many insisted they could be responsible and keep the community safe by following safe practices like wearing face masks and keeping social distance.
The members of the City Council, without discussion, passed unanimously a resolution affirming the city’s commitment to fundamental constitutional rights and declaring the city of Atwater a sanctuary city for all businesses.
Council members said the measure also applies to churches.
“If they don’t open up, they’re going to be in a really bad state, and we’re going to have bankruptcies and foreclosures and we’re just going to have families that are decimated financially,” said Chamber of Commerce President Don Borgwardt, who is also a local pastor and made a plea for people to be allowed back inside houses of worship.
“It’s time to do the right thing and listen to the people who put us here,” Mayor Paul Creighton said. “We want you guys to survive and thrive. It’s really critical that the elected in this country and especially this state start listening to you.”
Creighton said that while the city would take no action against anyone who reopened outside the State’s guidelines, local businesses were taking their own risks by reopening.
On Saturday, County Sheriff Vernon Warnke said that he will not be taking any enforcement action in this county for any of the COVID-19 “violations”.
“The citizens themselves can make informed decisions on how to proceed and protect their lives and livelihood and not the governor of the State,” he said.