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Friday, April 18, 2014
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People's Forum: Don't put others at risk during weather emergencies

I wish to commend the schools and businesses that were proactive in looking out for the health and safety of their students and employees by closing in accordance with the emergency weather warning procedures

Kathee Kime Kirchner
Posted on Feb. 3, 2014 at 6:10 p.m.

I wish to commend the schools and businesses that were proactive in looking out for the health and safety of their students and employees by closing in accordance with the emergency weather warning procedures. Thank you also for your concern for the emergency service workers who must be out in extreme conditions (paramedics, medical staff, police and fire departments and road crews).

I continue to be perplexed by non-essential businesses that choose to remain open at these times, and disappointed by a system that holds only the employees responsible for being on the roads. Why are employees left to choose between consequences for missing work and from breaking the law (incurring fines, not to mention risking their safety and the safety of others), while there are no consequences for the businesses?

I comprehend the losses incurred when a business closes. This is no small thing, yet many businesses have chosen to close during weather emergencies. To them I say, Thank you for choosing people over profit.

I live on a snow route. I was encouraged to see that a great many people heeded the emergency declaration. I was also amazed by the number of people driving. I am not talking about those who had legitimate reasons to be out. I am appalled by those who went out for "a cup of coffee" or who were establishing their bragging rights about a vehicle "that can get through anything." Do you not realize that minimum-wage workers are forced to out because of your need for a cup of coffee? Have you no respect for the emergency workers who put their lives on the line every day?

It may seem that it’s only a problem if something bad happens. But none of us knows what tomorrow holds, so why put others at risk?

Kathee Kime Kirchner

Elkhart



 This photo provided by the Utah County jail shows Megan Huntsman, who was booked into the Utah County jail on suspicion of killing six of her newborn children over the past decade. Seven dead babies were found in a garage at a Pleasant Grove home where Huntsman lived up until 2011. (AP Photo/Utah County Jail) Courtesy Utah County Jail
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