The following message was sent tonight via the Emergency Notification System by Mayor Shari Cantor:

Good evening, this is Mayor Shari Cantor.

I am calling you tonight to announce that pursuant to my recent emergency declaration regarding the global pandemic of Covid-19, the Town Manager has issued an executive order prohibiting social and recreational gatherings of more than ten people. The order will take effect tomorrow, Friday, March 20, 2020 and will be enforced by the West Hartford Police Department.  We join several other Connecticut towns in taking this important action.

This is a serious and difficult step but our number one priority is to protect the health and safety of all West Hartford residents and it will save lives. This executive order follows the most current CDC directive and addresses social and recreational activities, that include but are not limited to: community, civic, and sporting events; plays or live performances; and religious, spiritual, or worship gatherings. The emergency order runs through April 30, 2020, but may be modified at any time.

 We must do everything in our power to slow the community spread of Covid-19. This means that we must minimize direct contact with others. As social beings this is so incredibly challenging but it is essential at this difficult time.  We need to stop congregating in groups of more than ten and practice social distancing.

Earlier today, Town officials sent a letter urging parents and caregivers to make sure that all school-age youths are home each evening by 8:00PM. While it seems that children, adolescents and young adults are less likely to get sick from COVID-19, they can be carriers, infecting those who are most vulnerable.

We need your help enforcing the 8PM rule at this critical stage of the virus. Children should not be allowed to participate in playdates, sleep-overs, team sports, house parties and other group activities that would greatly expand their risk of spreading this virus.

The number of confirmed cases in Connecticut is rising exponentially. We have to take every precaution available to us to slow the spread and prevent the health system from becoming overwhelmed. I call on the members of the West Hartford community to do everything we can to assist us in this effort.

This is serious and real. Social distancing saves lives.

West Hartford is strongly positioned to weather this historic crisis, but we cannot do it without the assistance of all or our residents. Each and every one of us has been forced to make incredible sacrifices and, from the bottom of my heart, I thank you for your cooperation.

Remember, we are all in this together. Thank you for listening. Stay healthy. Be well.