Chesney Joins Legislators calling on Governor to Consider Human Toll of the Pandemic

State Representative Andrew Chesney and 39 other members of the House Republican Caucus sent a letter to Governor Pritzker urging him to consider the devastating effects that ongoing social isolation is having on the mental and long-term health of individuals and families.

“This is a public health crisis, but a more well-rounded approach is needed in dealing with it,” said Rep. Chesney.  “being isolated for long periods of time often leads to bad health outcomes for vulnerable individuals as well and the numbers prove it.  We have increased numbers of suicide, substance abuse, domestic violence, and much more.  The effects of this forced isolation are detrimental to Illinoisans as well, and this must be addressed immediately.”

Throughout this pandemic, Rep. Chesney has been encouraging Northwest Illinois neighbors to look out for and support each other, he has corralled local resources, created a COVID-19 website to dispatch resources and information to the public, donated blood personally twice, as well as donating meals to public health officials and first responders.  He has also urged for a thoughtful approach to the economic recovery which must now follow the Governor’s extended Stay at Home Orders.

The growth of the overall human toll linked to COVID-19 and its response can no longer be ignored,” the letter reads.  “We must ensure our path forward finally takes a holistic approach to save not only the lives of those infected by the virus, but also the lives of those affected by the government’s response.”

Chesney has been calling on the Illinois House to reconvene for weeks, to work with the Governor on emergency decisions and a proper plan to best reopen the state. On Wednesday, legislators will finally convene for a special session.

The letter co-signed by Rep. Chesney can be found at Rep. Chesney’s website at repchesney.com/human-toll-letter/