By James Thompson Jr.

CCC Journalism Program

Many people have changed their daily routine to try to avoid catching and spreading COVID-19. Others have not. 

Many have followed the advice of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the rules of some governments and businesses by wearing masks when they leave their homes, physically distancing from other people, avoiding gatherings and washing their hands frequently. The actions are intended to prevent them from catching the coronavirus or spreading it to other people, thereby combatting the growing pandemic. But when even the president of the United States ignores the advice, others follow his lead. 

Erica Padilla, a student at Camden County College, said she made the tough decisions to follow the rules.

An incorrect way to wear a mask.

“It is important that the protocols are followed to make sure we can stop the spread and stay safe until we find a vaccine,” Padilla stated. “It’s pretty simple. Wash your hands, keep 6 feet distance and wear your mask.”

She said she was prepared to follow these procedures “as long as it takes. I believe even when we have a vaccine there still must be a period where we continue to follow the rules to ensure against any more casualties.”

Padilla said she has had no contact with the virus and has been able to stay healthy during this unprecedented time.

Bryan Torres, an employee at a local grocery store, said he did not believe it was a necessity to follow the CDC guidelines and continued to live his life the way he did before the pandemic.

The correct way to wear a mask and socially distance. Photos by James Thompson Jr., CCC Journalism Program

“I don’t believe it is really necessary to wear a mask or follow the guidelines,” Torres stated. “If you’re at risk then you should wear a mask, but I shouldn’t be ridiculed if I’m healthy.”

He said he was required to wear a mask at work “but I often just wear it on my chin so I can breathe. I don’t think it’s necessary, so if a customer asks I tell them to just cover their mouth with their hand.”

As to what would make him follow the rules for fighting the pandemic, Torres said, “It would take being nearly arrested or if a family member was old and ill. Otherwise, I don’t find it necessary to follow social distance guidelines.”

Three of his family members have contracted the virus but all were asymptomatic, he said.

http://cdc.gov — Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website, which includes COVID-19 information

http://camdencc.edu — Camden County College website, which includes COVID-19 information

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