Celebrating 20 Years 1991-2011 



Letter to Governor DeWine concerning keeping parks and trails open to the public

Tue, Mar 31st, 2020 10:20:59 am

Dear Governor DeWine,                                                                                                              March 30, 2020

I am writing to you concerning the suggestion in today’s press conference by a member of the media concerning whether you are considering closing the state parks. According to the reporter, some people were not practicing social distancing while congregating in a park. While this might be true, for the most part, people are practicing social distancing as they are taking advantage of getting needed exercise and outdoor activity, utilizing Ohio’s parks and hiking/biking trails.

Ohioans have supported the majority of your initiatives to flatten the curve on the coronavirus outbreak. However, there comes a point when government can push too far, restricting people beyond reason.

Please consider that if you were to close the state parks, as was suggested, it would have a disastrous effect for people already under stress for a host of reasons in relation to the coronavirus health care crisis.

Families and individuals need to be able to go out into fresh air to run, walk, bike, hike, and stretch their legs. I know that you are concerned about this, as many Ohioans will be struggling with bouts of depression and emotional stress because of the uncertainty of life right now. Many people I talk with are already concerned about their personal economics, as some have had their businesses closed, others have been laid off or their hours severely lessened, and others have had to take a reduction in pay just to retain their employment. If you were to close the parks, in our opinion, this would have a disastrous effect, as people would feel caged in beyond reason.

We urge you, please keep Ohio’s parks and trails open to the general public with the emphasis that they continue to practice social distancing when out and getting exercise. I want to refer to what President Trump said in one of his recent press conferences concerning Americans’ ability to go out and enjoy the National Parks. The Department of the Interior has waived fees to the parks so that Americans can have access at this time. The President also spoke about his concerns that some Americans would be so depressed that it would lead to higher rates of suicide.  Reports from other states have already shown a sharp increase in suicide rates this past week.  

It is for that reason, and for these concerns that we write you today about this specific issue. Please know that we are praying for you and your staff as you guide Ohio through these difficult days of the coronavirus health crisis. 

May you be encouraged to know that many Ohioans are praying for you.

Sincerely,                                                                                                         Ron Koehler, Esq., Secretary

Chris Long, President Ohio Christian Alliance                                                Alfred B. Davis, Treasurer



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