Active and retired public employees across the country are stepping up and helping their communities in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Below, we share stories of how some of them are serving at this time. 

“I am a retired public employee. My husband and I have a little makeshift assembly line going on in our home with the two of us making face masks for nearby clinic and emergency room personnel. We have made 63 so far and have fabric to make a total of 270. Medical personnel are using these to cover/protect the hospital-issued N95 masks which are still in short supply. One nurse practitioner sent us a photo of her wearing our mask.” –Sandy Heerdt

“As educators, we are proceeding with virtual instruction for all our students. The School Board of Highlands County is providing breakfast and lunch for students. We have provided laptops and supplies to students. We are complying with the state and federal recommendations. We are conducting virtual meetings every day, and keeping the avenues of communication open. Just doing all we can to support the community and each other during this crisis.” –Luis Vargas 

“Although people are told to stay home and self-quarantine, we as first responders find ourselves in these families’ homes trying to help them in their time of need. While doing this all we can do is hope and pray we are fortunate enough to have the proper personal protective equipment (PPE) to protect us, and not wind up exposing co-workers or even bring something home to our families. We as first responders don’t get the option to stay at home and self-quarantine to protect ourselves and our families. We keep doing our jobs every day for low wages.” –Robert 

“My daughter Jessica and her husband Robert both work as correctional officers at Sterling Correctional. They go to work everyday under the realization they might not have the equipment they might need to do their work. They take that chance everyday and they risk everything as they have two beautiful daughters and a son. It would devastate this family should something happen to their mom and dad.” –Diane Adams

“I and other teachers in Kentucky are teaching our students remotely. I, personally, am engaging with my students using Google Hangouts and Remind texts. I am seeking to make my content accessible for students and their parents. I am also translating my content into paper packet work for those families who do not have Internet access. It is a balancing act to make sure that both the online content and the paper packet assignments are equitable. I am busy all day long and often assist students in the evenings and on weekends.” –Kathy Thompson 

“I retired five years ago from teaching middle school science, in Fayette Co. Schools, for 27 years.  I am 65 years old, so I’m considered to be in a ‘high-risk’ category for COVID-19. During the last two weeks, I have been leading outings for walking and/or hiking, keeping a generous 6′ distance between people.  Most of my participants are over 60. We need safe exercise options!!” –Terri  

“Busy busy making masks for health care people!  Time is of [the] essence…no time to talk except Denver Mask Task Force is getting it done!!” –Kay Adams

“I’m a retired Power Plant Operator from a Municipally Owned Gas & Electric Utility in San Antonio. We’re one of the few crafts that truly know what is meant by the term ‘Essential Employee.’” –Paul Brock

All of us at NPPC couldn’t be more grateful for all that retired and active public employees do for us and our communities. Be sure to follow NPPC on Twitter and Facebook to see more of these incredible stories.