As a large number of volunteers are called upon to make masks for the University of Nebraska Medical Center and the state records its highest one-day increase in coronavirus cases, businesses begin to reopen and the Nebraska Outlet mall will distribute 10,000 masks to customers and employees. What is wrong with this picture?
Ken Keith, Omaha
Millard bond deserves approval
As a “pandemic parent,” I appreciate the consistent support for our family from the Millard Public Schools teachers and administration. While e-learning is not ideal for industrial Ttechnology, AP chemistry or orchestra, my children have been engaged and learning during these surreal times. That is why our family is in favor of the school bond, so that all Millard students, teachers and staff can have a safe and secure learning and working environment.
While these are unprecedented times, it is vital that our students have a place to learn and develop to eventually become the next generation of nurses, doctors, first responders, teachers, etc. We are a community that supports each other!
Elissa Hamill, Omaha
No to street bonds
The street bond issue on the upcoming ballot came about after the mayor stated that street repair has been underfunded for 50 years. Why did it take her and the administration six years to figure this out?
I’ve been an Omaha and Nebraska resident all my life but, as a retiree, I’ve had enough of paying higher property taxes and throwing money at a problem without a well-thought-out solution. When you get right down to the bottom line, this is just another “pig in a poke” with the taxpayers footing the bill. I’m moving out of state at the end of this year. Elected officials better start working smarter or more will be following me.
Jack Urban, Omaha
Protect these workers
While growing up on a small Nebraska family farm, I watched my parents display the work ethic that provided enough for our family to enjoy the good life. I am deeply concerned about the meat industry that has become a hotbed of COVID-19 cases. It is apparent that many communities are becoming victims so that we might have meat on our tables.
It is time for both the industry and the state to provide outstanding leadership to give hardworking employees and their fine families safer working conditions so the producers continue to have a marketplace. We will then protect the food chain.
So I challenge the plant owners and the state to protect workers and therefore provide for the rest of us. Gov. Ricketts seems to equate the number of hospital beds available as reason to allow these communities to continue using less safe practices. Is this the good life?
Dee Ebel, Omaha
Health data safeguarded?
I fully appreciate Gov. Ricketts’ desire to crush the curve and slow the spread of COVID-19. However, I question the process. After reviewing information on testnebraska.com, I realized that I’m providing personal medical information to private, unknown companies. How are we sure that these companies are securing our personal data? Are we simply taking their word that they follow HIPPA guidelines for dissemination of personal health data? Given Google’s deal with Ascension to store and utilize patient’s health records to create profit centers around artificial intelligence, I raise serious issues with the State of Nebraska’s partnerships for virus testing.
Slowing, and ultimately eliminating, the threat associated with COVID-19 should be a critical priority, but not at the expense of our personal protections.
Bradley S. Grubb, Omaha
Stark for regent
The University of Nebraska system faces significant challenges and tremendous opportunities in the upcoming years. To manage the challenges in a manner that does not cause significant harm and our ability to educate our citizens while identifying and nourishing the opportunities will require unparalleled visionary leadership.
Establishing the mission, priorities and values of the institution for our system is the responsibility of the regents. A member of the Board of Regents should be fully committed to our children and have an enduring passion for the University of Nebraska system.
In the upcoming regents election, we have a candidate that checks all the boxes of the ideal person to represent the people of Nebraska on the Board of Regents — Dr. Jack Stark.
His opponents are good, accomplished people; that I cannot take away from them, but Dr. Stark has all the skills and attributes to be an influential member of the Board of Regents. I got to observe Dr. Stark, as the team sports psychologist for the football team, be a visionary leader with coach Tom Osborne to create the unity council. The council was a foundational part of the culture and led to multiple national championships. I have watched him help shape and guide the lives of students at the university who have sought his counsel.
Dr. Stark is a capable, honorable leader that people should choose as a member of the University of Nebraska Board of Regents.
George Achola, Omaha