A rally on Sept. 18 saw citizens show support for public health officers and some city council candidates, and to oppose the Sequim City Council’s resolution opposing public health mandates.
“We love Dr. Berry,” said Lee Strucker, as he held a sign on a corner. “She’s doing such a great and dangerous job.”
Diana Erickson said, “Thank you to Dr. Berry for protecting people who don’t have a choice.”
Said Bill May, “We are supporting the slate of people for City Council to replace the ones who are supported by the QAnon mayor.”
Members of Voices for Health and Healing, Concerned Citizens of Clallam County, Indivisible Sequim and Sequim Good Governance League were involved in organizing, promoting and attending the show of support at the intersection of Washington Street and Sequim Avenue.
According to Brian Grad of Voices for Health and Healing, at least 50 people attended.
In an email before the rally, Grad said, “We are responding to the Sequim City Council Resolution defying the Public Health Officer’s authority. This is a serious breach of Governor Inslee’s delegation of authority to local Public Health Boards to help manage the response to Covid-19.
“Dr. Allison Berry received her training in Public Health and Epidemiology from John Hopkins University, one of the country’s most prestigious institutions for medical Doctors. We are incredibly fortunate to have a person of her stature leading the Clallam County Health Board. It is simply astonishing that some people would want her fired and have made threatening overtures to her.”
Participants in the rally waved signs at people passing in cars and some made a short march on Washington Street. Toward the end of the rally, organizers and politicians made speeches declaring their allegiance to the rule of law, support of health experts and support for those candidates who they believe will uphold them.
People on the sidewalks also spoke of trying to keep their immune compromised friends and family safe. One spoke of being rejected from the Forks hospital when her husband had a stroke, another of her 97-year-old mother falling and bashing her head and not being admitted to the emergency room.
“I’m here because my husband had a heart transplant last year,” said one woman, “I’m trying to keep him safe.”
Grad said, “It’s such a divisive issue and I don’t know why it should be. I don’t know why medicine became so political. Getting a vaccine is a social and civic responsibility.”