Mufi's Message - January 11, 2021
EAT THINK DRINK
Tomorrow, January 12 at 6 p.m., the Hawai'i Lodging & Tourism Association will partner with the Hawai'i Agricultural Foundation to host the latest episode of HAF's extremely popular EAT THINK DRINK series. This online event will turn a keen focus upon the direction of our local tourism industry and will feature industry stakeholders who will be touching upon the difficult questions with which our industry's leaders must grapple:
"How do we reshape tourism to keep our economy going while making sure we maintain livable communities?"
"How can we innovate our existing industries such as agriculture with new technology, and create new programs to attract remote workers?"
"Is it finally time to diversify our economy away from tourism?"
Following our opening remarks, there will be an in-depth discussion panel that will include the following individuals:
COVID-19 Case Count
We continue to see a troubling rise in new COVID-19 cases around the state. Over the past seven days, we've averaged 175 new, confirmed cases per day. Two weeks prior to that, our seven-day average hovered around the 120 mark. Two months ago, it was 105. As I noted in my most recent communication to you, it is clear that the majority of these new cases can be traced back to community spread rather than travelers to Hawai'i. In this regard, I must commend the efforts of those of you in the lodging industry for not only installing effective standards, but also holding your staffs and your guests accountable these guidelines. Your diligence is the reason that our industry can confidently state that we are not the cause of this most recent flare up of COVID-19.
That being said, it is clear that local residents need to buckle down. The last thing we want to see is stay-at-home orders or other stringent mandates put in place by our elected officials. We cannot afford another shutdown so I am asking you to please reiterate to every member of your staff that our livelihoods depends upon us and us alone. Encourage them to continue to social distance, wear their masks, limit the size of any gatherings, and practice good hygiene.
We are mere months away from widespread dissemination of the COVID-19 vaccine, and we must continue to remain vigilant in the meantime.
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