Perryman, PhD, CEO of
the Center of Hope Family Services, has launched into action to
bring the Mask Up Toledo program to the public for a
number of reasons. Her father, Rev. Donald Perryman,
pastor of Center of Hope Baptist Church contracted the
coronavirus in February, but it went undiagnosed at the time.
to an estimate by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC),
by the day after Christmas, December 26, more than 329,000
US-Americans will have died from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The numbers are staggering and disturbing: The Institute for
Health Metrics and Evaluation projects that over 538,893
US-Americans will die from the disease by April 2021.
of the disease could have been prevented according to the CDC
and many infectious disease experts – by wearing masks, washing
hands, avoiding crowds when possible and keeping a social
distance when avoiding crowded situations is not possible.
There is a
resistance by members of the general public to those simple
health care acts – a result of poor leadership and an extensive
skepticism about any information given out by media, elected
officials or experts.
In spite of
the overwhelming numbers of those who have fallen ill, there are
two issues of concern. First, so many young people, as Perryman
notes, fall into that category of being skeptics about official
information and advice.
people don’t understand that they may pass it on to older ones”
it has now been estimated by the National Center for Health
Statistics that Latinos and African Americans are 2.8 times
more likely to contract virus than are those in the white
community and almost twice as likely to die from COVID-19.
these concerns is the fact that a lack of testing leaves so many
people in the dark about the extent of the virus among the
populace. Getting accurate information to the community is a
critical component in the battle to check the spread of the
coronavirus and to eradicating it in the future as vaccines
Up has started
broadcasting as a public service announcement featuring a music
video in which Perryman, an accomplished singer/songwriter,
tells listeners that “if your life matters to you, wear the mask
for me because it can save you.” Content is being featured in a
number of places such as YouTube, the Health Department’s
website, the Center of Hope’s website, network television
stations, through paid advertising and “every platform possible
until the message has traction,” says Perryman.