by Keytime, Tuesday, June 16, 2020, 14:31 (17 days ago)

Maybe one of the most detailed explanations of how the system tries to function.

A continuación se muestra la cartilla William Mertz:

June 13th, 2020

COVID 19 and Mexico, more specifically Troncones:

There are so many questions floating around, so much misunderstanding and so much misinformation. I am going to once again try and sort this out for you and add my little spin on it as well:

Please understand there are 4 levels of "rules and regulations" happening here and rarely are they in agreement with each other. Also understand there is little to no law enforcement to make certain rules are being followed even though in the beginning there was action from the military on keeping people off the beaches.

Level 1 is Federal. On April 1st the Federal government declared ALL beaches closed in Mexico. They ordered all hotels to STOP taking in guests and to not accept new reservations until further instructed. THIS IS STILL IN EFFECT! There have been modifications and additions to this regarding the closing of all nonessential businesses as well. THIS IS STILL IN EFFECT! The Federal Government is using a red light, orange light, yellow light, green light system for designating on a State level where each state stands on a week by week basis. Red meaning all of the above is still in effect. Lighter colors indicate various lifting of restrictions. The problem with this is many folds. First, it changes. If the state was orange then goes back to red. The colors are decided by current cases of the virus and increases and decreases in those numbers. There is little to no enforcement of this ruling after the first couple of weeks.

Level 2 is State. Many states are not following the guidelines or rulings and are setting up their own criteria for opening. They are going municipality by municipality and opening by the same criteria of the number of cases, increases and decreases. Again minimal enforcement.

Level 3 is municipal. States are divided into municipalities much like counties in the US. Each with its own government. They are making decisions on a local level based on whatever they want to base it on. MORE IMPORTANTLY, the majority of enforcement or lack of enforcement from the two levels above is going to fall to this level and whether or not they act on it. This varies widely from region to region.

Level 4 is community. As we saw with Troncones, Barra de Potosi and MANY other places in Mexico, local communities decided to lock themselves down to protect their citizens. This has been done with varying degrees of success and lengths of time. I know some communities are still locked down and tighter than ever. I have seen photos of fences put on the beach in Barra de Potosi to keep people crossing into town from Playa Larga. But let's stick to our town of Troncones. Initially, the "filter" was set to exclude ANYONE not a resident to Troncones THAT WAS ALREADY HERE. This means if you were a homeowner or condo owner you could not enter to go to your own property. No vendors, construction workers or anyone else was allowed in. This created a lot of friction and was quickly relaxed to various degrees. Construction workers, deliveries and vendors were allowed in, but no tourists or homeowners. Residents could come and go as needed as we were restricted in the beginning. All of this served itself well to keep out the Semana Santa crowds that likely would have put us all at more risk. However, the filter gradually became more and more porous and honestly wasn't serving the purpose anymore and in general no one wanted to continue manning it. In addition, a certain amount of local merchants were asking it to be disbanded as the financial harm has been extreme for them. It has now been removed and anyone can come and go as they choose.

Now in reality there is a level 5. That is individuals and individual businesses. My following commentary is not judgment or meant to point out anyone in particular as each case and person is making choices. Some businesses, hotels and restaurants are open, some have been open and some are just opening others choose to remain closed. I think and hope that all of them are following higher standards of sanitation and taking into account new mandates by the government for hospitality workers and businesses. But never the less, people are opening and receiving customers. There is no one here that will be monitoring and/or training anyone so it will be up to the individual places to do as they should to make their clients comfortable and safe.

Here are some personal observations and points. All of this is play it by ear, it changes constantly and there is no one looking after this. It will be up to individual tourists if they choose to visit, when and for how long. There are no travel restrictions here.

The most frequent QUESTION is when will everything return back to normal. There is no answer because it relies on something beyond anybody's control, which is the "pandemic". I can't imagine how numbers of cases will ever decrease until the virus either runs its course or there is a vaccine. For the moment people are adjusting to the new normal and that normal involves a certain level of risk and a certain level of putting others at risk as well.

There is a program that the Federal Government is putting in place that requires restaurants and hotels to become CERTIFIED for dealing with the situation. They are online courses offered through the Health Department (IMSS/CLIMSS) and supposedly no one is allowed to open without these certifications and without being inspected for compliance. HOWEVER again, no enforcement. The sheer number of businesses and the lack of personnel to do inspections clearly puts all of this in doubt, though I do APPLAUD THE EFFORT.

I am tempted to turn off comments for this post as it is overall a statement of facts not really open to interpretation but I will leave it open for now to see how it goes. I AM NO EXPERT on any of this. I simply read as many news sources as possible and try and make sense of what I take in. I may not be correct on everything here, but I am doing my level best.

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