Madison Valley, Gen Pierce photo

April 4, 2020, Helena, Mt.

Thank you for your strength and compassion for our fellow Montanans during this time. Right now, working together to fight this virus actually means staying separate. Staying at home and taking even one Montanan out of the chain of transmission could be a life-saving act. For your neighbors, for your grandparents, for your friends. For our healthcare providers, our first responders, and our law enforcement. We also know that approximately 10% of those who have tested positive for COVID-19 in Montana work in a healthcare setting. Staying at home means keeping our heroes on the frontline as healthy as possible. It means protecting those who are more at risk. In addition to staying at home, always, always wash your hands. These actions are absolutely critical in preventing the spread of the virus. I recognize staying at home presents new challenges for our uniquely independent, uniquely Montana way of life. But we’ve always had an entrepreneurial spirit – and it continues to thrive, even in these times. We’ve seen manufacturing businesses and teachers with 3D printers making masks, and distilleries making hand sanitizer. Montanans are also connecting with each other and with friends across the country over video and social media, hosting virtual game nights or taproom trivia and checking in frequently with loved ones. We are making sure our craft brewery industry can still succeed by making use of curbside delivery. We are supporting our local restaurants with take out. And we are getting that breath of fresh air that is much needed at this time. I encourage all Montanans to responsibly enjoy our public lands. That means following social distancing requirements by keeping at least six feet away from those outside your household when hiking, biking, running, or walking. Avoid crowded trailheads. And recreate near the communities you live. We are lucky to live in a state with an abundance of spectacular, unspoiled nature right outside our backdoors. We are also lucky to live in a place where our sense of community is strong. And I know have no doubt that it is stronger than ever before – because although we can’t actually join arms during this crisis, we recognize that the sacrifices made apart right now will ensure that our state remains together in the future. I can’t stress enough that every step Montanans take now and in the following weeks will make all the difference in managing us through this crisis. Thanks so much for everything you are doing to play your part in slowing down the spread of this virus. You can view all my Directives online at: Sincerely, STEVE BULLOCK Governor