Regional Chair Karen Redman is speaking publicly about testing positive for COVID-19 for the first time since it was announced she was dealing with the virus.
She made the remarks during Wednesday's police services board meeting.
"It causes you to stop and think on a very personal level, "have you put anybody in jeopardy or at risk inadvertently?" said Redman. "On a personal level, it brought it all home. My husband and I were really lucky, they were very mild symptoms."
She said they have been isolating since December 24.
"My husband and I sat down and said 'have we talked with anybody or [have we] been with anybody?' said Redman, "the reality was, we hadn't."
Redman confirmed her COVID-19 positive test last Tuesday in a video poster to her Twitter feed.
A personal message to the community: pic.twitter.com/VAUKd1VxEo— Karen Redman (@Redman4Region) January 12, 2021
She reflected on the impact that COVID-19 tests have had on her own family.
"We have five grandchildren, and three of them have been tested - two of them more than once for COVID due to suspected exposure in classrooms, so as much as I know it's difficult for parents to be teaching your kids off the side of your desk when you're working from home because that's the situation both of our daughters find themselves in - it does become up close and personal," said Redman.
Redman said that she is thankful that Region of Waterloo Public Health has been very diligent when dealing with the COVID-19 situation locally.
"We've had the flexibility that unless you're an essential worker and you can work from home - you should work from home," said Redman, "when I look at staff within the Waterloo Regional Police Services, people in healthcare, people running our transit system, people testing our water and wastewater - there are people who absolutely have to show up for work."
Redman said that each of us can make a personal decision to decide to follow public health guidelines after her experience with the virus.
"If we follow the guidelines, we stay in our household as much as that is wearing thin after many months, it's the least we can do for the people that can't opt to stay home and the least we can do for our frontline essential workers," said Redman, "PSW's, nurses, doctors who have been working flat-out and frankly, don't see an end in sight anytime soon."
She is encouraging everyone to follow the public health guidelines until everyone who opts to get the vaccine is able to do so.