Public health workers threatened for trying to control pandemic


A county public health official who is retiring after 40 years of service said she and her staff have received threats because of their work in trying to control the pandemic. Gail Scott, who is retiring as Jefferson County’s director / public health official, told WISN 12’s “UPFRONT” program that she was surprised by the “demoralizing and threatening backlash” from the public. The program is produced in partnership with WisPolitics.com. “I was threatened with being fired. I was threatened with armed violence and we were threatened with being brought to justice for crimes against humanity,” she said. “We really really wanted to help the public, and we really really wanted to stop this virus. And I was a little surprised by some of the demoralizing and threatening reactions that we had.” Scott said she and her staff had seen a positive public response, like when they organized a mass vaccination clinic and 500 volunteers came to help them. “What really hurts is when people say we lie. Because we weren’t lying. We weren’t trying to control anyone. Public health didn’t want to do it. We were just trying to do it. our job, ”Scott said. She also said other people thanked them and showed appreciation for their work on the pandemic. Scott said she was retiring because she was 65 and had always planned to retire at that age. She said that although the pandemic has been “the most difficult I have ever worked in my life”, she is leaving “with a smile on her face.” Also on the agenda, Wisconsin Revenue Secretary Peter Barca said that a UW-Madison economist’s plan to eliminate personal income tax and increase sales tax for the State to make up for lost revenue could result in a considerably higher sales tax which would make Wisconsin No. 1 in the country for sales tax. “We are always open to any idea,” Barca said. But the plan proposed by Noah Williams, director of the Center for Research on the Wisconsin Economy, would require “very careful thought,” Barca said. 11% for the numbers to work, “Barca said. Williams’ plan has been championed by several conservative groups. Barca said the state’s economy is strong and its tax ranking has fallen from No. 5 20 years ago at No. 23 among states today. Barca said the state pandemic pandemic subsidy program, made possible by federal funds, has made a difference. ” We are in a very good position, “Barca said. In another segment, a Waukesha County community leader said the first payments were made to the victims of the Christmas parade tragedy. The payments were coming from of the more than $ 5 million donated after the tragedy. On November 21, police said a man with a long criminal record drove an SUV through the closed streets of downtown Waukesha, directly into the parade. people were killed and more than 60 others were injured. Shelli Marquardt, president of the Waukesha County Community Foundation, said the first payments went to the families of those killed and those with the longest hospital stays. The next round will go to the people who were injured. People injured in the event have until the end of February to apply, she said. Marquardt said the foundation was following a formula developed in other communities that suffered horrific tragedies, like the Boston Marathon bombing and the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando. She said the donations, which have come from all states and even around the world, are heartwarming. “It’s inspiring and if there’s any kind of silver lining, it’s the love, the support, the generosity that surrounds our community,” said Marquardt.

A county public health official who is retiring after 40 years of service said she and her staff have received threats because of their work in trying to control the pandemic.

Gail Scott, who is retiring as Jefferson County’s director / public health official, told WISN 12’s “UPFRONT” program that she was surprised by the “demoralizing and threatening backlash” from the public.

The program is carried out in partnership with WisPolitics.com.

“I was threatened with being fired. I was threatened with armed violence and we were threatened with being brought to justice for crimes against humanity,” she said. “We really really wanted to help the public, and we really really wanted to stop this virus. And I was a little surprised by some of the demoralizing and threatening reactions that we had.”

Scott said she and her staff had seen a positive reaction from the public, such as when they organized a mass immunization clinic and 500 volunteers came to help.

“What really hurts is when people say we lie. Because we weren’t lying. We weren’t trying to control anyone. Public health didn’t want to do it. We were just trying to do it. our job, ”Scott said.

She also said other people thanked them and showed appreciation for their work on the pandemic.

Scott said she was retiring because she was 65 and had always planned to retire at that age.

She said that although the pandemic has been “the most difficult I have ever worked in my life”, she is leaving “with a smile on her face.”

Also on the agenda, Wisconsin Revenue Secretary Peter Barca said that a UW-Madison economist’s plan to eliminate personal income tax and increase sales tax for the State to make up for lost revenue could result in a considerably higher sales tax which would make Wisconsin No. 1 in the country for sales tax.

“We are always open to any idea,” Barca said.

But the plan proposed by Noah Williams, director of the Center for Research on the Wisconsin Economy, would require “very careful thought,” Barca said.

“Our revenue experts at the Revenue Ministry say we would have to increase the sales tax by over 11% for the numbers to work,” Barca said.

Williams’ plan has been championed by several conservative groups.

Barca said the state’s economy is strong and its tax ranking has gone from No.5 20 years ago to No.23 among states today.

Barca said the state subsidy program for the fight against the pandemic, made possible by federal funds, made a difference.

“We are in a very good position,” Barca said.

In another segment, a Waukesha County community leader said the first payments were made to the victims of the Christmas parade tragedy.

The payments came from the more than $ 5 million donated after the tragedy.

On November 21, police said a man with a long criminal record drove an SUV through the closed streets of downtown Waukesha, directly into the parade.

Six people were killed and over 60 others were injured.

Shelli Marquardt, president of the Waukesha County Community Foundation, said the first payments went to the families of those killed and those with the longest hospital stays.

The next round will go to the people who were injured.

People injured in the event have until the end of February to apply, she said.

Marquardt said the foundation was following a formula developed in other communities that suffered horrific tragedies, like the Boston Marathon bombing and the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando.

She said the donations, which have come from all states and even around the world, are heartwarming.

“It’s inspiring and if there’s any kind of silver lining, it’s the love, the support, the generosity that surrounds our community,” said Marquardt.


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