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I understand there is great concern at this time due to the COVID-19 scare. I have seen great changes in this community for some time now.


As this has progressed, I have seen a lot of news and officials giving statements, but there is not a lot being said that is reassuring or calming, other that charts and statistics.


As the State of Kansas is closing offices, it is causing more concern to the public, and burden on our counties.


I can assure you the Sheriff's Office is only making small changes to protect staff according to precautions prescribed by health officials, or to handle issues caused by the State closing offices. These changes will not change my services to this community.


I wish to remind everyone that I am a fellow citizen that ran for the office of sheriff. I live with you, and I have a family. I have the same concerns every person in this community has.


I am asking the citizens of Pratt County to be the model of sanity at this time. Do not get your news from social media unless it is from a trusted, known, professional news source, or agency charged with providing the information you are looking for.


Do not allow this situation to cause you to treat others in a harsh, or irrational manner. People should not be trying to harm each other for groceries or bathroom products. Wait your turn and get what you need. Have respect for the families that have to wait for funds and then find that there is nothing left at the store.


I have yet to see something that has alarmed me enough to overstock my shelves at home, other than everyone is cleaning off the shelves at the store. This again is spreading more fear and preventing everyone from having the resources they need for everyday life.


The United States of America is the finest country, with the finest individuals ever known in human history. All of us in the rural parts of this country are, as far as I have always been concerned, the backbone of the nation.   We need to set an example for the rest of the nation.


While there are constant updates from the state with a lot of information that is hard to understand, our freedom is not at risk. There are several precautions, that seem annoying but are necessary, to protect each other. If everyone follows these rules out of common sense and decency for others, this will be over soon.


I say again. Only get your news from trusted sources. If you hear something on social media, please double check the information before spreading any information that could cause unneeded panic.


While maintaining the precautions given to us by health officials, we can still treat each other like neighbors.

Pratt County Sheriff

Jimmy White