Officials in the County’s Emergency Management Office, along with Red Cross and other local responders, are urging residents to refrain from hoarding food and other paper products or cleaning supplies as New Mexico enters another week of “Stay at Home” under the Governor’s Executive Order issued March 23.
“We feel confident that, although some items may be received in limited supplies for re-stocking right now, the public should not be concerned that Los Alamos and White Rock will not be able to stock items in stores,” said Beverley Simpson, Emergency Manager for Los Alamos County.
Simpson said she continues to be in communication with local stores such as Smith’s Marketplace and that the issue of hoarding is one that is occurring across the state, but is unnecessary and can harm those who need essential supplies week to week.
“It’s critical that residents purchase only what they need right now. If you would typically shop once a week, continue that practice, and only buy what you would need for that time period,” Simpson said, adding that the State of New Mexico is implementing plans to stabilize the initial surge in purchasing that occurred as communities responded to the “Stay At Home” order.
“The New Mexico Department of Health is working with food distributors to divert supplies to grocery stores from orders that would typically have been sent to the restaurants that are now closed,” she said, adding that the DOH is also working on increasing the number of drivers needed for transport of goods to stores.
“We are shifting resources to respond to needs, but it takes a little time to do so, and until then, we need everyone to work together and stop unnecessary hoarding,” Simpson said, “Our food supply is secure, and purchasing more than you need for a week removes items for those who may really need them and are high-risk for COVID-19. Hoarding huge supplies of high-demand toilet paper and hand sanitizer can leave others without them.”