JEFFERSON — The county released a letter on Thursday signed by a number of village, city, county and state officials.

The letter states that responses to the COVID-19 outbreak should not be politicized.

COVID-19 is a real virus that poses a health risk to county residents, according to the letter.

The letter recommends citizens wear masks, observe social distancing and wash hands frequently. It also encourages people to stay home if sick. 

The letter is signed by the county commissioners, all three health departments in Ashtabula County, the city managers of Ashtabula, Geneva and Conneaut, State Rep. John Patterson and a number of other elected officials and hospitals. The people and entities that signed the letter said they would like to provide a unified message regarding the COVID-19 outbreak.

There have already been 44 deaths in Ashtabula County from COVID-19. While the county has not been as hard hit as other places, Ashtabula County must take COVID-19 seriously, according to the letter.

“Please join us to keep Ashtabula County safe and healthy,” the letter said. “Together, we can minimize the impact to our lives, our businesses and our future.”

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