Carlsbad community talks of forward moves from COVID-19

Grieving the loss of a loved one, teen suicide and effects on schools and health care workers were highlighted during a COVID-19 panel discussion Sept. 25 in Carlsbad.

Deacon Tony Dominguez of San Jose Catholic Church, Permian Basin Counseling Regional Director D’Nae Johnson, Associate New Mexico AARP Director Gary Williams, Carlsbad Municipal Schools (CMS) Superintendent Dr. Gerry Washburn and Carlsbad Medical Center Chief Executive Officer Nick Arledge spent nearly two hours talking about the effects of COVID-19 and possible solutions at the Leo Sweet Community Center.

“I thought it was good. I thought a lot of good information got put out there,” said Washburn.

Carlsbad Municipal Schools Superintendent Dr. Gerry Washburn addresses issues COVID-19 has on schools during a panel discussion on Sept. 25, 2021 in Carlsbad.

“I think it’s good to hear the different perspectives. We’re all trying to navigate something that just seems to continue to go on and on.”

Washburn said CMS dealt with a number of issues since March 2020 when the first COVID-19 cases were reported in Eddy County and New Mexico.

“When the kids were all remote (learning) we had a huge spike in kids threatening self-harm and depression. We’ve seen that thankfully go down a little bit,” he said.