To the editor;

Hillcrest Middle School was forced to close for a two-week required quarantine after a COVID-19 case. Around the same time, the CT Post had a story about how the coronavirus is now mutating.

The article says the mutation is making it more contagious than before. Scientists are still urging everyone to continue social distancing, hand washing, and wearing masks.

We must not forget those countries living in global poverty. With a lack of testing, medical treatment, and basic human necessities, these countries can face worse consequences than any first world nation.

The Borgen Project, an anti-poverty agency, believes that pandemics have no borders and their top priority is to ensure a global response to the COVID-19 crisis. Slowing the spread of the virus is crucial to ending this pandemic, that is why we are urging our U.S. senators to support emergency funding for COVID-19 in the International Affairs Budget.

Retired U.S military leaders Adam. James Stavridis and Gen. Anthony Zinni said it best, "No matter how successful we are in fighting the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic at home, we will never stop it unless we are also fighting it around the world.”

While we want to end the spread of COVID-19 here in the U.S., we can only accomplish this victory if others living in global poverty receive the help they need. Now, more than ever, we need to put pressure on Congress to recommit U.S. leadership to global health security so we can defeat COVID-19 and prevent future pandemics.

Molly Deegan