Big Horn County Public Health Requests Cooperation From Non-Residents Seeking Recreation—30 Mar
HARDIN, MONTANA (March 30, 2020) – The Big Horn County Public Health Department is asking for the cooperation and goodwill of non-residents who are considering traveling to Big Horn County for recreational purposes. We understand that many visitors want to come here because we have a low-intensity of COVID-19 and they believe it is a safe place to recreate. However, if visitors from other counties and other states where there are more cases of COVID-19 continue to come to our county, it is likely that the novel coronavirus will spread faster here than if these visitors stayed home.
In times of great danger, people often turn their minds and hearts to the greater good; this is the time to consider the impact of individual actions on our two Reservations and our County. Big Horn County is extremely limited in medical resources; many of our residents live below the poverty line and face barriers to accessing medical care. Our two hospitals struggle to keep adequate staff in normal times and we have no intensive care units in our County. Our best hope for weathering the storm that is coming is to keep the number of COVID-19 cases down to a minimum; the only proven way to do this is to stay at home and to restrict travelers coming in to our County. Our people are staying home; however, it is proving very difficult to restrict visitors.
Leaders of the Crow and Northern Cheyenne Nations as well as local healthcare providers are encouraging all of our residents to stay home and to stay local. We need essential businesses to continue to support residents during the quarantine; we need visitors who are not providing essential services to stay home. No one can be sure that they are not carrying the virus in their body even when they are feeling healthy; it is best to assume that each visitor may be harboring the virus and thereby bringing it to the places that they visit. As a show of respect and neighborliness, please stay home during this crucial period.
When the threat of the pandemic is past, we sincerely hope to welcome visitors from near and far; we look forward to sharing our natural resources, and our cultural and historical sites. Until that day comes, please stay home and stay safe for everyone’s sake.
To view the full order, please visit the Big Horn County website at https://www.bighorncountymt.gov/order-of-big-horn-county-public-health-officer-no-2020-2/ or the County’s response to COVID-19 on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/BHCMTResponds/.
Please visit the website of the Northern Cheyenne Nation at http://www.cheyennenation.com/.
Big Horn County is the sixth largest county in Montana, at approximately 5,023 square miles, and with a population exceeding 13,000. The local government was established January 13, 1913. Hardin is the County Seat. https://www.bighorncountymt.gov/
The Crow Tribe of Indians, headquartered in Crow Agency, is the largest reservation in Montana encompassing approximately 2.2 million acres. The Crow Tribe has a membership of 11,000, of whom 7,900 reside on the Crow Indian Reservation. http://www.crow-nsn.gov/
The Northern Cheyenne Indian Reservation is located in present-day southeastern Montana, and is approximately 444,000 acres in size with 99% tribal ownership. The Northern Cheyenne Tribe has approximately 11,266 enrolled tribal members, with about 5,012 residing on the reservation. http://www.cheyennenation.com/