Water and Wastewater: No Industry Is More Essential

We have always known you’re essential, and we are thankful and supportive as you continue your work during this uncertain time

Water and Wastewater: No Industry Is More Essential

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In its response to the coronavirus pandemic, the federal government earlier this month identified you as essential critical infrastructure workers. At COLE Publishing, we’ve always known you’re essential. That’s why we’re here.

Since this company was founded in 1979, we have been shining a light on the water and wastewater industries, showing the recognition and appreciation you and your work deserve.

In its overview of the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce, the Department of Homeland Security includes a section on Water/Wastewater workers, but reading through that document, your jobs are represented by multiple categories: Public Health, Public Safety, First Responders, Transportation, Logistics, Public Works and Hazardous Materials.

You are much more than water and wastewater workers. Running water and wastewater systems is a commitment that goes way beyond the standard workday. You’re not just earning a paycheck; you’re taking care of your community.

Clean water is essential to life, and proper sanitation is one of the greatest factors in public health. Ensuring we have both is a monumental task that rarely gets the respect it deserves. We take it for granted until suddenly there’s a problem. Most often it’s a water main break that leads to a temporary loss of service, or a clogged sewer line backing wastewater up into our basements. Maybe the occasional boil water advisory or a frozen line. But those are all short-term. We act inconvenienced, but only because we’re used to such incredible convenience.

A lot of people were taking a lot of things for granted before this pandemic began shutting down our normal lives. And then suddenly hand sanitizer vanished from shelves. Then toilet paper. Imagine if instead of people suddenly deciding they needed every roll of toilet paper they could get their hands on, this pandemic compromised our water supplies and people fought for every bottle of water they could find. But that’s not how it played out. Our water is safe; anyone blocking access to the toilet paper aisle is in grave danger. And we flush our toilets and send all the waste to you.

Our water and wastewater systems are still working as they should, because you’re still on the job. You still won’t get the appreciation you deserve in most cases, but that’s absolutely not the case here. We, the entire staff at COLE Publishing, know your role is just as important as any doctor, police officer or elected official. You are unsung heroes, and we are here to say Thank You.

Below is the complete memorandum and infrastructure guidance document released this week by the federal government:

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