The NBA and NHL have suspended their seasons, and the three teams that usually play in Staples Center during this time of year have made it less likely that the workers who were counting on those games for wages will not have to search for work in the midst of a pandemic, formulating a plan to pay them for the game days they’ll be missing out on during the stoppage.
Staples Center is doing its part to pay that forward, as on Friday night, the arena announced that it was donating food that would have gone to waste during these stoppages to local homeless shelters who could use it:
This afternoon STAPLES Center donated 7,000 pounds of food that would have been wasted due to the recent suspension of events at the arena. Donations were made to both The Midnight Mission and Los Angeles Mission Men’s Center both located in downtown Los Angeles. pic.twitter.com/QTkoQ8WXG2— STAPLES Center (@STAPLESCenter) March 14, 2020
COVID-19 may disproportionately threaten the homeless, who often have less ability to separate themselves from others, less access to medical care, and many of whom already have underlying health conditions (which we know make people more susceptible to this disease). As of June 2019, there were 59,000 homeless people in Los Angeles, and city officials are already enacting measures to try and stop a coronavirus outbreak among them in local shelters.
This food will not solve that issue. However, it is a way to help our most vulnerable with supplies that would have gone to waste anyway, and Staples Center deserves credit for making sure it did the right thing here. All any of us can do right now is try to help each other as much as we can, and as a community built around our shared love of Lakers basketball and local athletics, we should highlight it when the people involved with our favorite sports teams do their part to help out.
As a generalized reminder of things we all can do, the CDC is asking people to:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.