Samoan family in Hawaii staying home
A Samoan family with roots at Fatausi Savai’i and Saleimoa Upolu living in Hawaii are doing the best they can to stay protected from the coronavirus as it moves through the United States at a near exponential rate.
Late last month a sweeping "stay at home" order came into effect for Hawaii as part of an aggressive push to stop the spread of coronavirus in the islands. Only essential workers are exempt from the orders, leaving streets eerily empty.
Leki Tuilagi, who has been in Hawaii since 2013, tells the Samoa Observer that everyone is doing the best they can to stay safe.
Leki, who is part of the US Military., lives with her family at Royal Kunia, Hawaii.
They are among thousands of Samoans there.
"We are all safe,” she says.
“It is just me, my parents, my brother and my grandma.
“We've heard on the news that there has been more than two hundred cases here in Hawaii but my family and I are safe.”
Leki said the most common message is for people to stay home.
“We’ve been warned to stay indoors and not go out,” she said.
"So we are staying indoors as of now.
“We are not allowed to go outside. And I understand that we are much safer inside our family home.”
The global pandemic has claimed more than 53,000 lives around the world with more than a million cases as of Friday.
“We are still worried about the virus that is currently spreading around the world, and we hope it'll be gone soon," she said.
Leki said she is not at work. The lockdown comes as she is rehabilitating an injury.
"I am currently recovering at home, I had sustained a leg injury from training. I'm glad I am with my family as we go through this virus crisis," she said.
America has become the country with the most confirmed coronavirus cases in the world. As of Friday afternoon a total of 244,826 people had been infected, while more than 6000 people have died.
But so far only two people in Hawaii have died from the disease, despite the number of cases reaching 285.