Live Oak official unafraid to name infected nursing home

The News Service of Florida reports that Live Oak City Council member Don Allen has seen the number of coronavirus cases in his rural county increase to 58, including 36 involving long-term care residents or staff members.

Allen told the news service on Tuesday that the long-term care cases in Suwannee County stem from the Suwannee Health and Rehabilitation Center in Live Oak, about two blocks from where he lives.

“This nursing home is in my district and so I consider these people my constituents, and somebody has got to care for them,” Allen said, explaining his decision to speak with the press about the nursing home. “I’ve spoken with employees there who want to remain anonymous for fear of losing their jobs, but they are scared. They want the National Guard to come in there and clean the place up.”

Suwannee Health and Rehabilitation Center did not reply to requests for comment this week. Neither did the Suwannee County Emergency Operations Center.

“I worry about the people. I know them. I know those who work there,” Allen said. “I don’t want to be like the place in Seattle on TV every night where they start hauling them out of there, dead.”


Drop the mike, Mr. Allen.  Good to see to a courageous elected official willing to do what’s right regardless of pressure from the governor’s office.

Much better than the weak response Escambia County citizens got from their county administrator.   Please send this to Ms. Gilley – email.  Maybe she will listen if enough citizens express their displeasure with the cover-up.

BTW: We have no reports of an repercussions against Mr. Allen for speaking out for his neighbors’ safety.