Northampton Press

Friday, April 10, 2020
CONTRIBUTED PHOTOBath Mayor Fiorella Reginelli-Mirabito urges residents to take the COVID-19 pandemic seriously by staying home. Her family in Italy remains safe because of the lockdown there. CONTRIBUTED PHOTOBath Mayor Fiorella Reginelli-Mirabito urges residents to take the COVID-19 pandemic seriously by staying home. Her family in Italy remains safe because of the lockdown there.
CONTRIBUTED PHOTOBath Mayor Fiorella Reginelli-Mirabito (center) and her parents, Maria Fantozzi-Reginelli and Ennio Reginelli, on the day they arrived in America, Jan. 11, 1968. CONTRIBUTED PHOTOBath Mayor Fiorella Reginelli-Mirabito (center) and her parents, Maria Fantozzi-Reginelli and Ennio Reginelli, on the day they arrived in America, Jan. 11, 1968.

Bath mayor advocates for coronavirus safety

Wednesday, March 25, 2020 by BILL LEINER JR. Special to The Press in Local News

Reginelli-Mirabito discusses health of family members who live in Italy

Bath Borough Mayor Fiorella Reginelli-Mirabito is fiercely advocating to all about the importance of taking the coronavirus threat seriously.

Stressing the highly contagious nature of COVID-19, the mayor posted a safety alert on social media urging residents to follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations by washing their hands for 20 seconds, trying not to touch their face, to cough or sneeze into their elbow and to observe social distancing by staying 6 feet away from other people.

“Do not take it lightly,” Reginelli-Mirabito said. “If you don’t have to go out, don’t. Especially if you reside with elderly individuals, they are most at risk.”

The coronavirus pandemic hits close to home for the mayor. She has more than 80 family members in Italy. She communicates with them regularly and reports all are well.

“They are watching what is happening in the U.S. and plead with me to tell people to stay home,” she said.

The majority of her kin live in central Italy in an area known as Abruzzo in the towns of Teramo and Bellante. Reginelli-Mirabito was born in Teramo.

She describes what her family tells her about the virus suppression efforts by the Italian government.

“They are all confined to their homes. Some relatives see it as a military siege. I can sense the sadness in some of their voices because of the restrictions,” she reported.

The confinement began several weeks ago.

“Only one person at a time can leave the home and must wear a mask outside,” she added. “Only the pharmacies and grocery stores are open. It is so hard.

“[The virus] will pass, but we have to take a stand here, and people have to stay home,” Reginelli-Mirabito said.

She noted Italian culture is very social.

“People shop together, cook together, spend time together,” she said. “Family is everything. It is so sad. I cry after (speaking with relatives in Italy) every time I hang up the phone.”

Reginelli-Mirabito and her husband, Manny, have been in a near self-quarantine. Manny is also of Italian heritage.

Their family restaurant is only open for take-out orders. The mayor misses the work she performs in the currently closed Bath Borough Hall and the interaction with friends and constituents.

Reginelli-Mirabito said the sacrifices she and all of us endure because of the pandemic are a struggle we must engage to save lives. Her clear message is to limit interactions with other people and, ideally, stay home.