May 07, 2020

Rapid City Residents Share Input On COVID-19 With Mayor Allender



Mayor's Survey Monkey Attracts 1261 Responses,

One Week 'Snapshot' of Opinions Sheds Light On COVID Impacts

RAPID CITY, SD--How has COVID-19 impacted Rapid City residents?  According to more than 1,260 people responding to an online Survey Monkey produced by Mayor Steve Allender, the pandemic has had a noticeable and dramatic impact on the community.

            General anxiety about COVID-19, the fear of social isolation and the inability to purchase essential supplies are the main challenges listed by survey respondents.  More than three-quarters of the respondents report having either at least a moderate amount of concern about how the COVID-19 pandemic will affect them personally.

            Mayor Allender produced a survey monkey containing a small list of questions revolving around COVID-19 and its influence and impact on local residents.  Issued last week on social media, the mayor has been impressed by the level of response and reaction.

            "There is no shortage of opinions about how COVID-19 has impacted the lives of Rapid City residents," said Allender, who shared survey results and impressions at his weekly press conference this afternoon.  "The response was quick and the comments heartfelt."

            The seven-question survey gauged respondents' level of personal concern and impact of the pandemic, asked them to list their top three challenges they are facing during the crisis, how long respondents feel they can sustain the current situation presented by COVID, and to share personal concerns.

            Highlights of survey results:

            **More than three-quarters or 77.44 percent of respondents indicated they had 'a great deal', 'a lot' or 'a moderate amount' of worry or concern about the impact of COVID-19 on their lives.  Only 22.56 percent reported having 'a little' or 'none at all' level of concern.

            **Respondents could check three preferences among a list of 13 challenges they were facing during the pandemic, including lack of income or work, general anxiety about COVID, paying for food, social isolation, not making loan or health care payments and purchasing essential supplies.

            The top three challenges listed were general anxiety about the impacts of COVID-19 (61.15%), social isolation (49.36%) and purchasing essential supplies (37.98%).  Lack of income and work was referenced by 21.74% with challenges in traveling to the grocery store listed by 20.62%. Traveling to care for a family member was listed by 9.63% and making loan payments by 8.52%.

            **Nearly half of the respondents (49.44%) indicated they could sustain themselves for three or more months. Another 26.67% projected they could sustain for one to two months.  Nearly one-quarter of survey respondents (24.21%) predicted they could sustain themselves either a few weeks, one week or unable to sustain at the present time under current COVID impacts. 

            **Nearly two-thirds (65.95%) welcome daily or frequent COVID updates from City leaders with over 71.5 percent reporting a preference for Facebook updates over other social media tools.

            **Among the personal concerns shared by respondents:

            "That our economy won't sustain this, and that many small businesses will close."

            "I've been sick since December. I'm sick, broke and tired of it."

            "Schooling while working is impossible."

            "How will this affect the health of my family."

            "Having to work with people that are not social distancing."

            "People not social distancing, and taking precautions. Those not caring that even though they are healthy, they would still have the virus and unknowingly infect others."

            "That a family member or myself will catch it and no one will be able to be in the hospital with them. Social isolation is getting very hard also."

            "How to go back to work with no child care."

            "A huge recession."

            "Fear I will end up alone in the hospital dying."

            "I'm on both sides of the fence but I do think we do need to get our economy back up and running."

SURVEY QUESTIONS/Additional data:

Q) What city/town do you reside in?

A) 83.9% or 1,058 of the 1,261 respondents listed Rapid City; 2.7% listed Black Hawk, 2.62% Box Elder, 2.3% Summerset, 2.06% Rural Pennington County with the remainder from Hills-area communities. (1,261 responses)

Q) How worried are you about the impact of COVID-19 on you personally?

A)  Five choices...(1,259 responses):

'A great deal': 24.62% (310 respondents);

'A lot': 19.46% (245);

'A moderate amount': 33.36% (420);

'A little': 15.97% (201);

'None at all': 6.59% (83)

Q) What are the top three (3) challenges you are currently facing?

A) A total of 13 choices...(1,256 responses):

*Lack of income/work: 21.74% (273)

*Traveling to the grocery store: 20.62% (259)

*Traveling to work: 3.90% (49)

*General anxiety about the impact of COVID-19: 61.15% (768)

*Purchasing supplies (toilet paper, other essentials): 37.98% (477)

*Paying for food: 3.74% (47)

*Paying  for health care: 4.38% (55)

*Paying for housing: 4.86% (61)

*Making loan payments: 8.52% (107)

*Not knowing where to find help/resources: 2.71% (34)

*Traveling to care for a family member: 9.63% (121)

*Social isolation/lack of places to go or things to do: 49.36% (620)

*Other (please specify): 28.74% (361)

Q) Thinking about your current situation or arrangement, how long can you sustain this?

A) Five options...(1,256 responses):

*Not sustainable now: 7.17% (90)

*One week: 1.75% (22)

*A few weeks: 15.29% (192)

*1-2 months: 26.35% (331)

*3 or more months: 49.44% (621)

Q) How often would you like to be updated by our City Leadership Team regarding issues related to COVID-19?

A) Five options...(1,257 responses):

*More than once daily: 1.11% (14)

*Once daily: 25.70% (323)

*A few times per week: 40.25% (506)

*Once per week: 24.42% (307)

*Less often - only as needed (in the opinion of the City): 8.51% (107)

Q) What is your single greatest COVID-19 concern right now?

A) A total of 1,200 replies received sharing personal sentiments, many centered on anxiety with the virus, impacts on family, lack of social distancing by others or fellow workers, others not taking COVID seriously, impacts on personal finances, how to take care of children when going back to work, impacts on the economy, mental health issues, etc.

Q)  What is your preferred method of receiving communication from the City?

A) Five options...(1,252 responses):

*Text message: 16.61% (208)

*Email: 17.57% (220)

*YouTube: 6.55% (82)

*Facebook: 71.57% (896)

*Other (please specify): 8.71% (109)



Thank you,

Thank you,

Darrell W. Shoemaker | Communications Coordinator

T: 605.721.6686 | M: 605.939.8551

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