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Maui News informing readers amid COVID-19

The last few weeks have been full of stress, struggle and heartbreak for many of us in Maui County due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. We wanted today to provide our readers with an update on how we’ve been covering the crisis here at The Maui News, and the resources we have made available so you and your loved ones can remain informed and prepared in the coming weeks.

The Maui News has offered the most comprehensive and detailed report in the county on the coronavirus and how the disease has impacted our community health-wise, economically and socially. Hopefully, the information has helped you navigate this unprecedented crisis.

Internally, most of our reporters and advertising sales staff are now working from home, with only essential employees at our main office in Wailuku. We have closed our offices to in-person visits to battle the spread of the coronavirus.

Our handful of reporters are still covering events and bringing the latest and most important local news to you each day while practicing social distancing. Most correspondence with sources is done by phone or email, though there are occasions when our staff has to be on the road for interviews and photos.

Just as you are with your families, we are assessing each day how best we can keep our employees safe and healthy so that they can continue to bring you the latest local news on how COVID-19 is affecting and altering our way of life.

We’ve devoted nearly all of our reporting resources to coverage of the coronavirus. The Maui News, which has been in existence since 1900, is not immune from the economic turmoil. All newspapers have implemented or are looking at furloughs and The Maui News is no exception.

The Maui News has been on this story from the beginning, sometimes on the leading edge of reporting in the state, and has tracked the rapid evolution of the situation into the crisis we now face with deaths on Oahu, a person hospitalized at Maui Memorial Medical Center, people ordered to stay at home and the economy in shambles with rampant unemployment.

The Maui News was one of the first media outlets in the state to report from a health official that the disease was likely on the island — before the first case was reported. Our reporters focused on the implementation of testing for the virus on Maui and the first cases.

Our questions have led to news releases by state and county officials about the cases, clarifications on strict regulations and the availability of resources to help those left unemployed.

And we’ve offered reports on how the pandemic and new regulations are affecting various parts of our community — homeless people; restaurants and their efforts to move to takeout; the hotels, many of which are shuttered.

We’ve started a running feature “Personal Stories Behind The Pandemic” that offer vignettes about how Mauians are coping with the impacts.

In addition, we are reporting on what good people are doing in the community, such as rallying to make personal protection equipment for those on the front lines of the disease.

To help you sort through all this information, we’ve added a special tab on our website, www.mauinews.com, devoted solely to local stories on the coronavirus pandemic. We’re continually updating this section so you can remain informed on everything from closings and event cancellations to funding available to struggling residents and businesses.

Plus, we post breaking stories daily with the latest information on the crisis.

We ask that you and your loved ones stay safe and abide by state county orders, as we collectively go through this challenging time. We will do our part to keep you as up to date as possible with local news that you can trust from the most experienced news staff on the island. Local news matters, now more than ever, and we work each day, in all that we do, to remain your trusted local news source.

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