South Fulton Councilmember khalid kamau has revealed that he has tested positive for COVID-19. He’s encouraging anyone that has had contact with him in the past 30 days to get tested. He’ll be self-quarantining until he receives a negative test result.
Councilmember khalid shared his story in a recent blog post. Over the last several months, he traveled to Key West, Fla. and participated protests against police brutality in South Fulton and downtown Atlanta. However, he thinks he may have gotten the virus from his roommate who works in the medical field. His roommate also tested positive.
Councilmember khalid reported that in late June he experienced chest congestion and made an appointment to see a physician. He was diagnosed at that time with a sinus infection, given antibiotics and a steroid, and was ordered to take a COVID-19 test.
Councilmember khalid visited a free CVS testing site on July 2. He received a positive result on July 17, 15 days later.
“I have been getting COVID tests every month and tested negative in May and June before my trip to Key West,” he shared. “By the time I received my positive test result on July 17, I had experienced no symptoms for two weeks. I had quarantined myself, skipping more birthday parties, protests and city events.”
Councilmember khalid was tested again at the Fulton County Board of Health site at Wolf Creek Amphitheater on July 20 and a private clinic on July 21. Within two days, he received another positive test result from the BOH test site.
In his blog post, Councilmember khalid says that his experience has raised many questions about COVID-19, but that while under the shelter-in-place ordinance, he consistently tested negative for the virus.
He’s hoping that by sharing his story, others will take recommended safety protocols more seriously.
“I hope my personal story helps others understand why people — especially young, healthy people — want to get out and live their lives,” he said. “I understand that businesses — especially small businesses — have been hit hard by stay-at-home orders. But as my story illustrates, there really is no way to do these things safely when so many people are walking around with Cornavirus while displaying no symptoms.”
He’s also calling for the City of South Fulton, and Georgia to issue Stay-At-Home orders again, for Fulton County toextend its moratorium on evictions, and for Congress to re-authorize extended unemployment benefits.
“Those worried about whether poor people are receiving more money in unemployment than they do at their low-wage jobs should focus their fraud investigations on big companies who have received billions in COVID-19 bailouts,” he said. “Congress and states should cancel rent and mortgage collection, as other nations have done, until this pandemic is under control or we have a COVID-19 vaccine.”
As of July 26, there have been 167,953 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Georgia, 3,498 deaths, 17,091 hospitalizations, and 3,168 ICU admissions. Fulton County alone has recorded 15,843 cases and 372 deaths.
Any Fulton County resident can schedule free testing online at multiple sites, including Wolf Creek Amphitheater. Councilmembers Corey Reeves, khalid kamau and Mark Baker are partnering to promote a free testing event at Ace Hardware on July 30 from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m. Those who wish to participate are encouraged to register in advance online prior to arriving at the testing site.
Ace Hardware is located at 6385 Old National Hwy. All participants are encouraged to wear masks and practice social distancing.
Photo Credit: Office of Councilmember khalid kamau