Casper's 12-24 Club -- a support agency for recovering addicts -- will remain open even as many businesses, government and social service offices have scaled back or closed their operations due to the novel coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, its executive director said on the club's Facebook page on Tuesday afternoon.

"We understand that our facility and the programs we house are essential to the sobriety of countless individuals affected by substance abuse in Natrona County," Jeremy Jones wrote,

"After thoughtful examination and consideration, the 12-24 Club will be keeping our doors open for those in need of recovery services, for the time being," Jones wrote.

That will require diligence to limit the spread of COVID-19 while ensuring access to the club's services.

The club will practice the following health precautions over the next few weeks:

  • Limit all meetings to 10 or fewer people, but groups can use multiple rooms. For example, if a group in the one room has 15 people, five could move to an empty room.
  • Refrain from hugging, holding hands, or close contact while in the building in general.
  • Use the hand sanitizer dispensers, but also wash hands often in the meeting room or restroom sinks.
  • Help the staff keep the rooms clean, and alert a staff member to anything that needs cleaning.
  • Sick people should stay home. Anyone displaying flu-like symptoms -- excessive coughing, sneezing, runny nose -- will be asked to leave. This seems drastic, but Jones asked people to remember the severity of the pandemic

The 12-24 Club asked those who attend meetings and use its services to be considerate, Jones wrote. "Before venturing to the 12-24 Club for a meeting, consider whether or not your recovery depends on it that day."

That is a difficult question for those in recovery, but he asked if calling a sponsor, a sponsored person, or a friend would suffice. Meeting online may work, too, Jones added.

"No matter what, we are confident that the very same spiritual and altruistic principles that bond us, will continue to be our guiding star as we navigate this national crisis together," he wrote.

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