As the COVID-19 Command Center and other agencies and organizations provide updates on COVID-19, I wanted to share with you the new information being reported:
- In Massachusetts, there are a total of 94,220 cases of COVID-19 and a total of 552,144 tests have been performed. You can access a summary of case details and lab testing and cases by hospital facility and additional COVID-19 response reporting on the dashboard here.
- The Governor signed legislation passed by the Legislature that would provide unemployment insurance relief to employers and claimants during the coronavirus pandemic. It includes an expansion of the maximum allowable claims period from 26 weeks to 30 weeks, exempts employers’ experience ratings from impacts of COVID-19 and the current state of emergency, and lifts a cap on dependency benefits that currently stands at 50 percent.
- The Department of Unemployment Assistance is warning that criminal enterprises are using stolen personal information from earlier national data breaches to file fraudulent unemployment claims through the DUA system. This is part of a national unemployment fraud scheme. DUA has begun implementing additional identity verification measures that will temporarily delay the payment time frame for many unemployment claims in Massachusetts. Certain unemployment claimants may be asked to provide additional identity information in order to verify the validity of their claim. If you have believe someone has applied for benefits using your information fraudulently, please click here.
- Today, Governor Baker provided an update regarding COVID-19 and the MBTA. The MBTA has been able to increase construction across the system while ridership has been low. As a result of this work, the T has modified their schedule. To access the most up to date schedule, click here.
- Attorney General Maura Healey has issued guidance regarding people living in hotels and motels during COVID-19. Click here to read this guidance.
- The Supreme Judicial Court has ruled yesterday that jury trials in Massachusetts will not resume until September 8.In-person criminal and civil bench trials will not resume until July 1. For more information, click here.
- In Needham, the results for the Annual Town Election have been tallied and posted. The Annual Town Meeting will be held June 8 at 5:00PM To view the results, click here and for more information regarding the Annual Town Meeting, click here.
- In Dover, the Dover Board of Selectmen will be meeting tonight at 6:30 PM via Zoom. The Board of Selectmen will be discussing the Town Meeting and the FY21 budget. For more information, click here.
- In Medfield, the Medfield Foundation is accepting donations for a special COVID-19 Relief Fund to help Medfield residents. Donations can be made online through Network for Good or by check to PO Box 745, Medfield, MA 02052. All funds are managed by social services professionals. If you are in need of assistance, please complete this online form and someone will follow up with you. All information is completely confidential.
Reopening Updates – Phase 1: Start
- This week second step of Phase 1 began. In addition to construction, manufacturing, and places of worship, now lab space, office space, limited personal services, and retail can begin to reopen.
- The personal services that will be permitted to reopen are hair salons and barbershops, car washes, and pet grooming services.
- To learn more about the reopening process and to read the guidance, click here.
- If you have questions, input, or comments regarding the Reopening Massachusetts plan, you can submit comments online. These comments can be used to support efforts to methodically reopen the economy admits the COVID-19 pandemic. Click here for the form.
- Anyone feeling overwhelmed with sadness, anxiety or stress, or who wants to harm themselves or others, can access the mental health, emotional support, and suicide prevention program Call2Talk by dialing 2-1-1. Call2Talk is also available by calling 508-532-2255 or by texting C2T to 741741.
- If you or someone you know is at risk for sexual and domestic violence, service providers are still accessible. You can find local services by clicking here. You can also call SafeLink, the statewide domestic violence hotline, at 1-877-785-2020. SafeLink can provide resources and support services to survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault.
- To file an unemployment claim, visit here. If you have trouble filing a claim, please contact my office for assistance.
- If you do not qualify for traditional unemployment benefits but have lost your job due to COVID-19, you may qualify for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance under the federal CARES Act. To learn more, click here.
- To apply for SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program)benefits call Project Bread’s Food Source Hotline at 1-800-645-8333 (M-F from 8 AM-7 PM & Saturday from 10 AM-2 PM.)
- The WIC (Women, Infants, & Children Nutrition) program provides families with healthy foods, nutrition education, breastfeeding support, and referrals to healthcare and other services for families. To check your eligibility and apply for WIC, click here.
- Text COVIDMA to 888-777 to receive daily text updates from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.
Please remember social distancing is the most effective tool to contain the spread of COVID-19.
In addition to these updates, my office is still accessible so please continue to reach out and we will get back to you.
Our local boards of health, the Department of Public Health, and the Centers for Disease Control are continuing to maintain websites with the most updated information regarding COVID-19 that you can access here:
Needham Health Department Updates: http://www.needhamma.gov/85/Public-Health
Medfield Updates: http://www.town.medfield.net/1860/Coronavirus-Info-COVID-19
Dover Updates: http://doverma.org/
Department of Public Health: https://www.mass.gov/resource/information-on-the-outbreak-of-coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19, call 2-1-1, or text COVIDMA to 888-777.
Centers for Disease Control: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html