May 28, 2020 Update
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 94,895 cases of COVID-19 and a total of 562,323 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.
- Today, the Legislature enacted legislation to increase COVID-19 reporting requirements at the Department of Public Health and extend the data collection umbrella to include key demographic information such as gender, race, ethnicity, and disability. The bill implements a COVID-19 disparities task force to further study disparities for underserved or underrepresented populations. Governor Baker now has 10 days to act on the bill.
- The RMV announced that they will begin implementing some service adjustments to help meet increasing demand. The RMV is working on offering online exams for Class D and M learner’s permit exams for mid-June. For more information, click here.
- In Needham, the Town of Needham will re-open most Town buildings to the public beginning June 1. While these spaces will reopen, members of the public must make an appointment to conduct business in any Town building. The Center at The Heights will continue to offer virtual programming and the Needham Free Public Library will offer curbside service starting June 1.
- In Dover, the Annual Town Meeting will not be held on Monday, June 1. The Board of Selectmen and the Moderator, along with others, are working to find a new date on which to conduct the meeting in a safe and responsible manner. The Annual Town Election will be held on June 15, 2020. For more information, click here.
- In Medfield, the Town of Medfield will be holding a second town-wide Master Plan Forum on Sunday, June 7 at 5:00 PM. This forum is for Medfield citizens to provide input on the goals and objectives being developed by the Committee and consultant team. For more information, click here.
Reopening Updates – Phase 1: Start
- This week the 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