4/14/20 COVID-19 Update

  • Massachusetts joins six other northeast states in economic compact
  • Senator Elizabeth Warren wants the next relief package focused on essential workers
  • Governor Baker commits resources to the City of Chelsea as cases surge
  • Mayor Marty Walsh announces first COVID-19 tests for general public
  • COVID-19 is changing everything, except candidate’s signature-gathering process (so far)
  • College campuses this fall could be empty
  • The MBTA’s catastrophic revenue short fall could be saved by The Cares Act
  • Dentists and oral health – another consequence of COVID-19
  • Today’s COVID-19 Silver Lining: Washington state 10-year-old produces videos for peers

 

  1. While Governor Baker maintains that it’s too early to consider easing social distancing and stay-at-home orders, he is joining Democratic Governors from Connecticut, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island to coordinate strategies for reopening their economies after COVID-19 eases.

 

  1. An “Essential Workers Bill of Rights” increasing protections and benefits for front line employees, was unveiled yesterday by Senator Elizabeth Warren and California Rep. Ro Khanna. The proposal would require employers to provide personal protective equipment and robust, retroactive hazard pay. It would create a program requiring 14 days of paid sick leave and 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave and would also commit federal funding for free health care coverage and childcare for essential workers while stopping employers who are misidentifying workers as independent contractors, denying them basic employment protections.

 

  1. Personnel from Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) have set up a command center in the City of Chelsea and are working to support front line workers to combat the COVID surge among homeless individuals by setting up an isolation hotel.

 

  1. Mayor Marty Walsh announced testing for COVID-19 is available for all City of Boston residents and the Whittier Street Health Center in Roxbury is offering scheduled rapid testing Monday through Saturday. Confirmed cases of COVID-19 doubled over the last week and data shows African American residents make up 40 percent of confirmed COVID-19 cases. The Roxbury center serves predominately African American population. Appointments can be scheduled by phone.

 

  1. A bill to reduce the number of signatures needed to reach the ballot for state and county wide offices has been delayed. While leadership of state Senate attempted to answer the call of those campaigning for office, a lone Republican state senator objected to the bill all but guaranteeing a delay in passage until at least Thursday. State House News Service reported the lone objector, state Senator Ryan Fattman, is married to the Worcester County Register of Probate – who could be seen as benefitting if the requirements aren’t softened for ballot access.

 

  1. Colleges and universities across the country have begun planning for a fall semester without students physically on campus. In Massachusetts, where higher education contributes significantly to the economy, the University of Massachusetts, Boston University, MIT and Harvard University are among those planning and preparing for worst case scenarios and hoping for the best.

 

  1. As MBTA ridership falls more than 90 percent on the subway and nearly 80 percent on busses, so do revenues. Officials at the MBTA have projected a $231 million revenue shortfall due to the COVID-19 pandemic and are hopeful they will be able to cover their losses with the Federal Transit Administration grants authorized by The Cares Act which included $25 billion for transit agencies.

 

  1. In March, the American Dental Association (ADA) recommended that dentistry practices close for all procedures except emergencies as the most basic routines of their practices, close contact with mouths to water-spraying tools that send fluids flying, were suddenly filled with risk. Now with an amended recommendation to remain closed through April many patients and dentists, are in need.

 

  1. 10-year-old Sydney Dilling knew she could help her friends and classmates feel less anxious about COVID-19 and also help her community of Everett, Washington so she and her mother created a series on YouTube called Kids Coping with COIVD-19. The short videos include information but always ways they can help their community.
2020-04-14T10:15:46+00:00