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4/3/2020 - 4.3 COVID-19 UPDATE
Good Afternoon Fairfielders,

The latest data shows Connecticut now has 4,914 positive cases, 131 deaths, and 909 hospitalizations.  The Town of Fairfield now has 62 residents who have tested positive for COVID. It is with great sadness, I share that today we were notified of a 4th death of a Fairfield resident. 

My thoughts and prayers are with those families who have lost a loved one and with all families who are struggling in these challenging times.


Today, I provided a town update with our Health Director, Sands Cleary, Emergency Management Director, Denis McCarthy, and two local religious leaders: Rabbi Marcelo Kormis and Father Peter Cipriani. You can watch the town update below.  

I know as the weather becomes nicer, it will be tempting for our residents to want to gather together outside, however I can't emphasize enough that we all need to heed the warnings of health professionals, that the next several weeks are going to be critical. 

As Health Director Sands Cleary said during the town update, modeling tells us that we will see a peak of COVID-19 activity in our community on or about April 15th. Accordingly, the medical community expects overwhelming demands will be placed on our health care system and health care providers during the coming weeks. 
 
I am stressing this in the strongest possible terms, PLEASE stay home, exercise in your neighborhood, and if you have to go out for food or medical appointments, please keep a 6' distance from others. It is our collective civic responsibility to stop the spread of this virus and not overwhelm our local hospitals. 

This evening we have a command staff meeting followed by a conference call with Governor Lamont, other municipal leaders and emergency management professionals. During the call we will seek clarification about many of the executive orders the Governor has issued and their implications for our town. 

As I mentioned in my last update, local property taxes that were due on April 1st can be paid through May 1st without incurring any interest or penalties. The executive order the Governor issued late this week seeks to provide additional relief on interest and penalties. We have reviewed the options and are in conversations with RTM leadership and our tax collector to schedule a special meeting in the next two weeks to allow the town's legislative body to adopt a program for eligible residents. 

People's lives will depend on every one of us and our commitment follow the guidelines that tell us to restrict contact with only members of our households. Residents in our community can utilize facetime to speak with loved ones, participate in zoom happy hour's, and coordinate virtual "play dates" for children. We have the technology to stay socially connected while remaining physically distant.

Please see new information and resources at the bottom of this email.

We will get through this together if we stay apart. 


Sincerely,

Brenda L. Kupchick
First Selectwoman
The State Department of Public Health released this chart showing peak COVID-19 related hospitalizations assuming social distancing protocols are maintained. 
MORTGAGE RELIEF:
The state has provided a FAQ which is a resource to help answer many of your questions about unemployment, mortgage relief and more. Please read it here. The Governor announced yesterday mortgage payment relief with over 50 credit unions and banks to help residents and businesses impacted by COVID-19. Participating financial institutions are now offering mortgage-payment forbearances of up to 90 days. 
BUSINESSES:
For more information on state and federal support for businesses, click here. There is a Small Business Owner’s Guide to the Federal CARES Act here

Paycheck Protection Program: Starting today, small businesses and sole proprietors can apply for financial assistance through their banks and credit unions. Businesses and sole proprietorships should contact their banks directly. You can apply starting today through any participating financial institutionThe U.S. Small Business Administration has more information about the loans, a list of participating lenders, an application form and more.

You can always find information about federal and state programs on the state’s coronavirus website.

TESTING & GUIDANCE
At this time testing priority is given to those who are at high risk. For more information on testing sites and protocols, please click on the image or visit: fairfieldct.org/covid19
UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS
If you become unemployed due to coronavirus (COVID-19), you should file for unemployment benefits. Click here for more information. For frequently asked questions about coronavirus (COVID-19) for workers and employers click here.
Center for Family Justice recently closed its main Bridgeport offices in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Staff is now working remotely to serve clients in crisis. Domestic violence programs throughout the state are concerned victims may lack the ability to safely reach out for help as they are forced to stay in close quarters with an abuser. 

The hotline numbers are:
Domestic Violence: 203-384-9559
Sexual Violence: 203-333-2233
Spanish Hotline: 888-568-8332

 
GROCERY STORES
We are in continued communication with grocery store managers in town and have spoken with state officials. The Governor put out another executive order which requires all retail establishments that have been allowed to remain open to ensure six feet of distance between customers and employ touchless payment technology wherever available. It also suspends the tax on single-use checkout plastic bags and prohibits employers from requiring employees to place items in customers' reusable bags.  Refer to our website for more information. 

RESTAURANTS 
Fairfield is lucky to have countless restaurants that have altered their businesses to provide take out, delivery and curbside pick up.

Click on the image to the right view the full listing.  

TOWN GOVERNMENT
Each department will have new guidelines as to how you can reach them on various services. Please visit this summary page for an overview and follow links to specific departments for more information. 
Fairfield's Operations During COVID-19
IMPORTANT SEWER NOTICE FROM WPCA:

Please DO NOT flush rubber gloves, disinfectant wipes (or any type of wipes), paper towels, facial tissue or any materials other than toilet paper down your toilet as they are NOT designed to break down in the wastewater treatment process. 
 
Sign up for CODE RED ALERTS   
 

COVID-19 Prevention Measures: 

  • Practice social distancing
  • Avoid close contact with those who are sick
  • Wash your hands often for 20 seconds with warm soap and water. Hand washing is preferred but if not available, use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol content
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
  • Stay home when you are sick
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then throw the tissue immediately away
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects (including your cell phone and computer keyboard) and surfaces using regular household cleaning spray or wipe
  • Face masks are recommended for use for only people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others.

Important COVID-19 Links:

Fairfield Health Department coronavirus website:  fairfieldct.org/covid19

Bridge Loans for Business from State of CT: click here

For the latest numbers of cases, deaths and those recovered click here

For additional data and graphs of activity click here

For guidance and updates on Connecticut’s coronavirus preparedness efforts, visit:  ct.gov/coronavirus

Contact Information:

For general questions you can call 211

Hartford HealthCare’s COVID-19 Clinical Command Center hotline, staffed by healthcare professionals, is now available to the community. To reach the 24-hour hotline, call 860.972.8100 or (toll-free) 833.621.0600.

YNHH has a call center number it’s 1-833-ASK YNHH that’s open from 7am - 7pm.

For additional information and prevention tips, refer to the Health Department website at: www.fairfieldct.org/health or the Fairfield homepage under news at www.fairfieldct.org.
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