COVID-19 Updates & Precautions March 20, 2020 PM update

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The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has confirmed that COVID-19 is spreading throughout the Commonwealth. While the number of cases in Hopkinton remains stable with three positive cases, as testing increases, more cases may be identified in our Town.

While Hopkinton is not aware of any shelter-in-place plans intended for our community, residents are urged to adhere to restrictions, practice social distancing, and remain well informed. Please make sure you are obtaining information from trusted sources; such as mass.gov/orgs/governors-press-office, http://www.mass.gov/2019coronavirus, http://www.cdc.gov/COVID19. For information relating to the Commonwealth’s response to COVID-19, go to the Mass.gov website or call the Massachusetts 2-1-1 line for information, resources and referrals. Operators are staffing a 24/7 hotline to answer questions and translators are available in multiple languages.

Town Officials and Emergency Management personnel continue to monitor the rapidly evolving COVID-19 public health emergency. As of 12:00 p.m. on 3/20/20, Hopkinton’s Health Department has the same 3 confirmed COVID-19 cases. We have 29 individuals under quarantine; 1 less than yesterday. We continue to evaluate and implement mitigation strategies to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 in the community. Currently, in Hopkinton we do not have any unlinked cases, they are either related to travel or close contact with a known case of COVID-19. Improved social distancing efforts should reduce or stabilize the recent increase. Our mitigation strategy is focused on protecting the most vulnerable population, preserving the public safety and health care workforce and to minimize the social and economic impacts of COVID-19. Individuals, businesses and the community are all part of this mitigation strategy.
At this time, all town buildings are closed to the public.

Parks, Playgrounds and Playing Fields ARE CLOSED.
Essential public safety services provided by the Department of Public Works, Hopkinton Police Department and Hopkinton Fire Department will continue.
Hopkinton Police - NEW UPDATE The Hopkinton Police want to issue a warning of a COVID-19 Scam where individuals are going door to door claiming to test people for the virus. It is reported they are driving a white van and wearing Hazmat suits. While inside the houses taking fake vitals they are stealing items out in the open. Please be aware there are NO organizations going door to door testing people. If you see these individuals please CALL THE

POLICE IMMEDIATELY. (508) 497-9785
Firearms licensing - We will be accepting mail-in applications for LTC/FID's and providing receipts by mail. Applications are available on the Firearms Records Bureau website and should be printed at home and mailed to the police station (74 Main Street), with the appropriate fee and Basic Firearms Safety certificate (if applicable). In person interviews and photographs will take place at a later date. Applications that are received by mail will have correspondence mailed back to the applicant with further information. Cases will be handled on an individual basis and applicants are encouraged to call or email Officer Jay Deiana, Officer Moira McGaffigan and Officer Ryan Polselli with any specific questions.

Hopkinton Public Schools - NEW UPDATE Food Services Director Michelle Babin is prepared to provide lunches for students who qualify for free and reduced lunch. Students and families requiring lunches should reach out to Ms. Babin directly at [email protected] . Or, if you have another trusted adult in the School System, you may also ask that person to connect you to our Food Services Director. The Hopkinton Food Service Department will also be working closely with Project Just Because.

Library - NEW UPDATE Starting next week, our Children's Librarian will be livestreaming storytime via Facebook! To tune in, you must request to join the Facebook group "Hopkinton Public Library Storytime Livestream." The first storytime will be Monday 3/23/2020 at 10:30 am. The Children's Room is also using our Facebook page to lead Alphabet Scavenger Hunts that you can do at home. Staff will still be in the building during our normal Saturday hours, 10 am to 4 pm. Please call 508-497-9777 or e-mail [email protected] to reach us. We continue to share information and updates on our website (www.hopkintonlibrary.org) and social media (www.facebook.com/hopkintonlibrary, www.twitter.com/HopkintonPLMA).

Youth and Family Services - Massachusetts 2-1-1 Massachusetts residents are urged to use 2-1-1 for information, resources, and referrals regarding COVID-19. Operators are staffing this hotline 24/7 and translators are available in multiple languages. Residents with questions can dial 2-1-1 from any landline or cellphone, or use the live chat option on the Mass 2-1-1 website. There are 17 staff now answering calls, including staff from United Way and 7 staff members from DPH.

Mental Health Support: A variety of mental health resources can be found on the Mental Health Resource/INTERFACE card found here: http://bit.ly/2wmSFEP

Substance Abuse Support: https://helplinema.org/ 1.800.327.5050 Helpline for treatment information and support.

Food Resources: Project Just Because is the central location for residents who have limited access to food. More information can be found at https://projectjustbecause.org/ or by calling 508-435-6511. Hours of operation for food distribution 9:30am to 3:30pm Monday - Thursday.

Unemployment due to COVID19: If you have become unemployed due to the closing of your workplace, reduction in the workforce, or short term because of the illness itself (sick, quarantined, etc.) this link has the online application for unemployment assistance. https://www.mass.gov/resource/information-on-unemployment-and-coronaviru...

Resources for parental stress https://www.parentshelpingparents.org/parental-stress-line https://www.nationalparenthelpline.org/find-support Mommying is Hard facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/2180286238744260/

Feeling extremely stressed or desperate? Call and text lines for 24/7 support https://www.uwotc.org/call2talk https://samaritanshope.org/
Remember to check out our Facebook page for daily updates of resources and things to do to help with staying busy during this challenging time: https://www.facebook.com/hopkintonyouthandfamilyservices/

DPW - The Department of public works is suspending the following services in an abundance of caution, until further notice:

● White Metal Collection days that are typically held on the last Saturday of every month. Residents may contact EL Harvey at 800-321-3002 to have bulk items collected. Residents are allowed one bulk item to be collected per week.

● Weekly operation of the Recycling Center that is typically open every Saturday. Residents that are part of the Town's curbside collection program may place their recyclables at the curb in their recycling carts. Residents that are not part of the curbside collection program are encouraged to speak with your landlords or management companies to find other options. Please note that the Recycling Center will be locked and the dumpsters will be removed.

Inspection Services (Building, Plumbing and Wiring) - The Building Department, in collaboration with the Hopkinton Health Department and Hopkinton Emergency Management Group, has determined for the health and safety of all Residents, Contractors and Inspectors the Building, Plumbing, Electrical and Gas Inspectors will not be performing any interior inspections in occupied dwellings or structures. The Building, Plumbing, Electrical and Gas Inspectors will continue to perform inspections on all new unoccupied dwellings and structures. In the event of a Building emergency please reach out to staff at 508-497-9745.

Hopkinton Senior Center: The Senior Center staff continues to be available if you have questions, concerns, need assistance obtaining food or have any other need while we are closed. Please contact us at 508-497-9730. If you know of a senior in need please reach out to us and we will follow up with them. We have posted information regarding “Senior Hours” at local stores on our website (https://www.hopkintonma.gov/departments/senior_center.php) and Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/Hopkinton-Senior-Center-533752023452626).

Senior Shopping Hours - local stores: Market Basket: Stores open only to those 60 and over from 5:30 a.m. to 7 a.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Roche Bros.: ALL locations will dedicate first hour of business, 7 a.m. to 8 a.m., to customers 60+ as well as the disabled population. Shaw's/Star Market: Stores will open early Tuesdays and Thursdays, 7 a.m. to 9 a.m., for senior citizens and other at-risk members of the community. Price Chopper: Stores only open to seniors from 6 a.m. to 7 a.m. Stop & Shop: All locations open 6 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. daily for customers age 60 and older only. Target: Reducing store hours and closing stores by 9 p.m. daily. First hour of shopping each Wednesday is reserved for "elderly and those with underlying health concerns."

COVID-19 Updates & Precautions March 19, 2020 PM update
Town Officials and Emergency Management personnel continue to monitor the rapidly evolving COVID-19 public health emergency. As of 12:00 p.m. on 3/19/20, Hopkinton’s Health Department has the same 3 confirmed COVID-19 cases. We have 30 individuals under quarantine; 16 of those are without symptoms. We continue to evaluate and implement mitigation strategies to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 in the community. Currently, in Hopkinton we do not have any unlinked cases, they are either related to travel or close contact with a known case of COVID-19. Improved social distancing efforts should reduce or stabilize the recent increase. Our mitigation strategy is focused on protecting the most vulnerable population, preserving the public safety and health care workforce and to minimize the social and economic impacts of COVID-19. Individuals, businesses and the community are all part of this mitigation strategy.

At this time, all town buildings are closed to the public.
Parks, Playgrounds and Playing Fields ARE CLOSED.

Essential public safety services provided by the Department of Public Works, Hopkinton Police Department and Hopkinton Fire Department will continue.
Health Department - NEW UPDATE The Hopkinton Health Department has created a decision tree to help guide employers in advising employees how to determine if they should stay home. Click here to see the guide.

Hopkinton Public Schools - NEW UPDATE The HPS Food Service Director is partnering with Project Just Because to ensure needy families are fed. If families of school-aged children have not yet reached out to Food Services Director Michelle Babin at [email protected] or by phone at 774-346-0645 to secure lunches or other meals, please do so!

Reminder: Online learning experiences began yesterday, March 18th. If your child has not yet engaged in online learning, please click this link to the Hopkinton Public Schools website to learn how to do so at each school.

Youth and Family Services - NEW UPDATE Massachusetts 2-1-1 Massachusetts residents are urged to use 2-1-1 for information, resources, and referrals regarding COVID-19. Operators are staffing this hotline 24/7 and translators are available in multiple languages. Residents with questions can dial 2-1-1 from any landline or cellphone, or use the live chat option on the Mass 2-1-1 website. There are 17 staff now answering calls, including staff from United Way and 7 staff members from DPH.

Mental Health Support: A variety of mental health resources can be found on the Mental Health Resource/INTERFACE card found here: http://bit.ly/2wmSFEP

Food Resources: Project Just Because is the central location for residents who have limited access to food. More information can be found at https://projectjustbecause.org/ or by calling 508-435-6511. Hours of operation for food distribution 9:30am to 3:30pm Monday - Thursday.
Unemployment due to COVID19: If you have become unemployed due to the closing of your workplace, reduction in the workforce, or short term because of the illness itself (sick, quarantined, etc.) this link has the online application for unemployment assistance. https://www.mass.gov/resource/information-on-unemployment-and-coronaviru...

Resources for parental stress https://www.parentshelpingparents.org/parental-stress-line https://www.nationalparenthelpline.org/find-support Mommying is Hard facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/2180286238744260/

Feeling extremely stressed or desperate? Call and text lines for 24/7 support https://www.uwotc.org/call2talk https://samaritanshope.org/
Remember to check out our Facebook page for daily updates of resources and things to do to help with staying busy during this challenging time: https://www.facebook.com/hopkintonyouthandfamilyservices/

DPW - NEW UPDATE With the run on toilet paper and a focus on disinfecting surfaces, it appears that more households are using disinfectant wipes and paper towels. Please note, there is no such thing as a “flushable wipe.” The Hopkinton sewer department is seeing a steep rise in the amount of clogs at our sewer pump stations. The sewer pumpers are reporting an increase in residential service calls. The predominant cause has been the increase of wipes, paper towels, and rags to the toilet. Those items need to be disposed of properly in the trash. They do not break down and they bind together to clog the pipes and pumps. We need your IMMEDIATE assistance and ask that you please refrain from flushing any foreign items. Not only does this cause costly repairs, but it could lead to back up of sewerage into your home. We thank you for your cooperation in this very important matter!

The Department of public works is suspending the following services in an abundance of caution, until further notice:
● White Metal Collection days that are typically held on the last Saturday of every month. Residents may contact EL Harvey at 800-321-3002 to have bulk items collected. Residents are allowed one bulk item to be collected per week.

● Weekly operation of the Recycling Center that is typically open every Saturday. Residents that are part of the Town's curbside collection program may place their recyclables at the curb in their recycling carts. Residents that are not part of the curbside collection program are encouraged to speak with your landlords or management companies to find other options. Please note that the Recycling Center will be locked and the dumpsters will be removed.

Library - NEW UPDATE We are piloting a limited holds pickup service available by appointment to Hopkinton residents only. Information about this service is at bit.ly/HPLholds-pickup20. Please note that holds placed through the online catalog cannot be honored unless they were already waiting for you on the hold shelf before March 16. You MUST call the library and speak directly to a staff member to request additional items at this time. Please read the information at bit.ly/HPLholds-pickup20 for details. You can also access ebooks, audiobooks, newspapers, databases and more through the library from home; visit www.hopkintonlibrary.org/ebooks.asp and www.hopkintonlibrary.org/resources.asp. Staff continue to be available to answer questions at 508-497-9777 and [email protected] 10 am-5 pm Monday-Friday and 10 am-4 pm Saturday. For more information and other updates, contact us or visit our website (www.hopkintonlibrary.org) or social media (www.facebook.com/hopkintonlibrary, www.twitter.com/HopkintonPLMA).

Staying entertained at home - NEW UPDATE The Hopkinton Public Library has aggregated the following resources in order to help residents educate and entertain themselves while the library is closed https://hopkintonlibrary.org/extra5.asp

Inspection Services (Building, Plumbing and Wiring) - The Building Department, in collaboration with the Hopkinton Health Department and Hopkinton Emergency Management Group, has determined for the health and safety of all Residents, Contractors and Inspectors the Building, Plumbing, Electrical and Gas Inspectors will not be performing any interior inspections in occupied dwellings or structures. The Building, Plumbing, Electrical and Gas Inspectors will continue to perform inspections on all new unoccupied dwellings and structures. In the event of a Building emergency please reach out to staff at 508-497-9745.

Hopkinton Senior Center: The Senior Center staff continues to be available if you have questions, concerns, need assistance obtaining food or have any other need while we are closed. Please contact us at 508-497-9730. If you know of a senior in need please reach out to us and we will follow up with them. We have posted information regarding “Senior Hours” at local stores on our website (https://www.hopkintonma.gov/departments/senior_center.php) and Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/Hopkinton-Senior-Center-533752023452626).