Public Health Update on Coronavirus Situation 3/22/2020

Three Confirmed COVID-19 Cases Identified in Winthrop

Public Health Updates

The Public Health Department reports one new case identified in Winthrop. The Town of Winthrop Emergency Operations Center (EOC) is streamlining the COVID-19 response effort and ensuring the continued delivery of services to residents. The EOC will remain operational until further notice.  The EOC can be reached at 617-539-5848, Monday through Friday, between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., or by emailing COVID19info@town.winthrop.ma.us.

If any resident is currently under self-quarantine for symptoms or travel history, please contact the EOC at 617-539-5848 or COVID19info@town.winthrop.ma.us. All information will be confidential.

Assistance for Small Businesses

The Baker-Polito Administration announced that the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will offer low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to Massachusetts small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Small businesses, private non-profit organizations of any size, small agricultural cooperatives and small aquaculture enterprises that have been financially impacted as a direct result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) since Jan. 31, 2020, may qualify for Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses which could have been met had the disaster not occurred. Eligibility for Economic Injury Disaster Loans is based on the financial impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The interest rate is 3.75 percent for small businesses. The interest rate for private non-profit organizations is 2.75 percent. SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years, and are available to entities without the financial ability to offset the adverse impact without hardship.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard‑of‑hearing may call (800) 877-8339. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX  76155.  The deadline to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan is Dec. 18, 2020.

 Local Winthrop Updates

  • All Parks and Playgrounds will remain closed.
  • No gatherings of any kind of more than 10 people at one time, in one place.
  • All public schools in Massachusetts are closed until at least April 7.
  • All bars and restaurants will only be able to serve takeout customers.
  • COVID-19 Tip Hotline available on the Winthrop Public Safety website for those self-reporting or for a concerned member of the community. The hotline can also be https://winthroppublicsafety.com/covid-19-tip-hotline/.
  • Winthrop Community Food Bank will be accepting donations Mondays and Wednesdays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Cummings Elementary School.  Drop offs will take place on School Street (the back road that leads to the parking lot).
  • The Food Bank is looking specifically for canned goods, pasta, non-perishables, sealed baby formula, toiletries and paper products including toilet paper, tissues, napkins, and paper towels. Food will be distributed on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11am-1pm. If you are elderly, or homebound, please contact the Emergency Operations Center at 617-539-5848 so delivery arrangements can be made. Please note the distribution will be on a first come, first serve basis. We appreciate your cooperation in helping to make this process orderly and efficient. For more information about the Food Bank or volunteer opportunities, please contact Matt Rodes at mrodes@town.winthrop.ma.us.
  • Paul W Marks Company will be handing out FREE food at the Cummings School on Tuesday 3/24 and Thursday 3/26 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. for individuals and families IN NEED. Products will mostly be dairy products, milk, eggs, yogurt, etc.
  • Municipal offices will remain closed to walk in foot traffic at this time. Residents can pay taxes, parking tickets and apply for resident parking stickers online or by dropping payments and applications in the drop box located at the Town Hall front door.  Motor Vehicle Excise Taxes are due March 25th. The Town is not currently extending this deadline. Contact the Treasurer/Collector’s Office with any questions at 617-846-1750, Monday through Thursday, from 9 to 11 a.m.
  • Residents can report DPW safety issues from the home page of the town website.

Winthrop Public School Updates

Winthrop Public Schools will be distributing Grab-and-Go Meals for any WPS student in need. Pick up will be Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the rear loading dock area of Winthrop High School. There is no cost for any student.

Online educational opportunities will be posted for students on the Winthrop Public Schools website, as well as each school home page. Families are encouraged to review and begin the process of having your student remain connected to learning experiences during this time of school closure.

Health Guidance

  • As always, if anyone displays symptoms of COVID-19, including a fever, cough or shortness of breath, they should not go to work or school and are advised to contact their primary care physician.
  • For residents that may be self-quarantined and require outside assistance or meal delivery, please email the EOC at COVID19info@town.winthrop.ma.us.
  • Residents are advised to practice social distancing by keeping 6 feet between people to prevent the spread of infection which includes handshaking and hugging. Residents are also encouraged to avoid group activities and events.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, including under your fingernails. Alcohol-based hand sanitizer (at least 60% alcohol content) can be used when soap and water are not available.
  • Keep your hands away from your face.
  • Cover your nose and mouth when sneezing and coughing with a tissue and discard it immediately. Cough into the sleeve over your elbow instead of your hand. Wash your hands often when coughing and sneezing.
  • Stay away from people who are sick and stay home when you are sick.