I write to you this evening with relevant COVID-19 updates and resources.
As of today, there are 1133 Cambridge residents who have tested positive for COVID-19 and 98 residents have passed away. Learn more here. There are 106,271 cases of COVID-19 in Massachusetts, including 24,685 in Middlesex County. 995,374 patients have been tested, and 8,163 have passed away. Learn more here.
Today, the City of Cambridge launched a COVID-19 Housing Stabilization Program. This program will provide short-term financial assistance to eligible individuals and families in Cambridge who are experiencing housing instability due to COVID-19. Applications for the program will open on July 20th. Those who are unable to complete an application online can call 617-349-9797, starting July 20, 2020, to request assistance completing an application over the phone.
Lot 5 in Central Square at the corner of Bishop Allen Drive and Norfolk Street will be temporarily closing starting Tuesday July 21st and continuing through late fall. The Central Square Business Improvement District will transform the lot into Starlight Square, which will include an outdoor amphitheater with physically-distant seating, a courtyard for dining and dialogue, a community center for summer learning and food distribution, and the Central Square Farmers Market.
Tomorrow, the Cambridge School Committee will hold a Special Education and Student Supports Subcommittee meeting at 4PM. You can sign up for public comment here.
As a reminder, the Cambridge Public Library will hold a Meet the Mayor and Vice Mayor summer reading event tomorrow from 2-2:40PM.
Where to get tested:
During the month of July, the Cambridge Public Health Department is offering free mobile testing for all Cambridge residents in North Cambridge, The Port, East Cambridge, and Harvard Square one day each week during designated hours. Currently, all appointments for the month of July at these sites have been booked.
Testing will be available at the Pisani Center on Saturdays 7/18, 7/25, and 8/1 from 11AM-7PM to to help meet the demand of the waitlist. You can now schedule an appointment online or by calling 617-665-3795.
Translation Resources Available:
Multilingual city resources and information on COVID-19 are available on the City’s multilingual help page.
State Action Updates
The House Committee on Ways and Means and Joint Committee on the Judiciary are holding a hearing on S.2820 An Act to reform police standards and shift resources to build a more equitable, fair and just commonwealth that values Black lives and communities of color. Comments can be emailed to Chair Aaron Michlewitz and Chair Claire Cronin at Testimony.HWMJudiciary@mahouse.gov. Those submitting testimony should provide your name, organization, and phone number. The deadline to submit testimony is tomorrow, Friday, July 17th at 11AM.
Governor Baker Press Conference Updates:
Today, Governor Baker announced plans to make $20 million in CARES Act funding available to 181 municipalities through the Community Development Block Grant program to assist with homelessness prevention, food pantries, and job training. He also stated that he will need to make a decision soon on whether to extend the temporary ban on evictions and foreclosures in the state.
Where to Give
Tomorrow, Cambridge CoHousing will be collecting food to go to Chelsea on Saturday. Today’s piece in the Boston Globe demonstrates how heartbreaking and infuriating it is to see our neighbors in long lines waiting to feed their families.
Drop off is between 10 AM to 4PM at 175 Richdale Ave, the entrance to CoHousing, either in a paper bag or small box. If you don't see someone at the moment you come, please leave it just inside the gate where we will have boxes marked "FOR CHELSEA"
WHAT IS MOST NEEDED:
- bags of rice
- dried beans
- cereal (none sweetened)
- canned soups
- canned tomatoes and tomato sauce
- diapers and wipes
- pet food
Please no fresh foods -- those are supplied by a generous food producer
Also, no desserts, high sugar foods, or chips. THANK YOU!
Here is the LINK to the Chelsea Food Collaborative which this effort is supporting. Another option is to make a financial donation, via link at top of page.
Please email Anne Tonachel (email@example.com) if you have any questions or would like to make a drop off at a different time.
If you are able to give to others during this time, I encourage you to look to the following places that are working to help those most affected by COVID-19:
Cambridge Community Foundation
Cradles to Crayons Emergency Essentials Fund
Enroot Emergency Immigrant Cash Assistance Fund
I also encourage you to donate to the following organizations that are engaging in racial justice work:
Louis D. Brown Peace Institute
Families for Justice as Healing
As always, do not hesitate to reach out to me with questions or concerns at Marjorie.Decker@mahouse.gov.