I write to you this evening with relevant COVID-19 updates and resources.
As of today, there are 1102 Cambridge residents who have tested positive for COVID-19 and 97 residents have passed away. Learn more here. There are 109,338 cases of COVID-19 in Massachusetts, including 24,039 in Middlesex County. 860,936 patients have been tested, and 8,132 have passed away. Learn more here.
The Cambridge Fire Department will resume inspections to ensure compliance with MGL Ch. 148; Sec. 26F and 26F ½ starting Monday, 7/6.
The City of Cambridge amended its Temporary Emergency Restrictions on public meetings and events. All City-sponsored community events, athletic events, events permitted for the use of City parks or other City-sponsored public gatherings are cancelled through July 30th or postponed to a later date.
Where to get tested:
During the month of July, the Cambridge Public Health Department will offer free mobile testing for all Cambridge residents in North Cambridge, The Port, East Cambridge, and Harvard Square one day each week during designated hours:
- North Cambridge – Wednesdays, 11AM-3PM, Jefferson Park clinic at 266-B Rindge Avenue
- Harvard Square – Wednesdays, 4PM-6PM, First Church Cambridge at 11 Garden Street
- East Cambridge – Thursdays, 12PM-4PM, Millers Rivers Apartment at 661 Cambridge Street
- The Port – Thursdays, 5PM-8PM, Pisani Center at 131 Washington Street
The Cambridge Public Health Department is expanding the number of testing appointments available. Testing will be done by appointment only. You can 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
Applications are available for the Emergency Rental and Mortgage Assistance and Residential Assistance for Families in Transition programs through Metro Housing Boston. The same application will be used for both programs.
Governor Baker Press Conference Updates:
Today, Governor Baker announced that phase three of the state’s reopening plan will begin on July 6th. This phase will not start until July 13th in the City of Boston.
Step one of phase three will allow the following types of businesses to reopen:
- Movie theaters and outdoor performance venues;
- Museums, cultural and historical sites;
- Fitness centers and health clubs;
- Certain indoor recreational activities with low potential for contact;
- Professional sports teams, under the authority of league-wide rules, may hold games without spectators
Governor Baker also announced a revised gatherings order:
- Indoor gatherings are limited to eight people per 1,000 square feet and should not exceed 25 people in a single enclosed, indoor space.
- Outdoor gatherings in enclosed spaces are limited to 25 percent of a facility’s maximum occupancy, with a maximum of 100 people.
- The order does not apply to outdoor, unenclosed gatherings if proper social distancing measures are possible.
Health care providers may now provide certain group treatment programs and day programs that were not allowed in phase two, including adult day health, day habilitation programs, and substance abuse services day treatment and outpatient services. Certain human services programs can reopen in phase three, including community based day services for adults with intellectual and cognitive disabilities and psychosocial rehabilitation clubhouses.
Visitation guidelines have been updated for 24/7 congregate care facilities and programs overseen by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services.
MassHealth will extend current telehealth flexibility through at least the end of the year.
I am communicating my concerns with Governor Baker regarding our steps to reopening. As we see numbers spike around the country in states that have moved quickly to reopen along with schools that have had to close after reopening around the world. We need to make hard choices that will be a stark reminder that this pandemic and state of emergency is not over. We need to decide on priorities then alter decisions about what to reopen. I worry that if school reopening is a priority then we need to do everything to keep the rate of infection lower Currently we have relaxed the rules of entering our state that ultimately relies on the honor system. Again there are no easy choices until there is a vaccine, and it’s a matter of prioritizing what is essential to our safety and security, including the education and care of children and our elders.
Where to Give
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:
I also encourage you to donate to the following organizations that are engaging in racial justice work:
As always, do not hesitate to reach out to me with questions or concerns at Marjorie.Decker@mahouse.gov.