Thursday March 18 COVID-19 Updates

Dear all,
I write to you this evening with relevant COVID-19 updates and resources.
Office Updates
Letter on MBTA Service Cuts
Today, I sent a letter to the General Manager of the MBTA Steve Poftak and Governor Baker in response to the MBTA service cuts that were implemented this past Sunday. Cutting MBTA services during this difficult time would be not only irresponsible but also detrimental to the public, especially the essential workers who rely on public transportation. These cuts are an issue of economic justice, racial justice and opportunity for our state’s businesses. If we are committed to reducing our carbon footprint, accessible, affordable, and reliable public transportation must play a robust role in reducing emissions.
Upcoming Office Hours
I will be holding virtual office hours next week at the following times:
  • Thursday, March 25, 2021, from 5:00 - 6:00 PM
  • Friday, March 26, 2021, from 10:00 - 11:00 AM
The first half hour of office hours will be open to all who wish to join. The second half hour will be reserved for 1:1 appointments for those who have matters that they wish to discuss privately. If you are interested in attending, please fill out this form or call my office at 617-722-2060.
MA Vaccination Updates
Resources for Booking and Getting to Your Appointment
  • Phone: Call 2-1-1 between 8:30 AM-8:00 PM Monday-Thursday or 8:30 AM-5:00 PM Friday-Sunday and select the prompt for “help scheduling a vaccine appointment.” This multilingual service is for residents who don’t have Internet access or have trouble using the Internet.
  • Need help? For detailed information about how to make an appointment, including updates about specific health care providers, see the Somerville-Cambridge Elder Services vaccine resources page. You can also visit, which is an unofficial site staffed by volunteers for eligible individuals who are unable to book vaccine appointments on their own.
  • Need a ride? Somerville-Cambridge Elder Services (SCES) is offering free transportation for local adults aged 65+ to COVID-19 vaccination sites in Cambridge and Somerville as well as Fenway Park and CHA Malden. For more information, click here. To register for a ride, call SCES at 617-628-2601 or email
  • The City of Cambridge has published accessibility information for the state’s mass vaccination sites. You can find it here.
Don’t forget to book your second appointment while you’re getting your first dose!
Daily COVID-19 Vaccination Report
The Department of Public Health is now publishing a Daily COVID-19 Vaccine Report in addition to its Weekly COVID-19 Vaccination Report. Information as of Thursday, March 18, 2021:
Total doses administered: 2,734,460
Total cumulative doses shipped to MA: 3,221,320
Vaccination Timeline
Massachusetts is currently in the middle of Phase Two of the vaccine rollout. For more details and updates on vaccination priorities, please visit
For more details and updates on vaccination priorities, please visit
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has a Frequently Asked Questions site that is continually updated as they receive new questions. You may access the FAQs here: Questions can be submitted to
State Updates
MA Will Transition to Next Phase of Reopening on Monday
The Baker-Polito Administration announced today that Massachusetts will advance to Step 1 of Phase IV of the Commonwealth’s reopening plan on Monday, March 22, 2021. Changes include the following:
  • Public setting and event venue gathering limits will increase up to 100 people indoors and 150 people outdoors.
  • Stadiums, arenas and ballparks will be permitted to operate at a 12% capacity limit.
  • Dance floors will be permitted at weddings and other events.
Read more here.
Travel Advisory Replacing Travel Order
Also effective Monday, March 22, 2021, the Massachusetts Travel Order will be replaced with a Travel Advisory. Under the advisory, people entering Massachusetts are advised to quarantine for 10 days upon their arrival if they have been out of the state for 24 hours or more. There are exemptions for people who have a recent negative COVID-19 test, people who are fully vaccinated, and others. Read more here.
National Updates
New HHS Secretary Confirmed
Xavier Becerra was confirmed today as the new Secretary of the US Department of Health and Human Services by a Senate vote of 50-49. Becerra is the first Latino to hold the role and previously served as California’s attorney general and as a Congressman. Read more here.
Cambridge Updates
Voices for Justice featuring Ta-Nehisi Coates
The Cambridge Public Library (CPL) Foundation is hosting a Voices for Justice event series to support the CPL's Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion initiatives. This virtual event features New York Times best-selling author and journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates in conversation with award-winning journalist Callie Crossley of GBH News Boston’s Under the Radar. The event will take place on Tuesday, March 23, 2021 at 7:30 PM on Zoom. For more information and to register, click here.
Apply to Be Part of Starlight Square Season Two
The Starlight Square Steering Committee is now accepting applications for its Spring/Summer season. Anyone interested in organizing programming, performances or events can respond to the request for proposals here; applications are due by Sunday, March 21, 2021 at 11:59 PM. Read more here.
Translation Resources Available
Multilingual city resources and information on COVID-19 are available on the City's multilingual help page.
Today’s Case Count
Total Cases: 574,135
New Cases: 1,857
Total Deaths: 16,426
Tests Today: 106,850
Total Cases: 5,180
New Cases: 21
Total Deaths: 121
The state has created an interactive dashboard, including the percentage of COVID-19 positive cases and testing rates by city and town. The dashboard can be viewed here.
For Harvard University COVID-19 information, click here.
For MIT COVID-19 information, click here.
Baker Press Conference Updates
Governor Baker did not hold a press conference today. You can watch the Governor's latest COVID-19 updates here.
Cambridge COVID Testing Sites
Mental Health Services and Resources
If you or a loved one are struggling, please know that you are not alone. Here are some great resources:
Where to Give
On Fridays, Cambridge CoHousing will be collecting food either in a paper bag or small box for the Chelsea Food Collaborative. Drop off is between 9 AM and 2:30 PM at the entrance to CoHousing at 175 Richdale Ave, Cambridge, MA. If you don't see someone at the moment you arrive, please leave it just inside the gate where we will have boxes marked "For Chelsea."
Transition House in Need of Emergency Donations
If you are able to give to others during this time, I encourage you to look to additional 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

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