Wednesday March 17 COVID-19 Updates

Dear all,
I write to you this evening with relevant COVID-19 updates and resources. I also want to address last night’s hate crime in Atlanta. My heart aches for those who are grieving the loss of their loved ones. It is no coincidence that this tragedy has come after 4 years of a President and Congress that enabled and amplified misogynist and bigoted views. Words always matter. Our so-called leaders empowered white supremacists by explicitly promoting racism, refusing to hold public figures accountable for espousing hate, or both. The shooting in Atlanta is a tragic example of how hate begets hate, and how quickly it leads to violence. According to the coalition Stop AAPI Hate, there were nearly 3,800 incidents of violence and harassment against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders over the past year.
This should also give us serious pause for thought on what happens when we do not have federal laws that mirror our own here in Massachusetts. Allowing easy access to guns with no waiting periods and no background checks statistically leads to a higher rate of gun violence. My anger and determination to be part of a movement that challenges this stands firm.
Office Updates
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.
Baker Press Conference Updates
Eligibility Updates for COVID-19 Vaccines in MA
Today Governor Baker announced an updated timeline for COVID-19 vaccinations in Massachusetts. Find out more here.
  • Individuals aged 60 and over and workers in certain sectors, including: transit, grocery, utility, food and agriculture, sanitation, public works and public health workers, will be eligible on March 22, 2021.
  • Individuals aged 55 and over, and individuals with one certain medical condition will be eligible on April 5, 2021.
  • The general public, aged 16 and over, will be eligible April 19, 2021.
You can watch the Governor’s latest COVID-19 updates here.
MA Vaccination Updates
Updated Timeline for Eligibility for COVID-19 Vaccines in MA
The timeline for eligibility for the COVID-19 vaccine for all residents in Massachusetts has been updated as described above. For more information, visit: http://mass.gov/COVIDvaccine.
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 macovidvaxhelp.com, 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 info@eldercare.org.
  • 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 Wednesday, March 17, 2021:
Total doses administered: 2,671,928
Total cumulative doses shipped to MA: 3,095,810
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 mass.gov/CovidVaccine.
For more details and updates on vaccination priorities, please visit mass.gov/CovidVaccine.
FAQs
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: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-vaccine-frequently-asked-questions. Questions can be submitted to COVID-19-Vaccine-Plan-MA@mass.gov.
State Updates
RMV Expanding Senior Hours
The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) announced today that it is expanding designated Wednesday in-person appointment hours for seniors from those aged 75 and up to those aged 65 and up. Beginning March 24, 2021, customers who are 65 years of age or older will be able to book in-person appointments in April during designated Wednesday senior hours at Mass.Gov/RMV. Read more here.
Cambridge Updates
Food for Free Distributing Daily Table Gift Cards to People in Need
Food for Free began distributing $25 Daily Table gift cards yesterday to Margaret Fuller House and the Cambridge Community Center, following the success of its Daily Table gift card donation to the Cambridge Economic Opportunity Committee in February. Daily Table is a not-for-profit food store with locations in Boston and Cambridge that is now offering free grocery delivery within two miles of each store. Read more here.
CPSD April Expansion Enrollment Form Due Tonight
Elementary families with remote learners and all upper school families need to fill out the April Expansion Enrollment form by tonight, Wednesday, March 17, 2021 at 10:00 PM. Login here to fill out the form.
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: 572,278
New Cases: 1,640
Total Deaths: 16,399
Tests Today: 97,965
Total Cases: 5,159
New Cases: 29
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.
National Updates
There are no national updates today.
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 Marjorie.Decker@mahouse.gov.
Sincerely,
Marjorie

Copyright 2018 Authorized and Paid for by The Friends of Marjorie Decker © All Rights Reserved