Each day a summary of news and information that has been gathered from community partners and credible news sites will be posted.
- “Gov. Wolf: $50 Million in Grants Available to Support Fire and EMS Companies Negatively Affected by COVID-19” : https://www.governor.pa.gov/newsroom/gov-wolf-50-million-in-grants-available-to-support-fire-and-ems-companies-negatively-affected-by-COVID-19/
- “Reopening Phase Orders Updated to Include 10 Additional Counties Moving to Yellow and 16 to Green on June 5” : https://www.governor.pa.gov/newsroom/reopening-phase-orders-updated-to-include-10-additional-counties-moving-to-yellow-and-16-to-green-on-june-5/
- “Gov. Wolf Takes Action to Address Law Enforcement Reform and Accountability” : https://www.governor.pa.gov/newsroom/gov-wolf-takes-action-to-address-law-enforcement-reform-and-accountability/
- Governor Wolf
- As Americans, it is our duty to continuously strive to build a better democracy and right now our resolve is being tested. 10 days ago, George Floyd was murdered, brutally pinned down by police officers causing him to suffocate. George is not the first American who was black to be killed by a police officer, far from it and Pennsylvanians and Americans are banding together to demand long, overdue change. Protesting has always and always will be an essential part of democracy. In fact, the protests that have been occurring throughout the nation the past couple of days have done their job, they have called attention once again to the systematic injustice that has blocked our nation from living out our destiny as a land of freedom and equality for all.
- Earlier this week I spent time in Philadelphia talking with community leaders, clergy, local officials, business owners, I was there to listen and take their ideas, struggles, and plans back to Harrisburg. I also talked with community leaders in Pittsburgh, Harrisburg, and other cities all around the commonwealth. Throughout this week I urged de-escalation and preached the theme of unity in PA. But I acknowledge that as a leader, I need to provide a reason for people to actually want to deescalate. I need to show that I am listening, all of us here in Harrisburg need to show that people are being heard. So today I am taking steps to address concerns about long-standing violence and oppression against Pennsylvanians of color.
- First, I am directing MPOETC, the State Police, and all other training academies for law enforcement to review their curriculum. This will include a thorough review and revision of ‘use of force’ training. We will also develop standardized testing and best practices for verbal de-escalation techniques, trauma-centered approaches, mental health first aid, and implicit bias training. This is based on the recommendations from the 21st Century Report on Policing that was created under the guidance of President Barack Obama and co-chaired by Commissioner Charles Ramsey, former Police Commissioner of Philadelphia. This effort will commence immediately.
- Second, all of us are going to help municipalities develop citizen police advisory boards. The PCCD will develop a program that provides technical assistance to municipalities to create a citizens police advisory board to address police action that leads to injury or death. We will work with cities and towns to create organizations that provide transparency and independent accountability.
- Third, we need to do the same on the state level. I am going to create a Pennsylvania State Law Enforcement Advisory Commission that will review incidents of misconduct within law enforcement agencies under my jurisdiction and make recommendations, to me and the heads of those agencies, on how we can improve public interactions and prevent misconduct, oppression, and violence targeted at black and brown communities.
- Fourth, we will be creating a Deputy Inspector General within the Office of Inspector General. The Deputy IG will be charged with four things: deterring, detecting, preventing, eradicating fraud, waste, misconduct, and abuse among law enforcement agencies under my jurisdiction. I encourage local jurisdictions to establish similar protocols. I had a conversation yesterday with former Commissioner Charles Ramsey, who chairs the PCCD, our law enforcement agencies have implemented many of that Commission’s recommendations across PA but we are going to speed up the process so our law enforcement agencies have a better sense of community relations, better record of community relations, and a better understanding of the people they serve.
- Fifth, we will task the PCCD to create a Racial and Ethnic Disparities Subcommittee under the Criminal Justice Advisory Committee. This subcommittee will be tasked with reviewing criminal justice data at all decision points to develop a comprehensive strategy for policy changes, educational programs, funding, and technical assistance programs at the state and local levels.
- On Tuesday, members of the Police Reform working group put forward some thoughtful proposals calling for the reform of community police relationships on every level. This is a culmination of years of work by the General Assembly and the PA Legislative Black Caucus. I agree with them that we need to explore greater oversight of law enforcement to root out misconduct and abuse. I am going to work with them to implement their recommendations and pass legislation to address these inequities.
- We have already had some success, we implemented a fair funding formula that provided more money for schools, still we have a long way to go before we can make all of our schools truly equal, a long way. We have made our criminal justice system fair by passing Clean Slate into law, by strengthening support for county probation programs, by fixing inadequate sentencing guidelines and by reforming the post-trial criminal justice system. We have addressed criminal justice reform on a bipartisan basis and that is what we will need to do to address these long-standing inequities. I would point out also that we have reduced our prison population- from January 2015 to today there are 6,700 fewer people incarcerated at PA state correctional institutions. 80% of that reduction are non-white.
- As we go forward we need to address the looming systemic failings that have created this situation, this is not about the police, this is about the broad system of inequities that has sustained racism in the US and PA for too many centuries. These fights are real but they don’t have an end point. We have to keep going to make sure our commonwealth is more fair and more equal for everyone. That is something that every single Pennsylvanian, all 13 million of us, share a vested self-interest in. Again, this is not about law enforcement agencies, we have some of the best law enforcement agencies in the nation and it has been an honor for me as Governor to work with them. To establish better uniformity across our law enforcement agencies, we will strive to have all police departments become accredited, a step that the PA Chiefs of Police Association indicated they would support.
- As we change our system we must continue to work with community and police organizations across PA so the changes we as a commonwealth undertake are effective, successful, and long-lasting because if we are going to transform our justice system for the better or make it fairer, we all need to work together. So this is a call for reflection, improvement, and most of all for learning. We must rise to the challenge because too many people have lost faith in our public safety institutions and in our institutions in general. We must redouble our efforts to earn the trust of everyone we serve.
- Thousands of protesters’ voices have lifted this call to action for freedom and equality throughout PA. we cannot let them be drowned out by a few bad actors and we cannot lose further sight of the legitimate injustice that gave rise to the peaceful protests in the first place. We must continue to listen to the voices of Americans and Pennsylvanians who are black and brown and who have been shut out, kept down, and cast aside for too long. I urge protestors to continue to be peaceful and denounce those who are taking advantage of their legitimate anger with illegal acts and destruction. It’s time for Pennsylvanians and for Americans to come together around eliminating racism and injustice wherever it exists. We cannot do that in chaos.
- I pray that commonsense, peace, and unity, will prevail into a new chapter of our nation’s history- one where we finally eradicate the disgraceful racism and prejudice that has plagued America since its founding days. People who are black and brown should not have to lead this change alone, leaders who are white need to call out the injustice and speak out alongside the communities that have been repressed in this country for centuries. We have the chance to make our nation and our commonwealth the one our founders envisioned. One of justice and liberty for every American and Pennsylvanian. Our founders believed we could do this and I believe we can do it too.
General COVID resources: https://www.pa.gov/guides/responding-to-COVID-19/
Dept. of Health:
- “Department of Health Provides Update on COVID-19, 537 Positives Bring Statewide Total to 73,942” : https://www.media.pa.gov/Pages/Health-Details.aspx?newsid=842
- Link to Statewide map of testing sites: https://www.health.pa.gov/topics/disease/coronavirus/Pages/Symptoms-Testing.aspx?fbclid=IwAR0q72qATsxBX9zL0KMErYO_OQZutSgVMY1I4fEEa8-3zcHN_7WixZ-VFAY
- COVID-19 Data: https://www.health.pa.gov/topics/disease/coronavirus/Pages/Cases.aspx
- Lancaster Stats: 3,301 cases. 17,758 negative tests. (According to Dept. of Health website- updated today at 12:00pm)
- # of Deaths: 315 deaths. (updated 11:59 pm on June 2, 2020.)
- County Population: 543,557
- Death Rate per 100,000 residents: 58
- The federal government says dozens of COVID-19 testing sites in vulnerable communities have been forced to close amid civil unrest, including a Grubb's pharmacy rammed by a U-Haul van in Washington. The closures add to fears that a national wave of protests inspired by the past week's police killing of George Floyd will spread the virus, which continues to kill roughly 1,000 Americans a day on average.
- “Our urban areas are being disparately hit by the virus, and then they are getting disparately hit by the violence. And the result is a community that is truly in need for testing capacity losing that capacity,” a Health and Human Services spokesman told The Washington Post after reporting the closures.
- Even as the Trump administration tries to dissuade demonstrators, it encourages Americans to resume other forms of public activity that risk spreading disease. The White House's leading infectious-disease expert, Anthony S. Fauci, told CNN on Wednesday that public schools might be able to reopen in the fall. “Children can get infected, so, yes, so you’ve got to be careful," Fauci said. "Now, to make an extrapolation that you shouldn’t open schools, I think, is a bit of a reach.”
- Along with millions of unemployed Americans, Starbucks is worried about being able to pay its rent. Retailers such as Bed Bath & Beyond and the Gap have already stopped paying theirs, as have countless businesses large and small during the economic crisis. Nearly half of commercial rents were unpaid in May — setting up a dangerous chain reaction that could push landlords into bankruptcy, depress property values and freeze commercial credit markets.
- If you've donated $100 to a COVID-19 related cause, you have probably sacrificed more than most billionaires. The Post surveyed the public charity of the 50 wealthiest U.S. residents, converting the percentage of net worth they gave during the pandemic into the equivalent dollar amount for an average American. So the $125 million donated by Jeff Bezos — world's richest person and owner of The Washington Post — translates to just $85, and he's not even the stingiest. (See the ranked list.)
Other important news
- A study that found hydroxychloroquine was dangerous for hospitalized COVID-19 patients was retracted by its authors, who said they were unable to complete an independent audit of the hospital data underpinning their analysis.
- Nearly 2 million more Americans filed unemployment claims last week — an enormous number that is nevertheless the lowest since the outbreak began spreading widely in March, leading some to hope the economy may have stopped its free fall.
- Joe Biden has been styling himself as the Cassandra of COVID-19 — telling voters that President Trump “did not listen to guys like me back in January saying we have a problem, a pandemic is on the way.” Except he didn't actually say that.
- The Pentagon received billions of dollars from Congress to fight the pandemic. It has sat on most of the money — and much of what it has spent went to buy missile tubes, on staff golf courses and toward other projects with no obvious public health benefit.
- When, if ever, is your favorite sport coming back? We have all the intel in a handy guide — from the Kentucky Derby to your local team.
- United Way of Lancaster County has launched a new website, OneUnitedLancaster.com. This digital source of information for our community works in tandem with United Way's 2-1-1 resources to connect people and resources during this time of upheaval.
- The Asset Map is a county-wide resource for all to utilize. If you need to add/update/delete information please follow the link here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/UWMAP20
- Lancaster Chamber:
- Website updated daily: https://www.lancasterchamber.com/Apps/Pages/coronavirusnews
- “Important Updates Related to the Lancaster County Economic Recovery Plan” : https://www.lancasterchamber.com/Apps/Pages/page-slug-92504?formEntryId=21836
- INFORMATIONAL WEBINARS/TRAINING:
- PANDEMIC SAFETY MANAGER TRAINING – June 10
This program is based on the latest science being produced out of the CDC, NIH, NIOSH, FDA and DHS. The focus of the educational session is to provide senior leaders, safety directors, human resource professionals and others responsible for providing safe and healthy workplaces with important science-based information. Participants will receive a certification of completion following the training course.
- Workplace Considerations & Compliance
This webinar featured Steve Matzura and Austin Wolfe of McNees Wallace & Nurick as they discussed workplace safety measures, employer mandates related to building safety, cleaning measures and employee requirements, and OSHA guidance and compliance.
- Workplace Considerations: Practical Strategies for your Workplace and Workforce
Learn more about change management, how to create new norms, develop effective communication strategies, tips & tricks for outfitting your space and workforce and how to navigate new realities and challenges of the workplace in alignment with CDC and State guidelines as Pennsylvania prepares to reopen.
- Maintaining A Compliant Workplace & Workforce Under COVID-19 Restrictions
This webinar will cover steps employers are taking to comply with the Governor's orders and the implications to the workplace and workforce. It will specifically address: 1) what do employers need to do to maintain a safe working environment; 2) what are the OSHA, whistleblower, and workers' compensation considerations; and 3) what are the employees rights from a non-union and union perspective (e.g. protected concerted activity)
- PANDEMIC SAFETY MANAGER TRAINING – June 10
- Local Govt.:
- Mayor Danene Sorace is hosting daily briefings on Facebook every night at 5pm
- The County has a COVID site to keep up to date with their response: https://co.lancaster.pa.us/1296/Coronavirus-Disease-COVID-19
- Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health:
- Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health COVID-19 Data: online dashboard with COVID-19 testing and patient data. The site is accessible from the LGHealth.org homepage (click “data” in the top red banner), or at the link below. Data is updated each morning.
- WellSpan Health System:
- Meals: Hunger Free Lancaster
- Hunger Free Lancaster County: https://hungerfreelancaster.org/resources/important-resources-during-COVID-19/
- Resource to find childcare providers with waivers: https://www.dhs.pa.gov/providers/Providers/Pages/Coronavirus-Child-Care.aspx
- In-person instruction to resume for PA schools in yellow and green phases
The Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) has announced that elementary and secondary schools in the state’s yellow and green phases may resume in-person instruction and activities beginning July 1 under a phased reopening approach that first requires schools to develop health and safety plans based on guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the state Department of Health (DOH).
Find more information here.
- Gov. Wolf renews COVID-19 disaster declaration for state response and recovery, stay-at-home order ends June 4
Governor Tom Wolf has renewed the 90-day disaster declaration he originally signed on March 6 following the announcement of the first two presumptive positive cases of COVID-19 in the commonwealth. The declaration was set to expire on June 4. All remaining stay-at-home orders will be lifted June 4.
Read full article here.