At last night’s Select Board meeting, the Town Health Agent and Fire Chief reported on the actions being taken in Mansfield to help prevent the spread of coronavirus. You can watch it HERE.
The message from both the state and federal government is clear, cases of COVID-19 are increasing and we all must do our part to stop the spread: stay home as much as possible and follow social distancing guidelines. Distance is our single biggest weapon in battling COVID19.
COVID-19 Task Force understands what is being asked can be anywhere from inconvenient to extremely difficult. At the local level, enforcement actions are being taken by the task force to slow the spread of the coronavirus to protect the residents and employees of the Town of Mansfield and in turn the entire public. We have worked hard to educate residents on why these measures are essential both in our alert messages and on our webpage. Please know if you have any questions, the Health Department is available to answer them.
In accordance with the extended timeline announced at Governor Baker’s press conference held today, March 31st, the town of Mansfield will continue with the following actions until no sooner than May 4th.
- Municipal buildings are closed to the public.
- Mansfield Public Schools are closed but continue to provide Grab-and-Go breakfast and lunch for students on Tuesdays and Fridays, from 10am-11am. Please see their website here for more information.
- The library offers online services only. Please check out their website here for more information.
- The COA is closed but continues to deliver Meals on Wheels using best practices.
- Mansfield Recycling and Composting Green is closed. Homeowners can purchase compostable brown bags locally and store leaves and brush at their home until the Green is able to open. When it is safe to open the Green, the staff is committed to extending the days and hours as necessary to accommodate any additional volume.
- Municipal playgrounds and fields remain closed for any group and team sports and gatherings for more than 10 people. The fields are open for walking, running, or biking but people must practice social distancing and stay at least 6 feet away from others nearby.
- Municipal employees will continue to provide essential services while working remotely as best as possible. At this point, to protect both the residents and the employees from any kind of virus spread, only emergency inspections for the building, conservation and public health departments will be conducted.
- The COVID-19 Task Force continues to enforce the Governor’s Order for non-essential businesses to close their physical workplaces and facilities to workers, customers, and the public. Businesses and organizations not on the list of essential services are encouraged to continue operations through remote means that do not require workers, customers, or the public to enter or appear at the brick-and-mortar premises closed by the order. Curbside pickup is not allowed.
This is the most essential time to work together to do our part in flattening the curve. April will be a month of sacrifice for everybody, some more than others. But with all these efforts, we can literally save lives. The entire COVID-19 Task Force thanks you all for your understanding and assistance in stopping the spread of this deadly virus.
Over the weekend, the White House extended its social distancing guidelines through April 30th. This continues the request for people to avoid social gatherings involving groups of 10 or more, stay away from public spaces, avoid discretionary travel and practice increased hygiene.
Here in MA, Governor Baker has ordered a Stay-at-Home Advisory recommending all residents to stay home and avoid unnecessary activities including travel. Residents should be actively practicing social distancing at all times. Governor Baker has also issued an emergency order requiring all businesses and organizations that do not provide “COVID-19 Essential Services” to close their physical workplaces and facilities to workers. Businesses and organizations not on the list of essential services are encouraged to continue operations through remote means that do not require workers, customers, or the public to enter or appear at the brick-and-mortar premises closed by the order. Please note if a business is not essential as defined by the Massachusetts government, there should not be any employees in the building. Any questions can be directed to the Health Department about any of the Governor’s orders at 508-261-7366 or Health@mansfieldma.com.
We understand these are unprecedented times that are requiring strict action by government at every level. Everyone in Massachusetts has an important role to play to slow the transmission of this virus. Every instance of potential exposure that can be eliminated is an important step for that individual and for our community. Thank you all for your cooperation.
The COVID-19 Task Force continues to promote and emphasize the best public health practices to slow the spread of the coronavirus by residents and town employees alike: wash your hands often, avoid close contact, work from home if you can, stay home when you’re sick, cover coughs and sneezes, wear a facemask if you are sick and clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces.
At the Governor’s Press conference today, the governor called on all travelers arriving in Massachusetts to self-quarantine for 14 days. There will be information about this request at the major transportation hubs, such as Logan International Airport, South Station and Worcester Airport. There will be messages displayed on roadside message boards and fliers will be available at rest stops on the Mass Pike.
With so many people making sacrifices, we cannot emphasize enough the need for everybody to practice social distancing. Please note, all public parks and fields are closed to team or group sports or gatherings of 10 or more people. If there are less than 10 people, they still must practice social distancing leaving 6 feet between each other. Local law enforcement has reported throughout the week that youth are gathering at local fields at which point they are informed that they cannot be there. It is unacceptable that public safety resources are being used to enforce this. The official Public Notice stating the closure can be found on the Coronavirus webpage.
With the influx of pertinent information, the Coronavirus webpage was revamped to be more user-friendly with designated tabs. This includes town business during coronavirus, food establishments offering takeout or drive-through service, state-designated essential services, task force updates, COVID-19 testing guidelines, and information about social distancing, mental health services, hand washing and general information about coronavirus with links and videos from the CDC.
Finally, thank you to all the residents who are doing their best to adhere to public health recommendations. We all have a role to play in slowing the spread of this disease and flattening the curve. We really appreciate the sacrifices you are making for the public’s health.
Confirmed cases of COVID-19 are on the rise as testing becomes more readily available and the coronavirus spreads. In Mansfield, there are now 5 confirmed case of COVID-19 and 24 residents self-quarantining.
Social distancing continues to be an extremely important tool we have to reduce the spread. At Governor Baker’s press conference held this afternoon, March 25, 2020, at 3:30pm, it was announced that all public and private elementary and secondary schools and all non-emergency childcare programs will remain closed no sooner than Monday, May 4th. The Coronavirus webpage now contains additional information about social distancing and ways to practice it. Although sit down meals are prohibited in food establishments, there is also a list of local restaurants that continue to remain open, offered for takeout or delivery. Please share your ideas on how to practice social distancing responsibly at Health@mansfieldma.com and we can add them to our list.
Finally, Massachusetts COVID-19 text alerts can be sent directly to your phone by texting COVIDMA to 888-777
Please note that to protect the health and safety of employees and the general public, Mansfield Town Government is working remotely to continue to provide services to the town. Town Departments can be reached through email and by leaving voicemail messages. All non-emergency inspections, including building, electrical, plumbing and gas fitting, septic, and housing, have been put on hold through April 7th at which time it will be re-evaluated. Please contact the appropriate inspectional department through email or voicemail for more information. We understand that this will be disruptive and we appreciate your patience as we work through this unprecedented event.
GOVERNOR BAKER ISSUES NEW ORDERS
This morning, to further reduce the spread of COVID-19 Governor Baker issued the “Order Assuring Continued Operation of Essential Services in the Commonwealth, Closing Certain Workplaces, and Prohibiting Gatherings of More than 10 People.” This will be effective Tuesday, March 24, at noon and will run until April 7, 2020. All non-essential businesses will have to close their physical workspaces and facilities to customers and the public. Please see the attached links:
March 23, 2020 Essential Services And Revised Gatherings Order
COVID-19 Essential Services
March 23 Assemblage Guidance
If you operate a business and believe you are an essential service, please confirm so with the list of COVID-19 Essential Services list linked above. If you are unsure, please contact the Health Department at 508-261-7366 or Health@mansfieldma.com. The Health Department is working remotely but is connected to email and phones during regular business hours.
Please visit our website for an update on resources for those released from quarantine, information on managing anxiety and stress, and information on a helpline for those with questions. Public Health Department’s Coronovirus Information Page full update.
Please visit our website for an update on Closed Municipal Fields and updated information on Travelers from Countries with Widespread Sustained (Ongoing) Transmission Arriving in the United States. Public Health Department’s Coronovirus Information Page full update.
Please visit our website for an update on gatherings of children and adolescents, testing guidelines, and new important web links: Public Health Department’s Coronovirus Information Page full update.
The COVID-19 Task Force would like to provide you with an update of the most recent information as of 3/16/2020 as we continue to monitor this situation closely. Furthermore, we understand how difficult this time is for everyone as this virus has caused a tremendous amount of stress and anxiety. However, we want you to know that we remain vigilant as we work on a path forward. Please see the Public Health Department’s Coronovirus Information Page for the full update.
Please see the Official Town Response to Coronavirus by clicking this link.
In response to the rapidly evolving situation, the Mansfield Town Manager has established a COVID-19 Task Force comprised of Town and School leadership. The central goal and mission of the Task Force is to provide a balance in which the Town can continue to provide essential services to the public, while trying to prevent and mitigate the spread of the virus. Up to date information can be found on the Public Health Department’s Coronavirus Information web page here: https://www.mansfieldma.com/536/Coronavirus-Information