Weekly Email Update 7.13.20
"We've seen it over and over again. We are still here. Let's think not just about (police) training, but what safety means and how to grapple with the fact that the function of the police is to maim and kill. That is their tool in trade. ... As long as our police are trained with violence, we will continue to see violence."
A representative from Brattleboro’s Root Social Justice Center's Black, Indigenous People of Color Caucus (as featured in a recent Brattleboro Reformer article entitled Police Review Process Begins in Earnest)
We hope you are staying cool and hydrated in this heat, fellow WeCANners. This Sunday morning may be the perfect time to grab yourself a cold beverage (maybe a Vermont Maple Lemonade), head outside to a shady spot, and peruse this week's Weekly Email Update as part of your stay-cool routine.
Your Friendly WeCAN Admins would like to remind you, also, to make sure that your voter registration is up to date and that you have requested your absentee ballots for our August 11th, 2020 Primary Election and for our November 3rd General Election. If you are able, take a screen shot of the image below and keep it handy to share with other Windham County residents who may need it. Voting is an imperative this year so let's make sure that all Vermonters know when and how to cast their ballots.
Welcome, too, to our newest Weekly Email Update volunteer, Sam Warren. Sam is a recent Sociology graduate from UVM and will be helping to proof the Weekly Email Update before it goes out. Thank you for donating your time, Sam! Welcome to the WeCAN team.
HAPPENING TODAY, SUNDAY, JULY 12th, 2020
Share the Harvest Stand
brought to you by Edible Brattleboro
Sunday, July 5th, 2020, and every Sunday during the Summer, at the corner of Elm Street and Frost Street in Brattleboro, VT, 05301. 11am-1pm. For more information please email EdibleBrattleboro@gmail.com.
Pick up FREE fresh veggies and/or drop off surplus from your garden to share. Please supply your own bags.
Womxn’s Rights are Under Attack: A Conversation with Candidate for Lt. Gov Brenda Siegel
hosted by Brenda Siegel for Vermont
Sunday, July 12th, 2020 Online. 6pm-8pm. Tickets are available here: https://actionnetwork.org/events/womens-rights-are-under-attack/?fbclid=IwAR0dAiHXcmua_M0s2pdjgzht1LleIyt7RnmdavpaJgshUrENqcQbLnvDO_Y.
Since the dawn of our nation women have been fighting to have their rights recognized and actualized here. Even after the Women's Suffrage and the Me Too movements, we are still seeing gross inequality in the rights and freedoms of women.
Even just this week, the Supreme Court ruled to uphold a Trump administration regulation which allows employers with religious or moral objections to limit women’s access to birth control coverage under the Affordable Care Act. Because of this, more than 100,000 women could lose their access to birth control.
We must ensure that all women have freedom from pregnancy and parenting discrimination, freedom from violence, the freedom to make choices for their bodies, and have dignity, fair wage, and equal rights in the workplace. Now is the time to not only say "Enough is Enough", but also to follow through by demanding action.
Please join us for this dynamic panel as we discuss how we can step forward into an era of true Gender Equality.
HAPPENING THIS WEEK, MONDAY, JULY 13th, 2020-SUNDAY, JULY 19th 2020
Extra Food Distribution in Brattleboro
Monday July 13th, 2020 at Brattleboro Union High School (131 Fairground Road, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 10:00pm to 12pm. All are welcome. Masks required.
The Vermont Foodbank has set up an extra food distribution event in Brattleboro this Monday due to the Wednesday event by the National Guard being full. The event will be in the parking lot across from the main entrance of Brattleboro Union High School on Fairground Road. Food given out will be the same food given out by the National Guard later in the week. It will include chicken, produce and dairy.
If you can’t make it, you can send someone to pick up food on your behalf. They will use the drive-through model, so please stay in your vehicles. As a reminder, this program is open to anyone--there are no income requirements or paperwork to participate. Please feel welcome to come and get what you need.
Dining Dems - Online French Cooking Class
Tuesday, July 14th, 2020. Sign up at https://secure.actblue.com/donate/dwithd. 5:30pm-6:30pm. Requested donation is $15.
Celebrate Bastille Day and pick up some new cooking techniques with Chef Justin Thompson of Wantastiquet Catering. Chef Thompson will demonstrate and help you prepare a delicious French meal in your own kitchen.
Sign up now at https://secure.actblue.com/donate/dwithd and you will receive:
- Zoom link for the class
- All the recipes
- Ingredient list with recommendations
- Wine pairing recommendations
Requested donation is $15 and it goes to Windham Votes! and supports our Get Out the Vote efforts.
Construction of Whiteness Study Group
facilitated by Brattleboro Solidarity
Tuesday, July 14th, 2020
Tuesday, July 21st, 2020
Tuesday, July 28th, 2020
Tuesday, August 4th, 2020
On the Brattleboro Common (at the intersection of Routes 5 and 30: Park Place, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 6pm-8pm. This is an open and free study group. Snacks will be provided. Please sign-up by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org and wear a mask.
The social construction of "race" as a way to divide people is as old as the founding of the United States. Today we are seeing an escalation of ICE raids, police killing, and white supremacist attacks on people of color that are directly related to the construction of whiteness. It is imperative we continue to expand our knowledge of the history of race in this country in order to fight the supremacy in our society. Brattleboro Solidarity will be hosting a study group to expand our understanding of the historical divisions along race and class lines in the U.S as a tool for economic exploitation.
Teaching in Solidarity with Black Lives: Towards an Equitable Future
a Spark Teacher Education Institute learning opportunity
Wednesday July 15th, 2020
Wednesday, July 22nd, 2020
Wednesday July 29th, 2020
Wednesday, August 5th, 2020
All sessions will meet via Zoom. 4pm-6pm. Contact SparkTeacherEdVT@gmail.com for more information! Join us! Fill out this form to apply! Cost is $300, but contact us for sliding scale costs.
Spark Teacher Education Institute will facilitate online learning communities aimed at building curricula that centers Black lives and equity. With the goal of democratizing knowledge, the expertise will come from participants as they commit to study and reflection. We will co-construct curriculum and interrogate our pedagogy to inform our teaching practices.
You will receive 15 hours of professional development credits (that includes meetings and independent work), with the possibility of continuing into the year for graduate credits.
There will be 3 groups to choose from:
Science/Math, Humanities, and Early Childhood/Elementary.
Why Join this PD?
Practitioners and scholars have been urging teachers to centralize equity and Black lives in pedagogy and curricula for over two decades. Gloria Ladson-Billings, a distinguished professor of education and critical race scholar, points to the historic education debt (not “achievement gap”) placed upon Black students which is reflected in their over-representation in punishment, expulsions, and special education. Teaching in support of Black lives and equity is more than just methods or adding a social justice lesson. Teachers need to investigate and challenge white supremacy in their pedagogy and curricula to move the center. Teaching in support of Black Lives is an opportunity for educators to connect a long history of racialized inequities to school based practices, curriculum, and broader structures of schooling. These sessions are organized to offer a place for questioning and active collaboration to forge new paths of inquiry and initiatives in your schools and broader communities.
Spark Teacher Education Institute has been working with teachers for 18 years to centralize the experiences of working people, women, and people of color, in order to teach against exploitation and build an equitable world for all. Spark Teacher Education Institute was started by Janaki Natarajan and offers teacher certification in Social Justice Education. Teachers learn the social justice pedagogy and political economy. Participants work side-by-side for an entire year with a skilled mentor teacher, learning to integrate social justice and equity content into the mainstream curriculum. The program strives to instill an understanding of self and others in conjunction with the development of skills, knowledge, critical thinking and compassion required for creating an equitable and engaging learning environment for all learners.
Broadband, Food Insecurity, and Economic Justice: A Discussion with Candidate for Lt Gov. Brenda Siegel
hosted by Brenda Siegel for Vermont
Thursday, July 16th, 2020. Tickets are available here: https://actionnetwork.org/events/broadband-food-insecurity-and-economic-justice?fbclid=IwAR3KAx4RxElGyr6Q5GS7XKdRjGCMBbVPymnWUUf6BUsmkCE-3BbF0lvyrio. 6pm.
Here in Vermont, many of our systems are broken and do not work for regular Vermonters. Those at the top are paying very little while families across Vermont are sometimes working two or three jobs to just barely make ends meet. We also know that there are large disparities in resources depending on where you live, your socioeconomic status, and systemic oppression against communities of color.
With the already high costs of food, rent, healthcare and utilities rising and wages stagnating, now more than ever we need to make systemic change to build a Vermont where we not only survive, but thrive.
Join us on Thursday July 16th at 6pm as we talk about the need for systemic change, universal broadband, tackling food insecurity, implementing a housing guarantee, and economic dignity and justice for all Vermonters.
The Windham County Democratic Committee Candidate Forum for Windham 4 (Putney, Westminster)
Wednesday, July 15th, 2020 on Zoom (https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZ0kfuysqzkjE9OYnQ_SWO9b7fq-u9PRZ3Jy). 7pm-8:15pm.
The Windham County Democratic Committee will be holding forums for the candidates seeking the Democratic nominations for State Representative for Windham 3 and Windham 4. Candidates confirmed to attend: Michelle Bos Lun, Matthew Ingram, Mike Mrowicki. Forums are open to the public and questions can be submitted in advance to John Hagen at email@example.com or they can be asked via the Zoom chat. Both forums will also be streamed on Facebook Live on the Windham Dems page (@windhamdemocrats).
The Windham County Democratic Committee Candidate Forum for Windham 3 (Athens, Brookline, Grafton, Rockingham, Westminster, Windham)
Thursday, July 16th, 2020 on Zoom (https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYof-mqrDouHtYDXJpEOZKIT8bVDgM5Bwks). 7pm-8:15pm.
The Windham County Democratic Committee will be holding forums for the candidates seeking the Democratic nominations for State Representative for Windham 3 and Windham 4. Candidates confirmed to attend: Leslie Goldman, Carolyn Partridge, Kelley Tully. Forums are open to the public and questions can be submitted in advance to John Hagen at firstname.lastname@example.org or they can be asked via the Zoom chat. Both forums will also be streamed on Facebook Live on the Windham Dems page (@windhamdemocrats).
Solidarity Fridays: Our Struggles Are Connected
organized by Brattleboro Solidarity, The Root Justice Center, Tenants Union of Brattleboro and Lost River Racial Justice
Friday, July 17th, 2020 (and all Fridays) at Pliny Park (the corner of High Street and Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 5pm-7pm.
Weekly protest at Pliny Park focusing on a variety of currant local and national issues. Bring your signs, banners, chalk & noise makers to Pliny Park to rally for the world we want. Please wear a mask.
Our struggles are connected!
Keep the pressure on!
No Justice! No Peace!
Black Trans Lives Matter March
Saturday, July 18th, 2020 at Sheldon Field (51 Old Ferry Road, Northampton, MA, 01060). 2pm-8pm. Masks required.
Black Trans Women were, and continue to be the pioneers of the LGBTQ+ rights movement beginning with the Stonewall Riots. Amongst those who are suffering from the ongoing police brutality and racism, Black Trans women too are being murdered without justice. This event is a Black Trans Lives Matter March hosted in the city of Northampton, in alignment with the national Black Lives Matter Movement, as well as Defund 01060.
Come show your support and solidarity as we march from Sheldon Field through downtown to city hall before marching back to Sheldon Field.
Through this protest we aim to celebrate and support the Black Trans and LGBTQ+ community inside and outside the city of Northampton by rallying to honor the lives and accomplishments of our foremothers.
Toxic White Discussion Group
hosted by Peace and Justice Center
Wednesday, July 22nd, 2020, Online. This discussion group is available at two times: 12pm and 5pm. Recommended donation $10. No one turned away for lack of funds. Not sure if you should contribute more, less, or nothing? View our Sliding Scale Fee document to determine an amount that feels right for you. Donation to be shared with Black Lives Matter of Greater Burlington.
This space is held for white people to specifically process how white supremacy culture is harmful to them. The hope is that by joining this space, white people will be better able to allow for the emotional needs of people of color to take priority in multi-racial spaces. Space is limited and registration is required.
Visit with Emily Long, State Representative
Saturday, July 28th, 2020 at Moore Free Library (23 West Street, Newfane, VT, 05345). 11am-12:30pm.
Chat with Rep. Long about what's on your mind and learn what the VT Legislature is doing, has done, and plans to do. All voters in Windham-5 are welcome (Marlboro, Townshend, Newfane). THIS IS AN OUTDOOR EVENT. BYOM (Bring your own mask).
Vermont’s Tomorrow: State-Wide Candidate Forum on Young Professional Issues
hosted by Southern VT Young Professionals
Saturday, August 1st, 2020. Online. 4:30pm-6:30pm. Click this link to register: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYrdu2sqToqHtTKZl3Fsm5pGaPdE5mNGR9d.
Housing, childcare, diversity, climate—We know your primary concern isn’t the price of avocados, so as the Vermont Primary approaches, join the Southern Vermont Young Professionals for a virtual policy discussion. Meet the candidates hoping to represent you at the state-wide level and ask about the issues that matter to you.
We’re inviting qualified candidates running for the following offices to introduce themselves, give a brief overview of their policy positions, and participate in a moderated Q&A.
Secretary of State
Auditor of Accounts
Do you already have burning questions? Can’t make it to the discussion? Submit your questions here, and we’ll get through as many as we can.https://forms.gle/dZyix4n2iwS6EMmE8
We’ll also be streaming the event on Facebook Live, where you can also join in on the discussion.
Looking to hear from your State Senators and Representatives? We’ve got a local candidate forum in the works for mid-October.
*Qualified candidates are those approved by the Secretary of State—the names you can expect to see on the ballot August 11th.
Marlboro Free Food Event
Thursday, August 6th, 2020 at the Malboro Community Center (524 South Raod, Malbror, VT, 05344). 3pm-5pm.
All food is FREE. No registration necessary. All are welcome.Please wear a face mask. This event will follow social distancing protocols.
In cooperation with Marlboro Cares and the Marlboro Alliance, we will be giving away grocery bags of non-perishable food such as pasta, flour, rice, bean and canned goods.
Deliveries will be made through Marlboro Cares for those needing assistance. Please call Marlboro Cares at 258-3030 in advance to arrange a delivery.
What the US Constitution Offers Us: The 2nd Amendment
with Meg Mott, Ph.D, Professor of Politics Emerita, Marlboro College
Wednesday, August 12th, 2020 at Moore Free Library (23 West Street, Newfane, VT, 05345). 7pm-8:30pm.
An outdoor, salon-style discussion of the 1st, 2nd, 9th, and 10th amendments to the U.S. Constitution with Meg Mott, Ph.D, Professor of Politics Emerita, Marlboro College and "Constitution Wrangler." In case of severe weather, the event will be held the next day (Thursday) at the same time.
2nd Amendment: Why the need for an armed citizenry? In the 21st century, the Second Amendment took on a new life. In two recent Supreme Court rulings, the right to bear arms was transformed from a collective right of state militias to a personal right of self-defense. We will consider why the Framers wanted an armed citizenry, how the Second Amendment lost ground during the tragic failure of Reconstruction, and what the emphasis on individual self-defense tells us about the health of our democracy.
Women’s Film Festival Screening: Sisters Rising
Friday, September 18th, 2020 at New England Youth Theater (100 Falt Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 3:30pm. Buy your tickets here: http://womensfilmfestival.org/tickets/.
VERMONT PREMIERE of Sisters Rising at the Women's Film Festival!!! Ticket sales support the life-saving work of our beloved Women's Freedom Center in Southern VT. Q&A with directors Willow O'Feral & Brad Heck following the screening. MORE ABOUT SISTERS RISING: http://www.sistersrisingmovie.com
COMMUNITY SUPPORT OPPORTUNITIES
From WeCAN Founding Member and Administrator, Ann Braden:
On July 4th Dan (Ann’s partner) suffered an inter-cerebral hemorrhage, the origins of which are still unknown. Luckily the MRI showed no tumor and he is largely his same self. It will be another 3-6 months before the blood is reabsorbed and they can find out in more detail what happened and how to treat it. For now it's all about pain management and rest.
From a Braden family friend, Katie Traeger:
Take-out meals and groceries would be greatly appreciated for the family. I'm thinking postcards would also be awesome as well, seeing as Ann is the Love Brigade postcard queen! Shower them with love and healing! You are welcome to send them grocery or restaurant gift cards from the list compiled here. All the info can be found below:
Out in the Open Rural QTBIPOC/LGBTQIA+ Mutual Aid Fund
The Mutual Aid Fund is offering requests up to $400 and support for: Groceries, supplies, housing support, medical support, and other thriving and survival needs.
Queer Joy= Mutual Aid
Mutual Aid= Voluntary, reciprocal, participatory support among equals and being with, not for, community members.
We are here for our community, our community is here for each other.
Ask: request funds for support weareoutintheopen.org/mutualaid
Offer: to donate, weareoutintheopen.org/donate
The Mutual Aid Fund will distribute money to LGBTQ+ folks, prioritizing QTBIPOC folks requesting funds. Priority will also be given to folks in Southern Vermont, southwestern New Hampshire, and then elsewhere in Vermont and New England, where funds of this type are critically needed. Additional priority will be given to those who live at the intersections of systematically oppressed experiences & identities.
To request funds and for more information: weareoutintheopen.org/mutualaid!
To donate, visit: weareoutintheopen.org/donate
"We Need Each Other" image credit to @itsmonicatrinidad
LGTBQIA+ Resources via Out in the Open
Out in the Open is offering a lot of resources & virtual spaces for rural LGBTQ folks in this time, friends. The full list and calendar is on our website here. We have a Community Care Offers & Asks list, and a list of Rural New England Mutual Aid opportunities, with specific resource links for LGBTQ and QTPOC folks. Out in the Open also has a Slack channel for rural LGBTQ folks to share resources and connect outside of social media. Email email@example.com for more information.
Are You Sewing Masks? We have patterns and more information here: https://www.wecantogether.net/masks
Masks Needed for Local Schools by August
needed In Brattleboro, Dummerston, Guilford, Putney, Vernon
Can you sew masks for this need?
Can you donate cotton fabric or ⅛-¼ in. elastic?
Can you cut out masks if given material and a pattern?
Can you donate bandanas?
Cloth masks will be needed for students and teachers and school staff and bus drivers for the reopening of school (in late August).Hundreds of masks are needed in all sizes, from kindergarten through adult sized.
If you are capable of sewing masks, here are some samples of mask patterns:
Rectangular pleated mask, adult and child sizes https://www.deaconess.com/How-to-make-a-Face-Mask/Documents-Mask/Mask-Information
Contour face mask, several sizes https://drive.google.com/file/d/1O3IvcoVqyYqSTekwzLlnLI0t0GxSm-zA/view
Keep in mind, please:
1) Child size masks should have elastic loops, no ties (choking hazard).
2) All masks should be made of at least 2 layers of fabric.
3) Masks can be dropped off in marked bins Mon-Fri at any of these locations, and will be distributed to students and staff in the school district:
Brattleboro: Windham Southeast Supervisory Office, 53 Green Street or Oak Grove School, 15 Moreland Ave
Dummerston School, 52 Schoolhouse Rd
Guilford Central School, 374 School Rd
Putney Central School, 182 Westminster Rd
Vernon Elementary School, 381 Governor Hunt Rd
Please email Nurse Julia Duke (Green Street School) with questions: firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Judy Siler if you'd like ready-made kits for sewing or if you need elastic: 802-275-2627, email@example.com.
Please share this information widely! Thank you!
Online Religious Services
All Souls U.U. Sunday Services
Sunday Mornings at 10am.
To get the current information on an upcoming service or vespers check the All Souls web page at www.ascvt.org.
COVID 19 RESOURCES: VERMONT
Statewide Mutual Aid
organized by Brenda for Vermont
Localized Mutual Aid has been organized in Brattleboro and Putney and hyper local neighborhoods in Marlboro. If your community does not have mutual aid or you can't find it, please sign up to volunteer or if you are in need of help. All of us will likely be on the side of being able to help and needing help at times. Please don't hesitate to ask for help.
Sign up here if you would like to help your neighbors or are in need of help:https://www.brendaforvermont.com/cms/help-your-neighbor/
The links below will take you directly to the mutual aid forms.
To Volunteer: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfkRnbDKtNX_SacVaHWPyIAnsSXDGLsDMZE8vys25nzTgUo5A/viewform
If You Need Help: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfw7gg12KNq6n4s7SDUxf1ghMx-0MD3S0RCWQtxqmPTJQI8QA/viewform
A Message to Vermonters from Senator Bernie Sanders
As a member of the United States Senate, I want to make sure that the citizens of Vermont receive all of the federal benefits and help to which they are entitled. Although I cannot guarantee a particular outcome, I want you to know that my staff and I will do our best to respond to your concerns.
To contact Senator Sanders with a question, concern or comment please use this link: https://www.sanders.senate.gov/services/casework/.
If you want to contact me about your views and concerns regarding legislation and other issues important to you please use the COMMENTS FORM
If this is an emergency, please call: 802-862-0697 (Out-of-State 800-339-9834).
Note: We are currently experiencing a high volume of inquiries. As we do our utmost to assist vulnerable Vermonters, please only complete the form above if you are requesting assistance. Go to General Comments to leave comments and opinions.
Social Justice Resources
ROOT SOCIAL JUSTICE CENTER MUTUAL AID & SUPPORTIVE NETWORK
The Root Social Justice Center is collecting a list of contacts and resources to help support and assist with the needs of their Root community members. Join if you are in need or are able to help.
COVID 19 INFORMATION SPECIFIC TO WINDHAM COUNTY, VT
Brattleboro Memorial Hospital Information
BMH maintains a COVID-19 information page at https://www.bmhvt.org/coronavirus and reminds all who have primary care physicians to check with those providers if they have questions or concerns about their health.
FREE HEALTHY AND NUTRITIOUS FOOD IN WINDHAM COUNTY
Brigid’s Kitchen, St. Michael’s Church, 47 Walnut Street, Brattleboro 802-254-6800 or 802-558-6072
Grab-and-go lunches and fruit/nuts on Mon, Weds, Thus, and Sat, 11:30am-12:20pm.
Loaves and Fishes, Centre Congregational Church 193 Main Street, Brattleboro (802) 254-4730
Grab-and-go lunches on Tuesdays and Fridays at 12pm.
VT Foodbank and Veggie Van Go will be at Brattleboro Union High School (Fairground Ave, Brattleboro, VT, 05301), in the parking lot, on the 1st and 3rd Monday of the month, from 10am-2pm. Drive up, touchless pickup. Walkers welcome, too. Call VT 211 for more information.
Foodworks, the food shelf program of the Groundworks Collaborative https://groundworksvt.org (802) 490-2412, ccolascione@GroundworksVT.org
Households in need of food are asked to call or email to coordinate delivery. There is an urgent need for volunteers, and Foodworks has set up protocols to keep staff, volunteers, and clients as safe as possible. Please email us at volunteer@GroundworksVT.org if you are able to help.
Guilford Food Pantry
Every Thursday at the BBCC (3940 Guilford Center Road, Guilford, VT, 05301). 5pm-6pm.
We know that supplemental food can make such a big difference in one's budget. That is why we are stocking our shelves for our neighbors. All are welcome to come and take home fresh produce, staples, meat, dairy. Guilford Cares welcomes anyone in need of supplemental food for themselves or their families.
Vermont WIC is Responding to Covid 19
We are moving to phone appointments to align with social distancing efforts. If you have opted in to email and text notifications, you will receive important program updates, including information about local office hours and changes in operations. Our website will be kept up-to-date as well. Contact your local office with any questions about breastfeeding, nutrition or shopping. Call 1-800-649-4357 or email WIC@Vermont.gov with any questions about WIC nutrition services and enrollment.
P-EBT (Pandemic EBT) is Available in VT
Many families in Vermont were notified that they would be receiving a food benefit called Pandemic EBT (or P-EBT). P-EBT is loaded on a card and can be used to purchase the groceries at many grocers and farmers markets. If you have school-aged kids, contact your school district to apply for free school meals. If approved, you'll automatically receive P-EBT.
If you’ve already received P-EBT and also participate in WIC, use your WIC benefits first, as WIC benefits do not rollover month-to-month. dcf.vermont.gov/press-releases/P-EBT
COVID 19 GENERAL VERMONT INFORMATION
Weekly Summery of Vermont Covid19 Data
NEW: Weekly Summary of Vermont COVID-19 Data is a new feature, where you can see a deeper level of demographic and other detail. You can find out more about testing trends, outbreaks, pre-existing conditions and prevalence of symptoms.
Information for Those Traveling to Vermont: https://www.healthvermont.gov/response/coronavirus-covid-19/traveling-vermont
The Path to Restart Vermont
Just a reminder: Covid 19 is still very much prevalent and is not gone, despite the feeling you may get as VT and other states reopen. Please continue to wear masks and gloves when out in public, wash your hands whenever available, bring and use hand sanitizer often if hand washing isn't available, clean commonly used areas like door knobs and counter tops often, and stand at least 6 feet apart, even outdoors.
Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development Covid 19 Recover Resource Center: https://accd.vermont.gov/covid-19
Schools, Childcare, and Summer Camps: https://www.healthvermont.gov/response/coronavirus-covid-19/schools-and-child-care-programs
NEW THIS WEEK:
Covid 19 Recovery Resource Center: https://accd.vermont.gov/covid-19 and https://www.healthvermont.gov/response/coronavirus-covid-19
For more information on:
- COVID-19 health information, guidance and case data, visit www.healthvermont.gov/covid19.
- The Governor’s actions, visit governor.vermont.gov/covid19response.
- The state’s modeling, visit dfr.vermont.gov/about-us/covid-19/modeling.
Testing at Popup Locations information can be found HERE.
New on Healthvermont.gov: Race and Ethnicity Data
The Health Department is now including data about race and ethnicity on its data dashboard at healthvermont.gov/covid19. We recognized the need to include this information to help us understand how Vermonters were being affected by COVID-19, but in our earlier efforts to respond to the pandemic, race and ethnicity data was not always collected for each patient. Health equity exists when all people have a fair and just opportunity to be healthy – especially those who have experienced socioeconomic disadvantage, historical injustice, and other systemic inequalities. Therefore, our epidemiology team collaborated with Vermont Information Technology Leaders (VITL) to cross-reference medical records to gain more robust race information about COVID-19 cases in Vermont. At the end of March, race was unknown in 73% of cases, but through our joint work, we have brought that number down to just 8%. We have been able to partner with VITL through a state directive issued in response to the State of Emergency. We can use this data to help to prevent the spread of illness, improve care for patients, and present a more complete picture of how COVID-19 may be affecting everyone in Vermont. The Vermont State Health Assessment reports on what we know about the health status of Vermonters. Updated every five years, most recently in 2018, the assessment provides vital data for examining health inequities by race and ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, socioeconomic status, and geography. See the report and learn more at healthvermont.gov/sha.
Cloth Face Coverings
The department recommends that all Vermonters wear cloth face coverings when outside of the home, since COVID-19 can spread before a person has any symptoms. Facial coverings are encouraged for essential workers in stores and their customers.
We still need your help! Please sign up to support the state’s COVID-19 response: https://vermont.gov/volunteer.
Guidance for Vermonters
Who to contact:
• If you have questions: Use the Ask A Question tool on healthvermont.gov and review the FAQs.
• For non-health related questions, dial 2-1-1. If you have trouble reaching 2-1-1, dial 1-866-652-4636.
• If you are sick: Stay home and contact your health care provider online or by phone. Do not go to the hospital, except in a life-threatening situation.
Call the Health Department at 802-863-7240. We’re ready to respond to COVID-19 health-related questions. Calls are answered 8am - 6pm, seven days a week. Outside those hours, leave a message and your call will be returned.
VT Health Dashboards
VT Open Geodata Portal: https://geodata.vermont.gov/search?q=covid
Are You an Uninsured Vermonter?
Due to the COVID-19 emergency, Vermont Health Connect has opened a Special Enrollment Period. During this time, any uninsured Vermonter can sign up for a Qualified Health Plan through Vermont Health Connect. Qualified families can also get financial help paying for coverage.. Please call us at 1-855-899-9600 to learn more.
NOTE: The Vermont Health Connect portal will be down for required system upgrades between Friday, July 10th at 5pm and Tuesday, July 21st at 9am. During this scheduled downtime customers will not have access to the online portal and will be unable to enroll or make changes to their account online or over the phone. If you need to enroll or make a change to your account, please do so before the downtime begins on July 10. Thank you for your patience and understanding.
- Learn about health insurance basics.
- Try our Plan Comparison Tool to find out if you qualify for financial help, and to see estimates of the total cost of each plan choice. Most Vermonters can either get free or low cost coverage through Medicaid or Dr. Dynasaur, or get help to lower their monthly premium and out-of-pocket costs.
- Ready to apply? Set up an online account with Vermont Health Connect and fill out your application there, or call us at 1-855-899-9600 and speak to a customer support representative. If you'd like to talk through health insurance terms or the application process in person, you can meet with a trained, certified in-person Assister near you
RESOURCES FROM THE VT DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH
For daily Department of Health updates please use this link: https://www.healthvermont.gov/response/infectious-disease/2019-novel-coronavirus
VERMONT ESSENTIAL PERSONS INFORMATION
Vermont Emergency Management Has Issued This Essential Persons List for Covid-19 Response
It includes staff and providers of childcare and education services, healthcare providers, public health employees, firefighters, first responders, pharmacy staff, grocery workers, and many more. The full list is here: https://vem.vermont.gov/sites/demhs/files/Essential%20Persons_03182020.pdf
WSESU Essential Worker Request for Childcare
According to the state, "Essential Workers" will now be able to get childcare from the public school system. If you are classified as an Essential Worker and have no other adult available to provide childcare while you are at your job, you should complete this form. Once your form is submitted, you will be contacted by school personnel with more information.
If you have questions, please contact the school counselor where your student is enrolled.
NEIGHBORLY ASSISTANCE PRECAUTION RECOMMENDATIONS
While Vermonters are staying home or choosing activities that maintain social distancing as much as possible to slow the spread of COVID-19, some are stepping up to ensure their neighbors have what they need. This type of community support is crucial, but we need to make sure our helpers and volunteers are still using social distancing practices to protect our most vulnerable Vermonters.
Any volunteers bringing items to those who need to stay home should:
- Keep a distance of six feet away.
- Avoid entering the recipient’s home.
- Wash your hands regularly, avoid touching your face and cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- If you feel sick or learn that you have had contact with someone who is sick, stop doing community support work immediately.
- Keep a list of anyone you come into close contact with in case contact tracing is required.
- Wear clean gloves when handling items that may be given to people with a weaker immune system, and when you are close to someone who may be sick.
Common sense practices can go a long way while Vermonters take care of each other.
Want to help? Consider signing up for the Medical Reserve Corps. Volunteers can be deployed locally in the event of an emergency, support first aid stations at community events, educate the public on preparedness, and assist in promoting various health and wellness activities. You can also reach out to local community groups/organizers like rotary and lion clubs, soup kitchens and check out your neighborhood Front Porch Forum group.
Fact Sheets: Coronavirus and Emerging Infectious Disease Outbreaks from The Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress (Vermont Department of Mental Health)
Managing Anxiety and Stress (CDC)
Slide Presentation on Coronavirus (COVID-19)
RESOURCES FOR EMPLOYEES AND EMPLOYERS
Department of Labor FAQs for Employers and Employees
Specific Guidance for Employees:
Employee Assistance (Unemployment Claims): 1-877-214-3332.
Specific guidance for Employers:
Employer Assistance (Unemployment Claims): 1-877-214-3331.
Vermont’s unemployment rules have been relaxed to be able to help folks. Their phone lines are swamped, so here is a link where you can start the process of applying for Vermont Unemployment Insurance. https://appengine.egov.com/apps/vt/dol/unemploymentinsuranceclaim
MENTAL HEALTH ASSISTANCE
Vermont Support Line from Pathways Vermont (833) 888-2557
The Vermont Support line is a free, anonymous resource for all Vermonters who are looking for someone to talk to. The Support Line is staffed by individuals who acknowledge that they have experienced a broad range of struggles of their own and are willing to be open about them.
National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Covid 19 Information and Resources can be found here:
CDC Tips for Managing Anxiety in the COVID-19 Outbreak
Things you can do to support yourself
- Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories, including social media. Hearing about the pandemic repeatedly can be upsetting.
- Take care of your body. Take deep breaths, stretch, or meditateexternal icon. Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, exercise regularly, get plenty of sleep, and avoid alcohol and drugsexternal icon.
- Make time to unwind. Try to do some other activities you enjoy.
- Connect with others. Talk with people you trust about your concerns and how you are feeling.
IF YOU OR A FAMILY MEMBER IS ILL
- Stay home. Many people who are mildly ill can manage their symptoms at home with rest, drinking fluids and taking fever-reducing medicine (Tylenol), when needed. Not everyone needs to be tested for COVID-19.
- Call your doctor and ask to be seen for an evaluation. Do not go to the doctor's office unless instructed to do so. Anyone who does not have a health care provider can call 2-1-1 to be connected to a clinic in their area.
- Do not go to or visit any hospitals or long-term care facilities unless absolutely necessary. This is to protect everyone’s health, including patients and staff.
- Separate yourself from other people and animals in your home. As much as possible, you should stay in a specific room and away from other people and animals in your home. Also, you should use a separate bathroom, if available. Avoid sharing personal household items.
- Wear a facemask if you are sick around other people and pets.
- Cover your coughs and sneezes with your sleeve or a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean all “high-touch” surfaces every day. These include counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets, and bedside tables.
- Caring for Someone at Home(link is external) (CDC)
- Caring for Yourself at Home (link is external)(CDC)
- Steps to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 if you are sick(link is external) (CDC)
RESOURCE FOR WeCAN
Rapid Response Text Alert System
When WeCAN began, Song & Solidarity set up a Rapid Response Text Alert System for WeCAN Groups. Directions for signing up are on WeCAN's website, here: https://www.wecantogether.net/rapid_response. We are grateful to Song and Solidarity for providing this service.
ONGOING EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMMING
Sundays at 12pm on Brattleboro Community Radio 107.7FM. To stream live, visit: www.wvew.org
Indigo Radio, deepening understanding and making connections! IndigoRadio is a group of area educators seeking to learn through engaging with others in our community and throughout the world. We will be talking about educational and social issues both globally and locally and connecting them to our lives and Brattleboro community. Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/indigoradiowvew/. For archive recordings of past shows: https://soundcloud.com/user-654648353.