LPS updates, Mayor McGee calls for racism to be designated Public Health Emergency and Crisis in Lynn, Juneteenth now state holiday, & more | June 26, 2020

Tune in at 3pm every Monday, Wednesday, & Friday on our Government Channel or Facebook page for an update from city officials. Past updates can be found by clicking here. At 2pm & 8pm we are also airing Gov. Baker’s press conferences.

See other COVID-19 related posts by clicking here


Lynn Public Schools: Initial Guidance
For Reopening

Dear Lynn Public Schools Families,

Today, Governor Baker’s office and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education released the initial guidance on reopening schools this fall. No doubt, a high degree of thought and care went into the development of this guidance. We share the goal of a safe return for as many students as possible to in-person school settings in order to optimally meet students’ social, emotional, and academic needs.

With the release of the initial guidance, we are continuing, not starting, our efforts to prepare for reopening this fall. Keep in mind that we have already established target focus areas with identified leadership and specific tasks within each focus area. The release of the guidance will add additional focus and specificity to our efforts. We have already begun reviewing the guidance to understand how it impacts our planning in the Lynn Public Schools. We also acknowledge that these initial guidelines do not address every topic and that there will be additional guidance coming in late July. I welcome you to read the full document. Below are four key components:

• Current medical research supports a safe in-person return to school.
• Preventive measures include masks/face coverings, physical distancing, handwashing, and cleaning frequently-touched surfaces
• Masks/face coverings will be required for all students in Grade 2 and above and for all adults; while they are recommended for students in Grade 1 and below
• According to the medical community, a minimum physical distance of three feet has been established

We are required to develop three separate plans – one for return to in-person instruction with safety requirements, one for full remote learning, and one for hybrid learning that combines in-person and remote learning. Based upon the current medical situation, the expectation is that, in large part, students will return to in-person instruction in September. This is subject to change based upon how the medical situation develops.

We acknowledge that there are likely more questions than answers at this time. As information is provided and as our plans evolve, we will continue to communicate with you.

Respectfully,

Patrick Tutwiler, PhD
Superintendent of Lynn Public Schools


Mayor Thomas M. McGee Calls on Board of Health to Declare Racism a Public Health Emergency and Crisis

Signs onto “Mayor’s Pledge” issued by Obama
Foundation’s  My Brother’s Keeper Alliance

Mayor Thomas M. McGee announced today initial steps to strengthen efforts to eliminate systemic racism within the City of Lynn through policy creation, systemic change, and increased community conversations.

“Systemic racism adversely affects the Black Community and Communities of Color every day, said Mayor Thomas M. McGee. “Absolutely no one should live in fear of the act of simply living because of the color of their skin. We must listen and learn from those who have endured far too much, and take concrete action to update and reform our policies. I look forward to continuing the dialogue with members of our community to rid our City of hatred and inequity that has permeated throughout our society for too long. That starts by acknowledging that racism is a public health emergency and acting accordingly.”

Mayor McGee, along with Lynn Public Health Director Michele Desmarais, have submitted to the Board of Health a “Joint Order Declaring Racism an Emergency and a Public Health Crisis in the City of Lynn.” The Order is on the agenda for the Board of Health’s next meeting scheduled for Tuesday, June 30th.

“The City of Lynn is committed to reviewing our policies and working to enact the necessary changes to address the public health disparities and the barriers to healthcare that the Black Community and Communities of Color experience,” said Director Desmarais.

Additionally, Mayor McGee has signed on to the “Mayor’s Pledge” issued by the Obama Foundation’s My Brother’s Keeper Alliance. The pledge asks mayors from across the country to commit to the following actions: “review our police use of force policies; engage our communities by including a diverse range of input, experiences, and stories in our review; Report the findings of our review to the community and seek feedback; Reform our community’s police use of force policies.”

“While these are steps that will move our City in the right direction, there is still a long way to go. Addressing structural racism requires a long term focus and continued efforts from my office and through all levels of city government. I look forward to engaging with my fellow Lynners in this critical work.” McGee said.


Mayor Thomas M. McGee Announces Additional Outdoor Services

Inspectional Services Division joins City Clerk, Collector

As part of Mayor Thomas M. McGee’s phased re-opening of City Hall, the City Clerk and Treasurer/Collector began offering outdoor services on Wednesday, June 17th.

“The initial community response has been very positive and it became clear quickly from our interactions with residents that we could expand our outdoor offerings, particularly where the permitting process is concerned.” said Mayor McGee.

The Inspectional Services Department (ISD) is now providing outdoor services on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm and on Wednesdays from 12:00pm to 3:00pm through Monday, July 6th. Residents may drop off permit applications and pick up approved permits. Residents will be able to conduct all ISD related businesses during this time.

“ISD staff and inspectors are here to assist residents and contractors with their permitting needs,” said Inspectional Services Chief and Building Commissioner Michael Donovan.

Outdoor services from the Collectors office will continue on Wednesdays and Fridays from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm at the Johnson Street entrance of City Hall. Residents are able to pay their Real Estate, Excise and Personal Property Tax bills as well as the Solid Waste Fee with the Collector’s office. The parking department will also be accepting payments for violations during these times. Check or money offer is preferred. Cash payments will be accepted in the exact amount only.

“In addition to processing collections, the Collector’s staff is available to provide applications and instructions for excise tax abatements. Please note we cannot accept payments for excise taxes from years prior to 2020. To clear any excise taxes that are flagged at the Registry of Motor Vehicles, residents can pay online at www.deputycollector.com or can contact the Deputy Collector, PKS, at 781-944-8504,” said Treasurer Elyse Fannon.

Residents may also schedule appointments for licenses and birth/marriage certificates, notary public services, and drop off election papers with the City Clerk’s office. To make an appointment for outdoor service from the Clerk’s Office, residents should call (781) 586-6726 or e-mail jrowe@lynnma.gov.

The community is still encouraged to conduct City Hall business via phone, email or at www.lynnma.gov to continue efforts to mitigate further spread of COVID-19. If you do need to conduct business with City Hall, please call 781-598-4000 during City Hall hours: Monday- Thursday 8:30AM-4:00PM and Fridays 8:30AM-12:30PM.

If you are not able to make city related payments online or through Outdoor Express Services, residents may mail or drop them off in the blue City Hall lock box located at the Johnson Street entrance of City Hall. Both the lock box and U.S. postal mail will be checked regularly throughout the week by the appropriate department. Please do not deposit cash in the lock box.


MA House votes unanimously to make Juneteenth an official state holiday

From State Rep. Peter Capano: Historic day at the state house [Wednesday]! The House of Representatives voted unanimously 158-0 to establish Juneteenth as an official state holiday.

Special thanks to Rep. Bud Williams for filing the amendment speaking so powerfully about his experience and to Rep. Chynah Tyler for delivering such moving remarks during yesterday’s session — I’d also like to recognize my colleagues in the House and Senate who filed legislation last week to recognize Juneteenth an official state holiday.


REMINDER: Testing for COVID-19 is available for everyone in the Lynn Community at Lynn Community Health Center. You may get tested regardless of your symptoms or exposure to COVID-19. Simply call 781-581-3900  for an appointment and hours of operation or visit  lchcnet.org for details .

While we recommend calling for an appointment, walk-ins are also welcome at our outdoor testing site at 9 Buffum St. You do not need to be a patient at LCHC to get a test.


From Mayor McGee’s office: The Lynn Public Health Department has confirmed that as of today, the number of active, confirmed positive COVID-19 cases is 710 with 2 new cases today. 2,843 Lynn residents have recovered and 98 have died. The total number of confirmed positive COVID-19 cases in Lynn since March 21, 2020, including those who have died and recovered, is 3,651. Please visit the new City of Lynn COVID-19 Data Dashboard which is updated daily.

The City of Lynn Office of Community Development is still accepting applications from non-profits for funding from the CARES Act. Please be aware that funding is limited to non-profits that will utilize the funding for:

1. Carry out job training to expand the pool of health care workers and technicians that are available to treat disease within a community

2. Provide testing, diagnosis or other services at a fixed or mobile location

3. Increase the capacity and availability of targeted health services for infectious disease response within existing health facilities

4. Provide equipment, supplies, and materials necessary to carry-out a public service

5. Deliver meals on wheels to quarantined individuals or individuals that need to maintain social distancing due to medical vulnerabilities.

To apply please click here or visit:www.cityoflynnoecd.net or you may call 781-586-6770 with any questions.

We will continue to provide regular updates on COVID-19 through the City website (www.lynnma.gov), social media, and the Smart 911 emergency notification system (sign up at www.smart911.com).

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