Senator Jim Brewster’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update
Senator Brewster Hosts a Telephone Town Hall to Discuss the Coronavirus
important update from the puc
The PA Public Utilites Commission (PUC) signed an emergency order prohibiting electric, natural gas, water, wastewater & telecomm terminations during the COVID-19 outbreak. This will remain in place as long as the disaster proclamation is in effect.
Visit puc.state.pa.us for more information.
Senator Jim Brewster’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update
The spread of COVID-19 is a rapidly evolving situation. Below, please find links to federal, state, regional, and local sites that can help you navigate health recommendations, closures, and resources.
- List of Business Types That May Continue Physical Operations in PA, per Gov. Wolf
- Life-Sustaining Business Frequently Asked Questions
- Request a Waiver to Business Closure
- Westmoreland County COVID-19 Business Resources
- COVID-19 Business Resources
- U.S. Small Business Administration: COVID-19 Small Business Guidance & Loan Resources
- Hebrew Free Loan Association’s Coronavirus Financial Bridge Loan Program
- COVID-19 Community Preparedness and Procedures Materials
- Department of Health
- Department of Health: Interim Guidance on Visitation in Nursing Facilities During COVID-19 (3/12)
- Department of Education: School Guidance/Answers to Frequently Asked Questions
- Labor & Industry: COVID-19 Unemployment Compensation Guidance & Resources
- Department of State: COVID-19 Information, Guidance, and Contact Information
- PA Manufacturers’ Assocation
- Allegheny County Department of Health (24/7 hotline with United Way: 1-888-856-2774)
- Allegheny County Information for Residents
- Allegheny County’s Information for Specific Groups
- Allegheny County Intermediate Unit
- Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank
- Westmoreland County Food Bank
- Allegheny County Port Authority
- Pittsburgh International Airport
Mail-In Ballot Applications
Harrisburg, PA –Today the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced that the Department of Homeland Security has postponed the enforcement date for REAL ID from October 1, 2020, to October 1, 2021, in response to COVID-19 and the national emergency...
Harrisburg, PA – In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the Department of State is giving nurses, graduate medical trainees, nursing home administrators and other professionals more time to renew their occupational licenses. April, May and June license renewal...
Department of Human Services Creates Online Tool for Essential Workers to Find Child Care Providers with Approved Waivers, Reminds Operating Providers of COVID-19 Safety Recommendations
Harrisburg, PA - The Department of Human Services (DHS) today announced a new toolOpens In A New Window available on the department’s website designed to help essential workers connect with child-care providers that have been granted a waiver by the department’s...
Harrisburg, PA – The Pennsylvania State Police released data on actions taken yesterday, March 26, against non-life-sustaining businesses that failed to comply with Governor Tom Wolf's order closing their physical locations. Enforcement began on Monday, March 23,...
Gov. Wolf Signs COVID-19 Response Bills to Bolster Health Care System, Workers, and Education and Reschedule the Primary Election
Governor Tom Wolf signed four bills today to fight the COVID-19 pandemic in Pennsylvania that bolster the health care system, benefit workers and schools, and reschedule the 2020 primary election for June 2. The governor signed House Bill 1232, which provides $50...
Harrisburg, PA - The Department of Human Services (DHS) has issued guidance to the commonwealth’s opioid use disorder Centers of Excellence (COEs) to provide case management to clients through telemedicine in order for clients throughout COVID-19 mitigation efforts.
Governor Wolf and Health Secretary Expand ‘Stay at Home’ Order to Nine More Counties to Mitigate Spread of COVID-19, Counties Now Total 19
As the state continues to seek relief to save lives and stop the spread of COVID-19, today Governor Tom Wolf and Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine revised their “Stay at Home” orders to include nine additional counties – Berks, Butler, Lackawanna, Lancaster,...
Harrisburg, PA –Today the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced that the Department of Homeland Security has postponed the enforcement date for REAL ID from October 1, 2020, to October 1, 2021, in response to COVID-19 and the national...
Wolf Administration Submits Waiver Request to Support Food Security, SNAP Access for College Students and Their Families
Harrisburg, PA - The Wolf Administration today submitted a waiver to the Food and Nutrition Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture to waive the student eligibility criteria for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). “College students did not...
Governor Tom Wolf today sent a letter to U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue asking that USDA waive eligibility requirements for the Emergency Food Assistance Program; reconsider Pennsylvania’s request for temporary waivers to allow more food to be...
Governor Tom Wolf announced that he will spend up to $50 million in transferred state funding to purchase medical equipment and supplies for hospitals, nursing homes, and emergency workers to help fight the COVID-19 pandemic in Pennsylvania. “We need more beds, more...
Wolf Administration Launches Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Critical Medical Supplies Procurement Portal
Governor Tom Wolf announced the creation of a new web portal that will expedite the procurement of critical medical supplies for Pennsylvania’s health care system during the COVID-19 pandemic. “The commonwealth, and the nation, is facing an unprecedented and uncertain...
Pennsylvania’s Grocery Stores Will Remain Open, Wolf Administration Offers Guidance to Protect Workforce
Harrisburg, PA – The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture today issued guidance for the commonwealth's essential grocery stores to ensure continuation of services to Pennsylvanians while maintaining a healthy workforce. "In our current COVID-19 pandemic, retail food...
HARRISBURG, Pa (March 26) – The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) knows that anglers and boaters are ethically minded, passionate outdoor enthusiasts who might have some questions about how the COVID-19 outbreak is affecting their favorite activities this...
Federal Stimulus Package – ‘Putting Workers First‘
A bipartisan, robust third COVID-19 bill that will immediately bolster our health care response and our economy.
Unemployment Insurance: ($260 billion)
A massive investment in the UI program as well as critical reforms to make the program more effective for workers. In the wake of the economic recession caused by the coronavirus the UI program is an essential a long-term lifeline for millions of workers during this crisis.
- Full Paycheck Replacement: $600 increase for every American, which equates to 100 percent of wages for the average American without a paycheck struggling through the Crisis
- Waiving Waiting Weeks: Gets money in people’s pockets sooner by providing federal incentives for states to eliminate waiting weeks.
- Extension of Benefits: An additional 13 weeks of federally-funded unemployment insurance benefits are immediately be made available.
- Expanding Access: Allow part-time, self-employed, and gig economy workers to access UI benefits.
Marshall Plan For Our Health System ($150 billion)
An unprecedented and historic investment for our health care system in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. The new $150 billion fund is widely available to all types of hospitals and providers most affected by COVID-19, and it will be available to fund whatever is needed to defeat this virus.
- Equipment and Infrastructure: Personal and protective equipment for health care workers, testing supplies, increased workforce and training, new construction to house patients, emergency operation centers and more.
- Enhanced Health Investments: Additional funding is also dedicated to delivering Medicare payment increases to all hospitals and providers to ensure that they receive the funding they need during this crisis, and new investments in our country’s Strategic National Stockpile, surge capacity and medical research into COVID-19.
Robust Worker and Transparency Protections on Government Loans
- No stock buybacks or dividends for the length of any loan provided by the Treasury plus 1 year.
- Restrictions on any increases to executive compensation.
- Protect collective bargaining agreements.
- Real-time public reporting of Treasury transactions under the Act, including terms of loans, investments or other assistance to corporations.
- Prohibition on businesses controlled by the President, Vice President, Members of Congress, and heads of Executive Departments getting loans or investments from Treasury programs.
- Creation of Treasury Department Special Inspector General for Pandemic Recovery to provide oversight of Treasury loans and investments and a Pandemic Response Accountability Committee to protect taxpayer dollars. • Creation of a Congressional Oversight Commission to enhance legislative oversight of pandemic response.
Small Business Rescue Plan ($377 billion)
- $350 billion in loan forgiveness grants to small businesses and non-profits to maintain existing workforce and help pay for other expenses like rent, mortgage, and utilities.
- $10 billion for SBA emergency grants of up to $10,000 to provide immediate relief for small business operating costs. • $17 billion for SBA to cover 6 months of payments for small businesses with existing SBA loans.
Protected Over 2 Million Aviation Industry Jobs
- Democrats secured direct payroll payments to keep millions of airline workers on the job and receiving paychecks.
- Airline companies will be prohibited from stock buybacks and dividends for the entire life of the grant plus one year.
- Collective Bargaining Agreements negotiated by workers will be protected.
Increased Direct Payments to Working Americans
- Democrats fought to double cash payments to the working class Americans from $600 to $1,200
- An additional $500 cash payment is available per child.
- The full payment is available for individuals making up to $75,000 (individual) and $150,000 (married).
- The value begins decreasing and then phases out completely for those making over the full payment income cap.
State and Local Coronavirus Expenditures Fund ($150 billion)
To assist States, Tribes, and local governments that must pay for new expenses related to COVID-19 response.
- $150 billion, with a small-state minimum of $1.25 billion
- Tribal set-aside of $8 billion
Emergency Appropriations ($330 billion, including $100 billion for hospitals and providers mentioned above)
- $16 billion to replenish the Strategic National Stockpile supplies of pharmaceuticals, personal protective equipment, and other medical supplies, which are distributed to State and local health agencies, hospitals and other healthcare entities facing shortages during emergencies.
- $1 billion for the Defense Production Act to bolster domestic supply chains, enabling industry to quickly ramp up production of personal protective equipment, ventilators, and other urgently needed medical supplies, and billions dollars more for federal, state, and local health agencies to purchase such equipment.
- $4.3 billion to support federal, state, and local public health agencies to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus, including for the purchase of personal protective equipment; laboratory testing to detect positive cases; infection control and mitigation at the local level to prevent the spread of the virus; and other public health preparedness and response activities.
- $45 billion for FEMA’s Disaster Relief Fund, more than doubling the available funding, to provide for the immediate needs of state, local, tribal, and territorial governments, as well as private non-profits performing critical and essential services, to protect citizens and help them recover from the overwhelming effects of COVID-19. Reimbursable activities may include medical response, personal protective equipment, National Guard deployment, coordination of logistics, safety measures, and community services nationwide.
- $30.75 billion for grants to provide emergency support to local school systems and higher education institutions to continue to provide educational services to their students and support the on-going functionality of school districts and institutions.
- $25 billion in aid to our nation’s transit systems to help protect public health and safety while ensuring access to jobs, medical treatment, food, and other essential services.
- $10 billion in grants to help our nation’s airports as the aviation sector grapples with the most steep and potentially sustained decline in air travel in history.
- $3.5 billion in additional funding for the Child Care Development Block Grant to provide child care assistance to health care sector employees, emergency responders, sanitation workers, and other workers deemed essential during the response to the coronavirus.
- More than $7 billion for affordable housing and homelessness assistance programs. This funding will help low-income and working class Americans avoid evictions and minimize any impacts caused by loss of employment, and child care, or other unforeseen circumstances related to COVID-19, and support additional assistance to prevent eviction and for people experiencing homelessness
- More than $6.5 billion in Federal funding for CDBG, the Economic Development Administration, and the Manufacturing Extension Partnership to help mitigate the local economic crisis and rebuild impacted industries such as tourism or manufacturing supply chains.
- $400 million in election assistance for the states to help prepare for the 2020 election cycle, including to increase the ability to vote by mail, expand early voting and online registration, and increase the safety of voting in-person by providing additional voting facilities and more pollworkers. • $2 billion in funding to strengthen response capacity and support tribal governments: o $1.03 billion to the Indian Health Service to support tribal health care system response efforts; o $100 million more for the USDA Food Distribution Program for Indian Reservations; o $453 million to assist tribes through the Bureau of Indian Affairs; o $69 million to help tribal schools, colleges and universities through for the Bureau of Indian Education; and o $300 million more to the HUD Indian Tribal Block Grant program. • $1 billion to recapitalize Amtrak after steep ridership declines related to the outbreak. This will keep thousands of Amtrak employees employed, and ensure America’s intercity passenger rail stays on track, continuing service in the Northeast and nationwide.
Student Loan Relief
- To alleviate the pressure of student loan costs during this crisis, Senate Democrats fought for the inclusion of tax relief encouraging employers to implement student loan repayment programs. This provision will exclude up to $5,250 in qualifying student loan repayments paid by the employer on behalf of the employee from income for income tax purposes.
Some helpful links to understand the Federal Stimulus Package:
Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA or Act)
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) provided for the expansion of Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). This is a federal program administered by the US Department of Labor.
The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) published its first round of implementation guidance pursuant to the FFCRA yesterday.
The following was provided to us as guidance by the USDOL and has been posted on our website. The information can be found at: https://www.uc.pa.gov/COVID-19/Pages/FFCRA.aspx
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA or Act) requires certain employers to provide their employees with expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19. The United States Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division administers and enforces the new law’s paid leave requirements. These provisions will apply from April 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020. Please read the below fact sheets to determine if you are eligible.
Emergency Food Assistance
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank is committed to making sure all of our neighbors have access to enough food during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.
Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank continues to monitor the development of COVID-19 and we’re taking proactive steps to protect the neighbors we serve, our Food Bank team, and our supporters. As the situation continues to rapidly evolve, our priority remains focused on providing food and resources to those in need — a demand we anticipate will increase significantly over the coming weeks.
In coordination with Feeding America and Feeding Pennsylvania, the Westmoreland County Food Bank is actively monitoring developments related to COVID-19(coronavirus). We are taking proactive measures to protect the health and well-being of our staff, volunteers and recipients as we continue to serve our community.
Our Food Bank is open and it is safe to volunteer with us. In fact, we may need your help more than ever.
US Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service
We value your shared commitment to reducing food waste and food insecurity in our communities, and there is so much need now, more than ever.
With many businesses shutting their doors, we are beginning to see a spike in new donations. Additionally, access to food has never been more difficult for many members of our community. Whether it’s students who have been isolated from their only meals of the day, elders in our community who are at-risk every time they leave home, or the many who have recently lost their jobs due to this crisis, we are seeing an unprecedented need.
But also unlike any other time, we are faced with equally heightened need for safety. A balance we didn’t imagine we would need to strike – the need to be there FOR each other more than ever, with the need to ensure we are distanced FROM each other.
We evaluate the situation HOURLY, please watch for communication from us.
We appreciate you and want to send another email to let you know how much impact you are making and to also remind you of some guidelines and precautions:
We ask that if you are able, please set your app notifications to ON, and claim any rescues that you can. In coordination with our food donors and nonprofit partners, we would like to share a temporary adjustment to our operational procedures:
- For weekly rescues, CALL FOOD DONORS to ensure that there is an available food donation.
- CALL THE NONPROFIT or receiving location when you are on your way to arrange a no-contact drop-off. This location should be somewhere that the food will be safe and covered.
- Deliveries DO NOT require signatures at drop-off.
- DO NOT go on food rescues if you and/or someone that you have been in contact with is not feeling well or believed to have or been exposed to the Coronavirus.
Please visit https://412foodrescue.org/covid19/ for continuing updates.
If you have any questions or experience any trouble on the road, please call our dispatch team at 412.277.3831. We are standing by.
Again, we are going to communicate with you often, please watch for our messages on email, text and social media.
We can’t thank you enough,
Essential Businesses for a Safe Food Supply
Updated March 17
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania recognizes the critical role production agriculture, agribusinesses, food processors and manufacturers, retailers, and the entire distribution and support network from farm to table play in assuring a safe, reliable food supply.
The PA Department of Agriculture has developed the following guidelines for essential businesses to help ensure a safe and accessible food supply during the COVID-19 mitigation efforts. Examples of essential businesses for a safe food supply include farms, greenhouses and vegetable plants, orchards, pest management services, feed mills and ag supply businesses, agricultural equipment sales and service, animal feed and supply distribution network, transportation system from farm to retail, food and meat processors and manufacturers, veterinary services and supplies, pet food manufacturers and distributors, distribution and transportation system from processors and manufacturers to retailers, retailers to include grocery stores and farmers markets, grocery delivery services, and laboratories and inspectors that ensure food safety.
We encourage food production and distribution facilities to continue operations but the decision for essential businesses to stay open or voluntarily close during the COVID-19 mitigation phase is a business-by-business decision. All essential businesses that choose to remain open should review and adjust standard operating procedures to minimize risk, take measures to protect their employees, send home sick employees, and minimize or eliminate congregate settings or groups of more than 10 people whenever possible. The PA Department of Agriculture has developed the following voluntary guidance and recommendations for various businesses throughout the food supply chain.
COVID-19 Response Efforts
Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE)
UPDATED: March 15, 2020
Pennsylvania’s top priority is keeping students and school communities safe. On March 13, Governor Tom Wolf announced all public schools in Pennsylvania will be closed for the next two weeks.
The spread of the Coronavirus has required everyone to work within rapidly changing circumstances. We are incredibly proud of the education leaders who’ve been navigating this extraordinary situation for weeks – the work that has been done helped inform the decision that was made by Governor Tom Wolf today.
The following will help provide greater clarity specific to today’s announcements.
1. What schools are closed?
- All public K-12 schools, including brick and mortar and cyber charter schools, career and technical centers (CTCs), and intermediate units (IUs)
- Childcare centers operating within any of the above schools
- All universities in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education
- All other schools (including private, parochial, and institutions of higher education) should be consulted directly for the most current closure information
Within counties under aggressive social distancing guidelines: • All schools – including private, parochial, and institutions of higher education – are required to close.
2. What staff may schools deem essential?
- These decisions should be made locally, in the context of school and community needs.
- Examples of essential responsibilities may include, but are not limited to, school administration, food preparation and distribution, information technology, and continuity of operations (e.g., payroll, and building operations).
3. What are the consequences for districts/schools that don’t meet the 180-day/hours (990/900/450) requirements?
- PDE will not penalize districts/schools that fail to meet the minimum 180-day/hours (990/900/450) requirements as a result of COVID-19 response efforts.
- PDE will provide a simplified form that districts/schools can use to report any shortfall in days or hours.
4. How will students access meals while schools are closed?
- Pennsylvania sought and received approval from the Federal government to allow schools the option to distribute meals at no cost while schools are closed.
- Districts/schools that want to act on this Federal approval must apply to PDE.
- PDE has begun and continues to expedite approvals.
- Districts/schools may utilize essential staff to ensure students have access to meals.
- PDE is partnering with the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services, the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency, other state agencies, the American Red Cross, and public and private partners to expand these efforts.
5. Are schools required to provide any type of instruction during the closure of schools due to COVID-19 response efforts?
- No. PDE recognizes that the rapidly evolving pandemic may make it impossible to implement continuity
of education plans.
- Although not required, many schools have plans, or are creating plans, to provide continuity of
- Intermediate units are preparing to offer technical assistance for schools interested in developing such
plans; that support will be available by Friday, March 20.
6. For school entities considering continuity of education, what options are available?
- Educational services may continue in a variety of ways, including:
- Flexible Instruction Days for districts/schools with approved plans
- Online/digital learning opportunities
- Non-digital learning opportunities (e.g., materials sent home with students)
- The decision to employ one or more of the above methods of continuity of education is to be made at the local level based on feasibility, availability of resources, access and equity considerations, and the Commonwealth’s social distancing recommendations.
- Whatever decision is made, LEAs must ensure full access to learning for all students, with particular attention to free appropriate public education (FAPE) for students with disabilities and English as a second language (ESL) services for English Learners.
7. Is a school required to continue to provide FAPE to students with disabilities during a school closure caused by COVID-19 response efforts?
- When a school is closed because of COVID-19 response efforts and does not provide any educational services to the general student population, the school is not required to provide services to students with disabilities during that closure period. Once school resumes, the district/school must provide special education and related services to the child in accordance with the child’s individualized education program (IEP) or Section 504 plan.
- When a school is closed because of COVID-19 response efforts and does provide educational services to the general student population, the school must ensure that students with disabilities have equal access to the same opportunities, including the provision of FAPE. In addition, districts/schools must ensure that, to the greatest extent possible, each student with a disability can be provided the special education and related services identified in the student’s IEP or Section 504 plan. Once school resumes, a child’s IEP team (or appropriate personnel under Section 504) must make an individualized determination whether and to what extent compensatory services may be needed, consistent with applicable requirements, including to make up for any skills that may have been lost during the closure within a reasonable timeframe.
8. Will Early Intervention services be offered while schools are closed?
- Preschool Early Intervention programs should suspend all services to children and families in alignment with public K-12 closures.
- If the Preschool Early Intervention administrative offices are open while Preschool Early Intervention services are suspended, referrals to Early Intervention should continue to be managed by the program; once services resume, referrals can proceed.
9. Are PA Pre-K Counts and Head Start Supplemental Programs expected to close?
- PA Pre-K Counts (PKC) and Head Start Supplemental Assistance Program (HSSAP) Grantees operating within a K-12 building should close in alignment with the closure of all public schools.
- Those grantees operating PKC or HSSAP in community-based settings have the discretion to continue to operate unless the county is under aggressive social distancing guidelines (Montgomery, Delaware, Bucks, and Chester counties as of March 14).
- In order to track program impacts, closures must be reported to both the Preschool Program Specialist assigned to each grant and to the Office of Child Development and Early Learning: RAPWOCDELFacilclose@pa.gov.
Unemployment Compensation Temporary Changes & Updates
Workers in Pennsylvania who are impacted by COVID-19 may be eligible for Unemployment and Workers’ Compensation benefits – Unemployment compensation claims should be submitted online for faster processing.
The following information that has been provided by the Department of Labor and Industry regarding Unemployment Compensation:
- Governor Wolf has temporarily suspended the waiting-week requirement in Section 401(e) of the UC Law. With this suspension, a claimant can immediately file for benefits, and the first week of unemployment will be a compensable week. The suspension of this section will also be in effect for the length of the emergency declaration.
- The provisions of the emergency declaration allow the Governor to immediately suspend the work registration and work search requirements in Unemployment Compensation Law and adopted Regulations and the Governor has temporarily suspended these requirements for the length of the emergency declaration.
- The PA UC Law allows for employers to be relieved of charges for compensation once there has been a federal disaster declaration under the Stafford Act and the individuals would have been eligible for Disaster Unemployment Assistance. Therefore, an employer may be relieved from charges for compensation paid to an individual with respect to any week of unemployment occurring due to COVID-19.
Applying online is the fastest and easiest way to get started. You can find call center hours and other vital info at www.uc.pa.gov; learn all UC benefit requirements by visiting the self-service guide; or use UC LiveChat.
If you are having difficulty filing a claim or not being able to through to someone if you need direct assistance from Unemployment Compensation, please contact my office.
Income Support for Workers Impacted by COVID-19: Unemployment Compensation
Workers that are unable to work because of COVID-19 may be eligible for UC benefits or WC benefits. The following information is now available on the department’s website:
UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION (UC) BENEFITS
You may be eligible if:
- Your employer temporarily closes or goes out of business because of COVID-19
- Your employer reduces your hours because of COVID-19
- You have been told not to work because your employer feels you might get or spread COVID-19
- You have been told to quarantine or self-isolate, or live/work in a county under government-recommended mitigation efforts
- Online – it’s the fastest and easiest way to get started
- If you are eligible for UC, you will receive two approval letters and a four-digit PIN
- Your PIN will arrive in the U.S. mail – keep it in a safe, easy to remember place
- If approved, your first benefit payment should arrive within four weeks of filing for UC
- Continue filing your bi-weekly claim (every two weeks) – even while waiting for approval
- Find call center hours and other vital info at uc.pa.gov; learn all UC benefit requirements by visiting the self-service guide; or use UC LiveChat
WORKERS’ COMPENSATION (WC) BENEFITS
Two filing options:
- If you believe you may have been exposed to COVID-19 in your workplace, you may be eligible for Workers’ Compensation (WC) by either:
- Notifying your employer to file a typical “disease-as-injury” WC claim, which requires you to provide medical evidence that you were exposed to COVID-19 in the workplace
- Notifying your employer to file an “occupational disease” WC claim, which requires you to show that COVID-19 is occurring more in your occupation/industry than in the general population
Testing services for COVID-19
- You will need a prescription from your doctor, and some providers are able to offer services virtually/over the phone.
- If you’re going to any medical facility in person, call before you go.
- If you don’t have a fever, you’re not eligible for a screening… even if you’ve been traveling internationally, had a known exposure, etc.
- For testing:
- Allegheny County Health Department
- State Hotline for COVID-19
- No provider? Call: 1-877-PA-HEALTH
- Have clinical questions? Call: 1-877-PA-HEALTH
- All Medicaid, Medicare, and CHIP recipients will have testing and treatment covered.’
- UPMC, Highmark, and Aetna will waive applicable deductibles, copayments, or other cost-sharing for COVID-19 testing when ordered by a member’s treating medical provider.
- Uninsured: refer to Metro Health Clinic (sliding scale); iHealth Clinic in East Liberty ($35 flat fee)
- Absentee and Mail-in Ballots: https://www.votespa.com/Voting-in-PA/Pages/Mail-and-Absentee-Ballot.aspx
Local Community Resources
|Community Org||Contact||Services and resources|
|Lawrenceville United||412-802-7220; Dave@LUnited.org or info@LUnited.org||
● Lawrenceville “buddy system” for older adults or high-risk population sign-up
● Food box available for pick-up on Fridays (donations from Whole Foods Market and 412 Food Rescue)–call before noon to arrange a pickup
● Housing assistance
|Bloomfield Development Corp.||(412) 681-8800; email@example.com||● Assistance getting groceries or prescriptions to neighbors in need|
|Bloomfield Mutual Aid||
|● Providing neighbor-to-neighbor services and support|
|City of Pittsburgh – all neighborhoods||● Pittsburgh Mutual Aid Spreadsheet||● Providing neighbor-to-neighbor services and support|
|Sharpsburg Neighborhood Org||● Sharpsburg Urgent Needs Assessment Survey||● Providing neighbor-to-neighbor services and support|
|North Hills Community Outreach||(412) 408-3830 ; 412-487-6316||● Emergency food services|
Service Industry and Small Businesses
|USBG Emergency Fund||https://www.usbgfoundation.org/beap||Grants available for all FOH staff|
|Children of Restaurant Employees (CORE)||https://coregives.org/||Provides emergency assistance to service industry employees who are parents|
|Urban Redevelopment Authority of PIttsburgh||https://www.ura.org/news/ura-offering-resources-to-help-small-businesses-potentially-impacted-by-coronavirus||Small business resources for those impacted by COVID-19|
|Kiva Loan||0% interest up to $15,000 crowd-sourced loan; look|
|Circles – Greater Pittsburgh||Tammy Thompson||
If you need a babysitter in order to go to work, please contact Tammy Thompson via email: tthompson@Circlespgh.org
Please provide the following:
1. Number of children you need care for
2. Age of child/children
3. The hours that you need care for them
4. Name of Employer
5. Community that you live in
|SeniorLine of Allegheny County||412-350-5460||SeniorLine staff members are highly-skilled care managers who will answer your questions, or help you begin the process of receiving services.|
|Meals On Wheels of Greater Pittsburgh||412-350-5460 or 412-350-4234 (after hours, weekends and holidays).||You must first call the Allegheny County Senior Line to determine your eligibility and get your meals started. This is your single point of entry. Be prepared to complete a short assessment over the phone.|
|Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank||(412) 460-3663|
|Pittsburgh Public Schools Students||For Pittsburgh students that depend on our school breakfast & lunch program, Grab & Go meals will be available at all 54 PPS school locations from 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM Monday through Friday. Students are instructed to go to the school location closest to their home.|
|412 Food Rescue||412.407.5287|
|Just Harvest||(9am-5pm) at (412) 431-8960 x602.||Assistance with SNAP and WIC benefit processing and applications|
|Pitt Mutual Aid Society||Request housing, storage of belongings, etc|
|CMU Mutual Aid||To help our students and peers cope with the COVID-19 pandemic, this form allows students to identify needs and other members of the CMU community to offer support. This is not an official CMU program — it is a mutual-aid project of CMU community members.|
|Hebrew Free Loan Association – Pittsburgh||http://hflapgh.org/||Providing interest-free loans for those in need of a financial “bridge” to cover lost wages, childcare costs, businesses losses, and other challenges.|
|Homeless Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program (HUD)||+1 877-350-4777||The Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program will provide financial assistance and services to prevent individuals and families from becoming homeless and help those who are experiencing homelessness to be quickly re-housed and stabilized. The funds under this program are intended to target individuals and families who would be homeless but for this assistance|
|Pittsburgh Presbyterian Lazarus||412-323-1400||Can offer at most $250 in one time assistance to help with rental evictions, pay utility bills, and even such expenses as medical bills|
|Veterans Leadership Program – Western PA||(412) 481-8200||Administers the Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF). Veterans and their families can receive government grants to pay rent and information on permanent housing placement. Other programs include funds for security deposits for the homeless, transportation, shelter, and more.|
|Scholastic Learn-from-home||https://classroommagazines.scholastic.com/support/learnathome.html||Subscriptions offering free educational programming for students home from school|
|Harm Reduction – Vital Strategies||https://www.vitalstrategies.org/resources/practicing-harm-reduction-in-the-covid-19-outbreak/||Practicing harm reduction strategies during outbreak|
|National Domestic Violence Hotline||https://www.thehotline.org/;||For any victims and survivors who need support, we are here for you, 24/7. Call 1-800-799-7233 or 1-800-799-7233 for TTY, or if you’re unable to speak safely, you can log onto thehotline.org or text LOVEIS to 22522.|
|AA Live Phone Meetings||http://aaphonemeetings.org/||Meetings are being held by conference call.|