Tuesday, July 14, 2020

In the News: two items from Gov Baker's press conf on Monday, July 13

From the Milford Daily News, articles of interest for Franklin:
"Gov. Charlie Baker on Monday announced the state has launched a new website to provide directions to residents who want to report businesses that may not be following safety guidelines for COVID-19.

“If folks believe that a business or employer is not observing the safety guidelines, we’ve set up a process for people in the public or employees to reach out and communicate that,” said Baker.

Baker said a new page on the state website, Mass.Gov/Compliance (https://www.mass.gov/info-details/reopening-covid-19-compliance), would be activated to accept reports about businesses that were not in compliance with state-issued guidelines. He said reports can also be made through the 211 hotline.

“Investigations can result in enforcement measures if violations are discovered,” Baker said."
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"Traditional public schools sent students home and shifted to remote learning in March to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus, but that was not an option for residential schools that serve students with special needs.

Recognizing the costs for special education residential school providers to outfit their workforces with personal protective gear, to put in place enhanced facility cleaning plans, and in some cases to increase staffing levels, the Baker administration on Monday unveiled a relief package of more than $16 million to benefit 32 special education residential schools.

Gov. Charlie Baker made the announcement after touring the New England Center for Children in Southborough, which teaches, houses and supports more than 120 students with special needs. Baker said the center will receive about $2 million.

“The commonwealth’s special education residential schools do tremendous work educating and supporting students with special needs. Throughout the pandemic special education residential schools, like this one, have remained open,” Baker said. “The ability this community has shown to adapt to maintain a safe environment for students in their care and for their 24/7 staff has been a godsend. The schools incurred unanticipated costs related to the purchase of personal protective equipment, infection control measures, increased staffing costs and enhanced cleaning protocols over that period. We know this is difficult work, and we know that so many people, time and time again, found a way to simply get it done.”

Continue reading the article online (subscription may be required)

The press release with details on the schools and amounts involved

Press conf video link = https://youtu.be/3Mg92Dc6Ciw

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