Update #6 (5:20p.m.) Town of Winthrop Provides Latest Update on Coronavirus Situation

Two Confirmed and Zero Presumptive COVID-19 Cases Identified in Winthrop

Town Manager Austin Faison and Public Health Director Meredith Hurley would like to update Winthrop residents on the latest information involving the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Winthrop Public Health Department is continuing to conduct “contact tracing” with each case of Coronavirus in town. The Public Health Department identifies the close contacts of each case and alerts those individuals. The community would be informed if either case were in a public space while infectious. 

The Public Health Department remains vigilant in conducting these investigations rapidly and are being transparent in the process. 

The Town of Winthrop activated its Emergency Operations Center (EOC) at 8 a.m. Monday, March 16, streamlining the COVID-19 response effort and ensuring the continued delivery of services to residents. The EOC will remain operational until further notice. 

The Town’s Emergency Operations Center can be reached at 617-539-5848, Monday through Friday, between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., or by emailing [email protected].

If any resident is currently under self-quarantine for symptoms or travel history, please contact the EOC at 617-539-5848 or [email protected]. All information will be confidential. 

Municipal buildings will remain closed to the public at this time. Residents can pay taxes, parking tickets and apply for resident parking stickers online or drop payments and applications in drop box located at the Town Hall front door. 

Motor Vehicle Excise Taxes are due March 25. The Town is not currently extending this deadline. Contact the Treasurer/Collector’s Office with any questions. The Treasurer/Collector’s Office will be available by calling 617-846-1750, Monday through Thursday, from 9 to 11 a.m., until further notice.

The town is coordinating volunteer efforts to assist with those in self quarantine and its vulnerable population. Please contact Matt Rodes at [email protected] to learn more about volunteer opportunities in Winthrop.

Visit our Town website at www.town.winthrop.ma.us/where to learn more.Residents can report DPW safety issues online here.

Local Winthrop Updates

  • No gatherings of any kind of more than 10 people at one time, in one place.
  • All public schools in Massachusetts are closed until at least April 7.
  • All bars and restaurants will only be able to serve takeout customers.
  • The Winthrop Public Safety website now has a COVID-19 Tip Hotline for those self-reporting or for a concerned member of the community. The hotpine can also be accessed from the main page on the Winthrop Public Safety website.
  • The Town of Winthrop will host a Winthrop Community Food Bank this Friday, March 20 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Arthur T. Cummings Elementary School, at 40 Hermon St. Drop offs will take place on School Street (the back road that leads to the parking lot). The Food Bank is accepting donations and is looking specifically for canned goods, pasta, macaroni and cheese, non-perishables, toiletries, and sealed baby formula. Please contact Matt Rodes at [email protected] to learn more about volunteer opportunities.
  • There will be a Community Forum on Friday, March 20 at noon, and it will be streamed live through WCAT. Public Officials will be reporting on the COVID-19 response taken thus far. The time of the forum may be delayed as public officials address concerns accordingly.

Winthrop Public School Updates

Winthrop Public Schools will be distributing Grab-and-Go Meals through Friday, March 27. These meals will be prepared by food service staff and are available for any WPS student in need. 

Pick up location will be at the rear parking lot next to the baseball field and at the loading dock area of Winthrop High School. Pick up hours will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. There is no cost for any student. Food service staff will be available and on-site during distribution time to support the nutritional needs of our families.

If you are not able to come to the location to access the Grab-and-Go Meals, please email the Superintendent. An alternative solution will be provided to ensure that your child has access to what they need. All information will be kept confidential. Email the Superintendent at [email protected].

Online educational opportunities will be posted for students on the Winthrop Public Schools website, as well as each school home page on Wednesday, March 18. Families are encouraged to review the information and begin the process of having your student remain connected to learning experiences during this time of school closure. 

The learning opportunities that will be provided by the WPS are not intended to be a replication of a school day and work completed is not going to be graded by teachers nor is it considered mandatory. We would like to stress that every student will benefit from staying engaged daily and staying connected to the routine of learning daily, and resources provided will have multiple levels of engagement access so that every child has access to learning opportunities. 

Each Principal will reach out to families directly on Wednesday, to provide you with detail related to your student’s access to learning opportunities as well as access to teachers, school nurses and other essential staff.

Managing Stress

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued guidelines for those experiencing fear and anxiety relating to the outbreak of COVID-19.

Coping with stress will make residents and those they care about, as well as the community as a whole, stronger and healthier.

Those who may respond to the crisis more strongly than others include:

  • Older people and people with chronic diseases who are at higher risk for COVID-19
  • Children and teens
  • People who are helping with the response to COVID-19, such as doctors and other healthcare providers, or first responders
  • People who have mental health conditions, including problems with substance use

Additionally, people with preexisting mental health conditions should continue with their treatment and be aware of new or worsening symptoms. Additional information can be found at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) website.

For more information, parents, responders, people who have been released from quarantine and the general public can visit the CDC’s “Managing Anxiety and Stress” website here.

Latest Health Guidance

As always, if anyone displays symptoms of COVID-19, including a fever, cough or shortness of breath, they should not go to work or school and are advised to contact their primary care physician.

For residents that may be self-quarantined and require outside assistance or meal delivery, please email the EOC at [email protected].

The Town is also advising residents to practice social distancing by keeping six feet between people to prevent the spread of infection, which includes handshaking and hugging. Residents are also encouraged to avoid group activities and events.

Other Guidelines Include:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, including under your fingernails. Alcohol-based hand sanitizer (at least 60% alcohol content) can be used when soap and water are not available.
  • Keep your hands away from your face.
  • Cover your nose and mouth when sneezing and coughing with a tissue and discard it immediately. Cough into the sleeve over your elbow instead of your hand. Wash your hands often when coughing and sneezing.
  • Stay away from people who are sick and stay home when you are sick.

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