Cross-Cultural, Urban, Reformed, Ecumenical

Update 4/9/2020

If you are a faith leader, here are some helpful suggestion from faith leaders in Chicago:

1.       Conduct wellness checks for your members. Identify members of your congregation who are (1) 40 and up, and (2) have underlying conditions and make plans to check in every day.  Attached find wellness check scripts in multiple languages.

2.       Organize a special service or PSA to communicate the importance of preventative care. Use the attached sample script to get out important health information to members of your congregation.

3.       Share information on social media channels. Share social media posts on your channels to communicate meaningful health information to members of your congregation. Attached find a toolkit complete with graphics and language for you to share digitally.

Dear Chicago Residents and Partners,

The roll out of commercial testing has made tests more readily available to people in our city and state. While we would like to see more widespread testing, not everyone needs to be tested. Testing should be prioritized for those who need it most. Because both tests and personal protective equipment for doctors and nurses who perform testing are limited, tests should be saved for healthcare workers and first responders, individuals over age 60 or with underlying health conditions, people living in congregate settings (shelters, jails, nursing homes), and people who are seriously ill and needing hospitalization.  

Residents that are experiencing symptoms and are at higher risk should call their health care provider and see if they need to be tested. Health care providers evaluate patients individually and are best positioned to determine whether testing is needed. If health care providers don’t perform testing themselves, they should be able to refer you to a location for testing. For those who don’t have a health care provider or medical insurance, there are approximately 165 community health centers throughout Chicago, so find one that is close to you at findahealthcenter.hrsa.gov. Call ahead and they will work with you to coordinate appropriate care. No patient will be turned away because of inability to pay.

Testing is not currently recommended for people who do not have symptoms, even if they have had contact with someone with COVID-19. Those people are advised to stay home for 14 days and self-monitor for symptoms. Please refer to CDPH’s guidance for individuals who might have been exposed.

For most people, illness is generally mild and can be safely managed at home. If your symptoms are mild and you are not in one of the high risk groups, you will receive the same advice whether you have a test or not. There is no treatment or cure for COVID-19. Most importantly, you must stay home and away from others for at least seven days. Please refer to CDPH’s guidance for individuals who are sick.

Following these testing guidelines will protect healthcare workers and avoid spreading the virus in our communities. Everyone, regardless of whether they have symptoms, should practice social distancing and good hand hygiene.

Stay home. Save lives.

What's New

  • Protecting Immigrant and Refugee Communities - Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot signed an executive order explicitly ensuring that all benefits, opportunities, and services provided or administered by the City of Chicago are accessible to all residents, regardless of birth country or current citizenship status. This includes programs such as:
  • The COVID-19 Housing Assistance Grant program, which provides disaster relief aid for the housing costs faced by individuals and families impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic;
  • Online Enrichment Learning Resources through Chicago Public Schools for all students at all levels, so that each student, regardless of immigration status, can continue to pursue a top-notch education; and
  • A $100 million Chicago Small Business Resiliency Fund to provide small businesses with disaster relief cash flow during the COVID-19 pandemic, which is available to any entrepreneur, including immigrant business owners.
  • New Public Health Order - Effective Thursday, April 9th, all liquor sales citywide are prohibited after 9 p.m. to help prevent congregate activity that has been observed across the city near stores that sell alcohol, particularly during evening hours. Recent enforcement measures have led to 21 citations issued for up to $120,000 in fines for eight businesses violating the statewide mandate. The new Public Health Order gives the Chicago Police Department (CPD) and the Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP) enforcement authority to further curb non-compliance, with potential penalties for liquor sales after 9 p.m. including $500 fine, arrest and revocation of liquor and other licenses.
  • 2020 Census - The 2020 Census is going on now and will determine how billions of dollars in public funding are spent. The Census will play a critical role in our city's recovery and resources that impact our health care services, schools, infrastructure, and political representation. It is important, safe, and easy to complete online. Go to my2020census.gov to fill it out and remember that in 2020, it's time to make yourself count!

Resources

  • CPS Meal Sites - During spring break, families may pick up grab-and-go meals at more than 130 school sites across the city from Monday–Thursday, 9 a.m.–1 p.m. Meal sites will not be open on Friday, April 10 to give CPS staff members off for Good Friday. Beginning the following week, Monday, April 13, more than 270 schools that have been high demand distribution sites for families will be open to provide free meals. Find the meal site closest to you at cps.edu/mealsites.
  • Know Your Rights - The Office of Labor Standards, BACP has created a Know Your Rights flier with answers to frequently asked questions that essential workers may have related to COVID-19. Under the new Families First Coronavirus Response Act, certain employees are guaranteed Paid Sick Time from the federal government for leave used for specific reasons related to COVID-19. On Thursday, April 9, at 2:00pm, BACP’s Director of Labor Standards Andy Fox will be hosting a webinar to inform workers and employers of their rights and responsibilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. To register, visit www.chicago.gov/businessworkshops.
  • Smart 911 - Residents are encouraged to sign up for Smart 911 and provide critical medical information to 9-1-1 so they can help faster in an emergency. Residents can create a safety profile for themselves and family members with information on their current health conditions as well as information if they are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or are under quarantine, and it will automatically be provided to first responders when calling 9-1-1. To learn more, check out this video:

Chicago_Community Marketing_COVID-19

Latest Public Health Guidance

More guidance documents and supporting materials are available at www.chicago.gov/coronavirus.

Join the Fight against COVID-19

Mayor Lori Lightfoot and CDPH Commissioner Allison Arwady, M.D. have issued a call for assistance from the medical community and are seeking to hire healthcare workers immediately to help the City of Chicago in its COVID-19 response efforts.

  • Medical Assistants and Nurses are encouraged to apply for temporary positions. If you have any questions about the positions or the application process, you may email shelly.johnson@sunbeltstaffing.com or call 813-261-2706.
  • Chicago Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) is a network of both medical and non-medical professionals who volunteer their time to assist during public health emergencies such as the current COVID-19 outbreak. Many MRC volunteers are just like you - nurses, doctors, pharmacists, therapists, public health professionals, and other community members who believe in keeping Chicago safe. Register at illinoishelps.net and be there when Chicago needs you most.

CDPH is coordinating multiple opportunities for individuals, organizations and businesses to donate medical supplies and personal protective equipment (PPE) and join the fight against the COVID-19. Go to the links below to: