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First, I want to thank our Washtenaw County Health Department staff, our Public Health Officer, our Administrator Gregory Dill and our county leadership team, labor leadership and all of our employees and community partners for the incredible work they’ve been doing over the last week and the preceding weeks.
We have a dedicated and hardworking team here in Washtenaw who’ve been doing an incredible job acting thoughtfully and swiftly for our community.
For the health and safety of all residents of Washtenaw County and for the long-term stability of our local economy, our public safety and criminal justice system and our community social safety net, I am declaring a state of emergency
This public health emergency is unprecedented, touching every aspect of our lives, and some members of our community will need assistance meeting their basic needs, especially due to the closures of businesses and the dwindling availability of basic necessities.
This declaration of a state-of-emergency will formally activate channels of communication and coordination. To be clear, our Public Health Officer, Jimena Loveluck, and her team of experts are leading the public health aspect of our County response, with consultation and collaboration with county administration and the Board of Commissioners. We’ve been actively working together every day.
This declaration is about the fact that we are facing far and above the public health aspect of this emergency.
We are committed to doing absolutely everything we can to ensure that no individual is left behind in during this crisis.
We will make sure every business has the support they need, either by facilitating connections to state or federal funding or through a local program.
WASHTENAW COUNTY Board of Commissioners 222 NORTH MAIN ST. · P.O. BOX 8645 ·ANN ARBOR, MI ·48107-8645
We need your help though, to know where there are issues arising. We know what we know, but we need you to make sure we are aware of issues in our community so that we can tackle them together. We will find a way to help every resident who needs assistance. If anyone in our county needs assistance, please contact your county commissioner. You can find who your county commissioner is at www.washtenaw.org.
We want to ensure that we are doing absolutely everything we can to support our county now and to mitigate the long-term effects. This declaration allows us to fully utilize resources made available by the state and federal government while also layering on local resources to help provide services to anyone who may need them.
We have already enacted our contingency plan, and although buildings are closed to the public until April 6, 2020, several departments continue to provide essential services.
Additionally, many employees are practicing social distancing by working remotely from home in order to respond to questions or provide guidance to residents who may reach out.
Other efforts include the extension of grace periods on fees, fines and costs, as well as working to support school districts who are providing much needed meals to their students.
Many of our community members look to the county for their safety net services, and now more than ever, we must be there to assist.”
Washtenaw County Government has a close partnership with the United Way of Washtenaw County, so we also encourage the community to call 21-1 during this time if they need assistance or resources.
Additional staff have been added to the seven (7) statewide call centers so that the two agencies may collaborate and ensure needs are being met. Should you wish to donate to the United Way’s COVID-19 Community Relief Fund, you may do so at www.uwgive.org
Thank you to my colleagues, administration and public health. This declaration is a key to opening up additional communication and collaboration, in addition to the resources opened up by state and federal declarations.