Editor’s note: This is the town of Hopkinton’s COVID-19 update for July 17.
COVID-19 Updates and Precautions
July 17 update
While Town Hall and municipal buildings are physically closed to the public, we are open for business. Many transactions can be completed online, and we are available via phone and email to assist during regular business hours. A full town directory can be found here. A box at the front door of Town Hall may be used to drop off correspondence, applications, etc., and they may also be mailed or emailed. As we work on plans to reopen Town Hall and other municipal buildings, we are prioritizing efforts to keep the community safe and help our local businesses reopen.
As of July 16, Hopkinton’s Health Department is reporting 131 total confirmed COVID-19 cases; none of those cases are active, with 119 recoveries and 12 deaths. You can see historical tracking and updates on Hopkinton’s Community Impact Dashboard.
Mental Health Resources — REMINDER
While not new resources, a reminder of what is available to support mental health during these challenging times. One click can bring you to the Hopkinton Youth and Family Resource page that is a comprehensive and growing list of resources to aid in maintaining mental health and financial security during this challenging time: Y&FS Basic Needs Resource Sheet for COVID-19
Those in need of immediate assistance can access care through the following:
● Call 2-1-1 and choose the “CALL2TALK” option. uwotc.org/call2talk
● Samaritans is continuing operations 24/7, as always. During this unprecedented time, it can feel overwhelming to receive constant messages about COVID-19. Call or text the Samaritans’ 24/7 helpline any time at 877-870-4673. samaritanshope.org
● Advocates Emergency Services: If you are experiencing a mental health or emotional crisis, please call 800-640-5432 to speak to an Advocates crisis clinician 24 hours a day, every day.
● Behavioral Health Crisis Care at MassSupport — A crisis counseling program to support the behavioral health needs of Massachusetts residents during the COVID-19 pandemic.This initiative brings behavioral health resources, information, and referrals directly to individuals and communities. The program offers counseling services in English and Spanish and can be reached at 888-215-4920 or via email at email@example.com.
COVID-19 Elections Update
In July, a new law was passed to allow all registered voters in Massachusetts to vote by mail in any 2020 election, with no excuse needed. Click here for more information.
Returning Items to the Library
The library book drop remains open from 9:30-4:30 Monday through Friday. Quarantine procedures mean that we are currently unable to accept returns when staff are not able to monitor the book drop.
Because we are quarantining returns, items that you bring back will remain on your account for a few days. You may receive automated system notifications about these items during that time. Please rest assured that we will check your returns in once their quarantine period ends and we will waive late fees at that time. If an item is still showing as checked out on your account more than one week after you returned it, please contact us.
Summer Reading at the Library
One month in to the summer reading program, it’s been wonderful to see the level of participation from the community so far! Library staff wish to remind the community that summer reading is entirely online this year due to the pandemic. We are offering versions of the program for all ages and each level has opportunities to win prizes! You can sign up for the program at hpl.bookpoints.org/.
Summer reading prize pickups launched this week. Please refer to the prizes tab in the BookPoints software for details. Once you have read the information and are ready to schedule a pickup, call the library at 508-497-9777, Extension 1.
“Stop the Spread” Free COVID-19 Testing Sites
The commonwealth is launching a strategic testing program in communities across Massachusetts that have continued to see a higher number of residents testing positive for COVID-19. The program started July 10 and runs through Aug. 14. While Hopkinton is not one of these communities that is seeing a higher number of residents testing positive, the testing is free and is available to anybody. Testing is open to everyone. You don’t need to have symptoms. There is no cost, and testing at these sites is not restricted to residents of the city or town where the testing is taking place. The closest testing sites to Hopkinton are in Marlborough, and drive-through testing is available. More info can be found here: mass.gov/stopthespread.
Baker-Polito Administration Initiates Transition to Third Phase of Four-Phase Approach
Consistent with public health data and trends, Phase 3 of Reopening Massachusetts began Monday July 6. The following businesses will be eligible to reopen in Step 1 of Phase 3, subject to industry-specific rules concerning capacity and operations:
● Movie theaters and outdoor performance venues;
● Museums, cultural and historical sites;
● Fitness centers and health clubs;
● Certain indoor recreational activities with low potential for contact;
● Professional sports teams — under the authority of league-wide rules may hold games without spectators.
Full guidance and list of businesses eligible to reopen in Step 1 of Phase 3 can be found at mass.gov/reopening. Businesses and sectors set to begin opening in Phase 3 are subject to compliance with all mandatory safety standards. Click here to read the full Phase 3 press release.
COVID-19 Reopening Compliance
The Baker-Polito Administration announced a new website with information for the public to report businesses or workplaces that they believe are not complying with mandatory health and safety guidelines. Guidance issued for reopening activities are designed to keep customers and employees safe. While the governor praised the thousands of businesses and organizations adhering to reopening guidance, he said the commonwealth wanted to provide a mechanism for the public or employees to share their concerns. mass.gov/info-details/reopening-covid-19-compliance
Hopkinton DPW to Resume White Metal Day
White metal day collection resumes operations on Saturday, July 25. White metal collection is the last Saturday of each month from 7 a.m.-3 p.m., and takes place at the old Highway Department garage at 66 Fruit St. Please observe the following: Wait in your vehicle until your turn, face coverings must be worn, and social distancing of 6 feet is required. Please note that after-hours dumping is illegal — video recording is being used and police take notice.
Hopkinton also posts frequently on social media. Our Twitter is the best place to keep up with all happenings Hopkinton. You don’t need an account to see our twitter feed: https://twitter.com/HopkintonMA