There are now over 35,000 confirmed cases of Corona Virus, also known as COVID-19, in the United States. To avoid contracting or spreading the virus, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that you keep at least six feet of distance from others, stay indoors as much as possible, and frequently disinfect commonly used or shared surfaces such as keyboards, computer mice, toilets, sinks, door handles, light switches, controllers, remotes, chair backs, and staircase railings. As of March 20th Governor of Illinois J.B. Pritzker, has issued a shelter-in-place order effective until at least April 7th.
In the wake of the Corona Virus outbreak, local CU organizers have pushed for a swift and progressive response to ensure that those most vulnerable to the disease and its impacts are looked after. The best guide to local resources is this document put together by Champaign-Urbana Mutual Aid, a recently formed online group of volunteers and organizers addressing the crisis. In addition, the State of Illinois has recently launched a new website for COVID-19 updates and resources.
Employers right now have a responsibility to provide sick pay, hazard pay, remote work options, or gloves, masks and other materials needed to work safely. If you have an employer that refuses to provide these things, please let us know.
Below is a list of some important news and resources you may have missed:
- Utilities and Public Services:
- Illinois American Water and Ameren Illinois will not shut off water and electric utilities, and Ameren will not charge fees for late payments through May
- The Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District is offering free rides on all buses until further notice, beginning on Tuesday, March 17th
- AT&T, Comcast, and other Internet Service Providers are altering their policies to provide free hot spots, internet access, and no data caps in many case.
- Unit 4 Schools in Champaign are providing free meals to students aged 18 years and under, regardless of if they’re a student in the Unit 4 system. The program starts on March 23rd. Urbana Public Schools District 116 is organizing a similar program.
- Several local restaurants have begun providing free meals for kids. Check out this list from our friends at Smile Politely.
- Volunteers and Assistance
- Champaign-Urbana COVID-19 Mutual Aid, a Facebook group, has been organizing volunteers to help those affected by COVID-19. If you have a need for someone to run an errand for you or another specific need, this is the place to ask. In addition, they’ve put together this detailed list of local resources and information available locally, statewide, and nationally about the virus.
- United Way of Illinois will provide assistance to those needing rent aid, food aid, or other financial aid. Call 1-866-211-9966 and enter your zipcode.
We will update this post as we learn more. Please contact us to let us know of any important news or resources you think belong here!