The City of Eugene’s top priority continues to be the health and safety of the community. As we move into the fourth week of our national collective emergency, it is clear that we are in this for the long haul. This update provides information on current City activities and links to where you can find more information. For health and safety information and updates on COVID-19 please visit Lane County Public Health’s website.
Recommendation Regarding the Use of Cloth Face Coverings
New CDC guidelines recommend all people wear cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain such as grocery stores and pharmacies. Healthcare providers across the region and country are still in critical need of medical grade N-95 masks. The City of Eugene continues to request that the public reserve N-95 masks for healthcare workers and first responders. Individuals or businesses that have access to new N-95 masks or other personal protective equipment (PPE) can donate them to Lane County. New PPE is being collected Monday through Friday from 2-4 p.m. at Lane County’s warehouse (3050 N. Delta Highway, Eugene, OR 97408).
Stay Home, Save Lives
The good news is that recent data suggest social distancing is working. From the Oregon Health Authority: Updated projections from health researchers show that there is “strong evidence that measures currently in place in Oregon are reducing transmission.” The most recent data suggest that current social distancing measures could cut transmission rates between 50% to 70% if Oregonians maintain these limitations on virus-spreading interactions into early May.
The public’s ability to maintain social distancing will be the most important factor in determining whether Oregon prevents local hospitals from becoming overwhelmed by COVID-19 admissions.
Everyone in our community has been impacted by this healthcare and emerging financial crisis. We’ve added a Community Wellbeing section to our website. This section provides resources for mental health support, helpful articles, and “physical distancing fun.” As in any emergency, the first person to take care of is yourself. We encourage you to do so.
Wellbeing includes each person’s ability to pay bills and take care of basic needs. Renters, homeowners, and landlords impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic can refer to the COVID-19 Housing Resources page on our website for information on financial support, help understanding renter’s rights, or mediation services.
Working in collaboration, your city governments, school districts and other childcare partners have pulled together to provide emergency childcare services during the COVID-19 crisis. This service is currently only offered to first responders and essential workers. Visit YMCA to see if you qualify and to register for childcare.
Outreach teams of trained city workers are on the streets providing assistance to unhoused people in Eugene. These teams are meeting people where they are at to provide basic supplies and, when possible, addressing needs such as charging devices and bringing mail. All of these strategies are designed to help everyone in our community shelter-in-place to the maximum extent possible.
The City continues to increase the number of portable restrooms, now up to 40, and maintains 50 handwashing stations in accessible locations. See a map of the handwashing stations and portable restrooms. You can get updated information on our COVID-19 Resources for Unhoused web page.
Other Vulnerable Populations
We recognize that there are many vulnerable and at-risk community members throughout the city. We are working with our community partners in the Latino and immigrant communities to understand their unique needs at this time, and we continue to translate new information and resources on the City’s website into Spanish.
Looking for ways to help?
United Way of Lane County continues to be a great local resource for ways to give and receive help. An article in this week’s Eugene Weekly shared how people can help a local non-profit and a local business at the same time through purchasing a gift card to a favorite business and donating it to a favorite non-profit.
Just for Fun
The Hult Center for the Performing Arts is seeking submissions for the first Stay Home Talent Show! Whether you’re a musician, actor, dancer, comedian, or something else, performers of all ages are encouraged to participate. This contest is open to all and artists both fresh and seasoned are encouraged to get involved to help bring people together through incredible performances and displays of artistic ingenuity during such isolated times.
As Mayor Vinis shared in her weekly video update, “We don’t know exactly when it will get better, but we know that it will get better. And it will get better because of everything we are doing now, together.”
Thank you, Eugene!