April 10: Coronavirus Update from the CEO

April 10th, 2020

Dear Members of The Arc Family,

The Arc of Essex County continues to respond to the evolving Coronavirus situation based on daily information from federal and state authorities. Review of all responses are made daily against the most recent guidance available and new measures are implemented according to that guidance. To that end, please be aware of the following:

New Measures:

  • Masks were distributed to all locations for staff to utilize during shifts in program and when engaged in essential community activities
  • Infrared thermometers were secured for use as temperature checks increased
  • Containment scheduling was implemented which assigns staff to work in specific programs only in order to minimize the risk of exposure and spread of COVID-19

Current Closures:

  • Shapiro Center for Early Intervention: Suspended; modified teleservices began 4/1
  • Stepping Stones School: Suspended; remote learning plan activated
  • Stepping Stones Early Intervention: Suspended until further notice
  • Children and Adult Individual/Group Respite and Recreation Programs: Suspended for consumers until DDD/DCF authorize return
  • Adult Day Programs: Suspended for consumers until DDD authorizes return

Ongoing Services:

  • Deployment of iPhones to consumers and programs for remote monitoring (Facetime)
  • Increased use of telemedicine services with Station MD, the DDC and other medical providers
  • Residential Services: No outside visitors; only essential community activities
  • Administrative Support: The main office is open with limited hours, staggered, and remote staffing; only essential visitors
  • Increased screening, including temperature checks, for everyone entering residences
  • Program Administration: Staff deployed to Arc locations to support residential services
  • Support staff shopping teams continue to pick up and deliver items including groceries to group homes as needed.

Our staff, especially those in direct support positions, are the heartbeat of our organization. We continue to be amazed at the unwavering dedication to those we serve and thankful for the willingness to join forces with each other to support The Arc of Essex County, and the individuals and families we serve. I ask that you to continue to reach out to thank them and share your appreciation with us.

Linda's Signature.jpg

Linda C. Lucas
Chief Executive Officer