December 4: Coronavirus Update from the CEO

December 4th, 2020

Dear Members of The Arc Family:

Well, it seems that the State continues to take two steps forward and one step back as we march through our statewide COVID response. And, of course, here at The Arc of Essex County, we are marching to that same beat! While we opened day programs in October on a limited basis, DDD has required them to close once again. Community activities and congregate programs are once again subject to the reinstatement of the State’s COVID restrictions. All of us are feeling the pinch! But of course, The Arc of Essex County will make it work…...for our consumers, their families and our staff. Nothing would be possible without the tremendous effort of staff and the support of our Arc Essex family. From being flexible and pivoting regarding the strategies and plans to mitigate risk that have been changing weekly, to ensuring compliance with increased COVID related protocols for themselves, service participants and family members, to the extraordinary work of safely engaging in interesting and productive community activities, especially during this holiday season, the Arc Essex family is truly amazing.

Although the State of NJ continues to see an increase in COVID positivity rates, The Arc of Essex County remains committed to ensuring that the development and implementation of plans for services and supports meet all compliance guidelines from federal, state and local authorities. The health and safety of our service participants, their families and our staff are the foundation for any of our plans as we continue our march. We remain steadfast in our efforts to move forward, creating opportunities that support our Arc family, now and for the future.

Thank you, all. Stay safe and be well.

Happy holidays!

Linda's Signature.jpg

Linda C. Lucas
Chief Executive Officer


  • Adult Day Programs closed as per DDD through at least January 19, 2021.
  • Community Based Supports and HAP continue with in-person services supporting a few individuals (CBS) and families (HAP) to engage in community activities.
  • DHS/DDD roll-out of a COVID testing program for residential consumers and staff to begin December, 2020.

Current Status of Programs and Services:

  • Shapiro Center for Early Intervention: In-person and telehealth services continue
  • Stepping Stones School: In-person classes continue; 100% remote option continues
  • Stepping Stones Early Intervention: Virtual sessions continue into spring
  • Children Group Respite and Recreation Programs: In-person activities authorized to resume with restrictions; plans in development
  • Adult Day Programs: Closed through January 19, 2021; virtual activities continue
  • Community Based Supports and Individual Respite: Limited options available
  • Virtual activities calendars continue to increase and expand for at-home and residential home consumers on; virtual billing continues