As information about the response to COVID-19 is constantly changing, I want to provide you with an update on some important topics, as well as make you aware of some changes I have made to the “COVID-19” resources tab on my website. The resources tab will now take you to ilcovid19info.com.
This new website is a comprehensive source for critical information to stay up to date. The website features:
- Rolling news updates;
- News from the Governor;
- Department of Public Health resources;
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention resources;
- Price gouging resources from the Attorney General’s Office;
- Unemployment benefits resources from the Department of Employment Security;
- Support for small businesses through the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity and the Small Business Administration;
- Resources from the State Board of Education;
- Resources from the Department of Aging.
Below are some other important updates.
Please Maintain Normal Shopping Patterns
You have undoubtedly experienced the shortage of grocery and personal care items at grocery stores. These shortages are NOT due to a disruption in the supply chain. The supply chain remains strong. To that end, there is plenty of food and household supplies if everyone practices common sense and follows normal shopping patterns. As an example, if you shop on Thursday for the following week, then shop on Thursday and get what you need for the following week. Not for the next three weeks. There is ZERO need for hoarding. Hoarding is creating a problem that doesn’t need to exist. Simply practice good hygiene and social-distancing when you shop – things we should be doing under any circumstance. To provide a safer shopping environment for seniors, stores throughout the state are holding special hours for seniors. A comprehensive list of stores providing these special senior shopping hours is available – Click Here.
Take Advantage of Carry-Out or Delivery Restaurant Service
While restaurants and bars are closed for dine-in service for the time being, consumers can still obtain food from restaurants via drive-thru, curb-side, delivery or take-out/carry-out. I would encourage you to utilize these take-out options to help restaurants and those employed by restaurants during this difficult time. I have been in contact with many of these businesses throughout our district and a list of those offering this service is available on my Facebook page. These businesses are offering this service in an attempt to not only provide for our communities, but to keep their doors open and their staff employed in the long-run. Please consider supporting one our local small businesses the next time you order food.
Small Business and Employee Support
The U.S. Small Business Administration has approved the state’s eligibility for disaster assistance loans for small businesses facing financial hardship in all 102 counties due to COVID-19. Eligible businesses can apply for up to $2 million in low-interest loans at: https://disasterloan.sba.gov
Filing for Unemployment Due to COVID-19
I am hearing from constituents who are unsure how they should go about seeking unemployment benefits if they lose their income as a result of measures put in place to control the spread of the coronavirus. The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) is the agency that handles unemployment issues, and they have compiled a list of frequently asked questions and answers about employment issues associated with COVID-19. Click here to read that FAQ.
Thank you for taking the time to read my e-newsletter. It is a high honor for me to represent you, and if you have any questions or concerns about anything you read, please feel free to contact me.