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Contents

 

Dear Neighbor,

I am sharing a special edition of our newsletter this week to provide you with some information you may need to keep your families safe and healthy.

In addition to this newsletter, you may follow me on Facebook and Twitter for regular updates. You can also follow our Department of Health Services. 

 

I ask that you help share this newsletter with your friends and family. An informed community is a strong community, and I appreciate the opportunity to discuss our communities' concerns.

Sincerely, 
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Sen. Patty Schachtner

Coronavirus Update

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In our district, we have confirmed cases of coronavirus in Pierce, St. Croix, and Dunn Counties.

Wisconsin’s public health officials are continuing to monitor new cases, expand our state’s testing capacity, and develop the most up-to-date guidance for our local governments and healthcare providers. We must continue to wash our hands frequently and avoid touching our face, but most importantly, we need to practice social distancing to stay safer at home.

You can find the most updated information on the outbreak by visiting www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/outbreaks/index.htm.


 
 

Unemployment Support

Workplaces and local economies are slowing or shutting down completely to help our communities prevent the spread of coronavirus. While these are important and necessary public health measures, it will no doubt have an impact on our pocketbooks.

If your workplace shuts down due to this pandemic, you will be eligible to apply for unemployment benefits through the Department of Workforce Development. You can find more information here.

Governor Evers and the Public Service Commission have also halted all utility shut-offs during this public health emergency for those that may lose a paycheck and will be unable to pay their monthly bills.

On March 27th, the Governor also halted all foreclosures and evictions for 60 days to ensure that those who are laid off or otherwise unable to make their payments won’t be pushed out of their homes during this public health crisis. If you are trying to navigate paying a mortgage or rent during this time, check out the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Association resource to get your questions answered.

 

Absentee Voting

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The Wisconsin Elections Commission is encouraging residents who are concerned about being exposed to the new coronavirus to request an absentee ballot for the spring election and the presidential primary Tuesday, April 7. 

Registered voters can request an absentee ballot until Thursday, April 2nd! Voters can then mail their completed absentee ballot in to their municipal clerk’s office. If a voter misses the postmark deadline, they can bring a completed absentee ballot into their polling place on Election Day.

You can direct any questions regarding absentee voting to the Wisconsin Elections Commission by email or phone at 1-866-VOTE-WIS.

Kids and COVID

With schools and many day cares closed, parents across the state are juggling their own jobs from home while stepping up to keep their kids’ learning on track.

Last week, the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction and PBS put together a new partnership to air age-appropriate, educational programming with resources online to support learning in subjects like math, history, and science.

For any parent, talking about the coronavirus pandemic with a child can be difficult. The National Association of School Nurses and National Association of School Psychologists put together this great resource to help guide that conversation. 

Essential workers that need access to child care, are asked to submit their information through the Child Care Finder, a web-based platform with the Department of Children and Families (DCF). Right now, they are focused on essential healthcare workers. If you are a child care teacher or a K-12 educator willing to help, please fill out this survey. DCF, Wisconsin Early Childhood Administration, and the Child Care Resource and Referral agencies will be contacting you to connect you with existing child centers needing staff, families who are seeking in-home child care, and to assist with staffing new emergency child care centers.

  

Stop COVID Scams

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Wisconsin’s Attorney General Josh Kaul is warning people to be on the lookout for scams and price-gouging connected to the new coronavirus.. If you receive any suspicious phone calls or emails, you can submit a consumer complaint here.

Here are some tips from the Federal Trade Commission to keep the scammers at bay:

  • Hang up on robocalls. Don’t press any numbers. Scammers are using illegal robocalls to pitch everything from scam Coronavirus treatments to work-at-home schemes. The recording might say that pressing a number will let you speak to a live operator or remove you from their call list, but it might lead to more robocalls, instead.
  • Ignore online offers for vaccinations and home test kits. Scammers are trying to get you to buy products that aren’t proven to treat or prevent the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) — online or in stores. At this time, there also are no FDA-authorized home test kits for the Coronavirus. Visit the FDA to learn more.
  • Fact-check information. Scammers, and sometimes well-meaning people, share information that hasn’t been verified. Before you pass on any messages, contact trusted sources. Visit What the U.S. Government is Doing for links to federal, state and local government agencies.
  • Know who you’re buying from. Online sellers may claim to have in-demand products, like cleaning, household, and health and medical supplies when, in fact, they don’t.
  • Don’t respond to texts and emails about checks from the government. The details are still being worked out. Anyone who tells you they can get you the money now is a scammer.
  • Don’t click on links from sources you don’t know. They could download viruses onto your computer or device.
  • Watch for emails claiming to be from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or experts saying they have information about the virus. For the most up-to-date information about the Coronavirus, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO).
  • Do your homework when it comes to donations, whether through charities or crowdfunding sites. Don’t let anyone rush you into making a donation. If someone wants donations in cash, by gift card, or by wiring money, don’t do it.

Governor Tony Evers’ executive order declaring a state of emergency also prohibits price-gouging. To report suspected price gouging, you are urged to contact DATCP’s Consumer Protection Hotline at DATCPHotline@wisconsin.gov or 800-422-7128 or file an online complaint.