City of Philadelphia Press Briefing – May 21, 2020

 

From the City of Philadelphia:

PHILADELPHIA – The Philadelphia Department of Public Health today announced 341 additional confirmed cases of COVID-19 novel coronavirus in Philadelphia. That brings the number of confirmed cases to 20,700.

The Department of Public Health noted continued progress in congregate settings, including nursing homes and the Department of Prisons. No additional inmates have tested positive. The current total of positive cases at correctional facilities is three. Current and cumulative totals of positive cases in Philadelphia prisons are now posted on the testing and data page of the City’s COVID-19 website.

The Department of Public Health confirmed 13 additional fatalities in Philadelphia. This brings the number of residents who have succumbed to the virus in Philadelphia to 1,165. Of the 1,165 total deaths, 629 (54%) were long-term care facility residents.

The Department of Public Health reports 623 patients with COVID-19 are currently being treated in Philadelphia hospitals, with a total of 1,202 people hospitalized in the region (including Philadelphia).

Summer Programming Announcements: Mayor Jim Kenney today offered a preview of the City’s plans to modify summer programming to ensure public health while delivering accessible recreation and employment options for Philadelphia children and youth. The City’s summer planning is still underway and will correspond to regional reopening plans, based on the latest public health guidance.

Volunteer to Feed Children in Your Community: The Mayor called on community leaders, faith-based organizations, and nonprofits to help make sure young people have access to safe, nutritious meals close to home this summer by signing up to become a volunteer Playstreets Supervisor. Parks & Recreation’s Playstreets is a meal distribution program that provides meals to thousands of children each summer.

Recreational activities for youth at Playstreets will align with reopening guidance to prioritize health and safety.

Residents and organizations interested in applying to be a Parks & Recreation Playstreets Supervisor must live on a small, one-way street. Volunteers must be available to close their street to through traffic each weekday from June 15 through August 25, and distribute grab-and-go meals to local kids at noon and 3 p.m. each afternoon. Main thoroughfares, streets on bus routes, and streets with businesses, parking garages, or emergency services stations are not eligible.

This year, the Playstreets application has been modified to ensure residents can fulfill application criteria while practicing safe social distancing. The deadline to apply is Friday, June 5, and residents can learn more at phila.gov/programs/playstreets/.

Summer Meal Distribution: The City and its partners will continue to operate grab-and-go meal distribution and food sites during the summer, although some locations and schedules may change. Residents are encouraged to visit phila.gov/food or call 311 to find up-to-date food distribution information.

City Summer Camps: Philadelphia Parks & Recreation serves thousands of children each summer through its network of 150 affordable, accessible neighborhood day camps. Parks & Recreation and Department of Public Health officials are developing plans to offer a modified summer day camp season, should health protocols allow, that would focus on providing safe, accessible places for children to play during weekdays. Meanwhile, Parks & Recreation is also planning other opportunities for young people if a camp season is not possible this year. City Swim for Life and theme camps will not operate this summer.

More details about the City’s camps will be available in early June, and residents can stay up to date by visiting: phila.gov/parksandrecreation.

Office of Children and Families Out-of-School Time Services: The Office of Children and FamiliesOut-of-School Time (OST) summer programs will be virtual until further notice. Programming will focus on OST goals of literacy, career awareness, physical and social-emotional health. Online activities will include read-aloud videos and literacy supports, virtual college and industry tours, dance and martial arts, and mindfulness/meditation practice.

Expanded Summer Jobs for Philadelphia Youth: Philadelphia Parks & Recreation plans to hire 285 youth and young adults this summer through the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry’s State/Local Internship Program (SLIP), managed by Philadelphia Works and Philadelphia Youth Network (PYN). Older teens and young adults can learn about how to apply at phila.gov/programs/workready-at-parks-rec.

In addition, the Office of Children and Families along with the Office of Violence Prevention and PYN are prioritizing WorkReady paid virtual summer experiences for youth in the child welfare and juvenile justice system as well as those who live in high crime neighborhoods. Youth in the Juvenile Justice system should visit workready.org to apply and use referral code DJUS. Youth in the child welfare system should use referral code DAIC.

Free Library of Philadelphia’s Summer of Wonder: This year, Summer of Wonder will offer virtual programming from June 1 to August 31. Children, teens, and adults can go online at freelibrary.beanstack.org to earn points and badges for Summer of Wonder activities and time spent reading. The Free Library is also partnering with local organizations to host pick-up spots for materials and activities. More information on locations coming soon.

Science in the Summer and the Summer Camp Challenge will take place virtually this year.

For more information, visit freelibrary.org/summerreading. Residents can also text a librarian with questions about programs, resources, book recommendations, or reading support. Send a text to 66746 with the keyword “askfree” followed by a space, then your question.

“This summer more than ever, neighbors are relying on one another to help our kids and families get through this tough time,” said Mayor Kenney. “Whether it is volunteering to provide free meals ata Playstreet, encouraging a young person to apply for WorkReady, or finding a safe summer experience for your child, we must all do our part to help young people have a healthy summer.”

More information and ongoing updates to summer programming, can be found here.

Testing Site Map: A new testing site finder at phila.gov/testing helps people find a free COVID-19 test in Philadelphia. Anyone can search for a site by address, click on a map location for specific site information, and filter by day of week and by drive-thru or walk-up.

Each of the testing sites has its own requirements, and that information is included for each location on the map. For example, some sites require referrals, appointments, or certain criteria for patients. No sites require payment, insurance, or proof of citizenship. Residents are strongly encouraged to call first for an appointment or referral; all necessary phone numbers are available on the map.

The finder is available in six languages, and the map will continue to be updated as new testing sites are opened.

Expanded Testing Standards: The Philadelphia Department of Public Health is now recommending COVID-19 coronavirus testing for anyone regardless of age who has a new cough, is experiencing new shortness of breath, or two of the following symptoms: fever, chills, muscle pain, sore throat, headache, new loss of taste or smell. The expansion of testing recommendations comes as a result of the increasing availability of coronavirus testing at public health and commercial laboratories. Increased testing for the coronavirus is a key part of the City’s and Pennsylvania’s plan to re-open safely. More details can be found here.

COVID-19 Resources:

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