Resources related to COVID from Gov Tony Evers and Mandela Barnes (14 August 2020)
“On behalf of the people of Wisconsin, Lieutenant Governor Barnes and I hope this email finds you safe and healthy. As we have done throughout the past several months, we would like to provide you with the most up to date and accurate information available regarding the current public health crisis.
As of August 14, Wisconsin has seen over 63,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19. Over one thousand Wisconsinites have died from COVID-19. I would like to extend my deepest condolences to everyone who has lost someone they love during this pandemic. Our entire state is thinking of you and holding you in our hearts, and our administration will continue to do everything we can to limit the spread of COVID-19.
Unfortunately, throughout July we saw a surge in new cases across our state and, although we are fighting the same pandemic, we now find ourselves in a completely different situation. Although our local public health officials and frontline workers have done a heck of a job keeping our communities safe, July’s rise in cases reinforces the reality that COVID-19 does not stop at county or municipal lines. That’s why, on July 30, I declared a new public health emergency and issued Emergency Order #1 to put in place a statewide face covering requirement. Emergency Order #1 implemented the Centers for Disease Control’s recommendations requiring face coverings and masks and allowed Wisconsin to join the vast majority of states in recognizing the importance and effectiveness of face coverings in preventing the spread of COVID-19. If you have questions about the statewide face covering requirement, please consult this list of frequently asked questions.
We recognize that many Wisconsinites continue to struggle financially. You may find it useful to know that the Public Service Commission (PSC) voted in late July to prohibit utility disconnections until at least September 1 and will meet later this month to determine if a further extension is necessary. You can learn more about this decision and how it may affect you here. We have also included a more comprehensive list of financial resources below:
- If you are struggling to pay for groceries, you may qualify for the Department of Health Services’ FoodShare program.
- If you are struggling to afford health insurance, you may be eligible for one or more programs offered through the DHS or the Office of the Commissioner of Insurance.
- If you are struggling to pay your rent, you may be eligible for the Department of Administration’s Wisconsin Rental Assistance Program.
- If you are a low-income parent or are pregnant and low income, you may be interested in the programs available through the Wisconsin Department of Children and Families.
- For more general resources, please see the following list available under the 211 Program. You can also call 2-1-1 to be connected to resources over the phone.
- If you receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) funds, you are not eligible under state law to also receive UI, but you may be eligible to receive Pandemic Unemployment Insurance (PUA). We encourage you to apply online for PUA. Our administration is also advocating for the state legislature to change state law to ensure SSDI recipients can qualify for UI in the future.
- If you are a farmer who has suffered economic damages to the COVID-19 Pandemic, you may be able to find financial resources through the Department of Revenue’s Wisconsin Farm Support Program. Applications are due by August 24.
- You can also complete the “Request for Assistance” form on my official website. This will connect you with a caseworker within our office.