Staying Connected and Informed During the Coronavirus Outbreak

City of Palo Alto
Mar 15 · 6 min read

Learn more about City facility closures and resources to keep a sense of normalcy during heightened community concerns over the coronavirus

During this time of heightened public health risk and community concern, it is important to know you are not alone and there is help and resources available to answer your questions. We are encouraging our community to stay strong, be well and help each other. Check on your neighbors, call family members, and connect with friends. As a community, we are in this together.

This blog offers ways you can help slow the spread of this virus, shares details about City operations and other City approaches to respond to Santa Clara County’s Public Health Department’s Order banning gatherings of people, and more details about our public safety response to COVID-19 to keep you safe, informed and connected.

WHAT DO YOU DO IF YOU FEEL SICK?

One of the biggest questions we are receiving is what to do if you feel ill. There is a webpage for that!

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers easy to follow guidance on COVID-19 symptoms and what to do if you feel sick or may have symptoms. Go here for CDC guidance.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

CDC Educational Materials- Washing your hands will help slow the spread of this virus

Stay home if you are sick, use hygiene best practices including washing your hands, calling your health practitioner before going to the hospital if you have COVID-19 symptoms and other healthy lifestyle approaches. Help our most vulnerable community members stay safe during this public health emergency by demonstrating that hygiene is important for everyone. Vulnerable members of our community include persons over 50 years of age and those at highest risk are persons over 80 years and older and those with underlying health conditions and those with severely weakened immune systems.

Click here for the City’s community guidance on ways to slow the spread of COVID-19.

In addition, information is helpful to not only stay calm, but it also helps stay connected. Please share our communications and updates with your neighbors, families, and friends. Staying informed is important. As a community, we are in this together, so please check on your neighbors, call family members, and connect with friends.

OPEN SPACE PRESERVES AND CITY PARKS REMAIN OPEN & E-LIBRARY RESOURCES AVAILABLE

Open Space Preserves and parks will also remain open at this time with enhanced cleaning at playgrounds. While Open Space preserves remain open, the interpretive centers in the Baylands, Pearson Arastradero Preserve and Foothills Park are closed. Restrooms are open. In Foothills Park, the Interpretive Center restrooms are available through the rear doors only.

Palo Alto’s eLibrary is available 24/7 with tons of digital resources, including eBooks and Audiobooks; streaming movies, TV, and music; online learning; and digital subscriptions to newspapers and magazines.

DETAILS ABOUT CITY FACILITY CLOSURES AND OUR APPROACH TO CONTINUING TO PROVIDE CITY SERVICES

Effective immediately, Palo Alto’s libraries, the Art Center, recreation facilities such as the Mitchell Park Community Center and Teen Center, Lucie Stern Community Center, the Junior Museum and Zoo, the Children’s Theatre and Rinconada Pool are closed. The Palo Alto Animal Shelter is handling adoptions by appointment only. City-related events and programs at Cubberley Community Center are suspended and tenants at Cubberley may modify or suspend their activities in accordance with the County guidance. Access to City Hall and the Development Center will be by appointment only.

Police and Fire emergency services will continue. For an emergency situation, please call 911. For non-emergency situations, requiring a police response, please call (650) 329–2406 or the 24/7 Non-Emergency Dispatch Line call (650) 329–2413. For Fire Administration service requests, call (650) 329–2184. Police and Fire non-emergency administrative services are available by appointment only, please call (650) 329–2406 or the 24/7 Non-Emergency Dispatch Line call (650) 329–2413.

For all service changes, go here. For a recent Palo Alto City Library message, go here. For a recent Development Center message, go here.

HOW TO KEEP A SENSE OF NORMALCY

We’d love to hear from you about your strategies on staying calm and keeping a sense of normalcy through this public health situation. In case you need a few tips to get started, we’ve got you covered.

We know its raining, but you can still hike, what’s a little rain? Go outside, walk in your neighborhood, check out a Palo Alto park or playground, hike a local trail, or ride your bike (or stationary bike!). For more about Palo Alto parks, playgrounds and Open Space Preserves, go here.

Download a movie, book, or video games to distract your kids through the Palo Alto Library’s e-library resources. Learn more here.

Learn a new fitness routine you can do at home. Find videos on YouTube. Cook a new recipe. Search library books, ebooks, audio books, videos and more.

Check on your neighbors, other family members, connect with friends.

Read about wellness routines to reduce stress the whole family can do together. Stanford has some online resources to get started.

Consider purchasing gift cards or certificates from your favorite local merchants to show your support of our neighborhood businesses during these quieter times.

For all the ways to stay connected with us on social media, go here.

HOW BUSINESSES CAN GET HELP

This is a hard time for everyone and that includes our local businesses, retail stores, restaurants and hotels, just to name a few. Some help is coming. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) anticipates funds will become available to help small businesses in California affected by a lagging economy due to the coronavirus outbreak. More information will be available at www.sba.gov. In the meantime, the SBA provides information on Economic Injury Loans as well as the SBA’s disaster assistance offices’ Preparedness and Recovery fact sheets. The CDC has also put out guidance for businesses to help prevent exposures to respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19.

STAY INFORMED AND BE PREPARED WITH THESE ONLINE TOOLS

PaloAltoConnect

Official communications from the City of Palo Alto.

City of Palo Alto

Written by

Official communications from the City of Palo Alto. Connect about issues of interest to our community. Follow us on social media at www.cityofpaloalto.org

PaloAltoConnect

Official communications from the City of Palo Alto. Connect and join the conversation on issues of interest to our community.

More From Medium

More on Community from PaloAltoConnect

More on Silicon Valley from PaloAltoConnect

More on Silicon Valley from PaloAltoConnect

In the Public Interest

More on Community from PaloAltoConnect

More on Community from PaloAltoConnect

Staying Connected Through Information

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch
Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore
Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade