COVID-19 Update and Resources
As your State Senator I wanted to reach out in this uncertain time to provide reliable information and updates regarding COVID-19 and how you can keep yourself and your loved ones safe and healthy. I want to first emphasize the most important things you can do right now.
Stay home as much as possible and practice social distancing
Wear a face covering when going out (N95 masks are reserved for medical workers)
Avoid groups of more than ten people.
Limit trips to only necessary places, such as the grocery store and pharmacy.
Remember to follow CDC guidelines available here. Arizona has also launched an all-in-one resource website for Coronavirus available here in English and Spanish.
It’s impossible to stress just how critical the next few weeks are in slowing the spread of the illness and we all must do our part to keep our families and communities safe. To that point, we’ve compiled a list of resources available at the federal, state and local level, listed below. Please feel free to forward this information to anyone you know!
Although the Arizona Legislature is recess, please know as your Senator that I am working hard to keep you informed. Please do not hesitate to contact me directly if you have more questions or need additional information. You can also reach out to me directly at (602) 926-4864 or TNavarrete@azleg.gov.
HEALTHCARE AND LATEST UPDATES ON COVID-19
Remember to follow CDC guidelines https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
Arizona all-in-one resource website for Coronavirus https://arizonatogether.org/#individual-resources
Arizona Department of Health Services Website includes state related information about the illness and where to get a test.
Arizona Department of Health Services Hotline number: 1-844-542-8201
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - federal information on the COVID-19 crisis. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/index.html
HOUSING, FOOD AND NECESSITIES
AZ Department of Economic Security (DES) Services – DES has set up a specific COVID-19 page with information and phone numbers. Please note that information for unemployment insurance benefits are provided on this website. https://des.az.gov/services/coronavirus
Food banks – This is a directory of food banks in Arizona provided through the Arizona Food Bank Network. http://www.azfoodbanks.org/index.php/foodbank/
Health-e-Arizona PLUS – Online application for nutrition assistance (food stamps), Medicaid (AHCCCS) and cash assistance. https://www.healthearizonaplus.gov/Default/Default.aspx#
Telephone assistance for the application - 1-855-432-7587
Arizona 211 – Arizona 211 has compiled a great list of resources in one place. Individuals can either call 211 from their phone or browse their website. https://211arizona.org/
Community Action Agencies (CAA) – CAAs offer a wide variety of services including rental assistance and general casework. https://des.az.gov/services/basic-need/community-action-agencies
24/7 Hotline Number - 602-264-4357
UTILITIES AND BILL PAY
Many utilities are offering assistance with bills including delayed shut offs for people who can’t afford to pay. You will need to call each specific company and inquire about what may be available to assist you. Customers are encouraged to call their utility providers with questions or go to the utility’s website. If you have issues dealing satisfactorily with your specific utility, you may contact the Commission’s Consumer Services Section at (602) 542-4251 (Phoenix office), (520) 628-6550 (Tucson office) or 1 (800) 222-7000 (toll free in-state only).
The Arizona Corporation Commission has been meeting regularly about the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. Utilities are committing to no disconnections or late fees over the next 60 days -- as part of Governor Ducey's electric utility relief package.
Telecommunication companies are expanding broadband and increasing bandwidth and connectivity near schools and in libraries. Public WIFI hotspots will also be open for free. This follows the Keep America Connected Pledge, the Federal Communications Commission’s broadband and telecom industry initiative, which is intended to keep customers connected during the pandemic
The Arizona Department of Housing offers limited eviction assistance in certain zip codes, please refer to this website for further information.
EDUCATION INFORMATION AND FOOD SERVICES THROUGH PUBLIC SCHOOLS
Public Schools – The AZ Department of Education has guidance for parents and schools on their website: https://www.azed.gov/communications/2020/03/10/guidance-to-schools-on-covid-19/
Meals for Kids During Coronavirus School Closures: https://www.azhealthzone.org/summerfood
This is a list of sites at which meals are available: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1whTQcN8jk2jtdHwQ3iDTSans8rbiOc1vi5esMBB6gto/edit#gid=0
Information from the US Department of Education on providing services to children with disabilities is available here: https://www2.ed.gov/policy/speced/guid/idea/memosdcltrs/qa-covid-19-03-12-2020.pdf?utm_content=&utm_medium=email&utm_name=&utm_source=govdelivery&utm_term=
The Senior Help Line – The Senior Help Line is the top resource for Arizona’s seniors and elderly. The hotline operates 24/7 and has a great library of resources to pull from. https://www.aaaphx.org/program-services/24-hour-senior-help-line/
Seniors in need of assistance getting groceries can call the Area Agency on Aging’s 24-Hour Senior Help Line at 602-264-HELP (602-264-4357) or toll free at 888-264-2258.
Those hard of hearing or deaf can text 520-775-1899
Several grocery chains—including Bashas, Food City, and AJ’s—have announced that they will be open between 5 am and 6 am only for customers 65 years and older.
RESOURCES FOR SMALL BUSINESSES
The Arizona Commerce Authority has set up a webpage with business specific resources.https://www.azcommerce.com/covid-19/
The Small Business Owner’s Guide to the CARES Act : https://www.sbc.senate.gov/public/_cache/files/9/7/97ac840c-28b7-4e49-b872-d30a995d8dae/F2CF1DD78E6D6C8C8C3BF58C6D1DDB2B.small-business-owner-s-guide-to-the-cares-act-final-.pdf
The U.S. Chamber’s Coronavirus Small Business Guide (available at uschamber.com/sbloans) outlines the steps small businesses should take now and prepare to access much-needed funds to help keep their workers on the payroll during this disruptive period. Further guides will be developed as the CARES Act becomes implemented.
The Paycheck Protection Program is the brand new program born out of the CARES package. This program is meant to be forgiven for loans up to $10 million, provided certain criteria are met. This includes using most of the loan for payroll and mortgage/utility costs. Loan payments are deferred for six months and mature in two years at a very low fixed interest rate of 0.5%. We will see how this ends up being managed by the U.S. Treasury/SBA.
The Arizona Attorneys Response is a program where a weekly COVID-19 related topic is published and individuals are given an opportunity to submit legal questions that will be answered by an attorney with expertise in that area the following week. There isno fee associated. Email questions to: Carol.Rose@staff.azbar.org
The Arizona State Bar’s general contact for businesses or individuals seeking a general information and/or legal services referral:
Arizona State Bar Association
General inquiries/lawyer referral: email@example.com
Community Legal Services: https://clsaz.org/
Consumer protections: https://www.azag.gov/consumer
RESOURCES FOR DOMESTIC AND SEXUAL VIOLENCE SURVIVORS
The Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence (ACESDV) has a resource page for sexual and domestic violence survivors during the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic. Available here: https://www.acesdv.org/covid-19/
For people who want to speak with someone immediately, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at (800)-799-SAFE (7233) or (800)-787-3224 (TTY) or by calling the National Sexual Assault Hotline at (800)-656-HOPE (4673).
RESOURCES FOR SPANISH-SPEAKING/ UNDOCUMENTED COMMUNITIES
For information in Spanish, here’s the CDC guide.
Puente Arizona has created this COVID-19 resource guide in Spanish: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1yx02yPVGi_mXzgr2VVWABf-2vzAOQLMTg4e9b1pzZms/edit?fbclid=IwAR35S6Dtwfb7GIvpo-fuMlgTR3me5W8UJXyoMlNiaMgnZNoRAMDQjjypjSM
United We Dream has also compiled these resources for undocumented people: https://unitedwedream.org/2020/03/healthcare-access-for-undocumented-folks-in-the-time-of-covid19/?fbclid=IwAR0mgbxwlFp1V3bMeP9yYkFFQAU05WZ8KqZ1vU8apWcw-o28GYInum9fknc
RESOURCES FOR TRIBAL COMMUNITIES
The Inter-Tribal Council of Arizona has a help line for Tribal members: 1-800-552-9257.
The Indian Health Service also has a page with COVID-19 information, including FAQs about testing and funding.
RESOURCES FOR VETERANS
BeConnected is available for Arizona veterans to identify and contact resources: Phone: 1-866-429-8387 or https://www.beconnectedaz.org/
OTHER GOVERNMENT RESOURCES
The League of Arizona Cities and Towns created a website of state and federal resources to help Arizona municipalities respond to the COVID-19 Pandemic.
The Arizona Association of Counties has compiled all the latest on Arizona’s response to the COVID-19 Pandemic.
The Governor’s Office – For questions specific to what the Governor is doing or Governor’s executive orders, please refer them to the Governor’s website.
FEDERAL GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
What is the federal government doing? – For any questions related to the federal government and any aid they may approve, please contact your Congressional members. Please note that until a bill passes at the federal level, agencies don’t know how it’ll affect benefits including social security, Medicaid and food stamps.
Senator Sinema - https://www.sinema.senate.gov/
Senator Kelly- https://www.kelly.senate.gov/
MVD, my driver’s license is expiring –Here is text from the MVD website:
“Driver License renewal requirements are extended six months from the expiration date for all Arizona driver licenses and driving permits that expire between March 1, 2020 and September 1, 2020. For example, if a driver license expires on March 20, 2020, the new expiration date will be September 20, 2020. Requirements to submit a medical clearance card for a commercial driver license are extended until September 1, 2020.
Full text can be found here: