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Keeping Woodstock Safe During the COVID-19 Pandemic

March 24, 2020 Update

Concerned about COVID-19 (aka coronavirus)? Unsure of who to call if you have questions? Don’t worry, Woodstock’s Emergency Operations Committee has a plan for keeping you and your family both safe and informed.   We receive information daily from the State and will share this with you. All posts are approved by David Green, the Town’s Emergency Manager.


What are the Governor’s new rules for Vermonters?

Gov. Scott declared a state of emergency and has since issued several executive orders to reduce close contact among individuals. 

On March 24 the Governor issued a Stay Home/Stay Safe Order

      ordering Vermonters to stay at home, leaving only for essential reasons, critical to health and safety;

      advising Vermonters to adhere to social distancing policies if leaving the home: remaining six feet from others and thoroughly and regularly washing hands;

      ordering the closure of all in-person operations for non essential businesses. There are exemptions for businesses and entities providing services or functions deemed critical to public health and safety, as well as economic and national security. This includes – but is not limited to – health care operations; retail serving essential human needs, like grocery stores, pharmacies and hardware stores; fuel products and supply; news media; maintenance of critical infrastructure; and transportation and critical manufacturing sectors. For a full list, please review the order at https://governor.vermont.gov/content/addendum-6-executive-order-01-20.


Earlier executive orders


      bars and restaurants,  except for take-out or delivery of food and alcohol;

      schools and child care facilities (other than those providing services for the children of essential personnel)

      DMV district offices;

      close-contact businesses, including gyms, fitness centers and similar exercise facilities, hair salons and barbers, nail salons, spas and tattoo parlors;

      postponed all non-essential medical procedures;

      restricted visitor access at long term care facilities and hospitals;

      directed all businesses and non-profits to put in place, to the maximum extent possible, telecommuting or work from home procedures;

      prohibited non-essential* mass gatherings of more than 10 people. 

*Note: a"non-essential gathering" does not include normal operations at airports, bus or railway stations where people may be in transit; typical office, construction, manufacturing, grocery, food production, retail and retail banking, professional or other employment environments; gatherings of the press; or operations of the Vermont Judiciary or General Assembly consistent with their constitutional authority. 


What is the latest news from Vermont’s Emergency Management?

      California, Delaware, Indiana, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Wisconsin and Vermont  issued stay-at-home orders.

      Hawaii has ordered all persons entering Hawaii self quarantine for 14 days or the duration of their stay, whichever is shorter.

      All non-essential businesses have been ordered closed in Connecticut, New York and Pennsylvania.

      The U.S. Department of State issued a global health advisory advising U.S. citizens to avoid all international travel. The U.S./Canadian and U.S./Mexico borders are closed to non-essential travel.

      American Red Cross is experiencing a national blood supply shortage.


What is the latest advice from the Vermont Department of Health?

Vermont is now experiencing community spread of COVID-19, which is why everyone is encouraged to keep a safe distance from others – or to stay home when possible – to help slow the spread of the virus and protect our vulnerable populations.


The Department of Health wants Vermonters to know:

      Testing is currently limited and is prioritized to healthcare workers, hospitalized patients, and those in long term care facilities.

      Not everybody needs to be tested. Do not call the Health Department. Do not go to the hospital, except in a life-threatening situation.

      Drive-up testing is available at DHMC with an appointment if you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

      If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath), drink fluids, get rest and take fever reducing medication as appropriate.

      If you need to go food shopping, to the pharmacy or do other essential activities, keep a distance of 6 feet between yourself and others. Six feet is about the length of a 3-person couch or a bed.

      Please connect with family, friends and your community in responsible ways ­­such as using technology, going outside, learning a new skill or helping others in need. We encourage social distancing, not social isolation!


How can I protect myself?

According to the Vermont Department of Health: There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19 infection. Person-to-person spread of the virus is thought to occur mainly via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. Much is still unknown about how the virus spreads. Take these everyday preventive actions to help stop the spread of germs:

      Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

      Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

      Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

      Stay home as much as possible and especially when you are sick.

      Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

      Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

      If you traveled to affected locations or were on a cruise within the past two weeks or have been in close contact with a person with COVID-19, and develop a fever, cough or have difficulty breathing, contact your health care provider right away.   


When should I self-isolate?

You should begin to self-isolate the moment you suspect that you or a person with whom you’ve had close contact, such as a family member, have been exposed to COVID-19 or begin to feel the symptoms described above.

You should self-isolate if you are returning from travel in Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Europe, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Malaysia, South Korea, United Kingdom, or from a cruise. Stay home and monitor your health for 14 days. Call the Health Department at 802-863-7240 for monitoring information. (For the most update information please go to https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov)

Self-isolation is absolutely necessary to stop the spread of the disease and to allow Woodstock and the country to return back to normal life. Don’t wait until you’ve seen a doctor, or for your test results to come in -- start self-isolating immediately. If it turns out that you or a family member are infected you may spread it to other people unwittingly.


Will self-isolation help me get better faster?

Self isolation won’t quicken the healing process. We self-isolate to secure the health and safety of our friends, neighbors and larger Woodstock community. It’s one of our best defenses for keeping the community safe.


Additional Resources


      Centers for Disease Control and Prevention site on COVID-19

      Vermont Department of Health

      University of Vermont Health Network

      Call 211 with any questions you have




How is the town operating during this crisis?

Woodstock Town Hall is limiting access to the public to protect the health and well being of employees and citizens. Our Town employees are working and are available to assist you.


How do I connect with the different Town Departments?

You can call 802-457-3456 or use the phone in the lobby to connect you to the resource you wish to contact. Or you can send an email to the appropriate department; addresses can be found at townofwoodstock.org.


How can I contact the Woodstock Listers?

The Listers are now working remotely. If you need to get in touch with the listers for Property Record Cards, Itemized Cost Reports and/or Tax Maps you can  visit the web page: https://townofwoodstock.org/departments/town-listers or call  802-457-3607 or email woodstocklisters@townofwoodstock.org    


And a special request from the Sewer Department

Please don’t flush paper towels, baby wipes or other wipes down the toilet. These items can clog the Town’s sewer system and then we’ll have another emergency to live with!


What if I don’t have food or necessary supplies to self-isolate?

Woodstock Emergency Management is here to help support you and your family if you need to self-isolate.


To request assistance, call 802-457-7516. This line is answered 24.7 and a responder will get back to you as soon as possible.


What assistance is available to me if I need to self-isolate?

Woodstock Emergency Management will arrange for you to receive:

      Food and water supplies

      Necessary medications

      Financial assistance, if required


How will Woodstock Emergency Management get groceries and medications delivered to me?

When you speak with the emergency responder we will discuss your needs and will assign your request to a volunteer (see below if you wish to volunteer). A volunteer will purchase your items at Macs, or the pharmacy that fills your prescriptions, and deliver them to your front door.

Additionally, the Woodstock Farmers Market is now accepting web-based orders for curb-side pickup. Visit https://woodstockfarmersmarket.com/ to place an order. Orders placed between 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM will be available for next-day pickup. A volunteer will pick them up for you.


How do I sign up to volunteer?

Woodstock Emergency Management is seeking your help should the need arise. The Town now has a group email for volunteers. Should you wish to offer your services please email Volunteer@townofwoodstock.org and include the following information:

      Your name

      Your phone number

      The neighborhood you live in

      Offer of service (driving , donations for food, shopping or special service you may be able to offer. )

As the needs arise you may be contacted individually or via an email blast with a request.


What can I do to help my neighbors?

Woodstock is a caring community, and many of you are eager to help your neighbors. It’s a good idea to call them every day, especially if they are elderly and live alone. A friendly voice will go a long way in relieving their isolation. Moreover, your daily check ins will help Woodstock Emergency Services ensure they are safe and sound. If you notice a change in their behavior, or they don’t answer their phone or return your calls, call the police department 802-457-1420.

  How can I shop safely in Woodstock during the coronavirus health emergency? Visit here for a list of stores selling food and merchandise, as well restaurants—including hours, services and contacts. Many businesses offer the option of shopping online and over the phone, with home delivery available.  



Fantastic Fungi Day

 March 26, 2020 7:30-9:00 pm Virtual Q&A with Filmmaker and Paul Stamets starts at 9:00 pm At the Woodstock Town Hall Theater [Google Maps]

Unfortunately we needed to cancel this event. We hope to postpone to a future date. Please contact Pentangle if you have already purchased your tickets and are seeking a refund. Please consider turning your purchase into a donation to Pentangle to support their great work and our local businesses during this difficult financial time. (802) 457-3981   info@pentanglearts.org

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