HAVERHILL — As the Commonwealth comes to grips with a series of emergency measures taken by Gov. Charlie Baker, Haverhill Mayor James Fiorentini said the city is doing its part to keep residents safe and healthy in the face of coronavirus.
On Monday, Fiorentini said that while City Hall remains open, all city services have been shifted online. He advises residents to use the 311 constituent services hotline for any urgent matters.
“Everything that can be done at City Hall can be done online,” the mayor said. “We're asking people to go online and not to get in line. If there are elderly residents or others who are computer resistant, as long as they have access to a computer, they can call us at 311 and we'll guide them through it. 311 should work on every cell phone, but if it doesn't, try 978-358-1311.”
Trash pickup is still running as scheduled, Fiorentini said, but residents are advised to stay up to date on any changes through his “Haverhill News” Facebook page.
Police officers and other city stakeholders plan to fan out across Haverhill tonight to ensure local restaurants and locations where people congregate are aware of Baker's restrictions that begin Tuesday and run through April 7.
Per Baker's executive order, no on-site consumption is allowed at restaurants or bars and gatherings of more than 25 people are prohibited. Grocery stores and pharmacies are exempt from the ban.
To support small businesses while the ban is in place, Fiorentini, the Greater Haverhill Chamber of Commerce and state Rep. Andy Vargas have developed a database where locals can submit their information and ask for assistance or agree to help others in need. That link can be found here: https://t.co/QVlJc3t2CR
The Welcome Street Citizens Center will be closed to events and all community activities, including bingo, Fiorentini said. The community meals program will be transitioned to Meals on Wheels.
While Haverhill Public Schools are closed — through April 6 — breakfast and lunch will be offered for pickup weekdays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the following locations:
Consentino School, 685 Washington St.; Nettle School, 150 Boardman St.; the Haverhill YMCA at 81 Winter St.; and the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Haverhill, 55 Emerson St.
Fiorentini asks that residents do not call 911 unless it is an absolute emergency and be mindful not to “overwhelm” local medical facilities.
Starting Monday, Holy Family Hospital is restricting access at both the Haverhill and Methuen campuses, with only one visitor per patient allowed. All visitors must be over 18 and are only allowed inside after being screened.
“We're asking people not to rush down to the medical facilities,” the mayor said. “Call your doctor ahead of time and they will screen you on the phone. If your doctor really thinks you need to be checked, call that facility first to make sure they can handle you.”
Updated medical information can be found at coronavirus.gov or by calling 211.