*Internet Explorer will not work with the above-provided links. Anyone who registers that is not 75+ or a resident of Providence will have their appointment cancelled. In the coming days, additional clinic dates will be added to https://www.providenceri.gov/vaccinate/.
Residents who need assistance signing up for an appointment are encouraged to dial 3-1-1 to speak with a representative who can walk you through the enrollment process in English or Spanish. Although additional staff are supporting phone lines, residents should expect longer than normal wait times as MCCS anticipates a higher than normal call volume.
Rhode Island is in the beginning stages of distributing the COVID-19 vaccine. It is safe to get vaccinated and Rhode Island is working hard to get the vaccine to those who need it the most. To learn more about the vaccine and distribution plans, click here.
Everyone must wear face masks when at work or out in public until further notice. Learn more about masks here: Face Masks
Walk-up and drive-thru testing is available at several locations throughout Providence. Click here for information about when and where to get tested (English and Spanish): https://bit.ly/35flOQE
If you are feeling anxious, depressed, or overwhelmed you can access services for adults and children where you will be matched with mental health professionals. Adults can call BHLink at 414-Link and for children, you can call KidsLink at 855-543-5465. If you are experiencing violence in the home or other mental health struggles here is a great resource provided by the RI Department of Health: In EnglishEn Español
If you are sick at all – headache, runny nose, cough, fever or other symptoms you must stay home from work.
If you are in quarantine the state has set up a program for food service, you can go to RIDelivers.com or call 211 to access this service.
Keep a daily log of where you have been and who you came in contact with to help in mitigation and contact tracing if you become infected with the COVID-19 virus.
The Red Cross has launched the Virtual Family Assistance Center. This program will provide help to families who have lost a family member due to COVID-19, this includes counseling services, legal resources, funeral information and more.
Updates Regarding the Federal, State, and City’s Response to COVID-19
As of December 20, 2020 new guidance is in effect for the state of Rhode Island. Click here to see the latest social distancing guidelines and restrictions.
Anyone who would like confidential assistance with any questions they have regarding healthcare, testing, housing, food delivery, etc, can call “The Point” this is a confidential help line. The number is 401-462-4444
The State of Rhode Island has launched a website to describe the plan to reopen the economy here you can find guidance for reopening your business, plans for the phases of re-opening and resources: REOPENINGRI.COM
Rhode Island launched a one-stop COVID-19 app called Crush COVID RI. This app is available on the Apple app store and on Google Play in English and Spanish.
Any public facing employee (store clerks, office workers, etc.) will be required to wear a cloth face mask while at work. Residents also must wear the same type of cloth masks while out in public. Be sure that it covers your nose and mouth to keep others safe from the virus and other germs. To learn more visit: Face Masks How To’s
The RI Department of Health is looking for part-time or retired public health workers including doctors, nurses, LPN’s, CNA’s, CNE’s, social workers and mental health workers to help during the crisis. If you would like to sign-up please visit RIResponds.Org.
The RI DMV is providing 90-day extensions on registrations, renewals, etc. from the date of March 1, 2020 until the crisis is over.
Don’t fall prey to COVID-19 Scams. No government agency will ask for your SSN or your address, they know it. For more information visit the Federal Trade Commission’s site regarding scams: FTC
If you are seeing price gouging the Attorney General has created an online complaint form: Online Complaint Form
There is now a 30-day waiting period for the purchase of firearms in place, due to the need to have safety personnel available to assist with the ongoing health crisis.
Governor Raimondo announced the WeR1 initiative, in an effort to bring relief to Rhode Islanders who are undocumented and therefore are not eligible to benefit from Federal and State relief programs. Donations to the weR1 Rhode Island Fund can be made at http://bit.ly/give-wer1 or by texting weR1 to 27126. Learn more here.
City Hall Updates
The City Council Office is now open and ready to assist you. Please call our office at 401-521-7477 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
All emergency services including Police, Fire, Emergency Medical Services and—for life safety matters only— Animal Control will continue regular operations.
City Hall is open for business. All visitors must come in through the back door on Eddy St and will be screened for COVID-19 Symptoms.
How to Volunteer, Help Your Neighbors, How to Safely Grocery Shop, & Restaurant Food Donations
The United Way of Rhode Island is creating a list of volunteers as a proactive measure to protect and support our communities during COVID-19. If you’re interested in helping nonprofits meet Rhode Islanders’ basic needs, please complete this short survey. Note: we’ll only contact you if there is a match.
The RI Department of Health is looking for part-time or retired public health workers including doctors, nurses, LPN’s, CNA’s, CNE’s, social workers and mental health workers to help during the crisis. If you would like to sign-up please visit RIResponds.Org
Check out this handy guide of best practices that City Council has created: English and En Español
The City’s Healthy Communities Department has issued the following guidelines for grocery shopping: English and En Español
If you are a restaurant or would like to donate food from a restaurant, please follow these guidelines: English and En Español
How Can a Business Donate to the Department of Health
If you are a business owner and have the ability, supplies, or equipment to donate to the Health Department please fill out this online form: Health Donation Form
Do not go to malls or areas where large numbers of people may be – like bars or restaurants.
Do go for a walk or a run – it just means that you need to keep your distance from other people. Otherwise seemingly healthy people can be a carrier for COVID-19 and have no symptoms, but it can quickly spread – especially to individuals over the age of 60 or to those who have compromised immune systems or other underlying health concerns. So please be mindful.
Practice Social Distancing: Social Distancing is the practice of keeping a distance of roughly 4 to 6 feet between you and other people – even your loved ones. It means no close personal contact like hugging or handshaking. Say hello or nod your head when greeting a friend or neighbor.
Remember to practice safe hygiene by washing your hands, coughing and sneezing into your elbows, using hand sanitizer, and staying indoors and at home if feeling sick.
Resources Regarding Providence City Schools and Meal Services for Residents 18 & Younger.
The Providence Public School Department has a distance learning hotline for students and families: 401-456-0686
What Distance Learning looks like – check out this Google Document for more information: Distance Learning
For updates regarding the Providence Public School Department’s response to COVID-19 click here.
To answer any questions about the new 2020-2021 school year for Providence Public Schools visit: reopenpvdschools.org
Grab and Go meals will be provided for distance learners under the age of 18 on Tuesdays and Fridays from 2:30-4:30 PM. For more details and a list of pick-up locations in English and Spanish, click here.
Resources Around Utilities, Social, Federal and State Services
To find out more information regarding the U.S. Economic Impact Payment Program (Stimulus Checks) see these Resurces:
Residential trash and recycling pick-ups are considered essential services and will continue as scheduled.
Department of Labor and Training (DLT), and HealthSource RI will be moving to online and telephone-only services until further notice. This includes all new applications, renewals, or changes in benefits. Individuals who need to drop off paper applications will be able to do so without speaking with a customer service representative.
SNAP recipients are now able to buy groceries online from Amazon and participating Walmarts with their EBT cards.
Resources for Seniors
Providence has several meal sites dedicated to serving older adults throughout the city. Please contact each site directly as information may change daily: Senior Meal Sites
Grocery stores throughout Rhode Island are providing dedicated shopping hours to promote the safety and wellness of older adults: Dedicated Senior Shopping Hours
SeniorLiving.Org has compiled information on how to help seniors with communication, grocery delivery, home care and, health monitoring. This guide, Social Distancing: Apps for Seniors, provides practical apps for seniors (tech-savvy or not), along with setup assistance.
Governor Raimondo and the Rhode Island Office of Health Aging held a Facebook Town Hall for older Rhode Islanders. This can be viewed here.
Governor Raimondo took some time to go over the current situation in nursing homes.
About 76% of Rhode Island deaths due to COVID-19 have been nursing home residents. This is higher than both Massachusetts and Connecticut.
However, on a per capita basis, Rhode Island has seen less nursing home deaths compared to MA and CT.
Rhode Island is currently in the third phase of nursing home testing; through this program, every nursing home employee is able to get tested for COVID-19.
The National Guard has been providing assistance to any nursing home that requests it. This assistance includes employee PPE training, supplemented staffing for understaffed shifts, grief and trauma counseling, increased employee wages and increased PPE funding.
Resources for Renters & Homeowners
The State of Rhode Island has created a fund to help individuals who have past due rent and for those eligible can seek a grant of up to $5K. To find out if you are eligible, please visit HousingHelpRI.com or call the United Way at 2-1-1 if you don’t have access to the internet.
The State of Rhode Island has partnered with several financial institutions to provide a 90-day grace period on residential mortgage payments, no negative impacts to credit ratings from this relief, no late fees or charges, and a 60-day moratorium on initiating foreclosure sales or evictions for those who are impacted by COVID-19. To find a list of participating financial institutions visit the Department of Business Regulation.
HomesRI has released fact sheets on your rights as a tenant and how you can be protected during this COVID-19 crisis: In EnglishEn Español
HomesRI has released fact sheets on your rights as a homeowner and how you can be protected during this COVID-19 crisis: In EnglishEn Español
Are you a tenant behind on your rent because of COVID-19? Or a landlord whose tenants need help getting back on their feet? Then you may be able to take advantage of the Safe Harbor Housing Program from the United Way of Rhode Island. Click here to learn more.
Resources for Lost Wages and Employee Rights
Here is a great resource of what you may or may not qualify for, and how to apply as published by WPRI News.
If you need to stay home because of COVID-19, there are resources for you. Please DO NOT go into work if you are sick. Click here for the various resources available, including paid sick leave, unemployment benefits and options for undocumented immigrants.
If you lost a job due to COVID-19 or you are unemployed, the State has launched a new website to match employees with companies that are hiring: employri.org
If you have lost work or have to stay home because of COVID-19, the state may be able to help: Workplace Aid
If you are quarantined with COVID-19 you can apply for Temporary Disability Insurance (TDI): TDI Application
If the place where you work closes or your employer tells you that you must stay home without pay, you may be able to collect Unemployment Insurance if you can please fill out the form online and not call the office as it slows down processing of checks: File an Unemployment Claim
Are you a member of the RI AFL-CIO? Here’s a comprehensive guide of resources if you are out of work and other benefits: AFL-CIO
Resources for the Self-Employed, Contract Workers, Sole Proprietors, or Gig Workers
Gig workers, contract workers, self-employed, small business owners, sole proprietors, and other people who do not qualify for traditional unemployment insurance (UI) benefits are covered in the new federal CARES Act, can file online here: File an Unemployment Claim
Resources for Small Businesses
A second stimulus package has replenished the Paycheck Protection Program Loan Fund. If you are a small business owner you are encouraged to call your banker immediately. If you do not currently have a relationship with a bank please email email@example.com and they will help you find a lender.
The City of Providence has made adjustments to the Providence Business Loan Fund (PBLF) allowing businesses to borrow as little as $10K with closing costs capped at $500, with zero interest for up to 12 months, and deferred loan payments for 6-12 months. To further address the current disruption to the business community, PBLF is suspending the accrual of interest and fees on the loans to all current borrowers in April. Businesses interested in learning more about PBLF—including eligibility requirements—should visit providencebusinessloanfund.com, or contact PBLF Director Tom Hoagland by calling 401-680-8412.
The state is launching a short-term bridge loan program for businesses with 10 or fewer employees. The loan fund is seeded with $2M, and you are able to apply for the loan after you have filled out the SBA Disaster Assistance Loan Application. Call (401) 521-HELP.
The SBA Disaster Loan Assistance has been approved by the Small Business Administration, please note due to high volume the website has had a tendency to move slow or crash: Application
If you own a small business and need assistance because of COVID-19, the RI Commerce Corporation asks that you call: The Small Business Hotline (401) 521-HELP during normal business hours or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org any time. They can help by guiding you through the claims process.
Commerce RI, with support from volunteers from the Tech Community, will provide free tech support and advice on moving their businesses to remote working.
The Department of Business Regulations‘ regulations include a defined number of people allowed in the establishment at one time, creating social distancing in lines, increased and more thorough cleaning, and having designated staff to keep a physical count of shoppers in a store at any given one time.
If you are having issues with the Disaster Loan Assistance application, or have been issued a denial please call 401-521-HELP.
If you have lost business because of COVID-19, we ask that you fill out the Estimated Disaster Economic Injury Worksheet shared by the US Small Business Administration. By doing this, it may help Rhode Island get federal aid in support of our small businesses who have suffered adversely due to the ramifications of COVID-19.
Potential Resources for Educators, Learners, and those Craving the Arts
If you have access to streaming services, some of Broadway’s best shows are available across platforms including Amazon Prime, Apple, Netflix, Hulu, PBS and a host of others. Here’s a good list compiled by Playbill: Broadway on the Small Screen
Fan of opera? Want to expose your young ones to one of the oldest performance artforms, NYC’s Metropolitan Opera is offering nightly viewings of some of their most revered performances: OperaWire
12 of the world’s most famous museums have virtual tours you can access online for free. Check out this article from Travel & Leisure to find one you might want to visit! Virtual Museum Tours
The Rhode Island Department of Education is launching “Sail” Courses this summer. This temporary program is designed for students of all ages who may have fallen behind in distance learning. This program is free and there are a wide variety of courses for students from PreK-12. More information can be found on https://www.ride.ri.gov/Home.aspx
Providence Restaurants Open for Takeout or Delivery: Thank You Eat Drink RI for This List For a Complete List of Restaurants Open in Rhode Island: Eat Drink RI
The Members of the City Council have been in constant communication with the Administration, the Providence Emergency Management Agency, the Providence School Department, and Public Safety officials to assess and ensure the safety of our residents during these trying times.
As you are aware, yesterday Governor Raimondo moved the spring vacation of all public schools in the State of Rhode Island to begin on Monday, March 16, 2020. Since that announcement, the Providence School Department has worked to put mechanisms in place to ensure that no student goes hungry.
Beginning on Tuesday, March 17, there will be eight sites across the City where Providence Public School children can access “Grab & Go” lunches for that day and breakfast for the following day. The locations will be open from 11:00 am until 2:00 pm Monday – Friday during the duration of the break, and will continue if the State decides to keep schools closed for a longer period to stop the spread of COVID-19.
Service lines will be located at the front entrance of each school. No families will be allowed in the buildings. Sodexo staff will hand each student pre-packaged meals. To qualify for meals, students must attend a Providence Public School and be personally present at the distribution site.
During this time we ask that everyone continue to practice safe hygiene by washing their hands, coughing and sneezing into their elbows, using hand sanitizer, and staying indoors and at home if feeling sick.
Every student present in Providence schools on Friday – in grades 3-12 – was sent home with a Chrome Book so that they can access online learning and other tools. Here is a great selection of sites that have waived subscription fees during this period: Online Learning
The City has implemented a 100 person rule for restaurants and bars and has closed all City buildings and many of our cultural sites to protect against the spread of the virus. Today, the City launched a website with information for residents on COVID-19 and our response: Providence COVID-19.
The City is also working with utility companies to ensure that if someone is unable to pay their bill due to lack of income, that their services will not be interrupted. As we know more about these programs we will share them in later updates.
As of now, we are awaiting direction from the Attorney General’s Office regarding public attendance at the City Council meeting on Thursday, March 19 at 7:00 pm. Due to the advice of the Rhode Island Department of Health and the City to implement “social-distancing” we encourage you to watch the meeting on our YouTube Channel or Facebook Page where it will be livestreamed.
For more information on what you should do if you feel that you may have contracted COVID-19, or come into contact with someone that could potentially have COVID-19 please visit the Rhode Island Health Department’s website or by calling the COVID-19 hotline at 401-222-8022.
City Council President Sabina Matos and the Members of the Providence City Council
Since being sworn in as the Councilor representing Ward 8 in January 2019, Councilman James Taylor has made a tradition of holding Bingo nights for his elderly constituents.
In Ward 8, there are three high rises housing elderly community members along with two high rises that provide low-income housing. Because these high rises are home to a concentrated number of constituents with specific needs, Councilman Taylor makes a point to visit frequently.
“Bingo nights are an opportunity for me to engage with my constituents, and make sure their needs are being met in their building and their community, as well as a time for us to come together as a neighborhood and have fun,” said Councilman Taylor.
Snacks, gift cards, and raffles are available to all attendees so that everybody has a chance to win. Council staff member Stephanie Jourdain joins to call out bingo numbers and translate for Spanish speaking constituents. State Senator Ana Quezada and State Representative Scott Slater also often come to play bingo and address the needs of their constituents.
In addition to Bingo Nights, Councilman Taylor hosted barbecues at the two low-income housing high rises in his ward, where the residents are often much younger. He recently provided domino tables for their community rooms, which have been a big hit.
Councilman Taylor continued “The only time high rises are full with visitors is on Christmas and Thanksgiving. I want Ward 8 constituents of all ages and backgrounds to know that they are an important part of our community and I am here to help them year-round.”
Story by Abigail Appel, University of Rhode Island, City Council Communications Intern
The City of Providence announced on March 29, 2019 that the state-mandated full real estate property revaluation is complete and real estate property value assessment notices will be mailed on April 15, 2019. At this time, the following 2018 real estate revaluation procedures have been executed: Data Collection of Building Data, Building Permit Inspections, Review Analysis of Sales, Cost and Land Analysis, Income & Expense Review, Commercial Market Rate Analysis, and Table Calculations.
Providence property owners will soon receive a notice (after April 15) advising them of the new appraised value of their real estate property prior to when the new value will officially be added to the tax roll.
What You Will Receive
How To Request A Review
The notice that contains the new appraised value will also explain how to arrange for a personal informal hearing to review the proposed assessment if they so choose. Recipients are asked to follow the instructions on your notice to book an appointment with Vision Government Solutions, Inc. for a hearing on any parcel. Please bring any information to support your request for a change; hearings are by appointment only. You can make an appointment online at www.vgsi.com/schedules or by phone by calling Vision Government Solutions at 1-888-844-4300.
Hearings will begin on April 23, 2019 and end on May 17, 2019 and will be held at either the Fox Point Boys and Girls Club located at 90 Ives Street or the Neutaconkanut Recreation Center located at 675 Plainfield Street.
The Hearing Schedule is as follows:
Monday-Thursday from 10 AM to 6 PM
Friday from 10 AM to 4:30 PM
Saturday, April 27 and May 11 from 10 AM to 4 PM
The notices providing the results of the informal hearing will be mailed no later than May 31, 2019 with final values delivered on June 3, 2019.
Per RI General Law 44-5-11.6, cities and towns are required to perform a statistical update every third and sixth year and a full property revaluation every nine years. Vision Government Solutions uses recent sales and market data to inform their findings.
Property owners should not use the current tax rates when estimating their 2019 tax bill. Once the notices have been mailed, property owners may view their 2018 Data on the Vision Government Solutions website.