Town Hall and Town Offices Closed to Public Effective Today
Town Administrator Mallory Aronstein, the Board of Selectmen and the Board of Health announce that the Town of Dighton has issued a Local Emergency Declaration to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19 to staff and the community.
With this decision, the town now has the ability to expend funds without budget allocation, request state resources as necessary and address emergency conditions as they come up.
As a precautionary measure, all town buildings will be closed to the public until further notice. The Dighton Police and Fire Departments will respond to emergency calls for service as normal, but will temporarily suspend walk-in, non emergency services. Residents are asked to contact the police business line at 508-669-6711 and the fire business line at 508-669-6611 or send an e-mail for non-emergencies.
The town has also begun to take the necessary steps to cancel non-essential government meetings. For now, town staff will continue to report to work as scheduled and provide services to residents via phone, email and online services.
Active Town Closures and Cancellations
The following will be closed until further notice:
- All non-essential board and committee meetings are cancelled.
- Town playgrounds are closed.
- Council on Aging activities are cancelled.
- Recreation activities and events are cancelled.
- The Dighton Public Library is closed. Library content will be available digitally.
- The Dighton Water District is closed to the public, but will continue to operate with essential personnel only.
- The Veterans Agent has suspended trips to the VA for the foreseeable future.
- Prime Time, Dighton’s Adult Day Care program will be closed.
- Dighton Public Schools are closed through at least April 7.
Dighton Town Hall and town offices are closed to the public effective today. Tax bills may be paid online or through a dropbox outside the town hall. Passports will not be processed. Employees will still be reporting to work, and residents are welcome to call to ask questions about town services
The track behind town hall WILL remain open as there is adequate space for appropriate social distancing
At this time, food bank distribution is still scheduled to take place on Saturday, March 21 at Town Hall, 979 Somerset Ave. The distribution will be conducted via “drive-thru” with pre-selected bags, organized by Lions Clubs volunteers and delivered to cars.
The Emergency Preparedness Committee continues to meet on a regular basis and will continue to closely monitor regional, state and national developments with COVID-19. The committee will meet on Thursday, March 19 to re-evaluate the measures put into place and will make further changes if necessary.
On Sunday, March 15 Gov. Charlie Baker announced new guidelines for all Massachusetts residents to promote social distancing and help to prevent the spread of COVID-19:
- No gatherings of any kind of more than 25 people at one time, in one place
- All public and private schools in Massachusetts will close on Tuesday, March 17 until at least April 7.
- All bars and restaurants will only be able to serve takeout customers.
Dighton residents, business owners and community members are asked to abide by these newest guidelines from the Governor’s office.
In accordance with the most recent guidelines outlined at the state level, Dighton’s closures are a proactive step to limit the potential spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
The COVID-19 situation is very fluid, and new information and guidelines are being posted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on a regular basis. The CDC offers the following guidance for how COVID-19 spreads.
If anyone displays symptoms of COVID-19, including a fever, cough or shortness of breath, they should not go to work or school and are advised to contact their primary care physician. According to the CDC, symptoms of the virus appear within 2-14 days of exposure.
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) recommends that residents continue with good hygiene practices including:
- Practice good hand hygiene! Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds including under your fingernails. Alcohol-based hand sanitizer (at least 60% alcohol content) can be used when soap and water are not available.
- Keep your hands away from your face.
- Cover your nose and mouth when sneezing and coughing with a tissue and discard it immediately. Cough into the sleeve over your elbow instead of your hand. Wash your hands often when coughing and sneezing.
- Stay away from people who are sick and stay home when you are sick.