March 25, 2020
In this Issue
  • Latest Updates on COVID-19
  • What Can I Do?
  • Commentary: More Work Left to be Done
Latest Updates on COVID-19
Visit for the latest updates on COVID-19
Fairfax County

3/24/2020--YMCA of Metropolitan Washington will distribute produce at its Reston Location, 12196 Sunset Hills Road, on Wednesdays 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. and Thursdays 9:00 a.m. to noon. You do not have to be a member of the Y. Bring your own bag. Learn more at YMCA Grocery Distribution.

3/23/2020--Superintendent of Schools Scott Bradburn announced, “A short while ago, Governor Northam announced that all Virginia K-12 schools will be closed for the remainder of the academic year. I know this is very disappointing news but also an understandable decision considering the environment we are in as we all try to do our part to flatten the curve and contain the spread of the virus. …. Read more

3/23/2020--Fairfax County Park Authority announced today that “With Fairfax County Park Authority playgrounds now closed, health officials also recommend refraining from playing on all playground equipment at this time, including community/neighborhood playgrounds…. Read more


3/23/2020--Governor Ralph Northam today issued, “a statewide order to protect the health and safety of Virginians and reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19. Executive Order Fifty-Three orders the closure of certain non-essential businesses, bans all gatherings of more than 10 people, and closes all K-12 schools for the remainder of the academic year. Governor Northam is also urging all Virginians to avoid non-essential travel outside the home, if and when possible. This order goes into effect at 11:59 PM on Tuesday, March 24, 2020 and will remain in place until 11:59 PM on Thursday, April 23, 2020.” … Read more  Watch the video of today’s announcement here .

3/23/2020--The Virginia Department of Health reports that the Office of Vital Records walk-in customer service lobby at 2001 Maywill St, Richmond, VA 23230 is now closed due to COVID-19 public health precautions. The Office of Vital Records does remain open to process customer mail-in applications and answer customer telephone inquiries. (804-662-6200)… Read more


3/23/2020--The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a Checklist for Older Persons,If you are an older adult or someone who has severe chronic medical conditions such as heart or lung disease, or diabetes, you are at higher risk for more serious COVID-19 illness. It is very important for you to take steps to stay healthy.”… Read more

3/23/2020--The CDC releases daily update of number of COVID-19 cases in U.S. “COVID-19: U.S. at a Glance”… Read more
What can I do? Civic Involvement
Help Out in Your Community with the
Neighbor 2 Neighbor Program
  • During this unique time of COVID-19, the Fairfax County N2N Coordinator can help homeowner associations organize opportunities for neighbors to provide socially-distant-appropriate volunteer services such as grocery deliveries and friendly check-in phone calls to those most vulnerable in their neighborhood. Local associations can contact the coordinator by phone or email to receive guidance to help put together this important effort for their neighborhoods: 703-246-8962


More Work Left to be Done
I hope you are hunkered down as you read this column as I am hunkered down writing it. No one wants to get sick with a nasty virus, and certainly no one wants to be responsible for getting someone else sick with something that can be deadly. The rules to follow are incredibly simple: wash your hands with soap on both sides for about 20 seconds many times a day; stay away from others for several feet and especially do not go into any kind of crowd. If you need to sneeze or cough, do it in a tissue that you throw or flush away. If you get a fever and a dry cough, contact your doctor or the health department.

The final advice that might be the hardest for active persons like I am is to stay sane. Wrapping up an amazing and historic session of the General Assembly like this last one has been has kept me busy for several weeks. While I have received more notes of thanks and appreciation than ever after a legislative session, I also want to thank those who have taken the time to send me a note or email. As many have expressed, it was a historic, transformative, and consequential session! I was honored to be part of it.

The session gives us a solid footing upon which we can move forward. Unfortunately, the economic slump we are entering may even be worse than the one in 2008 and may hamper progress in funding very important programs. We must not falter on funding critical health care programs both for physical and mental health. And we must continue our effort to ensure that everyone has access to health insurance. Our current health crisis reminds us that much work needs to be done to provide mandated paid sick leave for everyone.

We got a start on raising the minimum wage, but we need to continue a pathway to $15 per hour. The so-called right-to-work law needs to be repealed to give workers greater protections.

The criminal justice system got attention this past legislative session, but a great deal of work needs to be done to ensure that it is a just system. We need to shut off the classroom to prison pipeline that too often has treated youthful behavior as crimes. Small amounts of marijuana were decriminalized this session, but the entire range of drug crimes and rehabilitation needs review. Likewise, the parole system needs reform with an emphasis on restorative justice. The death penalty that is seldom used needs to be repealed.

A major transportation package that passed needs continuous review. With an increasing number of vehicles using electricity for power, the revenue from the gasoline tax will shrink. We took significant strides in protecting our environment, but there is much work to be done.

Hunkering down gives us time to celebrate our accomplishments, but the time of reflection and contemplation also reminds us that much more is left to be done.