First Selectman on What You Can Do to Cope With, Reduce Spread of COVID-19 in Darien

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First Selectman Jayme Stevenson, in a “Code Red” phone call to town residents Monday night, gave an update on what the town government is now doing to help halt the spread of COVID-19 in Darien.

She added that what you do in that effort is extremely important, and important now.

For instance, Stevenson said: “In spite of this formal guidance, play dates, dinner parties and all social gatherings should be put on temporary hold — you may not know if you or others are contagious. The risks are just not worth taking.

“All these efforts, while extraordinary to be sure, are intended to slow the spread of the virus, reduce the chances of overwhelming our healthcare system and to save lives.”

People can sign up here for the “Code Red” program, which delivers local messages over the phone. This web page on the town website has links to this and other town messages you can read online.

Stevenson’s Message on Monday Night

Stevenson passed on Monday night’s phone message to local news organizations. The message is also posted as a text here, on the town website. Here’s the full text:

Good evening Darien family,

This is your First Selectman, Jayme Stevenson, with an important message about the spread of the Coronavirus here in Darien and across the State of Connecticut. While the situation changes by the hour, I know you and your family need information on how we are working to keep you safe.

Darien’s Emergency Management team, which includes representatives from public health, EMS, police, fire, schools and all municipal and social service functions, is fully operational and we are working closely with our federal, state and regional partners.

Today, I took the unprecedented step of declaring a local emergency to underscore the seriousness of the COVID-19 virus threat to our community.

Governor Lamont, along with the governors of New York and New Jersey have mandated restaurants, bars, fitness studios and entertainment venues to close as of 8 p.m. this evening. Restaurants may continue to provide take out and delivery food service.

Because the virus is so highly contagious, group gatherings are limited to 50 people or less but that may be further reduced in the coming days.

In spite of this formal guidance, play dates, dinner parties and all social gatherings should be put on temporary hold — you may not know if you or others are contagious. The risks are just not worth taking.

All these efforts, while extraordinary to be sure, are intended to slow the spread of the virus, reduce the chances of overwhelming our healthcare system and to save lives.

As of today, 41 people have tested positive for COVID-19 here in Connecticut. There are 29 cases in Fairfield County, 13 new cases since yesterday alone. We have 2 confirmed cases here in Darien but limited testing suggests that number may be much higher.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, the spread of COVID-19 is in the acceleration phase and that is particularly true here in Fairfield County.

Stay home if you can.

Turn family time into opportunities for making those deep connections with your kids that are so rare when our schedules are busy.

Think about the less fortunate among us by making donations to the Darien Human Service Department.

Please don’t hoard food or non-perishables. We are a community of plenty — let’s make sure everyone has what they need.

See if your elderly neighbor needs food or a friendly voice on the phone. Many folks are afraid to go to the grocery store and they may need your help.

And to the best you can, please continue to support our local businesses by ordering take out from your favorite restaurants. All other shops may stay open and would love to see you but please practice diligent “social distancing” as you go about your business and interact with others in the community.

While we’ve closed public playgrounds due to the risks of virus transmission, our beaches and parks remain open for your enjoyment. Get outside often for fresh air and exercise — it’s important for a health body and mind especially during these stressful times.

I will continue to update you in the coming days. Our Emergency Management team is doing all we can to protect you, your family and our local businesses.

Please visit the Town of Darien website for local updates and the CDC website for
COVID-19 information.

I’m here for you 24/7 to answer all of your questions and concerns.

Be well, keep calm and wash your hands!

Jayme J. Stevenson
First Selectman, Town of Darien
Chairman, CIRMA & SWRMPO
JStevenson@darienct.gov
(203) 656-7338

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