The City of Ashland has opened its Emergency Operations Center (EOC) in response to the COVID-19 epidemic as of Monday, March 16. In addition, City Administrator Kelly Madding will seek City Council endorsement tomorrow, March 17th, of an Emergency Declaration to marshal the City’s response to this rapidly changing threat to public health.
The EOC opening and Emergency Declaration allow the City Administrator authority and flexibility in managing the City’s resources to protect public health and safety during this unprecedented event. Slowing the spread of the virus is critical to not only public health, but also to maintaining the City’s essential services to citizens by keeping City employees healthy and on the job.
The City recognizes Jackson County Health and Human Services as the lead agency in the local COVID-19 response. The City Administrator will take direction from the County and coordinate resources through the EOC.
“I want the City of Ashland government and citizens to be prepared and proactive as this situation unfolds across our community and region. By taking these steps, we’re creating the best possible situation for limiting the impact on the people we serve and the employees who serve them,” said Madding.
Many steps have been taken already, including canceling all non-essential meetings, following practices for social distancing in the workplace and City offices, sharing information with the public, and working with local service providers to the homeless population. The City is also coordinating with community partners to share information and plan for future developments in the COVID-19 outbreak and response in regular coordination with Jackson County Health and Human Services.
The City of Ashland has a COVID-19 website at ashland.or.us/coronavirus
. There is a list of frequently asked questions on the City’s page along with information specific to local response, canceled events, and links to health information.