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3.13.2020 Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

From: Thomas Goddard, Fire Chief/EMD
Date: March 13, 2020; 3:40 p.m.

In accordance with our established municipal emergency plans, representatives for the Town of Putney and Putney Fire Department have initiated monitoring of social media outlets, relative to the COVID-19 pandemic.

We are beginning to see questions being raised regarding the care for our vulnerable community members, in the event of a widespread and/or long duration isolation.

Without question, these concerns are valid, and we clearly understand many citizens will likely require additional degrees of assistance, moving forward.

Given that situations and expectations will remain dynamic, so-to will the levels of assistance which will be required. With that said, community leaders and first responders are not presently able to provide specifics regarding actions that will be taken in providing additional assistance. However, we can collectively assure our citizens that various planning actions are actively taking place regarding the following aspects:
1) Ensuring to the best possible degree the health, safety, and well-being of all our citizens, and more specifically, our most vulnerable citizens
2) Assessing the possible needs for, and establishing the appropriate mechanisms for emergent medication supplies, provisions, and delivery to vulnerable citizens
3) Assessing the possible needs for, and establishing the appropriate mechanisms for food delivery to vulnerable citizens
4) Establishing in-home health screenings and care for vulnerable citizens
5) Establishing regular in-home “welfare checks” for vulnerable citizens

Moving forward, we also acknowledge the definition of “vulnerable” may very well be modified, in consideration of changes in the overall situation within Vermont, and guidance being received regarding appropriate actions to be taken, or limited.

As our planning processes continue, we would respectfully request that all Putney residents understand municipal governors and I are in daily contact with various state and regional agencies and services, and various local services, as well as social service agencies within Putney and the region.

In accordance with guidance received from the Vermont Department of Health, we would respectfully request that all citizens remain calm, and refrain from engaging in “best practice” activities that are not arranged, coordinated, or approved by the Town of Putney. Such activities may in fact endanger those that we all want to most desperately assist.

As planning functions transition to actual “boots on the ground” operations, we will certainly be requesting assistance from community members and regional emergency services agencies; but we need to make certain that everyone is safe, everyone involved is operating in concert, and our operations are efficient and effective.

More information and guidance will follow, as frequently as necessary.

If anyone feels other citizens may require a welfare check, please contact Chief Thomas Goddard, and arrangements will be made.

Please continue to monitor the Vermont Health Department website at for updated information and guidance. As new details and guidance suggestions develop, the Town of Putney website will be updated.

Correspondence received from the Vermont State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) this afternoon, advises Governor Phil Scott will hold a press conference at 5:30 this afternoon. Additional pertinent information will be available at that time, and will be disseminated as appropriate.

Any questions should be directed to Chief Thomas Goddard [802-387-4372; 802-579-9526; or via email at]. As a secondary contact, you may reach Town Manager Karen Astley [802-387-5862 x11; 802-236-1444; or via email at]

Resources: Town of Putney Website:; Vermont Health Department website at; Vermont Emergency Management Department of Public Safety:; Facebook Social Media: Putney Fire Department