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Posted on: November 23, 2020

Public Health Staff Remind Residents About Indoor Gatherings Guidance and COVID-19 Prevention

public health update

Portland’s Public Health Division wishes all a Happy Thanksgiving and would like to provide you with some tips for celebrating safely. With this holiday season upon us, please remember:

  • Limit the number of guests you’re gathering with. It is best to include only those who live within your household.
  • If you gather with people from outside of your immediate household, set expectations with guests ahead of time. This can include things such as mask wearing and physical distancing.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and items between use.
  • Bring in fresh air by opening windows and doors if possible.
  • Limit the number of people in food preparation areas.
  • If you must travel, do so to and from States which per Executive Order allow for exemptions to testing and quarantine requirements. This includes New Hampshire and Vermont as of November 20, 2020. 

“As we enter the colder months and continue to see a rise in COVID-19 cases, it is more critical than ever that we all do our part to reduce the spread,” said Bob Fowler, Portland’s Public Health Director. “Wearing a mask or face covering, maintaining physical distance, good hand hygiene, and limiting gathering are still the cornerstones of preventing the spread of COVID-19. Stay the course, Portland!” 

Additionally, there have been two recent updates to Governor Mills’ Executive Orders. As of November 5, 2020 it is required that anyone over the age of two is required to wear a face covering when in a public setting. This order expands upon the previous order by broadening the mandate to include streets, sidewalks, parking lots, outdoor lines, transit stops, parks and other spaces regardless of ability to maintain six feet of physical distance. Effective Friday November 20, 2020 through Sunday December 6, 2020, all outdoor and indoor amusement venues, movie theaters, performing arts venues, casinos, and businesses that provide seated food and drink service including social clubs, restaurants, bars and tasting rooms currently open for outdoor service will close for the night by 9:00 PM. 

Despite our best efforts, the holidays can be a time of increased stress for many, particularly during this unprecedented time of COVID-19. If you or someone you know needs help, we would encourage you to call the StrengthenME team at 207-221-8198, seven days a week, from 8am to 8pm.

For more information on Governor Mills’ Executive Orders and holiday safety, please visit https://www.maine.gov/governor/mills/official_documents and https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays/thanksgiving.html

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