Special Alert and Opportunity for Relief

Dear friends,

It is important for everyone to be aware of the facts of COVID-19 Coronavirus and the local and state networks sharing up to the minute information. The health of our New Bedford small business community is extremely important and you may have heard Mayor Mitchell’s update to the public on Friday. In case you missed it, here is the link as well as the link to SouthCoast Health, where you also will find continuous updates.

Below we are also including Massachusetts Department of Public Health guidelines and recommendations for businesses and employers as well as information on an opportunity to advocate for the activation of SBA funding for disaster relief.

Finally, please consider our small business loan program as a potential opportunity for relief. If you are experiencing hardship, please get in touch and we can discuss solutions to assist you and your business. Just contact Angela Johnston at ajohnston@nbedc.org to learn more. Check us at at www.nbedc.org and follow us on Facebook for updates.

Be well everyone,

Derek


The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has also issued guidelines and recommendations for businesses and employers regarding the reduction of close contact in the workplace, such as:

  • Make telecommuting options available for as many employees as possible.
  • Discourage touching including shaking hands, hugging, etc.
  • Encourage good hygiene such as washing hands frequently, covering your cough with your elbow or a tissue, and regularly cleaning frequently touched surfaces and objects.
  • Urge employees to stay home when they are sick.
  • Be flexible with sick leave benefits for those who are ill or who are recommended to stay home because they are high risk.
  • For businesses in which telecommuting is not an option or for particular duties that cannot be performed remotely, follow the other steps above to limit close contact, and prevent the spread of disease.
  • Increase routine environmental cleaning.

CDC-issued guidance for employers to help prevent workplace exposures to illnesses and planning considerations if there are more widespread, community outbreaks of COVID-19:

Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to COVID-19.


SBA Disaster Recovery Funds could be made Available if Need in MA is Demonstrated

The MA Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) and Baker-Polito Administration are working closely with the U.S. SBA to activate the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program which would provide assistance to eligible businesses and non-profits impacted by COVID-19.

The 1st step in this process is to meet a minimum threshold of affected businesses within MA.

Affected small businesses and non-profits should download, complete, and submit the SBA EIDL Worksheet https://lnkd.in/ewF7VBy & Instructions to expedite activation of the EIDL program. If you know of businesses being impacted as a result of the Corona virus, it would be helpful if you shared this information with them and encouraged them to complete the SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan Worksheet as soon as possible.

Completed forms can be submitted by email to Disaster.Recovery@mass.gov or by fax to (508) 820-1401. If you do fax the form, please include your email.

When the EIDL program is activated, the small businesses will be contacted to apply directly to SBA’s Disaster Assistance page https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/disaster-assistance and this website will be updated with application details.

For questions, please contact Disaster.Recovery@mass.gov.