Lake County Board Chair Sandy Hart on Friday, March 13, 2020 signed a disaster proclamation — a proactive measure that will allow Lake County to access additional state and federal funding and resources for coronavirus (COVID-19) response efforts. The proclamation follows a recommendation by the Lake County Board of Health at its March 12 executive board meeting.
The proclamation is a procedural step that will ensure the County is able to access the resources, equipment and personnel needed to address changing circumstances. This is particularly necessary should the number of COVID-19 cases rise and the demands on County staff and partners continue to increase.
“This proclamation allows for greater collaboration with our local, state and federal partners,” said Lake County Board Chair Sandy Hart. “It also positions the County to access funding and support from the federal government when additional resources are necessary, and funding is made available.”
All Lake County government offices currently remain open, and Lake County has a contingency planning team in place that is closely monitoring the fast-changing COVID-19 situation. To ensure the safety of the community and Lake County government staff, Lake County will be following the guidelines issued by the Lake County Health Department to minimize COVID-19 spread. This includes:
Postponing and canceling large-scale events
Considering the cancellation of upcoming public meetings, including Lake County Board Committee meetings
Encouraging social distancing in the workplace
Exploring teleworking options for Lake County government staff
Limiting non-essential work travel
“Our highest priority is to ensure the health and safety of Lake County employees and their families, and residents,” said County Administrator Gary Gibson. “This is a dynamic situation, and our staff is working tirelessly to stay up to date with the most current information and make informed decisions to minimize the spread of COVID-19.”
Everyone has a role to play in getting ready and staying healthy. Residents are recommended to practice social distancing and follow new guidelines issued by the Lake County Health Department:
Community events of 250 people or more should be canceled or postponed until May 1. This includes personal and social events, and those with large spectator crowds, such as concerts and sporting events
For events with less than 250 people, residents should closely consider who is likely to attend the event and, if it includes vulnerable populations, strongly consider cancelling. Vulnerable populations include older adults and people of all ages with serious chronic health conditions, such as heart disease, lung disease, and diabetes
Residents should use good judgment about attending events in their own communities
Residents also should remember the 3 C’s – clean, cover, and contain to prevent the spread of illness.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects
Cover cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash
If no tissue is available, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve, not your hands
Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care
Avoid close contact with people who are sick
The Lake County Board and Health Department are closely monitoring the fast-changing outbreak of COVID-19 and will continue to post updates at lakecountyil.gov/coronavirus.
Residents are also encouraged to sign up for the Lake County Health Department’s COVID-19 newsletter.
For general questions about COVID-19, call the Illinois Department of Public Health hotline at 1-800-889-3931 or email [email protected].