UPDATED AUGUST 23, 2021:
Although the formal State of Emergency declared by Governor Baker related to the COVID-19 pandemic was rescinded on June 15, 2021, continued spread of the virus has prompted the Town to issue the following directive to its staff effective on August 23, 2021:
As is well-documented the incidence of COVID-19 infections is growing throughout the Commonwealth as well as in Athol and our region. Over the past four days the case count in Athol has doubled to 30 and counting. In addition, our vaccination rates are below state average (based upon 01331 ZIP code reporting that includes Phillipston) at 57 percent with at least one dose of vaccine and 51 percent deemed fully vaccinated. To ensure the safety of all staff – whether vaccinated or not – and the general public that we serve, effective Monday, August 23, 2021, until rescinded, the following masking requirements shall be reinstated:
All Town staff shall be required to wear a mask indoors when social distancing is not possible and during all encounters with the general public. This shall include wearing of masks when multiple employees are riding within a single vehicle. All public buildings shall be posted with signage indicating that anyone who is not vaccinated is requested to wear a mask before entering the facility.
The Town will, as it has from the beginning of this pandemic, follow additional protocols should the Commonwealth and state Dept. of Public Health so mandate.
If you have not been vaccinated there are many options that still remain. For quick access to a listing of vaccination sites click HERE. The Athol Board of Health Facebook page will continue to offer updates as needed by clicking HERE.
Finally, I offer a sincere THANK YOU to the citizens of Athol for your perseverance during these challenging times and to our staff and many volunteers who continued to diligently serve the public despite the increased obstacles. AspireAthol!
- Shaun A. Suhoski, Town Manager