Thursday, October 29, 2020
Good Afternoon IDHS Staff,
It has been nearly eight months since our lives and the way we work have been turned upside down by the novel coronavirus, COVID-19. Since that time, we have banded together and have been able to courageously continue providing vital human services to Illinoisans who need us most.
Today I am writing to ask you to refocus your energy as we enter another wave of the virus. Across Illinois, COVID rates are rising rapidly and, as of today, 8 out of 11 regions in the State have triggering current or upcoming mitigation measures. The statewide 7-day positivity rate has risen to 6.9%, up from 3.7% at the beginning of this October.
As we face this next challenge, we must resist pandemic fatigue and maintain our vigilance in fighting the virus. That means, always wearing our masks around others and maintaining social distance both inside and outside of work. I urge you to hold each other accountable and remind one another that COVID safety, both inside and outside of work, is expected to keep each other safe during this difficult time.
Meanwhile, IDHS leadership is dedicated to keeping you safe. I encourage you to revisit our Restore and Reinvent OneNet page where you can find our COVID safety protocols, guidance, and trainings. We want to partner with you in this effort and encourage you to reach out to our Central Planning Team at DHS.Reinvent-Restore@Illinois.gov with any suggestions, questions, or concerns you may have.
Whether you are working heroically on the front lines at our 24/7s, faithfully serving clients at our local offices, or working at our administrative offices to advance our programs, your vigilance in following all COVID safety protocols is essential in ensuring the safety of all DHS staff, patients, residents, and clients.
Thank you for the dedication you have demonstrated throughout the pandemic. As we continue to weather this, let's remain mindful of each other and proudly represent the State of Illinois.
Grace B. Hou