04/16/2020: COVID-19 Coronavirus Response Update

COVID-19 Coronavirus Response Update

April 16, 2020
Yesterday, I hosted a tele-town hall with the military base commanders here in Hawai‘i to talk about how the pandemic is impacting the military, our men and women in uniform, and their families.
I want to thank everyone who participated and especially those serving and their families for the sacrifices they make every day to keep us safe — even in the middle of a worldwide public health crisis.
Honolulu Drive-Thru Testing Tomorrow and Next Week — Kalihi Kai Urgent Care is conducting drive-thru COVID-19 testing on Friday, April 17, at Geiger Community Park in ʻEwa Beach, located on the corner of Kapolei Parkway and Kahiuka Street. Testing begins at 8 a.m. and will run till 2 p.m. Participants should follow the posted signs to the test area.
This weekend and next week, there are more drive-thru testing sites and opportunities. All will run from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Testing will be available to those without insurance as well.:
Saturday, April 18 at the Polynesian Cultural Center, Lāʻie
Sunday, April 19 at Kakaʻako Waterfront Park
Monday, April 20 at Koko Head District Park
Wednesday, April 22 at The Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-Day Saints, Wahiawā

If you have any questions or if you are in need of assistance, please call me at (808) 541-1986 or email me at TulsiOffice@mail.house.gov.
Mahalo and be well,
Tulsi Gabbard
Member of Congress (HI-02)

Tele-Town Hall Next Week. Sign Up Today!

My next tele-town hall will take place on Wednesday, April 22 at 4:00 p.m. If you would like to register to join the event, please sign up on my website!
Telephone Town Hall | COVID-19 Update # 06
Wednesday, April 22 at 4:00 p.m. Hawai‘i Time

EIDL and PPP Funds Tapped Out, Congress Must Pass More Funding

Both the Paycheck Protection Program and the Economic Injury Disaster Loans program have run out of appropriated funds due to high demands and as of today, the Small Business Administration is not considering new requests. I joined over 100 of my colleagues in sending a bipartisan letter (over 50 Republican House Members) to the SBA pointing to the magnitude of the crisis we are facing and that these programs need additional funds and improvements to meet the needs of our community. I will continue to fight in Congress for the resources our small businesses and workers need to make it through this crisis.

Why Social Distancing, Cloth Face Masks Are Vital

A new study by NIH researchers published yesterday shows that small aerosol particles produced by speaking calmly and at a normal volume can remain airborne long enough to enter people's airways and make them susceptible to COVID-19. While large particles produced by sneezing or coughing "remain airborne only briefly before settling because of gravity," breathing or talking produces smaller aerosols at higher rates that are "too small to settle" and therefore can be transported by air currents.
Remember to wash your hands frequently, wear your cloth mask covering whenever you are outside the home, and launder them after use!

SSA Says SSI Recipients to Automatically Get Economic Impact Payments

The Social Security Administration announced that Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients will automatically receive their Economic Impact Payments directly to their bank accounts through direct deposit, Direct Express debit card, or by paper check, just as they would normally receive their SSI benefits. Treasury anticipates SSI recipients will receive these automatic payments no later than early May.

Economic Impact Payment resources from the IRS...

IRS “Get My Payment” App:
Economic Impact Payment for Non-Filers:

COVID-19 Hawai‘i News

Testing in Hawai‘i — To date, there are 541 individuals in Hawai‘i who have tested positive for COVID-19. There were 11 new cases since yesterday. Of the 541 cases, 45 remain hospitalized and 374 have been released from isolation. There have been 21,985 lab tests conducted as of April 15.
Hawai‘i to Get More Than $11 million For Child Care Needs — Following up on yesterday’s news that the Department of Health and Human Services is releasing $3.5 billion to support the Child Care and Development Block Grant program, the HHS Office of the Administration of Children and Families announced that Hawai‘i would receive $11,990,147 from the program which will help support child care providers during the public health crisis.
2020 Graduation Ceremonies Will Be Different — The Hawai‘i State Department of Education announced that traditional commencement ceremonies at public and charter schools will be replaced with alternative celebrations for the class of 2020 due to safety concerns and social distancing guidance. Schools will honor their seniors through different models of celebrations.
Kaua‘i Helps Bridge the Gap to UI — In an effort to promote economic resilience by accessing affordable capital and ensuring cash flow while unemployment benefits are pending, the County of Kaua‘i announced a partnership between the country, the Hawai‘i Community Foundation, Hawaiian Community Assets, and Hawaii Community Lending to launch the Kaua‘i County Loan Program for residents of Kaua‘i to assist them while they are attempting to obtain their unemployment benefits and who have no other means to access loan funds. You can learn more about the program in today’s video update by Mayor Kawakami.
REMINDER: New Dept of Labor Resources — Here is a rundown of the new resources that Dept of Labor is making available to assist individuals filing unemployment insurance compensation claims.
Application for Determination of Insured Status: https://huiclaims2020.hawaii.gov/initial-claim
Unemployment Benefits Claim Status: https://huiclaims2020.hawaii.gov/status
Oahu Claims Office: dlir.ui.oahu@hawaii.gov
Hilo Claims Office: dlir.ui.hilo@hawaii.gov
Kona Claims Office: dlir.ui.kona@hawaii.gov
Maui Claims Office: dlir.ui.maui@hawaii.gov
Kauai Claims Office: dlir.ui.kauai@hawaii.gov
Individuals who would like to have their claim backdated (the backdate will be for their first week of less than full employment due to COVID-19): dlir.ui.backdate@hawaii.gov
Individuals who have received an email, letter or other message (screenshot) that says that they are disqualified from UI:​ dlir.ui.disqualified@hawaii.gov
Individuals who would like to request language assistance from UI (the interpretation services would be provided free of charge and via telephone): dlir.ui.languageassistance@hawaii.gov

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