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The COVID-19 Digital Resource Guide

Congressmember Bass and her staff are continuing to monitor the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak and are in regular contact with federal, state and local public health officials.

Throughout this crisis, our office has been hosting telephone town hall meetings with local and national experts to answer questions you have about this outbreak. To join these calls, click here

For updated information from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health about this outbreak, please visit http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/Coronavirus/ or call 211. Please note that many people are likely to call 211 so be prepared for increased wait times and remember that this is not a hotline reserved for the 2019 coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Governor Newsom has also announced the creation of a statewide hotline - (833) 544-2374 - in coordination with local 211 systems as a one-stop shop to answer their questions and get assistance during this crisis.

Culver City staff continue to receive updates from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LACDPH) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and participate in planning regarding the novel (new) coronavirus. To learn the latest community information about COVID-19, including facility closures and event cancellations in Culver City, click here: https://www.culvercity.org/live/public-safety/emergency-preparedness/current-disaster-information

In concurrence with recommendations made by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for team member and constituent safety, Congressmember Bass has directed her L.A. and D.C. offices to begin serving constituents remotely. Learn more here.

Here is what you need to know to protect yourself and your loved ones:

What is coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)?

COVID-19 is a respiratory illness that can spread from person to person. Coronaviruses are common, and they include the common cold, but COVID-19 is a new strain.

What are the symptoms and how does it spread?

The most common symptoms include fever, cough and increasingly severe respiratory symptoms (trouble breathing). Our experience to date is that most people who are exposed to the virus, more than 80%, have mild or no symptoms. Some people, however, may have more complicated symptoms, including pneumonia or lung inflammation. 

For confirmed COVID-19 cases, reported illnesses have ranged from mild to severe symptoms, including fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Current research suggests that symptoms of COVID-19 may appear in as few as 2 days or as long as 14 days after exposure.

Am I at risk of contracting COVID-19?

It is important to know that the risk of COVID-19 to the general public in the United States continues to remain low and efforts are being undertaken to keep it that way. With that said, public health officials believe the situation will get worse. How much worse, depends not only on the response of local, state and federal public health officials, but on the public at large.

As mentioned above, some people are more at-risk of severe health effects from COVID-19.  This includes but is not limited to those over 60 years of age, with growing risk as age increases; people with respiratory conditions like asthma, chronic bronchitis, and emphysema; people with cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes; and those who are immune-compromised, such as people in cancer treatment or with HIV/AIDS. 

How can I help protect myself, my family, and my community?

Every person has a role to play in protecting themselves and helping prevent the spread of COVID-19. Here’s what you can do:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, & mouth
  • Stay home when you are sick
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw tissue in the trash
  • Use a regular household cleaning spray/wipe to clean & disinfect frequently touched objects & surfaces
  • Wash your hands often with soap & water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing

What is Congress doing?

In March 2020, Congress passed a series of bills in response to the Coronavirus Pandemic. On March 6th, Congress passed the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act, an $8.3 billion spending measure to fund the federal government’s initial response to the coronavirus and to assist state and local governments in their response as well. Later, on March 18th, then-President Trump signed into law a second coronavirus relief package that Congress had passed nearly a week prior, which provided $1 billion in food aid and extended sick leave and unemployment benefits to vulnerable Americans. It also included provisions for free COVID-19 testing, tax credits, and an increase in Medicaid funding. 

By the end of March, it was apparent that more aid was necessary. In response, Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (also known as CARES) Act, which contained $2.3 trillion in relief including $1,200 stimulus checks that were mailed to millions of people in the United States. Targeted COVID provisions included $25 billion for targeted testing, a moratorium on foreclosures and evictions, and $100 million for the Federal Bureau of Prisons for COVID resources. Other provisions included $30 billion for lending institutions focused on underserved communities, $2 billion in Community Development Block Grants, and $4 billion in homeless assistance grants. Many of these provisions were championed by the Congressional Black Caucus under Chairwoman Karen Bass’ leadership. 

In April, it became clear that the pandemic would last longer than many anticipated. As a result, Congress worked to support and expand the existing COVID-19 response, passing the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act, providing an additional $484 billion to replenish and supplement key programs under the CARES Act. Congress also passed two additional bills to extend the period in which businessowners could utilize PPP loans they received and extend the application period for the program. 

Over the next few months, Congress continued its efforts to provide relief from the ongoing pandemic. In December of 2020, Congress passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2020, which included $900 million in COVID-19 relief that provided $600 stimulus checks sent to Americans with gross incomes under $75,000. It also included increased funding to existing programs which included $10.6 billion for Head Start, $5.8 billion for Child Care and Development Block Grant, $1.7 million for Jobs Corps, $1.1 billion for federal programs that support disadvantaged black students, and $25 million for federal gun prevention research. Additional provisions were included that contained targeted aid to Black Americans, funding for Historically Black Colleges and Universities, the Census Bureau, housing and health centers, infrastructure improvements, and job creation. These provisions were championed by the Congressional Black Caucus under Chairwoman Karen Bass’ leadership. 

After a new President was elected and a new Senate seated, Congress was able to pass the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. The $1.9 trillion package built upon on many of the provisions from the CARES Act and The Consolidated Appropriations Act. Significantly, this bill provided for $1,400 in direct payments to individuals, and unlike previous stimulus payments, adult dependents and college students were eligible to receive payments. Other provisions included a 15% increase in Food Stamp benefits, an extension and expansion of unemployment benefits with a $300 weekly supplement, $130 billion for K-12 schools to implement COVID-19 protective measures, and $50 billion to the Federal Emergency Management Fund (FEMA) for vaccine distribution efforts. The American Rescue Plan Act also contained several significant tax provisions. The Act expanded the Child Tax Credit to $3,000 per child up to age 17 and $3,600 per child under age 6 and made the credit fully refundable. This Act also expanded the Earned Income Tax Credit by lowering the lower age limit to 19, eliminating the upper age limit, and raised the limit on investment. To see if you qualify for the Child Tax Credit, click here. To see if you can benefit from the Earned Income Tax Credit, click here

I am a health professional. Where do I find resources on how to treat my patients and where to report cases?

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has specific resources for doctors, nurses, and other health professionals, including Identifying and Managing Suspect Patients; Testing, Reporting, Infection Prevention and specific guidance for care centers located here. Health professionals can also sign up for the Los Angeles County Health Alert Network (LAHAN) here.

Information for Workers

Sick or Quarantined

In California, if you need access to paid family, medical, or sick leave, you should visit or contact the California Department of Employment Development at edd.ca.gov or call 1-877-238-4373 to contact a Paid Family Leave representative.

Reduced Working Hours

If your employer has reduced your hours or closed operations due to COVID-19, you can file for Unemployment Insurance (UI). UI provides partial payments of wage replacement benefits to workers who lose their job or have their hours reduced, through no fault of their own. Workers who are temporarily unemployed due to COVID-19 and expected to return to work with their employer in a few weeks are not required to actively seek work every week. However, they must remain capable and available and ready to work during their unemployment for each claimed benefit week and meet all other eligibility criteria. Eligible individuals can receive benefits ranging from $40 to $450 per week.

Information for Employers

Occupational Health and Safety

For information on how to protect workers from COVID-19, see OSHA's Guide to Measures to Prevent Workers' Exposure to the Coronavirus. Businesses and employers can visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for help with planning and responding to COVID-19.

Reduced Working Hours

Employers experiencing a slowdown in their business or services as a result of the impact of the coronavirus on the economy can apply for the UI Work Sharing Program. This program allows employers to seek an alternative to layoffs: by reducing their hours and wages that can be partially offset by UI benefits, employers can retain their trained employees. Employer workers who are approved to participate in the Work Sharing Program receive the percentage of their weekly UI benefit amount based on the percentage of hours and reduced wages, not to exceed 60 percent. Visit the Work Sharing program to learn more about your employer and employee benefits, and how to apply.

Possible Closing or Layoffs

Employers planning a major closure or layoffs as a result of the coronavirus can get help through the Rapid Response program. Rapid Response teams will meet with you to discuss your needs, help prevent potential layoffs, and provide immediate on-site services to assist workers facing job losses. For more information, see the Rapid Response Services for Business Data Sheet (DE 87144RRB) (PDF) or contact the California Local Employment Center in the United States.

Information Regarding Housing 

As of October 1st, renters must fill out an application for rent relief in order to avoid eviction. You cannot be evicted while your application is pending. This measure will be in effect until March 31st, 2022, to apply click here. For more information on California’s current tenant guidelines, click here

The City of Los Angeles has announced a second Emergency Renters Assistance Program for tenants and landlords. To apply, click here, or call (833) 430-2122. 

For information on the City of Los Angeles’ guidelines, click here

For legal assistance regarding an eviction, click here

Student Loan Information  

As of March 2020, the U.S. Department of Education has been providing relief to individuals with student loans by suspending loan payments, setting interest rates at 0%, and ceasing collections on defaulted loans. This measures are still in place, and were recently extended until January 31st, 2022. For more information on Student Aid during COVD-19, here

Student loans can come from many sources, and borrowers should contact their own lender(s) to discuss what their individual situations may be. Learn more about avoiding Student Aid Scams here.  

Information for Small Businesses

Find information about small business assistance below:

Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC)
500 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90071 | 213-250-9550

Small Business Development Center Hosted by Pacific Coast Regional
3255 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1501, Los Angeles CA 90010 | 213-739-2999

The New Ninth Business Resource Center
4301 S. Central Ave., Los Angeles 90011 | 213-763-5951

Vermont Slauson Economic Development Corp 
1130 W Slauson Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90044 | 323-753-2335

Opportunity Fund
5701 S Eastern Ave, Commerce, CA 90040 | 866-588-7232

CBC Small Business Finance
80 S. Lake St, #830, Pasadena, CA 91101 | 800-611-5170

Small Business Majority
Online resources and ongoing webinar updates | 818-470-0377

Pacific Asian Consortium in Employment (PACE) Women's Business Center
1055 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 900B, Los Angeles, CA 90017 | 213-353-9400

If you need computer access, WorkSource Centers in Los Angeles are still open and have public computers available, along with assistance in applying for many programs.  Call ahead for a computer appointment. They also offer assistance with filing for unemployment insurance.

Avoiding Scams

Do not give anyone your personal information to "sign-up" for your relief check. There is nothing to sign up for. Anyone calling to ask for your personal information, like your Social Security number, PayPal account, or bank information is a scammer, plain and simple. Also be on the lookout for email phishing scams, where scammers pretend to be from the government and ask for your information as part of the "sign-up" process for the checks.

To set up direct deposit of your check, communicate only with the IRS at irs.gov/coronavirus. And you only need to do this if you didn't give the IRS your bank information on your 2018 or 2019 return. In the coming weeks, the IRS will be setting up an online form available through irs.gov/coronavirus. But nowhere else, and never in response to an email, text, or call.

No one has early access to this money. Anyone that claims to is a scammer. The timeline for this process is not exact, but it looks like funds will start going out in the next few weeks. Scammers are using the lack of detail to try to trick people into giving their personal information and money.

To get official updates and more information, visit the IRS's page on economic impact payments. And if you come across a scammer trying to take your check, we want to hear about it. Report it at ftc.gov/complaint.

Food Assistance

The spread of COVID-19 has dramatically impacted the lives of Californians up and down the state. With unemployment at nearly 20 percent and food banks serving 10 times more working and low-income Californians during the pandemic, the office of the L.A. Controller has released a statewide guide to free food resources. View it here.

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act, enacted March 18th, temporarily suspended (as of April 1) SNAP’s three-month time limit for jobless adults without a child at home. They will remain eligible for SNAP without having to report that they’re working or in job training for an average of 20 hours a week, as they normally would. The suspension lasts through the month after the month in which the Secretary of Health and Human Services lifts the public health emergency.

You can also visit the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank website here.

Resources For Senior Meals:

There are a food and grocery resources:

There are a variety of organizations that can help with grocery delivery for free

  • LA Regional Food Bank: Runs a food bank network across the LA area. Call (323) 234-3030 for more information. 
  • St. Vincent Meals on Wheels: Serves anyone in need that lives within our service area, regardless of age, race, illness, disability, religion or ability to pay. All of our clients are homebound—confined to their homes because they are unable to shop or cook for themselves. Contact (213) 484-7775 between 8 AM and 4 PM or visit https://www.stvincentmow.org/if-you-need-meals/
  • Project Angel Food: Delivers meals to each client one day per week, Monday through Friday. Contact (323) 845 -1800 or email info@angelfood.org
  • Urban Partners LA: Provides food pickup only.  Call (213) 401-1191 or email urbanpartnersla@gmail.com
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP): A federally-funded program you may access by calling the State Hotline at 877-847-FOOD (3663). CalFresh helps California seniors 60+ buy healthy food at the grocery store. Individuals receiving CalFresh benefits will be able to order at-home delivery of groceries through their Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card at Walmart and Amazon. However, the CalFresh benefits will only cover the cost of the food being ordered, not delivery.
  • County Free Grocery Delivery Service: Items may be delivered 24 hours a day, seven days a week. There is no delivery cost to the client. No application process is required, but items must be pre-paid and ready for pickup.Deliveries may be scheduled by calling 1-888-863-7411 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays.
  • Shop4Seniors: Pairs seniors with volunteer shopper/delivery service. Email maryjerejian2@gmail.com to submit a shopping list or volunteer to shop & deliver.
  • Shopping Helpers LA: Pairs a college-aged volunteer with a senior or someone who is immunocompromised to take care of their grocery shopping needs — at no charge. Call 323-628-7071 or email shoppinghelpersla@gmail.com to request help.
  • People4PeopleLA: Pairs volunteers with seniors to shop and deliver food, medicine and household supplies to elderly Angelenos and others who cannot leave their home during the pandemic. Call 707-390-0269 or email People4PeopleLA@gmail.com to make a request.
  • Southeast Communities Corps - Provides food at the site at 2965 E. Gage, Huntington Park, CA 90255 on Mon, Weds, Fri - 9am-4pm. Call (323) 587-4221. 
  • San Fernando Valley Corps - Provides food at the site at 14917 Victory Boulevard, Van Nuys, CA 91411 on Mon, Weds, Fri - 9am-4pm, Tues & Thurs: 9-12pm. Call (818) 781-5739.
  • EAST LA Corps - Provides food at the site at 140 N Eastman Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90063 on Mon, Weds, Fri - 9am-4pm. Call (323) 263-7577. 
  • LA Korean Corps - Provides food at the site at 933 S. Hoover Street, Los Angeles, CA 90006 on Mon, Weds, Fri - 9am-4pm.. Call (213) 480-0714, ext. 4

Testing Information

The City of Los Angeles, in partnership with the County of Los Angeles, is providing access to free COVID-19 testing to Los Angeles County residents. At this time, testing is limited in Los Angeles to people with symptoms. Please note that same or next day testing appointments are prioritized for individuals over 65, or who have underlying chronic health conditions. You can find out if you are eligible for a test here

Protective Equipment

Learn about masks and other protective equipment here: https://laprotects.org/

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This is an evolving situation. For updated information on this outbreak, visit http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/Coronavirus/ or call 211. Please note that many people are likely to call 211, so be prepared for an increased wait time and remember this is not a hotline reserved for the 2019 coronavirus outbreak (COVID-19).

More on The COVID-19 Digital Resource Guide

May 23, 2020 In The News

May 15, 2020 Press Release

In their letter, the Members note that “the USMS is responsible for the care of individuals charged with federal offenses, from the time they are arrested and ordered detained pretrial to the time they are either ordered released from USMS custody or are convicted and transported to serve their sentences in a BOP facility. The USMS does not operate its own jails, but it contracts with approximately 1,200 state and local government agencies, as well as with private facilities, for housing detainees.

April 26, 2020 In The News

Find more information about upcoming Congressional Black Caucus events here: https://cbc.house.gov/events/

April 23, 2020 Press Release

In December 2017, the Department of Homeland Security updated its policy on the detention of pregnant woman that reversed previous guidance that discouraged incarcerating pregnant women barring extraordinary circumstances. The number of detentions decreased from 1,380 in calendar year 2016 to 1,160 in 2017, and then increased to 2,098 in calendar year 2018. The report found over 4,600 detentions of pregnant women between 2016 and 2018 and found that detention standards addressing care varied by facility.

April 23, 2020 Press Release

In the letter, the members wrote, “While the surge in firearm sales from federally licensed dealers has received nationwide attention, at least 16 companies that sell ghost gun kits have reported order backlogs and shipping delays due to overwhelming demand.   The uptick in sales of ghost gun kits and parts have received substantially less notice, even though the increase in sales of ghost guns poses a direct threat to public safety and law enforcement… Because the proliferation of ghost guns is a serious problem, we write to request…information and documentation t

April 22, 2020 Press Release

“There are currently nearly 2,400 children in Office of Refugee Resettlement’s (ORR) within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) custody, including licensed shelters.

April 22, 2020 Press Release

“The WHO plays a vital role in supporting and enforcing international health regulations, educating the public, and strengthening the ability of health systems—particularly those in the developing world—to prevent, detect, and respond to outbreaks.  The organization is not perfect, and we should thoroughly review its early handling of this crisis, particularly its engagement with Chinese authorities, and advocate for appropriate reforms,” wrote the lawmakers.

April 20, 2020 Press Release

“As the public health crisis continues to worsen, a growing number of states and cities across the country are issuing stay-at-home orders and closing schools,” wrote the Members in their letter. “To ensure equal learning opportunities during the pandemic, schools are increasingly adopting distance learning strategies to bring the classroom into students’ homes.  However, this can prove challenging for many high poverty urban and rural school districts that may lack the resources to connect disadvantaged students to digital devices or high-speed internet.”

April 16, 2020 Press Release

While the Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth and their colleagues in Congress continue to advocate for federal COVID-19 relief for transition-age foster youth, they also encourage Governors to support these young people as they manage their state responses to the pandemic. 

 

Read the letter here or below.