Covid-19 Resources

  • Red Cross Virtual Family Assistance Center

  • Rhode Island Testing Sites: Rhode Islanders requiring COVID-19 testing should contact their primary care provider to schedule an appointment, call a respiratory clinic, or visit the CVS Rapid Testing Site. 

    • Respiratory Clinics: List of clinics is available at the RIDOH Testing webpage: https://health.ri.gov/covid/testing/#how.

    • CVS Rapid Testing Site: Appointment scheduling is available at https://www.cvs.com/minuteclinic/covid-19-testing.

    • Walk-up COVID Rapid Testing for Central Falls and Pawtucket residents: Site is located at 934 Dexter St. in Central Falls.To schedule an appointment, call 1-855-843-7620 between 9 AM and 5 PM (weekdays).

    • Rhode Island Free Clinic (RIFC) at St. Joseph’s Hospital parking lot at 647 Broad St. in Providence. Call 401-922-6843 to make an appointment. Testing is available to new and existing RIFC patients Monday-Thursday from 1 to 5 PM and Saturdays from 10 AM to 2 PM.

    • Thundermist Health Center: Hosting a drive-thru and walk-up test site at 450 Clinton Street in Woonsocket. To schedule an appointment, call 401-767-4100. *You do not need to be a patient of the health center to be eligible for testing.

    • Cranston CCAP Family Health Services will open to the general public an appointment-only drive-thru testing site. To schedule call CCAP Family Services at 401-943-1981.

    • East Bay Community Action Testing Sites (by appointment only):

    • East Providence: 100 Bullocks Point, Riverside, Phone: 401-437-1008

    • Newport: CCRI Parking Lot (1 John H Chafee Blvd), Phone: 401-848-2160

    • Memorial Hospital (Pawtucket): Care New England’s Respiratory Infections Triage Unit will be staffed Monday-Friday 8 AM-5 PM. Symptomatic patients should call their primary care provider or call 401-227-3669 to make an appointment.

    • Transportation to Testing Sites: Constituents seeking transportation assistance to testing sites can contact the following services: MTM has support in place to transport those enrolled in Medicaid and people who qualify for the Elderly Transportation Program. Eligible individuals call: 1-855-330-9131 (TTY: 711) *This service is only available if no other transportation options are available.

Note: The Department of State advises U.S. citizens to avoid all international travel due to the global impact of COVID-19. In countries where commercial departure options remain available, U.S. citizens who live in the United States should arrange for immediate return to the United States, unless they are prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite period.

The Department of State encourages all U.S. citizens traveling overseas to immediately enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) via step.state.gov to receive important and timely updates from the local U.S. Embassy.

Constituents with a COVID-19 virus related emergency overseas can contact the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate or call the Department of State’s 24/7 assistance call center at 1-888-407-4747 (within the U.S. or Canada) or 1-202-501-4444 (from overseas). 

  • Behavioral Health Resources
    • If you or someone you know is experiencing a behavioral health care crisis, contact BH link for 24/7 call-in service at 401-414-LINK (5465) or click here for more information.
    • People with moderate to severe opioid use disorder (OUD) can access telehealth service for initiation of buprenorphine treatment at 401-606-5456.
  • RI Delivers
    • RI Delivers is Rhode Island’s connection to help for those living in quarantine or isolation due to COVID-19. This service will ensure that Rhode Islanders in quarantine will have what they need to safely remain home and monitor their symptoms. Connections to groceries, home supplies, restaurants, and mutual aid groups are featured here. For additional information, residents can call 2-1-1 or the Point at 401-462-4444.
  • Rhode Island Commerce Corporation 
    • If your business has questions regarding SBA loans and access to capital, please call the Small Business Hotline during business hours at (401) 521-HELP or e-mail info@commerceri.com anytime.
    • En Español
  • Rhode Island Department of Human Services 
    • For general information on SNAP, RI Works, Child Care Assistance, EBT Cards, General Public Assistance, RIte Care, and other agency programs, click here or call 1-855-MY-RIDHS (1-855-697-4347) from 8:30am – 4:00pm, Monday through Friday.
    • DHS will temporarily increase SNAP benefits of some households during the Covid-19 crisis. DHS will issue supplements to households whose SNAP benefits were below the federal monthly maximum for the month of June. On June 3, households with benefit amounts under the maximum amount will receive additional benefits as a supplement to the regular June issuance.
    • The USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) recently granted Rhode Island the authority to issue Pandemic-EBT benefits (P-EBT) to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and non-SNAP households with one or more children who have temporarily lost access to free or reduced price meals at school due to COVID-19 school closures. For households receiving SNAP benefits, the additional benefits will be added to their existing EBT cards. Households not currently receiving SNAP benefits will receive a new P-EBT card in the mail with benefits automatically added and a personal identification number (PIN) and setup instructions. If you still didn’t receive the P-EBT benefit, call the DHS Call Center at 1- 855-MY-RIDHS.
  • Rhode Island Division of Motor Vehicles 
    • For information regarding updates, licenses, IDs, registration services and reservations, click here.
    • All DMV satellite offices are closed.
    • The Cranston DMV will be providing the following limited services and transactions.
      • Driver license, learner permit, State ID – Reservation Only
      • Vehicle Registration and Title – Reservation Only
      • Adjudication - Reservation Only
      • Commercial driver licenses and permits - Reservation Only
      • Dealer services – Drop Off and Checks Only
      • To make a reservation for DMV services, click here
    • The DMV is temporarily waiving the requirement for a VIN check on out of state titles to be conducted by your local police station. The VIN will be electronically verified at the time of titling.
    • The DMV will be extending driver licenses, learner permits, ID's, CLPs, CDLs, registrations, inspection stickers, and disability placards scheduled to expire in the months of June, July 2020 by 90 days. Click here to learn more.
  • Rhode Island Secretary of State 
    • For updates regarding Secretary of State operations, click here.
    • Business Services Division
    • Customers are encouraged to use the new Business Services website to register their business, file annual reports, update information and obtain letters of good standing.
    • Business Services staff will be available Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. to assist customers over the phone at (401) 222-3040 or via email at corporations@sos.ri.gov.
    • Temporary Remote Online Notarization (RON) is effective until the termination of the state of emergency. Remote Online Notarization is the process by which documents are notarized in an electronic form where the signer and notary public are not physically in each other’s presence but can communicate simultaneously using secure audio-video technology. Learn more here.
  • Board of Elections
    • Rhode Island’s Presidential Preference Primary is postponed until June 2.
    • Eligible Rhode Islanders in need of a Voter ID are asked to make an appointment 24 hours prior to their desired visit by calling (401) 222-2340 or emailing elections@sos.ri.gov.
    • The Elections Division will offer limited in-person service by appointment only. Elections staff are still available to assist the public by phone at (401) 222-2340 and email (elections@sos.ri.gov)
      • Rhode Island Office of the Attorney General - Consumer Protection Team: 
        • Rhode Islanders who suspect price gouging or COVID-19 scams should contact the Attorney General’s Office. Price gouging is illegal in Rhode Island. Businesses are prohibited from increasing the price of any essential commodity to an "unconscionably high price" immediately before or during a declared state of emergency. 
        • Contact the Consumer Protection Team here or at 401-274-4400.
        • Effective immediately, the RIAG is prioritizing background checks as follows:
          • Healthcare providers, such as nurses and long-term care/assisted living facility workers
          • Individuals requiring background checks for housing
          • First responders
          • Individuals with urgent circumstances who need a background check for employment purposes. 
          • Contact BCI first in order to make an appointment at 401-274-4400, prompt 2.
        • All others, including those seeking background checks for volunteer positions that require a background check, are asked to postpone their visit to the AG Customer Service Center until the state of emergency has been lifted.
        • Applications/renewals for License to carry concealed weapon permits will continue to be accepted by mail only. Applications will be processed, however, permit cards will not be available for pickup at this time. A temporary paper permit will be mailed for use until normal BCI operations resume.
        • Background checks for firearm sales are conducted by local police departments and the Rhode Island State Police. The timeline for background checks has been extended to 30 days by executive order due to the COVID-19 emergency.
        • Attorney General Peter Neronha issued guidance reminding creditors, debt collectors and financial institutions that stimulus payments resulting from the federal government's Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act are exempt from seizure or garnishment by debt collectors.
      • Rhode Island Veterans Home:
        • The Veterans Home has implemented Level 3 visitor restrictions. No visitation is allowed other than those essential to care. These visitors must also be older than 18 years of age, not have exposure to someone under investigation for COVID-19, and be symptom-free. People who have traveled internationally in the last 14 days will not be allowed to enter the Home. All new admissions are temporarily halted. No outside activity groups will be allowed at the Home through March 31. Within the home they have restructured all activities and limiting them to the Neighborhood wings; no centralized activities will take place. Religious services will be conducted in the Neighborhoods in lieu of the central Chapel. Residents who routinely leave the facility will be required to remain at the Home.
      • RI Havens
        • RI Havens is Rhode Islanders’ connection to local establishments offering discounted lodging rates to frontline workers and others who may need a place to stay during the COVID-19 pandemic. Click here to learn more. 
        • Food Services
          • Due to the closure of schools, free "Grab and Go" meals are available for school children throughout Rhode Island. All of these sites are operating on the same basis, which is that anyone aged 18 or under who shows up gets a free meal.  There are no ID or residency requirements, but the child must be present; schools cannot give a meal to an adult on behalf of a child.
        • Providence VA Medical Center
          • The Providence VA Medical Center and its associated clinics are fully functional and continuing to provide Veterans with health care. Patients have been directed to utilize the medical center’s main entrance for screening prior to entry. Veterans experiencing symptoms of Covid-19 have been advised to call a 401-457-3336 before visiting a VA medical center or a community clinic. 
        • VA Providence Regional Benefits Office
          • The VA Providence Regional Benefits Office is suspending VA benefits services at the VA community clinics. This will not affect health care and mental health operations.
          • Walk-in VA benefits services will continue at both the VA Regional Office (380 Westminster St.) and the VA Medical Center (830 Chalkstone Ave.)
        • Rhode Island Division of Information Technology
          • For businesses, municipalities, K-12 and other entities, Microsoft is providing six months of Office 365 tools for free to enable remote collaboration, file sharing and video conferencing. Click here.
        • Office of Healthy Aging
          • Senior centers and other congregate meal sites are offering boxed meals that are being delivered by staff and/or volunteers, or being offered as grab-and-go options.  The local senior center in each municipality is acting as the coordinating site for these meals within their city/town. A list resources for older adults can be found here
          • Cases of elder abuse, exploitation, and self-neglect can be reported 24/7 to 401-462-0555
          • Case management and wellness checks will be conducted telephonically. Referrals to case management can be made through the Point at 401-462-4444
          • The Office of Healthy Aging has created Project HELLO, a volunteer based effort that connects isolated older adults who are in need of socialization to friendly volunteers via the telephone. Volunteers are not only providing phone-based wellness checks, but also a sense of community. If you are an older adult who would like to receive a Project HELLO call, please call the POINT at: 462-4444. If you are interested in volunteering for Project HELLO, click here.
        • Office of Library & Information Services
          • Although schools and public libraries across Rhode Island are closed, there are many opportunities to access free learning and recreational resources through Rhode Island's libraries.
          • Click here for resources for all ages!
        • Rhode Island Judiciary & Courts
          • Beginning June 1, 2020, non-emergency in-person hearings which cannot be conducted remotely will be scheduled by the courts.
            • The McGrath Judicial Complex (Washington County) and the Murray Judicial Complex (Newport County) will remain closed until September 1.
            • The courts are making technological accommodations to make remote hearings accessible to the public.
            • For more information, click here.
          • Rhode Island Superior Court Business Recovery Plan: The court will provide supervised protections for Rhode Island businesses so they can remain operational, access new working capital, and pay debts. For more information, click here.
          • For Bankruptcy Court operations, click here.
          • For RI Supreme Court Miscellaneous Order related to special/rules requirements relative to bar admissions, click here.
        • Evictions
          • Public housing residents with questions can contact Rhode Island Legal Services at 274.2652 x123. Tenants in private rental housing can call the Rhode Island Center for Justice at 401-491-1101.
        • Child and Elder Care
          • Updated guidance for child care programs can be found here.  
          • Care.com is providing Rhode Island residents three months of free, premium access to their site in support of Frontline workers at this difficult time here.
          • You can also sign up here to volunteer for frontline workers by providing child or elder care: 
        • Rhode Island Student Loan Authority 
          • For assistance with non-federal student loans, contact RISLA about relief applications, click here.
        • RI DEM
          • DEM is spearheading an initiative to support RI's commercial fishing and seafood industry during the COVID-19 Coronavirus crisis by helping connect consumers with retailers of local seafood. See more information here.
          • DEM issued the following guidance for operation of marinas, yacht clubs, and harbor masters during the COVID crisis:
            • Boatyards at marinas and yacht clubs should remain secure so that admittance can be monitored by the owners / operators.
            • In the event an owner or other persons wish to work on their vessel, they should be cautioned about social distancing and monitored to ensure that no groups form. This is important to protect your employees as well.
            • Any sales at your stores must be curbside pickup only.
            • Limit use of facilities to RI resident seasonal slip holders only. Use of facilities by transients and out of state boaters is prohibited.
            • In the event that a vessel arrives at your facility unannounced, they must be provided with the Public Health documents being provided to all out of state travelers. They should also be directed to the RI Department of Health website site to fill out the required information.
          • DEM issued COVID-19 safety guidelines as state parks reopen on May 9. Rhode Islanders are urged to take precautions and follow the rules to safely to enjoy the outdoors. For a list of State Parks included in Phase 1 reopening, click here. 
          • Boating during COVID-19 Boaters are urged to follow these safety rules to protect themselves and others:
            • Stay close to home. Travel to and from the access site without making other stops.
            • Boat only with people in your immediate household.
            • Maintain a distance of at least 6 feet from others at all times and keep your distance on the water by not tying up to other boats or beaching your boat near other boaters.
            • Fuel up and plan ahead by packing hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes and disposable gloves. When fueling, wash your hands as you would when fueling a car. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry. Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
            • When launching and loading your boat, give people ahead of you plenty of time and space to finish launching or loading before you approach.
            • Do not enter the marina office unless you have an appointment.
            • While on the water, find a secluded spot away from others to relax.
            • Call ahead to your destination to make sure it is open and accepting visitors.
            • When returning, be prepared to dock or trailer with your own crew and avoid assistance.
            • Keep distance at dock. Dispose of trash according to marina rules and guidelines.
            • If you are sick or exhibiting symptoms consistent with COVID-19 such as fever, cough, or difficulty breathing, stay home and self-isolate for 14 days.
        • Information for Survivors of Domestic Violence
          • For information to support victims and survivors, click here.
          • The Victims of Crime Helpline is available 24/7 at 1-800-494-8100
          • Safe at Home: The Rhode Island State Police launched Safe at Home in concert with leading community organizations to raise awareness of the threat of increased violence during the COVID-19 pandemic. Safe at Home is focused on connecting with those who may be facing violence at home and providing all Rhode Islanders with resources to identify and help those at-risk.
        • Department of Children, Youth and Families
          • Family Care Community Partnerships (FCCPs) are the Department of Children, Youth and Families’ primary prevention resource for the state. FCCPs partner with families and communities to raise healthy children in a safe, caring environment. The Department recognizes that all families struggle and need supports they can turn to from time to time. These supports range from basic needs to bridging family rifts with the overarching goal of increasing the overall well-being of families. FCCP agencies, which are part of DCYF's network of prevention-focused providers, brings community-based services to children and families to build a stronger, brighter futures. For more information, or to contact your local FCCP, please click here. 
          • Kids Link RI 
            • This free hotline connects parents and caregivers to children’s services in Rhode Island, and helps parents determine the best place to go for treatment and counseling. Call 1-855-543-5465 to be connected.

          • IRS
            • Updated 3/26/20: Due to staff limitations, the Practitioner Priority Service (PPS) line, the e-Services Help Desk line and the e-Services, FIRE and AIR system help desks are closed until further notice. The public should make IRS.gov their first option for answers to questions. 
            • The IRS is experiencing delays with Income Verification Express Services as well as processing CAF number authorizations. 
            • Practitioners with e-Services accounts and with client authorization can access the Transcript Delivery System to obtain prior-year transcripts. Taxpayers should use Where’s My Refund? and Get Transcript.
            • Tax filing deadline is delayed from April 15 to July 15.  See more information here.
            • The IRS is focused on steps to help taxpayers, businesses and others affected by the coronavirus. The page will be updated as new information is available.
            • Taxpayer Advocate Services remains open to receive phone calls at the local phone numbers but has suspended walk-in services until further notice. Phone: (401) 528-1921. Fax: 855-807-9697
            • On Friday March 20, the U.S. Treasury Department, Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and the U.S. Department of Labor (Labor) announced that small and midsize employers can begin taking advantage of two new refundable payroll tax credits, designed to immediately and fully reimburse them, dollar-for-dollar, for the cost of providing Coronavirus-related leave to their employees. More information, here
            • On Wednesday, March 25, the IRS unveiled a new People First Initiative to assist taxpayers by providing relief on a variety of issues ranging from easing payment guidelines to postponing compliance actions. See more
            • On Monday, March 30, the IRS will begin temporarily accepting images of signatures (scanned or photographed) and digital signatures on documents related to the determination or collection of tax liability.  In addition, the IRS is allowing IRS employees to accept documents via email and to transmit documents to taxpayers using SecureZip or other established secured messaging systems.
            • On March 31, 2020, the IRS announced Employee Retention Credits are available for many businesses financially impacted by COVID-19. See more here.
            • On April 3, 2020, the IRS is warning taxpayers to be alert about possible scams relating to COVID-19 economic impact payments.
            • On April 15, 2020, the IRS launched the “Get My Payment” Web App for Americans to submit direct deposit information and track economic impact payments. Visit the “Get My Payment” App here.
            • Americans who did not file a tax return in 2018 or 2019 can click here to submit basic personal information to quickly and securely receive their Economic Impact Payments. 
            • Economic Impact Payment FAQs
            • “Get My Payment” FAQs
          • U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
            • USCIS is preparing to resume public services at it’s field offices, asylum offices and Application Support Centers (ACSs) on June 4.Please call the Contact Center for assistance with emergency services here or at (800) 375-5283.
            • As services begin to reopen, offices will reduce the number of appointments and interviews to ensure social distancing, allow time for cleaning and reduce waiting room occupancy. Appointment notices will contain information on safety precautions that visitors to USCIS facilities must follow.
            • USCIS asylum offices will automatically reschedule asylum interviews that were cancelled during the temporary closures. When USCIS reschedules the interview, asylum applicants will receive a new interview notice with the new time, date and location for the interview and information about safety precautions.
            • USCIS will send notices to applicants to reschedule postponed naturalization ceremonies.
            • USCIS will send notices to applicants and petitioners with previously scheduled appointments and interviews. 
            • For the latest information on the status of individual offices, check the office closures page.
            • USCIS announced that any testing, treatment, or services relating to COVID-19 will NOT be used against immigrants in their public charge evaluation. Learn more here.
            • Until further notice, USCIS has announced it will no longer be accepting I-907 Premium Processing Application requests, which ask for faster processing, for I-129 and I-140 petitions.  USCIS will notify the public with a confirmed date for resuming premium processing and reject and return the $1,440 filing fee for all petitions requesting premium processing that were mailed before March 20 but not yet accepted.
            • More information on current processing times can be found here.
            • USCIS is extending the response due date by 60 days for any requests for evidence (RFE) and notices of intent to deny (NOID)s received between March 1 and May 1. 
              • For applicants and petitioners who receive an RFE or NOID dated between March 1 and May 1, 2020, any responses submitted within 60 calendar days after the response deadline set forth in the RFE or NOID will be considered by USCIS before any action is taken.
            • As of May 6, 2020 U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced that U.S. service members and veterans can now file Form N-400, Application for Naturalization, online. USCIS offers a toll-free military help line, 877-CIS-4MIL (877-247-4645, TTY: 800-877-8339) and e-mail address at militaryinfo@uscis.dhs.gov?exclusively for current members of the military and their families, as well as veterans.
          • U.S. Department of State 
            • H-2 Visas and COVID-19:Consular officers can waive the visa interview requirement for first-time and returning H-2 applicants who have no apparent ineligibility or potential ineligibility.   This expansion also increases the period in which returning workers may qualify for an interview waiver. Applicants whose previous visas expired in the last 48 months, and who did not require a waiver of ineligibility the last time they applied, do not need to be interviewed in-person if they are applying for the same visa classification as their previous visa.
            • Passport Agencies throughout the nation are working with limited staff and processing life/death applications with travel within 72 hours only. Should you need these services, please call the National Passport Information Center (NPIC) at 877-487-2778.  
            • Passport's COVID-19 Update
            • Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Passports During COVID-19
          • Providence VA Medical Center
            • The Providence VA Medical Center and its associated clinics are fully functional and continuing to provide Veterans with health care, however, non-urgent, elective procedures will be rescheduled until sometime after May 15. The Providence VA Medical Center are calling veterans who need to be rescheduled. If you have a specific question about your appointment, a list of clinic phone numbers can be found here
            • If you have flu-like symptoms such as fever, cough or shortness of breath, please call 401-457-3336 before coming to the Providence VA Medical Center (VAMC) or one of their clinics, or send a secure message with My HelatheVet.
            • Please enter the main campus from Chalkstone Ave. or Valley St. RIPTA buses are no longer coming onto the Providence VAMC campus. Buses now stop at Chalkstone Ave. and Navy Lane, across from Roger Williams. Valet service is closed. As a precaution, everyone will be directed to a tent at the medical center’s main entrance for a brief screening.
            • The Pharmacy is now only using the mail-order system for prescription refill requests. Emergency prescriptions, including post-surgical, emergency department and discharge medication will still be provided on location by the Pharmacy. For other medications and supplies, Veterans should request refills and renewals by:
              • Calling the Pharmacy Call Center at 866-400-1241
              • Mailing in refill slips
              • Requesting through My HealtheVet
            • DAV van service has been temporarily suspended. Providence VA shuttle services to the VA Hyannis Clinic, VA Boston and Eagle Square are suspended for the time being, as well. 
              • Please contact the Travel Office with questions at (401) 273-7100 ext. 3550 or call the applicable clinic to discuss alternative care-delivery options
            • For more VA Related Questions, click here.
            • Disabled American Veterans (DAV) is offering $250 grants to veterans left unemployed by coronavirus pandemic, click here for details.  
          • VA Providence Regional Benefits Office
            • The Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) Regional Offices will be closed to the public starting March 19. Regional offices will remain open, but will no longer accept walk-ins for claims assistance, scheduled appointments, counseling and other in-person services.
              Veterans with claims specific or other questions may call toll-free 1 (800) 827-1000, Monday through Friday, 8:00AM-9:00PM ET or
            • Contact the VA through the Inquiry Routing & Information System (IRIS).
          • Social Security Administration
            • All local Social Security offices will be closed to the public for in-person service starting Tuesday, March 17, 2020. However, we are still able to provide critical services.
            • To allow available agents to provide better phone coverage, the agency is temporarily changing the National 800 Number hours starting on Tuesday, March 31, 2020.  The hours will change from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. local time to 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. local time. The agency is experiencing longer than normal wait times on the 800 Number and asks the public to remain patient, use its online services at www.socialsecurity.gov, or call their local office.
            • On April 1, 2020, the Department of Treasury announced  Social Security beneficiaries who are not typically required to file tax returns will not need to file an abbreviated tax return to receive an economic impact payment.  The IRS will use the information on the Form SSA-1099 to generate $1,200 economic impact payments to Social Security beneficiaries who did not file tax returns in 2018 or 2019.
            • Treasury, not Social Security, will make automatic payments to Social Security beneficiaries.  Beneficiaries will receive these payments by direct deposit or by paper check, just as they would normally receive their Social Security benefits.
            • Economic Impact Payments for Social Security and SSI Recipients – Steps to Take and Schedule of Payments
              • SSI recipients who did not file a 2019 or 2018 tax return and who have a child must use the IRS' Non Filer: Enter Payment Info tool by May 5 to receive $500 economic impact payments now for their children.
          • FEMA
            • You can visit FEMA’s coronavirus (COVID-19) response page for more updates on the federal response.
            • Stay informed with FEMA’s  updated myth vs. facts related to the federal (COVID-19) response.
            • FEMA Extends Grace Period for Flood Insurance Renewal Premiums: National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) customers who may be experiencing financial hardships, the agency is extending the grace period to renew flood insurance policies from 30 to 120 days.
            • Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) 
              • OSHA published an alert listing safety tips employers can follow to help protect retail workers from exposure to coronavirus. Safety measures employers can implement to protect employees working in pharmacies, supermarkets, big box stores and other retail establishments include:
                • Routinely cleaning and disinfecting surfaces and equipment with Environmental Protection Agency-approved cleaning chemicals from List N or that have label claims against the coronavirus
                • Using a drive-through window or offering curbside pick-up
                • Recommending that workers wear masks over their nose and mouth to prevent them from spreading the virus
                • Practicing sensible social distancing, which could include opening only every other cash register, temporarily moving workstations to create more distance and installing plexiglass partitions between workstations
            • U.S. Census Bureau
              • Some Area Census Offices (ACO) are re-opening in a phased approach. To see the status of current operations, click here.
              • The final date to respond to the 2020 Census has been extended to October, 31, 2020.
              • You can still complete the Census online.
            • U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
              • U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Federal Housing Finance Agency announced a moratorium on foreclosures and evictions.
              • On March 18, 2020, HUD announced immediate relief to renters and homeowners by suspending all foreclosures and evictions until the end of April.
            • U.S. Department of Agriculture
              • Rhode Island has been approved to operate Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT), a new program authorized by the Families First Coronavirus Act (FFCRA), which provides assistance to families of children eligible for free or reduced-price meals dealing with school closures.
              • The State of Rhode Island will be the second state to operate Pandemic EBT, a supplemental food purchasing benefit to current SNAP participants and as a new EBT benefit to other eligible households to offset the cost of meals that would have otherwise been consumed at school.
            • U.S. Department of Homeland Security
              • April 22, 2020: U.S. Customs and Border Protection will extend the temporary closure of Trusted Traveler Program enrollment centers until at least June 1, 2020.
            • Centers for Medicare and Medicaid
              • Medicare has further temporarily expanded its coverage of telehealth services — allowing doctors and clinicians to perform dozens more additional services via telehealth.
              • Other expanded services due to the COVID-19 emergency include: 
                • Lab tests for COVID-19. You pay no out-of-pocket costs. 
                • All medically necessary hospitalizations. This includes if you're diagnosed with COVID-19 and need to stay in the hospital under quarantine instead of being discharged from the hospital after an inpatient stay.
                • Learn more about COVID-19 and your Medicare coverage here. 
            • U.S. Small Business Administration
              • Additional materials for small businesses are below under Small Business Resources
              • Paycheck Protection Program
                • The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll. SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities. Click here to learn more.
                • Applications are now being accepted for the Paycheck Protection Program. Please contact one of the SBA approved lenders or your bank/credit union, and let them know that you want to apply for the Paycheck Protection Program.
            • Food Services
              • Due to the closure of schools, free "Grab and Go" meals are available for school children throughout Rhode Island.  All of these sites are operating on the same basis, which is that anyone aged 18 or under who shows up gets a free meal.  There are no ID or residency requirements, but the child must be present; schools cannot give a meal to an adult on behalf of a child.
            • Commerce RI
              • If businesses have questions regarding access to capital and other lending options, please call the RI Commerce Small Business Hotline at (401) 521-HELP or e-mail info@commerceri.com.
            • Unemployment Insurance
              • Rhode Island Department of Labor & Training filed an emergency regulation to waive the waiting period for COVID-related Unemployment Insurance claims. If employees are laid off from their position due to COVID-19 (i.e., temporary business closure/other circumstances where they are not self-quarantined but are out of work), they may be eligible to apply for UI. 
              • If you are laid off from your position due to COVID-19 (i.e., temporary business closure/other circumstances where you are not self-quarantined but are out of work), you may be eligible to apply for UI. Click here to apply for UI.
              • If you are a Rhode Island gig economy worker, contract worker, small business owner, worker for hire, self-employed, or other individual ineligible for regular unemployment insurance, who is out of work because of COVID-19, click here to apply for COVID-19 Emergency Unemployment Insurance benefits.
            • U.S. Small Business Administration
              • For information on the SBA resources, click here on our COVID-19 Stimulus Bill FAQ tab. 
              • The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll. SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities. Click here to learn more.
              • Applications are now being accepted for the Paycheck Protection Program. Please contact one of the SBA approved lenders or your bank/credit union, and let them know that you want to apply for the Paycheck Protection Program.
              • The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering designated states and territories low interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). 
              • SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans offer up to $2 million in assistance and can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing.
              • These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses. The interest rate for non-profits is 2.75%.
              • SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years. Terms are determined on a case-by-case basis, based upon each borrower’s ability to repay.
              • SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans are just one piece of the expanded focus of the federal government’s coordinated response, and the SBA is strongly committed to providing the most effective and customer-focused response possible. 
              • To apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan, click here. 
              • For questions or to check on your application status, please contact the SBA disaster assistance customer service center at 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 1-800-877-8339) or e-mail disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.
              • For FAQs regarding the SBA's Disaster Loan Program, click here. 
            • Gift it Forward
              • Gift it Forward is an online resource aimed at helping Rhode Island small businesses make it through the COVID-19 pandemic. To purchase a gift card or support a local small business, click here
            • Microenterprise Stabilization Grant Program
              • Rhode Island’s microenterprise stabilization grant program is designed to assist small businesses that have been impacted by COVID-19 and left out of federal stimulus programs to-date. The program will provide grants of up to $5,000 to qualifying microenterprises. Funds may be used for working capital to cover business costs, such as rent, staffing, utilities. Click here to learn more.
            • Understanding Rhode Island and Federal Paid Leave and Unemployment Insurance via the Economic Progress Institute 
            • Reopening
              • For needed supplies: Contact the Commerce hotline at 401-521-HELP
              • For sector specific questions about Phase 1 reopening: Contact the Department of Business Regulation DBR at 401-462-9500 or click here. 
              • For questions regarding reopening plans for businesses contact: covidplan@reopeningri.com
            • Masks and Supplies for Small Businesses
              • Small businesses with 50 or fewer employees that are open or are reopening — including retailers, grocery stores, manufacturers, restaurants and service-based businesses — are able to access a month’s supply of product through these organizations. Local chambers of commerce or industry associations will distribute the supplies starting May 18th. Click here to learn more.

            Food

            • Grocery Stores offering shopping hours for At-Risk populations 
              • Aldis: 8:30 a.m. (Tuesday & Thursday)
              • Clements Market: 7-8 a.m.
              • Brigido’s Fresh Markets 7-10 a.m.
              • Dave’s Markets (large locations): 7-8 a.m.
              • Dave’s Markets (small locations): 8-9 a.m.
              • Dollar General: 6-7:30 a.m.
              • Jerry’s Market: 7-8 a.m.
              • Ma & Pa’s in Hope Valley: Curbside Service
              • Richmond Farms Fresh Market: 7:30-8 a.m.
              • Roch’s Fresh Foods: Curbside Service
              • Save-A-Lot: 8-9 a.m.
              • Seabra: 6-7 a.m.
              • Shaws: 7-9 a.m. (Tuesday & Thursday)
              • Stop & Shop: 6-7:30 a.m.
              • Target: 8-9 a.m. (Tuesday & Wednesday)
              • Walmart: 6-7 a.m. (Tuesday)
              • Whole Foods: 8-9 a.m.

            Renters & Homeowners

            • For Mortgage and housing assistance during the coronavirus national emergency, click here.
            • U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Federal Housing Finance Agency announced a moratorium on foreclosures and evictions. On March 18, 2020, HUD is providing immediate relief to renters and homeowners by suspending all foreclosures and evictions until the end of April. Click here for more information. (link to our homeowners FAQ page)
            • To help homeowners who are in COVID-19 related forbearance, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) has announced that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the Enterprises) are making available a new payment deferral option. The payment deferral option allows borrowers, who are able to return to making their normal monthly mortgage payment, the ability to repay their missed payments at the time the home is sold, refinanced, or at maturity.
            • On April 24, 2020, the State of Rhode Island announced that financial institutions have committed to offering the following relief to homeowners impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic:
              • 90-Day Grace Period for All Residential Mortgage Payments
              • No Negative Credit Impacts Resulting from Relief
              • Moratorium on Initiating Foreclosure Sales or Evictions
              • No Fees or Charges
              • For more details, click here. 
              • CFPB released resources for consumers to understand issues that may arise as a result of COVID-19, including information on how to protect their finances and how to submit complaints.
                    • Evictions
                      • Public housing residents with questions can contact Rhode Island Legal Services at 274.2652 x123. Tenants in private rental housing can call the Rhode Island Center for Justice at 401-491-1101.
                    • Rental Assistance
                      • $1.5M in emergency rental assistance is available to low-income renters who've been impacted by the COVID-19 emergency and are at immediate risk of homelessness. You can click here to view requirements and apply.

                    Utilities

                    • RI Public Utilities Commission
                      • In response to the COVID-19 emergency, the Public Utilities Commission has directed all electric, gas, water, and wastewater utilities regulated by the Commission "to cease certain collections activities, including service terminations for nonpayment". This moratorium extends to July 17, 2020 for all customers of these utilities, subject to further review of the Commission.
                      • If the provider is unable to help, customers should call the Division of Public Utilities and Carriers at 401-780-9700
                    • National Grid
                      • National Grid is temporarily suspending collections-related activities, including service disconnections, to lessen any financial hardship the COVID-19 pandemic may have on our customers. These policies will remain in effect in alignment with the respective executive orders issued in RI. We will evaluate their continued need at that time. Please note that regular billing will continue for all customers.
                    • Keep America Connected Pledge 
                      • On March 13, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai called for broadband and telephone service providers to take pledge to promote connectivity for Americans affected by disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic.  The Keep Americans Connected Pledge calls for providers to do the following for the next 60 days: 
                        • not terminate service to any residential or small business customers because of their inability to pay their bills due to the disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic;
                        • waive any late fees that any residential or small business customers incur because of their economic circumstances related to the coronavirus pandemic; and
                        • open its Wi-Fi hotspots to any American who needs them.
                    • AT&T, Cox Communications, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon have all signed the pledge. 

                    Health Care

                    • CVS Pharmacy/Minute Clinic:
                      • On March 9, 2020, CVS Health announced additional COVID-19 resources to increase patient access to medications.
                      • CVS Pharmacy will waive charges for home delivery of prescription medications, which will help patients avoid visiting their local CVS Pharmacy for refills or new prescriptions.
                      • Aetna will offer 90-day maintenance medication prescriptions for insured and Medicare members.
                      • CVS Caremark is working with all PBM clients to waive early refill limits on 30-day prescription maintenance medications.
                      • If you suspect you may have COVID-19, telemedicine services such as MinuteClinic Video Visits are an effective option for screening. MinuteClinic Video Visits enable patients to talk with a health care provider and have a basic screening to determine their risk for COVID-19, without having to come into a clinic. 
                      • On March 25, CVS Health announced it is waiving cost-sharing and co-pays for in-patient hospital admissions related to COVID-19 for Aetna’s commercially insured members. This is one of several steps to help members access the care they need during the pandemic.
                      • April 6, 2020: Rhode Island has partnered with CVS Health to make free, rapid COVID-19 tests available to Rhode Islanders. Click here to learn more.
                    • Walgreens Pharmacy:
                      • 3/12/2020: Walgreens is waiving delivery fees for all eligible prescriptions during this evolving situation. 
                      • To make online shopping even easier, there will be free delivery on any purchase on Walgreens.com, with no minimum purchase required.
                      • March 30, 2020: Walgreens is now offering select products at its more than 7,300 pharmacy drive-thrus nationwide. The offering provides greater convenience while also helping to promote social distancing, and is another way Walgreens is helping to support patients and customers during this time.
                      • More than 60 front-end products are currently available for purchase at drive-thru, including household essentials chosen specifically to support the needs of customers and communities during the pandemic.

                    Rhode Island will receive stimulus funding through a number of federal programs.  The following is a list of funding estimates for those programs based off of the Senate's recently passed stimulus package.

                    • State Stabilization Fund:  $1.25 billion for Rhode Island
                    • Community Development Block Grant (CDBG): $9.8 million for Rhode Island, including $646,417 for Cranston, $448,348 for East Providence, $1 million for Pawtucket, $3.1 million for Providence, $575,033 for Warwick, $785,912 for Woonsocket, and $3.2 million for other cities and towns
                    • Child Care Development Block Grant: $8.1 million
                    • CDC Coronavirus State, Local, and Tribal Grants Minimum Awards: $5.4 million
                    • Community Service Block Grant (CSBG): $5.5 million
                    • Election Assistance: $3 million
                    • Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grants: $4 million
                    • HUD Emergency Solutions Grants: $4.9 million for Rhode Island, including $549,000 for Pawtucket, $1.5 million for Providence, $399,000 for Woonsocket, $2.4 million for other cities and towns
                    • Federal Transit Administration Grants: $105 million
                    • Housing Opportunities for Persons With Aids (HOPWA): $177,466
                    • Indian Housing Block Grant: $117,000
                    • Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP): $4.8 million
                    • Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP): $227,500
                    • National Endowment of the Arts: $424,000
                    • National Endowment of the Humanities: $418,000