Reading, MA — At their Thursday, June 3, 2021 meeting, the Reading Board of Health unanimously voted to rescind all of its COVID-19 related orders dating back to March 11, 2020.
A hearty thanks go out to current BOH members including Chair Dr. Richard Lopez, Vice Chair Kerry Dunnell, Paula Curren, Geri Cramer, and Kevin Sexton, as well as former members Emmy Dove, Ann Marie Messina, Lara Romanowski, and Eleanor Shonkoff for their unfailing assistance and leadership during the past 15 months during the pandemic. Thanks also to Health staff including Peter Mirandi, Kristine Harris, Shuang Shen, Daniel Markman, and Assistant Town Manager Jean Delios, and to countless other Town and School staff and volunteers led by Emergency Management Director/Fire Chief Greg Burns. There were many complex and fast-moving challenges, and the rules from the Federal and State governments changed frequently. Looking back, with some exhaustion, the community should be very proud at the relentless teamwork that kept us all together with a laser focus on keeping you all safe. We mourn those lives lost and rejoice at those lives saved.
Thanks also to all users of Town Hall for the past year as we all have rearranged our interactions/operations under the guidance of our Board of Health for the safety of you, our staff and the Reading community. For our regular guests, this has included frequent meetings outside, short meetings in doorways, and a great deal of electronic communication including automated permitting. Many of our divisions have been busier than ever before.
Everyone is immediately welcome to use your Town Hall without an appointment, but we ask everyone to use caution and common sense with respect to public health:
- If you have Covid-19 symptoms, please either refrain from visiting in person until you feel well, or if you must visit please wear a mask;
- If you are not two weeks beyond being fully vaccinated, we would appreciate if you wore a mask on the honor system;
- Please remember that our most fragile residents often visit Town Hall.
Employees have been working in the building since a brief two-day break in March 2020 when we installed safety measures. For example, all of our customer service windows now have Lexan shields between staff and the public, with small open areas to pass papers back and forth.
You will see some staff members wearing masks and some that do not. This depends on their vaccine status, exact work environment as well as individual choice to be safer. Please respect their choice for extra safety as our employees and their families have endured personal tragedy during the past year, just as you have.
All of our customer service windows will be staffed between the hours of 7:30am and 5:30pm Monday through Thursday. However, we encourage everyone to use the alternative and especially electronic methods of communications we have mutually developed over the past year. It is always a good idea to call in advance (https://www.readingma.gov/departments) to best plan your time in the building.