Here is what you need to know about Milwaukee County’s response to COVID-19.
Click here for continuous updates for Milwaukee County.
EMERGENCY OPERATIONS CENTER
The Milwaukee County Executive, Milwaukee County Office of Emergency Management (OEM) and municipal health leaders launched an Emergency Operations Center (EOC) to monitor and support the response to coronavirus (COVID-19). The EOC will track cases of COVID-19 across the County, coordinate resources and provide public information as necessary. The EOC will operate to ensure preparedness for the potential of widespread transmission of COVID-19 as well as the implementation of community mitigation measures as they become necessary. The activation of the EOC is in accordance with the recent proclamation declaring a local public health emergency due to COVID-19.
MILWAUKEE COUNTY SERVICES
Buses: Milwaukee County Transit System (MCTS) requests that riders limit non-essential bus travel until further notice. MCTS is working with federal, state and local governments to help limit the spread of the virus. Whenever possible, all passengers are encouraged to pay their fare with the MCTS M-Card – a contactless smartcard – or use the electronic fare offered via the Ride MCTS App. Both options allow you to pay your fare without making direct contact with the farebox.
Once on board, MCTS passengers are asked to leave extra space between themselves and others. This form of ‘social distancing’ can help protect from the spread of the virus. MCTS recommends exiting through the rear doors of the bus instead of the front doors to limit contact with the bus driver. Additionally, MCTS requests riders stay behind the yellow line and limit conversation and interaction with the bus driver. Future updates from MCTS will be posted here.
Airport: Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport is following all directives and best practices from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Milwaukee Health Department. Protocols have been implemented to maintain the health, safety and well-being of all who use the airport. In partnership with our Airport partners and stakeholders, the airport continues to share all relevant CDC recommendations with staff and travelers. They have enhanced the already robust cleaning and disinfecting of restroom facilities, common areas and SuperSaver Parking shuttles. Further updates will be available here.
Parks and recreation: Milwaukee County Parks will close all golf courses, club houses and Disc Golf effective March 17, 2020. All dog parks will also be closed and locked until further notice. Parks has canceled park rentals, special events and organized sports activities through April 17, 2020. Reservations are still being taken for events that take place after May 15, 2020.
While information is continuing to evolve, Parks also recommends avoiding use of playgrounds at this time. Signage will be posted to serve as a reminder.
The Milwaukee County Zoo continues to share all relevant CDC recommendations with staff during the closure. It has implemented best practices and proper precautions for essential staff reporting to the Zoo for work at this time. It has cancelled its upcoming special events in April, adhering to the CDC guidelines stating that gatherings of more than 50 people should not occur for the next 60 days. The animals continue to do well and are receiving the same level of professional care on a 24-hour basis.
Services for seniors: Milwaukee County Department of Health and Human Services and the Milwaukee County Department of Aging recommends residents check-in on elderly neighbors, friends and family during this time. Older adults who live alone are at high risk of social isolation and a friendly phone call or check-in can be especially important. To minimize possible transmission of the virus, residents should call the Aging Resource Call Center at (414) 289-6874 rather than come for a walk-in visit.
To ensure older adults remains the top priority for the Department of Aging, Clinton Rose Senior Center, Kelly Senior Center, McGovern Park Senior Center, Washington Park Senior Center, and Wilson Park Senior Center are closed for social programming. Arlington Court, College Court, Convent Hill, Fernwood Court, Franklin, Grobschmidt Senior Center, Lapham Park, Milwaukee Christian Center, and West Allis Senior Center will transition to carry out meals only effective March 16, 2020. Starting March 17, the following dining sites will also be transitioning to carry out meals only: Clinton Rose Senior Center, Elks Lodge, Greater Galilee, Hart Park Senior Center, Kelly Senior Center, McGovern Park Senior Center, Washington Park Senior Center, and Wilson Senior Center. Indian Council for the Elderly, LGBT Community Center and Muslim Community Health Center are closed for both the senior center and the senior dining sites.
Meals on Wheels remains a top priority and service will continue as normal to the older adults in this program.
Services for those who are disabled: Milwaukee County Disabilities Services Division is committed to the safety and needs of children and adults with disabilities. The following are the changes in service at this time: The Friedens’ food pantry located at Coggs (1220 W Vliet St) is closed indefinitely; to minimize possible transmission of the virus, we are suggesting people call the Disability Resource Call Center at (414) 289-6660, instead of an in-person visit if people have questions or need assistance with any of the following: burial Assistance, Go Pass, Adult Long-Term Services 18-59, Adult Protective Services. Disability Benefits, Disability Resources and Information, or the Interim Disability Assistance Program. Customers can also call the Children’s Intake line at (414) 289-6799 if they have questions or concerns about the Birth to Three Program. Referrals can also be emailed to Birth_to_ThreeDSD@milwaukeecountywi.gov.
Help: Energy Assistance sites are temporarily closed, and residents are urged to move in-person visits to phone calls. 2020 Energy Assistance applications can be completed by phone. Visit KEEPWARMMKE.ORG or call 414-270-4-MKE (4653) to reschedule or make an appointment. In case of a no-heat emergency, call 2-1-1.
Jail visitation: Milwaukee County Jail will also video visitations only. Non-contact attorney visitation is available on-site. House of Correction will also allow video visitations only.