Delegate Nicole A. Williams Newsletter: Juneteenth; Police Accountability Work Group; Summer Meals
Dear Neighbors and Friends,
Today is June 19th also known as Juneteenth which is the date in 1865, 2 years after the Emancipation Proclamation, when Union soldiers marched into Galveston, Texas and announced the news that the Civil War had ended and that all of those who had been enslaved were now free. African-Americans have celebrated this holiday for years as a symbol of independence and freedom.
Today as we grapple with the effects that slavery and racism has created in our Country, let us each think about what we can do individually and collectively to make our Country better. If it is through self-education, the education of others, activism, advocacy or some other contribution - seek to make a positive difference.
One major difference that has recently occurred here in Prince George’s County is the resignation of police chief Hank Stawinski. His resignation comes on the heals of the release of a report that details more than two dozen instances of discrimination against officers of color within the County Police Department which resulted in either no discipline or minimal discipline. County Executive Alsobrooks announced today that Hector Velez will serve as the interim Police Chief.
The Governor did not have a press conference this week and has ended his weekly COVID-19 pandemic calls with the County leaders across the state. It is great that our numbers here in Maryland are decreasing but the coronavirus is still here. The number of positive cases and hospitalizations in States across the U.S. are spiking. There is also the concern about another spike occurring in the fall as we see with other viruses such as the flu. What happens in one part of the state actually does affect other parts of the state. We need to continue to work together as “One Maryland” to combat the spread.
Please continue to wear your face mask, practice social distancing, and celebrate Juneteenth today and Father’s Day on Sunday!
Local Juneteenth Events
Greenbelt is hosting a celebration on Saturday, June 20th at 7 PM at the Community Clinic located at 9220 Springhill Lake, Greenbelt MD. Masks and social distancing required.
Prince George’s County Department of Parks and Recreation has a number of virtual Juneteenth events today. www.facebook.com/pgparks
The Prince George’s County Memorial Library System has several virtual Juneteenth events and lots of information about traditions and celebration of Juneteenth. https://www.pgcmls.info/Juneteenth
The Prince George's County Young Democrats is hosting a March and Protest on Saturday, June 20th at 1 PM starting at the James. R. Cousins, Jr. Municipal Center, at 8600 Glenarden Parkway, Glenarden MD 20706 and ending at FedEx Field in Landover, MD.
Police Reform and Accountability in Maryland Work Group
Three weeks ago Maryland House Speaker Adrienne A. Jones announced the formation of a work group to address police reform and accountability in Maryland. The first meeting of the work group is this Tuesday, June 23, 2020 at 1 PM. You can view the work group meeting live by visiting the Maryland General Assembly website.
Prince George's County Modified Bulky Trash Schedule
The Department of the Environment is continuing to operate additional modified nine (9) bulky trash drop-off sites on a biweekly, rotating schedule from 11 AM – 7 PM
Residents may bring up to eight (8) bulky trash items for disposal at all modified drop-off locations. For a list of accepted items, frequently asked questions and a complete schedule of drop-off locations, visit environment.mypgc.us.
Please note, due to COVID-19 restrictions, County employees are not allowed to assist, handle, or touch any bulky trash items brought to the sites. Therefore, residents must be able to independently lift and place their items in the back of the packer truck for disposal and are encouraged to bring an extra person should they require assistance. There will be no exceptions to this guideline
Need Health Insurance
The Maryland Health Connections’ COVID-19 Special Enrollment Session has been extended for uninsured residents to apply for health insurance, including Medicaid. Get covered by visiting www.marylandhealthconnections.gov. The deadline to apply has been extended to July 15th. Prince George's County Public Schools Summer Food Service Program PGCPS ended the grab and go meals on Wednesday, June 17th. There will be a one week break and then the school system will begin on Monday, June 29th to operate its summer food service program which will run through August 13, 2020. The “Grab and Go” breakfast and lunch meals will be available Monday through Thursday from 10 AM to noon at 87 school sites and 12 apartment complexes. Click here for a list of all of the locations in the County for the summer grab and go meals. To bridge the gap in meal service, PGCPS families can access seven community sites from Monday, June 22 through Friday, June 26. The sites will offer lunch and a snack from 12-2 PM.
We have been informed by the Department of Labor that they are making progress in working through the backlog of unemployment claims. If you are continuing to have problems, please let my office know. Please use this Unemployment Insurance Tracker Form or contact my office directly for additional assistance. To directly access the BEACON One-Stop site, visit https://beacon.labor.maryland.gov/claimant/ The website will be down between the hours of 1 AM – 3 AM to perform maintenance and resolve any ongoing technical issues.
I recently I became aware of applications for the following NAACP scholarships. Please pass this information along to any potentially qualified students.
Applicant must be a current member of the NAACP
Scholarship amount: twenty (20) to forty (40) scholarships available
Maximum scholarship amount is $2,000.00
The Hubertus W.V. Willems Scholarship for male students
Applicant must be a male majoring in one of the following fields: Engineering, Chemistry, Physics or Mathematical Sciences
NAACP membership and participation are highly desirable
Scholarship amount: 20-40 Scholarships available
Maximum scholarship award is $3,000.00
Applicant must compose a 500 – 750 word essay that
1) Addresses how the life and legacy of James Weldon Johnson has impacted them, OR
2) Is an analysis of “Lift Every Voice and Sing”
Scholarship amount: Seven scholarships worth $3,000 each, available annually
One (1) recipient per NAACP region
Submission Deadline for Applications: July 17, 2020 Scholarship Application Forms are available at: https://www.grantinterface.com/Home/Logon?urlkey=pfscholar As a general rule, applicants to any of the three (3) NAACP scholarships listed above MUST:
Be a US citizen
Not have reached the age of 25 by the July 17, 2020 application deadline
Be currently enrolled in or accepted by an accredited college or university in the U.S.
Must demonstrate financial need based on the federal poverty guidelines (Click here to see guidelines).
For Graduating High School Seniors and Undergraduate Students
Must be full-time student
Must possess a grade point average of 2.5 on a 4.0 system
For College (Graduate) Students
May be full or part-time student.
Must possess a 3.0 average on a 4.0 system
Food Distribution Sites and Resources
Food Pantry Locations In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, several food pantries have been setup throughout the county and in neighboring jurisdictions. Enter your zip code or address to search for the food pantry nearest you. SNAP Assistance SNAP is now approved in Maryland for online grocery purchases for delivery or pickup. Walmart, Amazon and ShopRight are among the participating retailers. Call Maryland Hunger Solutions at 866-821-5552 for assistance and questions related to SNAP applications. They can assist with completing and submitting SNAP applications over the phone, submit any changes to your active SNAP case, answer questions about your benefits, and direct you to additional food resources
County COVID-19 Resources
PRINCE GEORGE’S FREE COVID-19 TESTING SITES The County Health Department now has three coronavirus testing sites, open now by appointment only. Same day appointments are available. To make an appointment, call 301-883-6627. The sites are open Monday through Friday, 10 AM to 6 PM. Laurel-Beltsville Senior Activity Center 7120 Contee Road, Laurel MD. Rollingcrest-Chillum Recreation Center 6120 Sargent Road, Chillum MD Cheverly Health Center 3003 Hospital Drive, Cheverly MD The COVID-19 Hotline If you have any questions or concerns, please call the Prince George’s County Health Department Coronavirus hotline at (301) 883-6627 from 8:00 AM - 8:00 PM to receive updated information about the coronavirus disease. *Please contact 911 for medical emergencies only. Nonprofit Resources Listing of resources and grants specifically for nonprofit organizations in the County. Hourly Employee Relief Fund The County is accepting applications for its Hourly Employee Relief Fund to assist residents who were laid off due to the COVID-19 pandemic by providing $200 cash cards for those in need. Childcare for Essential Employees and Employees Returning to Work Child care centers are opening up throughout in the State. Click here if you are returning back to work and need child care. To keep track of confirmed COVID-19 cases within the county please click here.
A virtual panel to discuss the importance of the Census during COVID-19 on Monday June 22, 2020 @ 11:00AM – 12:00PM via Facebook Live @UMCCommunityEngagement Complete the 2020 Census TODAY. Call 1-844-330-2020, no code needed to complete your form over the phone. We are almost at our goal but we need you to make sure everyone is counted. Go to www.2020census.gov to fill out the census online. Let your friends know you've been counted--share this status on your social media: I am #ProudtobeCounted in PGC #pgcensus We need you to complete the 2020 Census TODAY.