Coronavirus update – Legislative session postponed; university courses move online; St. Patrick’s events postponed

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Here’s  an  update of actions by Delaware organizations in  response to coronavirus.

Legislative session postponed

In response to growing concerns about the Coronavirus pandemic, House Speaker Pete Schwartzkopf and Senate President Pro Tempore David McBride announced Thursday that the Delaware General Assembly is postponing next week’s legislative session.

The legislature was scheduled to return from its break for Joint Finance Committee hearings on March 17, but the spread of COVID-19 and recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control, the World Health Organization and Delaware public health officials prompted this proactive decision.

“After careful consideration and consultation with various state agencies, we believe delaying our return is the right decision to ensure the safety of our staff, fellow lawmakers and members of the public who visit Legislative Hall when we are in session,” Rep. Schwartzkopf and Sen. McBride said in a joint statement.

Delaware State University moving classes online

Delaware State University is making a number of changes due to concerns about the coronavirus.

DSU is moving all courses online while encouraging students to leave campus over spring break.  The university earlier ordered travel restrictions and is exploring telecommuting for some employees.

The university is waiting for conference decisions regarding its athletic programs.

Click here for further details.

Delaware Tech extends spring break

Delaware Technical Community College extended its spring break through March 22 to ensure that faculty and staff are prepared should we need to move to alternative distance learning methods, President Mark Brainard announced.

Community events on  campuses have been canceled through March 31.

Wilmington University moves online, cancels events

Starting Monday, March 16, all in-person classes will be moved online until further notice. All other university events are canceled starting Saturday, March 14.

 All University sites and services will remain open until further notice. For additional information, please see Coronavirus Update.

State employees issued guidelines

On Wednesday, Governor John  Carney and the Delaware Department of Human Resources issued guidance to state employees about coronavirus and potential impacts on the state workforce. Full-time and casual/seasonal state employees may be eligible for 14 or 30 days of Paid Emergency Leave if they are forced to miss work due to a coronavirus impact, or to care for a family member.

St. Patrick’s events postponed

Saint Patrick’s Day Society announced that all planned 2020 Saint Patrick’s Day events will be postponed until further notice due to the reported spread of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, in the area. This includes the Vigil Mass and Sponsors Dinner on Monday, March 16th, as well as the Mass and Communion Breakfast on Saint Patrick’s Day, Tuesday, March 17th.

The group offered the following: “The Saint Patrick’s Day Society believes it is in the best interest of our members and supporters to follow the recommendation of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to postpone all gatherings of this size. The health of our community is paramount, and the Saint Patrick’s Day Society has made this decision to ensure the safety of our guests.”

St. Patrick’s  Parade canceled

The 45-year-old  Wilmington parade joined its counterparts in Philadelphia and elsewhere in canceling the festivities. The city, like others in the region,  has deep Irish roots that date back to the days of the DuPont power mill. 

Pro Seasons suspended

The Philadelphia Flyers, 76ers and Phillies have or will suspend their seasons as officials strongly discourage large gatherings.  The Philadelphia Eagles and the NFL are moving forward on the free agency process and the draft at last report

The NBA’s G League, which includes the Delaware Blue Coats, also suspended its season.

There was no immediate word on the status of the Wilmington Blue Rocks.

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