Rising COVID-19 cases put Monroe on Red alert

Monroe Town Hall in the evening. Photo by John Babina

MONROE, CT — First Selectman Ken Kellogg says rising case rates for COVID-19 over the past two weeks brought Monroe back to the red category on the Connecticut Department of Public Health’s color coded map. Red is the highest alert.

“We are currently averaging roughly five new cases per day, which is similar to what we observed in mid-April of this year,” Kellogg said in his update, released Thursday. “We are also seeing scenarios of multiple cases being reported in a single household.”

“While I am not issuing a town-wide mask order at this time, I am asking residents to be vigilant and to exercise individual responsibility,” he said. “Please consider the current CDC recommendation to wear a mask inside public spaces, especially in crowded locations and where children under 12 are present.”

“Our emergency management team continues to monitor this closely,” he continued, adding of the state of Connecticut, “we received positive news that there was an overall decline in the number of people hospitalized from COVID-19 this week. It is encouraging that overall case severity does not appear to have increased.”

The statewide requirement for unvaccinated people to wear masks while in all indoor public places remains in effect, according to Kellogg.

Everyone must wear masks, regardless of vaccination status, while inside healthcare and childcare facilities, all schools, and public and private transit.

“Businesses may continue to decide to require masks by everyone inside their facilities,” Kellogg said. “Please respect our business owners and their rules.”

Monroe’s vaccination rates continue to be higher than the state average, with 70-percent of its total population having initiated vaccination, including over 79-percent of those over 12 who are eligible, according to Kellogg.

“Vaccination continues to be the most effective way to combat COVID-19,” he said. “Those vaccinated have a significantly lower chance of becoming infected. Typically, those vaccinated who experience a ‘breakthrough’ infection have much less severe symptoms.”

“As we anticipate the state beginning to authorize booster doses for the general population later this month, we are putting plans together now to resume vaccination clinics in late September,” he said.

“Throughout this pandemic, the Monroe community has worked together and we have persevered,” Kellogg said. “I’m confident that we can do so again. My best wishes for a safe and happy Labor Day weekend.”

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