Updates from State Deputy, Dale Trott
Maryland State Family
It will probably not come as a great surprise to you that the State Family Hershey park Day has regrettably been canceled. We have been told that Hershey park will honor any tickets purchased for April 26th through July 31st or provide you with a refund. Requests for a refund must be submitted by May 1st. Please review the options below.
Given the impact of COVID-19 across the United States, Hershey park will not open for your semi-exclusive event on 4/26/2020. Currently, Hershey park is planning to open for the 2020 Summer Operating Season on May 1, 2020.
They have two options in place as a resolution:
Option 1: Hershey park is extending your tickets dated for 4/26/2020 for use through July 31, 2020. There is no upgrade fee or ticket exchange required; your current tickets will scan at our front gate upon your arrival.
Option 2: If you are unable to utilize the admission tickets by July 31, 2020 and prefer a refund, please e-mail: email@example.com by May 1, 2020. Refund requests will not be accepted after May 1, 2020.
The free parking offer associated with the semi-exclusive event will not be available for the 2020 Summer Operating Season. The State Council will continue to communicate the status of State activities and other business via email. Please stay tuned. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to your DD and State Officers.
Please continue to Pray for those who are impacted, and by the Grace of God Let us get back to serving our communities and Church as soon as possible.
The Supreme Knight does not feel the situation with the Coronavirus Outbreak will end anytime soon. Per our Supreme Knight, the Supreme Office and states should prepare for a long period (3 – 4 months) of limited contact events. The Supreme Council has established a fraternal working group in New Haven who’s job it is to review all facets of this situation on a daily basis. The Supreme Office will be operating with a skeletal staff with most of their personnel working from home. In addition to keeping tabs on the daily situation around the country, the fraternal working group will be working on new guidelines for meeting such things as the Circle of Honor and the Star Council Awards. They will be weekly meetings held between the Regional Growth Directors (RGD) and the home office to better assist councils through this period. RGD’s will continue their regular calls with state officers and inform them of any updates The Supreme Council will also be sending out updates to everyone via email on a regular basis.
That being said, it is with a very heavy heart that for the first time in all the years I can remember, I have the sad duty of announcing that we will not gather to hold the 122nd Maryland State Convention at the Princess Royale in Ocean City, Maryland this year. In lieu of our normal gathering and meeting at the ocean, the Supreme Knight has directed that all State Conventions shall be “Virtual Conventions” for this year. Supreme will be providing guidelines to the State Deputies as soon as possible. Once received, the State Officers and I will begin preparing for our upcoming “virtual” state convention. Once all details have been finalized, the State Council will issue written guidelines to everyone; most especially, to Grand Knights, Delegates and Alternates pertaining to voting.
Lastly, I have been in contact with the the Convention Committee Chairman and the committee members will begin the process of issuing refunds and, unless otherwise instructed, they will also request that the hotel cancel and refund all room reservation charges.
Wednesday afternoon the Supreme Knight sent out guidance and recommendations on how Councils should proceed during the pandemic of the Coronavirus. Yesterday, the Govenor or Maryland, the Archbishops of Baltimore and Washington announced immediate precautionary measures to reduce the spread of the Coronavirus. As State Deputy of this Jurisdiction, it is my responsibility to ensure that all brother Knights are being as safe as possible during these times. The State Officers & Staff place your health and safety of all our Knights and their families first and foremost. Based on our Supreme Knight’s Letter and the announcements today from our leaders, I ask that Councils consider the following-
- Hold all Council meetings via conference call. I have been made aware of a resource for Councils to use called freeconference.com for both Council and Executive meetings. Grand Knights can sign up for an account and use of freeconference.com. The service is free and there are no charges unless you want to use an 800 number. Please check it out and if you have any questions, please contact State Warden, John Winfrey for assistance.
- All “Parish Based Councils” with upcoming events being held at their parish should meet with your Pastor to access the situation and consider whether-or-not to postpone or cancel it. This should be a decision between the Council and the Pastor. It is understandable that these fund raising or charitable events mean a lot to a Council, the Parish, and the community. However, please consider the risks and have that conversation with your Pastor. Councils with Council Homes should discuss all upcoming events and carefully consider whether-or-not to postpone or cancel.
- Councils that have scheduled the new degree can go forward with them. Our Councils have and continue to grow, making Maryland our Councils healthier and stronger. Keep up the great work! The Supreme Knight, under the circumstances, has authorized that, if a Council has candidates, they may visit the candidates at their home and conduct the new Charity, Unity & Fraternity Degree via the video. Please make sure that you complete a Form 450 and submit it to Supreme and the State Ceremonials Chairman. You can also have new members sign up via the online method.
Below you will find compiled resources from various governmental resources in regard to responding to and preventing the spread of COVID-19. Please use them as you need.
What you should know:
- Workplace, School, and Home Guidance
- How COVID-19 Spreads
- Prevention & Treatment
- Frequently Asked Questions
- What to Do If You Are Sick with COVID-19
- Stigma Related to COVID-19
- What You Need to Know
- What to Do If You Are Sick with COVID-19
- Facts about COVID-19
- Information for People at Higher Risk and Special Populations
- Communication Resources
Information for Families and Households:
- Information on COVID-19 for Pregnant Women and Children
- Interim Guidance for Household Readiness
- Environmental Cleaning and Disinfection Recommendations for U.S. Households
- Guidance for Preventing the Spread of COVID-19 in Homes and Residential Communities
- FAQ: COVID-19 and Children
- EPA: Disinfectants for Use Against COVID-19