The Oklahoma Eagle Newswire
To date, the Tulsa Health Department (THD) has confirmed 69,112 positive COVID-19 cases in Tulsa County. 65,716 residents have recovered and 661 have died. Test results are updated daily at www.tulsa-health.org/COVID19. For the most up-to-date news, information and business resources in Tulsa, visit www.cityoftulsa.org/COVID19.
According to the Oklahoma State Immunization Information System (OSIIS), THD has administered 33,826 vaccines to date, which includes 8,934 second doses. There have been more than 114,251 doses administered in Tulsa County and documented in OSIIS as of Feb. 16.
THD continues to administer the COVID-19 vaccine to eligible individuals in Tulsa County, which currently includes all health care workers, first responders, and Oklahomans age 65 and older.
On Monday, Feb. 22, more than 1 million Oklahomans with co-morbidities will be eligible to receive the vaccine, along with all pre-K through 12th grade teachers and staff.
Co-morbidities include, but are not limited to, hypertension, obesity, cardiovascular disease, Down Syndrome, diabetes mellitus, chronic lung, liver or renal disease, cancers and those who are at high risk of mortality and severe morbidity resulting from a COVID infection.
Appointments are required to receive the vaccine at the THD vaccine clinic, and must be scheduled using the Oklahoma Vaccine Portal at vaccinate.oklahoma.gov.
COVID-19 Relief Funding Updates
Request for Proposals (RFP)
The deadline to apply to the COVID-19 Relief Grant Request for Proposals (RFP) is tomorrow, Feb. 19. The City of Tulsa is seeking proposals from eligible nonprofits to address the negative local effects of the pandemic and award up to $6.5 million in grants. Details on eligibility requirements, evaluation process, how to apply and frequently asked questions, can be found online. Additionally, there is an informational webinar you can watch online.
The overflow shelter for individuals experiencing homelessness at the former Tulsa County Juvenile Detention Center has been more important than ever during the winter storm the Tulsa metro area has experienced since Feb. 8. The shelter has been able to provide daytime and nighttime services to an average of 171 individuals daily. Thanks to the ongoing partnership with Iron Gate, Tulsa’s largest stand-alone soup kitchen, more than 6,254 warm meals have been provided from Feb. 8 to Feb. 17. Iron Gate has also partnered with Housing Solutions to provide 486 bags of groceries since Feb. 12 for those who were helped off the streets and put into hotels because of the cold weather.
Additionally, 11 pets are currently being sheltered. It is the only homeless shelter in town that accepts pets. It welcomes anyone and their pets to seek shelter, regardless of weather conditions. Regular veterinary care is provided at no charge.
Also, the City Lights Hotel continues with its ongoing shelter for those experiencing homelessness. It provides a safe place for people to isolate who have either tested positive for COVID-19 or are symptomatic waiting for test results. The hotel has also helped permanently house at least 40 individuals. Thanks to a partnership among local restaurants, the staff provides three meals a day for the hotel residents.
Emergency Rental Assistance Program
The City of Tulsa received more than $12 million for emergency rental and utility assistance from the most federal COVID-19 relief bill. The City is working as quickly as possible with Tulsa County to develop a program that will ensure these funds are distributed as soon as possible to landlords to help tenants struggling with rent and utility payments during this public health crisis. Tenants in need of immediate assistance should call 211 to be connected with available resources and future rental assistance.
Financial Empowerment Center
To date, the Financial Empowerment Center (FEC) has served 17 clients and has held 34 sessions. The one-on-one financial counseling is free for individuals, regardless of income, who are looking for long-term help in their financial goals. The topics include dealing with debt, creating a budget, building their savings and improving their credit. The FEC sessions are longer than the Financial Navigator program, which assists individuals with more immediate needs. Trained counselors are available in English and Spanish, as well as other languages supported through “Language Line” For more information, visit: www.cityoftulsa.org/blueprint . You can schedule an appointment online or call (918) 802-7279.
There are two, new videos produced by the City’s communications department on the FEC and program partner, Goodwill Industries of Oklahoma, which is currently offering tax preparation services. Watch online – English Video | Spanish Video
The Financial Navigators (FN) program continues to offer free financial advice to Tulsans who need quick, immediate help on their finances. To date, 179 sessions have been completed and 1,453 referrals given. Navigators will speak with the client over the phone, identify resources and send them action steps they can take. Services are offered in Spanish, Zomi and Burmese. Utilities hardship, rental assistance and food insecurity continue to be the top three topics of concern among callers. For more information on the program and to schedule an appointment, visit: https://finnav.org/interest-tulsa
Internet Access Plan
More than 760 households have signed up for subsidized internet service through the City’s partnership with Cox Communications and at least 40 households are waiting to receive equipment for installation. Eligible households must currently lack internet at home and have a current student enrolled in Tulsa Public Schools, Union Public Schools, Jenks Public or Charter Schools, Educare, Headstart or CAP Tulsa who are receiving either government assistance or those who live in Section 8 Housing or live in Public Housing, among other eligibility requirements. For more information on the program and to see if you qualify, contact Tulsa Responds at (918) 900-0918 or visit: https://www.tulsaresponds.org/
Student Support Camps
The City of Tulsa Parks and Recreation’s student support camps will remain closed for the rest of the week due to the inclement weather. For information on the camps and services provided, visit: https://www.cityoftulsa.org/camps
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The City’s website, www.cityoftulsa.org, has a tool to help with translation assistance for any page. Website visitors can click the drop down menu on any page that says, “Select Language,” and choose from one of more than 100 different languages.