NOAH is a founding member of the Niagara Falls Health Equity Task Force, and we are working closely with our community partners to dramatically expand access to COVID-19 testing and lifesaving information in our city and county.
TELL FEDERAL AND STATE OFFICIALS: WE NEED OUR COVID-19 TEST RESULTS!
Residents of Niagara County are experiencing delays of more than seven days to receive COVID-19 test results due to backlogs at the labs. Since we need results quickly in order to identify, isolate, and track positive cases, these delays make testing more or less useless for controlling spread of the virus. The health and safety of our community members are at stake, especially those who are at highest risk. These delays are unacceptable!
In addition to testing backlogs, some of our local healthcare providers have had to suspend community-based testing because testing supplies are now unavailable. Our Niagara Falls Health Equity Task Force, comprised of leaders from local healthcare providers, direct service agencies, the faith community, and local government, was actively identifying and eliminating barriers to testing to ensure that EVERYONE could get tested. Without testing supplies, we are unable to address disparities and keep our community safe.
Please write to Assistant Secretary for Health Admiral Brett Giroir, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Governor Cuomo, and Lt. Governor Kathy Hochul today! Tell them to:
- Open up additional community-based testing sites in Niagara Falls.
- Approve additional labs that will process COVID-19 tests.
- Ensure that our region has access to needed test kits and test processing supplies.
- Ensure that everyone who is tested will receive results within 24-48 hours.
FREE COVID-19 TESTING FOR CONGREGATIONS
Due to the critical shortages of test kits and test processing supplies noted above, Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center has had to put their community testing program on hold. The church testing events we were organizing with NFMMC were unfortunately part of that program. We have arranged to continue testing at local churches through the Community Health Center of Niagara’s mobile testing unit; however we are currently experiencing long wait times for results, sometimes more than 7 days. To schedule a FREE testing event at your church or place of worship, please call our office at 716-285-3590 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
NIAGARA FALLS TESTING SITES
- Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center, 621 10th St., Niagara Falls: testing daily. Call 716-278-4496 for information.
- Community Health Center of Niagara, 2715 Highland Ave, Niagara Falls, NY: every Thursday from 9:00AM-4:00PM. Call 716-986-9199 ext. 5907 for information.
- Rite Aid, 1030 Pine Ave., Niagara Falls, NY: testing daily. Drive thru only, sampling is by self-service nasal swab. Click here to schedule appointment.
- For a full listing of test sites county-wide, visit the Niagara County Department of Health
- Check our Events Calendar for listings of upcoming Testing Events!
knowledge is power
Here are links to additional resources that may be useful to you:
- Niagara County Department of Health: COVID-19 Resource Page
- Plain language information on COVID-19
- Child care resources: call the Community Childcare Clearinghouse of Niagara at 716-285-8572 or visit their website.
- If you need food or other assistance, call 2-1-1 or visit 211.org
- Coronavirus Tech Handbook
- Coronavirus Capitalism – And How to Beat It (video by Naomi Klein)
- Niagara Falls/Niagara County does not yet have its own online Mutual Aid Network, but until one gets rolling, check out this Facebook Group for the Buffalo Mutual Aid Network.
- Information on coronavirus related hoaxes/misinformation; also see this Snopes.com list of known hoaxes.
WE ARE HERE TO HELP!
We know that you, our beloved family and neighbors, may be worried or afraid or struggling with social isolation at this time. We see you. Reach out to us if you need to talk about it.
To our friends in the healthcare industry on the front lines of this pandemic, we see you, and we know that you are struggling with your own challenges and fears for yourselves and your families. We thank you for your service. Let us know if you need to talk.
To schedule a one-to-one with a member of our team, email email@example.com with a good phone number and times when you are available, and we will call you!
Basic Safety precautions
Please incorporate these simple steps into your daily routines to keep yourself and your family safe:
- As much as possible, please stay at home to help reduce the spread of the virus through our community.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds, especially after coughing or sneezing, going to the bathroom, and before eating or preparing food.
- Avoid touching your face.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, and then throw the tissue in the trash. If a tissue is not readily accessible, cough or sneeze into your elbow to avoid contamination to your hands.
In community organizing, we know that taking care of each other starts at the grassroots, with each of us. Please use your best judgment and do your part to help keep your community safe and healthy.