Akron, Ohio, March 17, 2020 – Today, Mayor Dan Horrigan has announced additional steps to protect the health and wellbeing of Akron residents and employees. Effective Friday (March 20, 2020), all non-essential City workers will be directed not to report to work until further order of the Mayor. City workers will be notified tomorrow of their status, and approximately 600 of the City’s roughly 1,800 employees are expected to be categorized as non-essential at that time. Essential City employees will be provided instructions on their responsibilities, the possibility of doing their essential work remotely, and how to manage any potential COVID-19 exposure or symptoms.
All sworn police and fire/EMS personnel are essential employees, along with those providing direct public services, and those carrying out high level functions in administration, finance, legal and communications. At this time, the City will be continuing all critical City services including, but not limited to: 911, police protection, fire protection, EMS services, water and sewer services, trash and recycling, street cleaning/maintenance, utility billing, and the 3-1-1 call center.
“At this time, residents should expect no change in the level of public services we provide, however they are asked to extend patience and understanding as local government navigates this unprecedented situation, and as circumstances change rapidly,” Mayor Dan Horrigan said. “These are temporary measures designed to stop the spread of this disease and save lives. Our focus will be on doing what is necessary to keep the City as safe, clean, and healthy as possible.”
To stay up-to-date on City of Akron specific COVID-19 news, please visit www.akronohio.gov/COVID19. As a reminder, the following directives have been previously issued under Mayor Horrigan’s emergency designation:
Mayor Horrigan has ordered that all Akron water customers be provided full water service, regardless of delinquency. Water and sewer charges still apply, but no service will be shut off during this moratorium to ensure continuous access to safe, healthy drinking water for all families.
All City community centers are closed and public access is significantly limited to City buildings. Residents are asked to pay bills and interact with City offices electronically, by mail, or over the phone. See here for more info or call the Mayor’s 3-1-1 Action Center.
As of today, City golf courses and Lock 3 will be closed.
All City business travel is suspended through June 30th and in-person meetings with City staff will be limited to essential functions only.
“I look forward to the day when we can lift these protective measures and begin to return to normal life,” Mayor Dan Horrigan said. “Until that time, I want to extend my gratitude to all City employees and residents for their commitment to doing what it takes to help ‘flatten the curve’ of this pandemic. As a nation, it is not an exaggeration to say that we are at war with the COVID-19 virus. We have all been called upon to do our part and temporarily sacrifice for the greater good. In particular, I want to thank those first responders and healthcare workers who will continue to selflessly put themselves at risk. While many people shelter in place and practice social distancing, first responders will be providing front-line service to all in need.”
As a result of this latest directive from Mayor Horrigan, non-essential City of Akron employees who will be off work will be provided the option of using their personal paid leave, while others will be able to seek unemployment benefits. The City will continue comprehensive health care benefits for all eligible employees during this period.
For further information, contact:
Ellen Lander Nischt
Press Secretary & Senior Strategic Counsel