Safety is Top Priority as Lighthouse Phases-in More Services
State Guidelines for Safety in the Yellow Phase
Lancaster County is slated to move to the Yellow Phase on June 5. Moving to the Yellow Phase is one step closer to resuming all Lighthouse services, although things will certainly look different.
All licensed facilities in Lancaster remain closed during the Yellow Phase. However, the state has established these safety guidelines, which Lighthouse is following closely, for services that may take place during the Yellow Phase:
1. Activities to be provided are only those allowed by the Governor’s order and all appropriate steps will be taken to ensure participants’ safety.
2. Prior to engaging in any community based activities, the participant’s team, including the family, will meet to assess what is needed to ensure health and safety.
3. Community activities will include no more than three participants.
4. To accommodate social distancing, transportation will be limited to three participants in a vehicle, unless a larger van is used which can accomodate more and still comply with social distancing recommendations.
5. The vehicle used to transport will be disinfected after each use. Lighthouse is already doing this for those engaged in lawn mowing.
6. Activities which encourage exercise and getting outside, including swimming, walking and hiking, will be provided by Lighthouse based on response.
Lighthouse continues to offer remote programming. We expect these offerings to continue into the fall, even after the building opens. Remote services are being redesigned to provide longer blocks of time in which various activities will be offered.
Families whose participant is part of the remote programming are pleased. We have received many reports from families about how eagerly participants look forward to their online classes each day, including the joy of socializing with their co-workers on-screen.
Planning for More
With the requirement to ensure social distancing in vehicles, we are assessing how many people can be safely transported to and from work in Lighthouse vehicles. New options being considered include, making multiple runs, or asking families to consider providing transportation when they are able.
The establishment of local meeting places near participant’s homes is also being studied. Participants would go out from the meeting places to engage in community activities and meet back there at the end of the day. This would ease transportation issues and reduce the number of people in the Lighthouse building.
Discussions are underway with local plexiglass sources as we anticipate using plexiglass to provide social distancing in our work areas. All staff and participants will be required to have their temperature taken before entering the building, and to wear masks while in the building. Lighthouse has purchased over 2000 masks to ensure each person has a freshly sanitized mask available each day. Enhanced cleaning and disinfecting protocols are ready to be implemented.
Thank you for your continued support and prayer during these challenging days.
~ Brian French, Director of Programs