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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

As our state and country deals with the health care and economic ramifications of the coronavirus, I wanted to share with you available resources. Additionally, the federal government is passing legislation to provide assistance and larger, more comprehensive plans are being discussed and developed.

The end of this email contains an excerpt from an essay that was recently published in the Wall Street Journal on epidemics in America and how our country overcame them. We are a resilient, caring, hardworking nation that conquers challenges. Take care during these difficult times.


Aric Nesbitt

State of Michigan

On Tuesday, March 10, our governor declared a state of emergency as the state’s first positive cases of COVID-19 were identified. The emergency declaration allows the governor to deploy resources to local jurisdictions to support their response efforts in combatting the spread of COVID-19. Read more about Michigan’s response by clicking here.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Coronavirus

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a dedicated section on their website for the Coronavirus. The site includes helpful ways to protect yourself and what to do if you think you are sick. This site will also give you a breakdown of what symptoms you may encounter, symptoms for older adults and people with medical conditions and how to prepare your family. You may also view an interactive map to see what parts of the country are being most effected by the virus. The CDC website can be found by clicking here.

Resources for workers/families affected by Coronavirus or closures

211: 2-1-1 connects you with thousands of nonprofit and government resources in your area such as food pantries, bill pay assistance, family services, utility assistance and more. The 211 system is available by dialing 2-1-1 on your phone or by going to

MI Bridges: Benefits and coverage through the Michigan Department of Health and Human services such as food assistance, health care, and state emergency relief. You may access MI Bridges at

Unemployment: Here is a fact sheet for claiming unemployment benefits – Click here

Guidelines for unemployment benefits were temporarily expanded to cover the following:

Workers who have an unanticipated family care responsibility, including those who have childcare responsibilities due to school closures, or those who are forced to care for loved ones who become ill;
Workers who are sick, quarantined, or immunocompromised and who do not have access to paid family and medical leave or are laid off; and
First responders in the public health community who become ill or are quarantined due to exposure to COVID-19.

You may file an unemployment claim at

Assistance for Employers

Work Share Program: This program will assist employees and employers during times of reduced hours. For details: Click here.
Unemployment Insurance information for employers: Click here.
An employer or employing unit will not be charged for unemployment benefits if their employees become unemployed because of an executive order requiring them to close or limit operations.
The state of Michigan has an Office of Employer Ombudsman to contact with questions; 1-855-484-2636.

Coronavirus Hotline

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has launched a statewide hotline to respond to health-related questions about COVID-19 and to direct residents, providers and more to the right resources in their local communities and other state government departments. The hotline is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. at 1-888-535-6136.

General Information on COVID-19

If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19, call, do not visit, your health care provider. If you do not have a health care provider, call the nearest hospital.
Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds. If not available, use hand sanitizer.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.
Avoid contact with people who are sick.
If you are sick, stay home, and avoid contact with others.
Stay at least 6 feet away from others when in a public setting.

Published in the Wall Street Journal:


When Epidemics Wreaked Havoc in America

Deadly infectious diseases were once common in the U.S., until science conquered them. In today’s crisis, it’s worth recalling those celebrated victories.

By David Oshinsky
March 13, 2020

There’s a reason we’re emotionally unprepared for what may lie ahead: We simply haven’t experienced the extreme cycles of infectious disease that previous generations were forced to endure. We’re in frightening new territory, wondering if there is enough protective equipment for medical personnel and first responders, if there are enough test kits and ventilators for possible victims, if an effective vaccine is really a year or so away.

Many wonder as well about the new dangers unleashed by globalization. Germs travel, and the consequences can be severe. But that’s the way it’s been for centuries, at an admittedly slower pace. Yellow fever and malaria came to North America from Africa; cholera and typhus rode the steamers and “coffin ships” that discharged immigrant cargo at our shores. History assures us that Covid-19 will be conquered by science and that another virus, originating in a bat cave... an open-air poultry market somewhere in the world, will rise up to take its place. That’s the nature of the beast.

In times like this, when anxiety turns so easily to fear, it sometimes helps to focus upon an optimistic vision of the future. For me, it’s the image of a war hero turned president [Eisenhower] tearfully thanking a selfless researcher for helping to save the children of the world.

Click here for the full article at the Wall Street Journal (subscription required)


Michigan's 26th Senate District

The 26th State Senate District includes all of Allegan and Van Buren counties, as well as the city of Kentwood and Gaines Township in Kent County.

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Thank you for subscribing to my electronic newsletter! I am honored to represent you in the 26th Senate District of Michigan. As always, please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns. Please feel free to forward this on to others who may be interested in receiving the 26th District E-news. You may sign up for it also at my website.

Senator Aric Nesbitt
6100 Connie B. Binsfeld Office Building
P.O. Box 30036
Lansing, MI 48909-7536

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