48th Ward Weekly Update – January 6, 2021

48th Ward UpdateView this email in your browserJanuary 6, 2021
Dear Neighbor,

Chicago Public Schools plans to reopen schools on Monday, Jan. 11, for some Pre-K and Cluster students, to be followed on Monday, Feb. 4, for Kindergarten through 8th grade students. Many of you have reached out to me about your concerns regarding this reopening plan. I have spent recent days talking to parents and educators from our local schools, and I have listened to their real and practical concerns regarding the reopening plan put forward and its impact on the health and safety of our schools, students, and educators. I value and respect these important insights and the deep commitment to our students. l share these concerns, in addition to concerns related to rising COVID-19 cases and the spread of a new strain of the virus.

Today, I joined with 36 of my Aldermanic colleagues in a letter to CPS CEO Dr. Janice Jackson and Mayor Lori Lightfoot outlining a series of concerns related to the reopening of schools at this time. Click here to view the letter. It is critical that all stakeholders are working together to safely reopen our schools and ensure safety for students, teachers, building staff, and families. I will keep you updated on this critical health and education issue, and thank the many neighbors who reached out to me. The City Council Committee on Education will hold a Subject Matter Hearing about the CPS reopening plan on Monday, Jan. 11, 10am. This meeting will be livestreamed on the City Clerk’s website.

Yesterday, I introduced an amended GAPA ordinance to the City Council Committee on Public Safety, that will create civilian oversight of the Chicago Police Department. This sets the stage for a Committee vote and City Council vote on this long overdue measure. I, alongside 6th Ward Alderman Roderick Sawyer and the GAPA community coalition, am working to secure votes to pass this ordinance. Click here to view the amended ordinance. I’ll update you on the progress of this ordinance in the weeks ahead.  

This week, health care workers at Chicago hospitals began to receive their second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, as the City continues to follow CDC guidelines regarding prioritized populations. For more information about the City’s plans and data regarding vaccine distribution, visit chicago.gov/covidvax. I encourage anyone with questions or concerns about the safety of the vaccines to look at this FAQ. It is critical that each of us gets vaccinated as vaccines become available to us. Additionally, tune in tomorrow night to a national Town Hall hosted by the Black Coalition Against COVID-19, featuring Dr. Anthony Fauci, Dr. Helene Gayle of the Chicago Community Trust, and other medical professionals. Making It Plain: What Black America Needs to Know about COVID-19 and Vaccines will be livestreamed on Facebook and YouTube tomorrow night at 6pm. Click here for more information.

Stay safe and have a peaceful evening.

Sincerely,

Harry Osterman
Alderman, 48th Ward
 Copyright © 2021 Harry Osterman – 48th Ward Alderman, All rights reserved