KWSO News for Wed., Jun. 3, 2020

The Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs Branch of Public Utilities reports that temporary repairs were completed yesterday for the Schoolie Water System which is now pressurized to full capacity.  They will continue to work on system upgrades, pump replacements and redundancy ability.  Schoolie Water System users do still have a boil water order in effect.  Anyone on the Schoolie Water System needs to bring tap water to a rolling boil for three minutes OR used bottled water for drinking, making ice, washing dishes, brushing teeth and preparing food.

Indian Head Casino will reopen on Thursday June 11, 2020 after voluntarily closing down on March 18th in response to the COVID-19 Pandemic.  Occupancy will be limited to 250 guests and other modifications will be in place as well.  There will only be one entrance in use, by the Cottonwood Restaurant.  There will be a touchless temperature check before entering the Casino and everyone will be required to wear face masks.  Additional adjustments will include plexiglass shields and social distance markers in high traffic areas.  There will be multiple hand sanitizing stations and the entire property will be smoke free.  Table games will open at a later date.  The Tule Grill and Cottonwood restaurant will be open for take-out and the Cottonwood will offer curbside delivery.  The Casino will operate daily 10am – 2am.  Warm Springs Tribal Council concurred with the Gaming Board and Management to go with the June 11th reopen date.

Warm Springs Tribal Council approved a reopen date of Monday June 8th for the return of 25% of Tribal Government employees who have been on administrative leave.  Each subsequent Monday another 25% of workers will phase back in.  Programs are working to ensure space is physically marked for social distancing, and there is adequate supply of hand sanitizer and face masks.  Protocols such as temperature checks before entering a Tribal Facility for work are also being established.

Yesterday’s Warm Springs Covid-19 update reported that we currently have 18 positive cases of Covid-19 for a total of 35 confirmed cases since the pandemic began.  17 people already having recovered.  Those who test positive self-quarantine for a 2 week period, are interviewed by public health about who they have come in contact with, and are monitored routinely.  548 Covid-19 tests have been done at the Warm Springs Health and Wellness Center.

A recent survey conducted at more than 120 colleges nationwide, with the aim of pinpointing issues of housing and food insecurity among students, found that 41 percent of 602 respondents at Central Oregon Community College had faced food insecurity in the prior month. Some 22 percent had struggled with homelessness or unreliable housing in the previous year.  But a newly forged partnership between COCC and the nonprofit Thrive Central Oregon will work to connect students in need with a range of local resources, district-wide, from housing and health care to food banks and disability benefits.  The project’s impact will be evaluated in spring 2021 for potential continuation.  COCC also participates in the State of Oregon’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program’s (SNAP) Training and Employment Program, offers emergency student loans, operates a student-run food bank, and serves as a 211 hotline sponsor.