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COVID-19 President Update March 20

Dear Cushing Community,

I am truly amazed by the outpouring of support to our community during these most challenging times, however, I am most amazed by our staff.  In my conversations with a family earlier today, I shared my admiration and respect for the staff that are truly putting the needs of those we support before the needs of themselves and their families.  These parents agreed and shared how much Cushing has changed their lives, and referred to our staff as God’s Angels.  I believe that with all of my heart.

We continue to add safeguards and limit the amount of staff here on campus without compromising the health and safety of those we support. While this is a difficult decision, we have now determined that there will be no visits allowed to residences as of March 21st.  We know there have been conversations with families around the possibility of taking their loved one home.  We also know that for some, this is not a possibility.  Every family situation is different, we support the decisions you need to make.  Cardinal Cushing Centers will make every effort to keep our residential programs running without interruption. We have been assured by those at the state level that this is their priority, too, and they will make every effort to support us. 

Our administrative staff have spent countless hours on calls with state agencies to receive assurance that our funding will not be impacted by the decisions we have made on the health and safety of our students. Just yesterday, myself and Board Members Jody Nash and Jerry Vitti were fortunate to have a call with Senator O’Connor to share our concerns over not only our programs’ funding, but also to share that our employees and their families need access to relief benefits, as some may be out of work due to closures.  For those who do not know Senator O’Connor, he is a fierce advocate for those with disabilities and just a few weeks ago, was named Legislator of Year by the Massachusetts Developmental Disabilties Council.  

These days will not break our spirit or commitment to those we support, it will only strengthen us.  We will continue to provide updates in the days ahead.

Be Well,
Michelle Markowitz
Interim President & CEO