A dozen positive COVID-19 cases identified at Niagara County Department of Social Services

Niagara County

NIAGARA COUNTY, N.Y. (WIVB)–Niagara County Manager Rick Updegrove says over the last week, the county’s Department of Social Services (DSS) had approximately a dozen positive COVID test results of employees.

Updegrove says these employees work on the second floor of their office building on 10th Street in Niagara Falls.

After talking with employees and conducting contact tracing, Updegrove tells News 4 the County Department of Health decided all employees who work on the second floor of the building will quarantine.

Updegrove added that several additional tests are still outstanding.

In a statement released this afternoon, the Niagara County Manager says:

This past weekend, a deep cleaning was done of the entire building. And even though there was minimal physical interaction between the Niagara Falls and Lockport DSS offices, a deep clean was also done in the Lockport office. We fully recognize the importance of our DSS employees and the role they play in ensuring that vital services are provided to the public, often to people who are most in need. I have been in regular contact with Department of Social Services Commissioner Meghan Lutz who has been working on a plan to ensure that these services remain available to the public as we deal with this situation. It is important to note that Niagara County DSS does have COVID-19 protocols in place. The public must make an appointment to meet with DSS employees unless in an emergency situation. Any member of the public entering the building must undergo a temperature check and answer a screening questionnaire. DSS employees, like all county employees, were required to sign an attestation that mandated they take their temperature daily prior to coming to work and directed them not to come to work if they had a temperature over 100.4 degrees or were otherwise not feeling well. This has been in place for several months. We will continue to work with and take direction from the county Department of Health on any additional steps necessary to protect the health and safety of our employees and the public.”

Niagara County Manager Rick Updegrove

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