As we continue to fight COVID-19, our brothers and sisters all over the country are fighting another battle: A battle for their lives. From Minneapolis to Georgia, black people are being killed in the streets for no reason, with outward showings of racism everywhere — even in the halls of our very own Legislature. That’s why I continue to fight. We have a right to live freely without fear of persecution, and we must defend it.
I encourage you to also please take the less than five minutes needed to watch and listen to this floor speech. We’re all in this together and, as such, it’s critical that we find ways to work together.
This morning, I had an 11:00 a.m. appointment and got tested for COVID-19 at the Historic Little Rock Baptist Church on the North End. I had the antibody testing done, as well as the nasal swab. Both tests were free, and the procedures took about 10 minutes total. The process was easy and I encourage anyone who is out and about to get tested.
Free testing is available at the church today until 3:00 p.m. and you can schedule an appointment by calling (313) 212-2887. You can also visit Michigan.gov/CoronavirusTest to find a site near you.
RESCHEDULED: AUTO INSURANCE TOWN HALL
Due to unforeseen circumstances in Lansing with a committee meeting running longer than anticipated, I had to reschedule my Auto Insurance Town Hall to Monday, June 1.
This virtual meeting will be an excellent opportunity for Michigan drivers to learn and ask questions about our new auto insurance law, and the choices they will have to make on their policy after July 1, 2020, which is when changes are set to take place.
Here are the details:
You can RSVP on my Facebook event, or simply reply to this email. You do NOT need to have a Facebook account to join the conversation! Just visit my Facebook page at 6 p.m. on June 1st and you’ll be able to watch the video.
Please submit your auto insurance questions ahead of time to Warren Stanfield in my office. His email address is WStanfield@senate.michigan.gov.
ASSISTANCE AVAILABLE TO KEEP RESIDENTIAL WATER SERVICE CONNECTED
If you have recently had your residential water service reconnected, you are encouraged to explore assistance programs that are available so your service can remain connected.
If you are facing financial distress because of COVID-19, you should:
BE AWARE OF FRAUDULENT UIA CLAIMS
On Thursday, May 27, the Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) warned residents of attempts by criminals to file imposter claims in pursuit of benefits. The U.S. Secret Service recently issued a national alertregarding an international criminal ring exploiting the COVID-19 crisis to commit largescale fraud against state unemployment programs.
The UIA is proactively taking steps to authenticate unemployment claims, including asking some claimants to submit additional information to verify their identity.
“Stop payment” notices:
If you receive a “Stop Payment” notice on your account, detailed instructions have been emailed and mailed to you on how to submit additional identifying information in order to receive your benefits. There is no reason to take further action until you receive the instructions.
If you are asked to provide additional information:
If the UIA needs to re-verify your identity, they will mail you a Form UIA 6347 Request for Identity Verification, which will have a mailing address or fax number on it for where you can submit ID verification documents.
For faster processing, you are encouraged to upload digital copies of the requested documents to your Michigan Web Account Manager (MiWAM), by logging into your account and under “I Want To,” click “Send Unemployment a Message” to upload the required documents.
In addition to completing Form UIA 6347, you will also be asked to provide your:
Tips to prevent unemployment identity theft:
When someone files a claim for unemployment, they receive a written Monetary Determination letter. If you receive such a letter but have NOT applied for benefits, or if the name listed on that letter is not yours, contact the UIA immediately online at Michigan.gov/UIA and click on the “Report Identity Theft” icon or call their customer service hotline at (866) 500-0017.
If you believe you are the victim of identity theft, you can also place fraud alerts on your credit reports for free through Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. You only need to contact one credit bureau and they will contact the others for you.
NEW ONLINE DASHBOARD PROVIDES COVID-19 RISK AND TREND DATA
Developed through a collaboration between the Michigan departments of Health and Human Services and Labor and Economic Opportunity, as well as the University of Michigan, a new, online dashboard was launched on Tuesday, May 26, that visually illustrates COVID-19 risks and trends in Michigan.
Dashboard data is divided into Michigan Economic Recovery Committee regions and provides residents with important information about the pandemic status where they live and work.
The COVID-19 data displayed on the dashboard represents publicly available case, death and test data analyzed to determine overall level of risk and key trends. Graphs, numbers and trends provide a snapshot of how much virus is in a community and whether it is increasing or decreasing.
Risk levels were developed by MDHHS and the U-M School of Public Health using guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, national Guidelines for Opening America and several other leading national organizations.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: MY MEMORIAL DAY MESSAGE
Memorial Day was this past Monday, and in case you missed it, I posted a message to my Facebook page thanking all the families who shared the people they loved with our country and never got them back. This holiday was started as a time for Freedman (former slaves) to honor the people who fought for their freedom and paid for it with their blood.
In a time where our country is at war with an insidious threat that passes from brother to sister, father to daughter, and mother to son, it’s deeply problematic to see the Confederate flag waved by so-called ‘Patriots.’ That flag simply needs to be put away, because waving it reminds all of us that it killed more Americans than any other single flag.
#WeCanDoBetter. Please stay home, but if you do go out, wear a mask.
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