September 10, 2021
I hope this latest e-newsletter finds you well.
Included in this edition is information on Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month, how to stay prepared for any emergencies, National Suicide Prevention Week, staying protected from mosquitoes since the first human case of West Nile Virus has been detected in Michigan, mortgage assistance, and a reminder that it’s National Voter Registration Month.
Should you need any help, please do not hesitate to contact my office by phone at (517) 373-8360 or by email at SenPWojno@senate.michigan.gov. We are happy to serve you.
SEPTEMBER RECOGNIZED AS ALCOHOL AND DRUG ADDICTION RECOVERY MONTH
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer are declaring September as Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month. Together with community networks, this recognition is a time to celebrate recovery and raise awareness of recovery-oriented systems of care working to prevent and treat substance use disorders in our state.
Substance use disorder is a chronic, often relapsing brain disease that causes compulsive drug seeking and use, despite harmful consequences to the
individual and those around them. In the long-term, it may lead to mental and physical effects such as paranoia, psychosis, immune deficiencies, and organ damage that will require treatment to resolve. In 2019, more than 1.3 million people in Michigan, age 12 and older, had abused an illicit drug in the past month and 615,000 individuals aged 12 and older in Michigan needed treatment for illicit substance or alcohol use — 7.3 % of the population.
STATE POLICE ENCOURAGES RESIDENTS TO TAKE ACTION TO PREPARE FOR EMERGENCIES URING PREPAREDNESS MONTH
Emergencies can happen when we least expect them. That’s why Michigan State Police, Emergency Management and Homeland Security Division (MSP/EMHSD) is encouraging Michigan residents to take steps to prepare for emergencies during Michigan’s Preparedness Month.
Throughout September, the MSP/EMHSD is joining federal, state and local governments, as well as private and public organizations, in supporting emergency preparedness initiatives. Agencies nationwide are uniting under the theme “Prepare to Protect” to encourage everyone to create a family emergency plan and to learn lifesaving skills like first aid and CPR to help themselves and others until first responders arrive.
SEPTEMBER 5-11: NATIONAL SUICIDE PREVENTION WEEK
As part of National Suicide Prevention Week, Sept. 5-11, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) are encouraging Michiganders to have open, honest, and direct conversations about suicide and how to seek help in times of need.
Although preliminary data for 2020 shows a reduction in suicide deaths, suicide was the tenth leading cause of death in both Michigan and the nation in 2019. Unfortunately, Michigan has higher rates of suicide among those 10 to 19 and 25 to 44 years of age compared to the nation, and the highest suicide rate in the state was among older age adults ages 75 to 79 years.
If you are in a crisis, or know someone who needs help, contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (8255) or visit the MDHHS Suicide Prevention website for more information.
FIRST WEST NILE VIRUS CASES OF 2021 DETECTED | PROTECT AGAINST MOSQUITOES
The first cases of West Nile virus (WNV) have been detected in residents in Oakland and Macomb counties. Michiganders are reminded the best way to protect against West Nile virus and other mosquito-borne illnesses like Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) is to prevent mosquito bites in the first place.
The risk for mosquito-borne illness rises throughout the state over the course of the mosquito season, peaking in August and September. The best way to prevent West Nile disease or any other mosquito-borne illness is to reduce the number of mosquitoes around your home and to take personal precautions to avoid mosquito bites. Precautions include:
WNV is transmitted through the bite of a mosquito that has picked up the virus by feeding on an infected bird. Most people who contract the virus have
no clinical symptoms of illness, but some may become ill three to 15 days after the bite of an infected mosquito. Symptoms typically include a high fever, confusion, muscle weakness, and a severe headache. More serious complications include neurological illnesses, such as meningitis and encephalitis.
MORTGAGE ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS AVAILABLE TO IMPACTED BORROWERS
The Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS) is reminding Michigan consumers with federally backed mortgages who are worried about falling behind on payments that assistance is available under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, but they must act before the Sept. 30th deadline.
Under the CARES Act, borrowers with federally backed loans could ask for a pause or reduction of their payments, also known as a forbearance, of up to 180 days, with an extension of 180 days if additional relief is needed. The Biden Administration has extended the forbearance enrollment window through Sept, 30, 2021, but the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau reported in August that about 569,000 borrowers in the U.S. are in the early
stages of delinquency and have not participated in a forbearance plan.
The MiMortgage Relief Partnership is also available to assist impacted homeowners in Michigan until Dec. 31, 2021. Through this partnership, more than 230 of Michigan’s financial institutions have agreed to provide mortgage relief to borrowers experiencing financial hardship due to COVID-19.
For more information on COVID-19 related mortgage relief, call DIFS Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 877-999-6442.
SEPTEMBER IS NATIONAL VOTER REGISTRATION MONTH
Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson is celebrating the start of National Voter Registration Month by encouraging eligible Michigan citizens to register in September.
The National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS) established September as National Voter Registration Month in 2002 as a nonpartisan means of encouraging voter participation and increasing awareness about state requirements. September 28 is National Voter Registration Day.
In Michigan, residents can register to vote in person up to 8 p.m. on Election Day at their city or township clerk’s office. Residents can also register online at Michigan.gov/Vote or by mail at least 15 days prior to an election. In the 14 days leading up to an election and on Election Day, voters must register in person to vote in the election.
To be eligible to register to vote you must be:
Residents must provide proof of eligibility and residency to register if they choose to register in the 14 days prior to an election, including Election Day. Documents submitted as proof of residency must include the voter’s name and current address. Digital copies of documents are accepted. Such documents can include:
Local election officials, as well as the Michigan Department of State, are the most trusted sources for election information. Residents can find registration information, including the location of their clerk’s office and steps to complete registration, at the Michigan Voter Information Center at Michigan.gov/Vote. To report incorrect election information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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