The Boston Resiliency Fund for coronavirus relief has paid out another $1.2 million in grants to nonprofits helping vulnerable residents hit hard by the pandemic, Mayor Martin J. Walsh said Friday.
The grants, Walsh said during his regular press conference outside City Hall, are helping residents with food access and rent, among other priorities.
He thanked the groups for the “incredible work” they’ve done during the health crisis over the past five months, “not complaining, not saying anything disparaging, just trying to do the right thing to help vulnerable populations. Thank you for your work.”
All told, Walsh said, the resiliency fund, which is supported by donors, has distributed over $25 million to nonprofits on the front lines of COVID-19 relief effort.
He also urged Bostonians to continue wearing face coverings, practicing social distancing, and washing hands and frequently-touched surfaces.
As of Thursday, Walsh said, the city had logged 15,018 COVID-19 cases including 746 deaths. The most recent seven-day average positive test rate stood at 2.8 percent, Walsh said, adding that the positive test rate in Boston continues to “fluctuate up and down” in that general range.
The mayor devoted most of his briefing to the school reopening plan, announcing that BPS students will start the year learning remotely on Sept. 21, and that kids won’t return to school buildings if the citywide positive test rate reaches 4 percent.
“If we’re at 4 percent, we won’t be in school,” Walsh said. “The CDC threshold is 5 percent, in Boston our threshold is 4 percent. We want to make sure that our kids are safe.”
Boston, Walsh said, is currently in the state’s moderate yellow category for COVID-19 risk.
“This certainly is not a time for complacency,” Walsh said. “Everyone has to keep doing their part.”
He said the city is currently testing more than 1,600 people per day on average at over 20 different testing sites. More information on testing site locations is available online at boston.gov/coronavirus, Walsh said.