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Dear Neighbor,

This past weekend we celebrated Memorial Day, which traditionally marks the beginning of summer in Ohio. As we watch our restaurants, retailers, and other businesses reopen, the summer offers new possibilities for us. We can go to campgrounds and pools with our families, see friends over dinner at local restaurants, and safely celebrate graduations and weddings with our loved ones. After flattening the curve and reopening, this summer offers us renewed hope.

We still have many difficult tasks ahead of us due to COVID-19. If we lead with the same compassion, drive, and hope we have exhibited since the pandemic began, we can tackle any challenge presented to us.

As your State Senator, I do my best to be as accessible as possible to my constituents. As we work to continue reopening our state, hearing from you is essential to solve the problems we face in Ohio today. To do this in a new way, I hosted my first
Facebook Live this month to  answer the most common questions our office has received during the pandemic. We still have many questions to answer, but listening to you will help my colleagues in the legislature and I work on finding the best solutions for Ohioans. 

Please don’t hesitate to reach out to my office if you have any thoughts or suggestions to improve our community. I’m available at Gavarone@OhioSenate.gov or 614-466-8060 or through my social media pages.

We are in this together! 

Sincerely,
State Senator Theresa Gavarone
2nd Senate District
www.OhioSenate.gov/Gavarone

 
May has been an active month in the Ohio Senate as we continue to address the effects of COVID-19. Over the past few weeks, I have worked tirelessly with my Senate colleagues to help Ohioans through this trying time. 

I was thrilled to see two of my bills, which will both directly help Ohioans during this pandemic and after, pass out of the Senate this month.
Senate Bill 258 will give Ohioans more options to receive crucial mental health services. The bill would enter Ohio into the Psychology Interjurisdictional Compact (PSYPACT), which is a multi-state cooperative agreement that addresses the increased need for these services through tele-health for those who relocate, travel, and are in underserved areas of the state.

My other bill,
Senate Bill 309, came from a conversation with a Wood County swim instructor. This legislation will allow certified swimming classes to take place at a residential swimming pool without requiring the homeowner to obtain a public swimming pool license. Learning how to swim can be lifesaving. This bill will permit swim lessons to continue so our children can remain safe, especially as summer begins.

Both of these bills now go to the Ohio House for consideration, and I look forward to working with my colleagues in the other chamber on sending these bills to the Governor for his signature.
 
Memorial Day commemorations looked different this year, but they were still rooted in what matters most: honoring our veterans for their service and sacrifice for our country. These heroes gave their hearts and lives for our freedom and for our nation's ideals. We owe it to our veterans to always remember them and to live up to the values they fought proudly to defend.

It was a privilege to attend one of many events across our state on Memorial Day with the Genoa American Legion. For their virtual ceremony, I spoke about the courage our heroes who died in the line of duty had to protect us and the United States of America
.

We are exceptionally blessed to live in the land of the free and home of the brave. May we never forget the men and women who gave all for us. 
 
Last month, Governor DeWine announced the beginning stages of how we were going to responsibly reopen Ohio. As May comes to a close, we have seen a variety of our small businesses open their doors again and our hard-working citizens go back to work and more than 90% of Ohio’s economy can be reopened. 

Even though having dinner at a restaurant or shopping at your favorite store may look different, supporting our local businesses in a safe way is crucial for them to succeed and for us to rebound from the economic challenges brought on by COVID-19. You can learn more about what is now open in our state and how our business leaders are working to protect your health by visiting the
Responsible Restart Ohio page or by clicking "Learn More" below:  
 
Ohio reopening for business also means that we can all enjoy what it has to offer in the summer months. Our state has a rich history exhibited in museums and at historic sites, beautiful natural landscapes and landmarks, a distinct and diverse arts culture, and of course our crown-jewel, Lake Erie. Ohio has countless attractions for those seeking adventure or family fun. Explore Ohio as a homegrown tourist through Ohio. Find It Here, the one-stop-shop for finding new destinations in our state all year round. You can learn more about all that the Buckeye State has to offer for you and your family at the link below:
 
The Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services is accepting applications for expanded unemployment benefits for those whose jobs have been affected by COVID-19. This program is available due to the federal CARES Act, and you may be eligible if you are self-employed, a 1099 tax filer, or if you work part-time. Visit www.unemploymenthelp.ohio.gov to learn more about the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program's expanded eligibility, if you may qualify for benefits, and to apply.

If you need assistance in regards to your unemployment benefits or contacting ODJFS, please never hesitate to reach out to my office by
email or at 614-466-8060.
 
Many Ohioans are struggling to stay connected with loved ones, and this fact coupled with current events have left some of us feeling isolated, stressed, and anxious. The Ohio Department of Aging is combatting this by starting the Staying Connected Check-in Service. By staying connected, we can help one another overcome current challenges and distress.

Staying Connected is a FREE, daily check-in by phone for Ohioans age 60 or older. Registration is simple and you can choose the time of day ideal for you.


Visit the Ohio Department of Aging Staying Connected page here: www.aging.ohio.gov

 
 
 






 
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