Coronavirus Information Center

Continuing to serve Minnesotans:

Rep. Phillips is working together with Minnesota and federal officials to get us through this pandemic as healthy, economically sound, and prepared for the future as possible. He is on a mission to ensure transparency, and remains committed to tackling this threat in a unified, nonpartisan manner at home and overseas. 

Due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, the U.S. Capitol and Minnetonka office of Rep. Dean Phillips are closed to the public at this time. In the coming days, weeks, and months, many of our friends and neighbors will struggle to navigate the federal government to obtain benefits and federal assistance. Bureaucracy should not be a barrier to care, and the Office of Rep. Dean Phillips is here to help. As a constituent, you can still:

 

 

RESOURCES FOR MINNESOTANS:

Businesses

In Minnesota, businesses are the economic engines of our communitites - and even if you don't own one yourself, chances are you or someone you love depends on the goods, services, or employment that a Minnesota business provides. From advocating to flexibility and accountability in federal relief programs to helping you get answers from the Small Business Administration, Rep. Phillips and his staff will do their best to keep you informed and are focused on the mission to get us through this as healthy, economically sound, and prepared for the future as possible. 

Phillips leads Problem Solvers Caucus

 

Consumer Protection

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison has warned Minnesotans about a reported spike in price gouging, scams, and phishing attacks related to COVID-19. Use the links below to learn how to spot, avoid, and report these attacks:

Direct Payments to American Families

To date, Congress has approved three rounds of Economic Impact Payments to American families.


Discrimination

Viruses don't descriminate, and neither should we. Amid rising reports of discrimination from the Asian American community, Governor Tim Walz and Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan launched a Discrimination Helpline to reinforce the state’s efforts to protect the civil rights of Minnesotans during the COVID-19 pandemic. The toll-free helpline, which is at 1-833-454-0148, will allow those who experience or witness bias and discrimination to report incidents to the Minnesota Department of Human Rights. The helpline is staffed Monday through Friday, 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM. 

Domestic Violence

Avoiding public spaces and working remotely can help to reduce the spread of COVID-19, but for many survivors of domestic violence, it may actually cause danger. If you need immediate suport, the National Domestic Violence Hotline is here for you 24/7 at 1-800-799-7233 or 1-800-787-3224 (TTY). If you’re unable to speak safely, you can visit thehotline.org or text LOVEIS to 22522.


Education, Schools, and Childcare

Faith-Based Organizations

Places or worship play a critical role in times of crisis. Community- and faith-based organizations, working together with schools, businesses, healthcare systems, and state, local, tribal, and territorial health departments, can help slow the spread of diseases, especially among high risk populations.

Food and Nutrition

You may leave your home to run essential errands like going to the grocery store, food bank and meal pick-up locations. Some Minnesota grocery stores are offering special shopping hours for at-risk populations, contact your neighborhood stores for more information about COVID-19 precautions. 

  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), more commonly known as food stamps, ensures that Americans receive the food they need, especially if they are newly unemployed. Congress has invested in SNAP in the last three coronavirus relief bills to help Americans put food on the table during this crisis. Click here to access the Minnesota SNAP website to see if you are eligible and apply for assistance
  • Congress has also secured $850 million in emergency funding for The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) to help food banks face increased utilization and demand in countless communities across the country due to the coronavirus. To find food assistance near you, call the USDA National Hunger Hotline 1-866-3-HUNGRY/1877-8-HAMBRE 
  • Click here to download the Minnesota Free Meals For Kids app 
  • As more schools close due to coronavirus, Congress has provided emergency funding for Child Nutrition Programs to ensure students can still receive their free or reduced-price school meals during this time. Contact your school district for more information about the meal services that are available to your family

 

Phillips, Problem Solvers Inspire COVID Compromise


Health Care and Insurance

Developments in your life due to COVID-19 may make you eligible to recieve coverage through MNSure. 

Thanks to the CARES Act, all four medical insurance companies that sell private health insurance plans on MNsure are waiving co-pays, co-insurance and deductibles related to COVID-19 diagnostic testing, and cost sharing for in-network COVID-19 hospitalization.


Housing

Governor Walz signed Emergency Executive Order 20-79 suspending evictions and writs of recovery for the term of the COVID-19 peacetime emergency.

Congress has also passed important protections and assistance for homeowners and renters during the pandemic, including:

  • Mortgage Forbearance: Homeowners with FHA, USDA, VA, or Section 184 or 184A mortgages (for members of federally-recognized tribes) and those with mortgages backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac have the right to request forbearance on their payments for up to six months, with a possible extension for another six months without fees, penalties, or extra interest. Homeowners should contact their mortgage servicing company directly. 
  • Eviction Protections: Renters residing in public or assisted housing, or in a home or apartment whose owner has a federally-backed mortgage, and who are unable to pay their rent, are protected from eviction for four months. Property owners are also prohibited from issuing a 30-day notice to a tenant to vacate a property until after the four-month moratorium ends. This protection covers properties that receive federal subsidies such as public housing, Section 8 assistance, USDA rural housing programs, and federally-issued or guaranteed mortgages. Renters whose landlord is not abiding by the moratorium should contact the relevant federal agency that administers their housing program or their local Legal Aid office. 
  • Energy Asistance: The CARES Act indluded $900 million to help low income Americans and their families heat and cool their homes thruogh the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Click here to learn if you qualify and apply online for energy assistance

 

Scooch Over MN


Mental Health

COVID-19, and the accompanying physical and financial worries, can cause considerable amounts of stress. Take care of yourself, spend time outdoors, use technology to connect with loved ones, and ask for help when you need it. 


Student Loans

If you have student loan debt, Congress secured several options outlined below for borrowers that help provide relief through September 30, 2020. During this period, borrowers will be able to: 

  • Pause payments for federal student loan borrowers who have Direct Loans and Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL). Borrowers will not be required to make any payments toward outstanding interest or principal balance
  • Suspend interest accrual for such loans so that these balances don’t accrue
  • Avoid forced collections such as garnishment of wages, tax refunds, and Social Security benefits
  • Halt negative credit reporting
  • Ensure a borrower continues to receive credit toward Public Service Loan Forgiveness, Income-Driven Repayment forgiveness, and loan rehabilitation
  • For additional guidance on how to apply and learn about next steps as this critical relief becomes available, refer to the U.S. Department of Education website

 

Taxes

The IRS has established a web page to help taxpayers, businesses, and others affected by the coronavirus.

 

Travelers and Minnesotans Abroad

The State Department has issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory advising U.S. citizens to avoid all international travel due to the global impact of COVID-19In an emergency, please contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate or call the following numbers: 1(888) 407-4747 (toll-free in the United States and Canada) or 1 (202) 501-4444 (from other countries or jurisdictions).


Unemployment

If your employment has been affected by COVID-19 you may be eligible to receive supplemental unemployment benefits. Thousands of people are in the process of applying for unemployment benefits and Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (MNDEED) call wait times may exceed one hour. 

Vaccinations

COVID-19 vaccines are safe, effective, and your decision to get vaccinated will help save lives and small businesses. 

 

Veterans

Congress provided robust emergency funding to ensure the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has the equipment, tests, vaccines and support services – including setting up temporary care sites, mobile treatment centers and increasing telehealth visits to allow more veterans to get care at home – necessary to provide veterans with the additional care they need.

Minnesota veterans impacted by COVID-19 may be eligible for financial assistance grants from the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs (MDVA).

 

Workers

Every day, and especially during a pandemic, you should feel safe and supported in your workplace. 

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act was signed into law on March 18, 2020 and requires certain employers to provide paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19.

 

WAYS TO HELP:

 

Challenging days lie ahead, but we will persevere and overcome together. The best thing you can do for our community during the COVID-19 crisis is to heed public health advice - stay home, wash your hands, sanitize surfaces, and be kind and patient with one another. Doing so will save lives and ensure our medical professionals have the time and supplies they need to keep us all healthy. 

 

Donate Blood

 

Minnesotans are hearty, and when our friends and neighbors need help, it's our instinct to pitch in. If you are healthy, able, and willing to practice responsible physical distancing and hygiene, here are a few ways to help:

Individuals

  • Check in on elderly and at-risk neighbors: Use technology to stay connected or offer pick up essential items so those at the highest risk can avoid exposure.
  • Only buy what you need: We're in this together. Don't stockpile essential supplies, food, or medication. 
  • Donate PPE: Personal protective equipment, commonly referred to as "PPE", is equipment worn to minimize exposure to hazards that cause serious workplace injuries and illnesses. PPE includes items such as face masks and shields, isolation or disposable gowns, gloves, N95 respirators, and goggles or eye protection (and the materials that make them). PPE is critical to protecting patients and medical staff and preventing the spread of COVID-19, click here to donate. 
  • Become a Medical Reserve Corps volunteer: Minnesota Responds is a partnership that integrates and engages local, regional, and statewide volunteer programs to strengthen public health and health care, reduce vulnerability, build resilience, and improve preparedness, response and recovery capabilities. Click here for more information. 
  • Give blood: The COVID-19 pandemic has created an urgent need for blood. The American Red Cross has established special COVID-19 safety procedures to keep donors safe.
  • Support local small businesses and restaurants: Use online ordering or delivery to support the small businesses, restaurants, and cafes in your neighborhood if you are able.
  • Check in with your neighborhood food shelf and non-profit: Difficult days are ahead, so contact your favorite cause and see what they need. 
  • Lift up the heroes: We can do this and WILL do this together, so let's spread a little joy. Engage in small acts of kindness, share stories of people doing good, and send a thank you note to those on the front lineOptimism is just as contagious as fear. 

Businesses and Organizations

  • If you are a business, school, university, medical facility or organization with essential products, materials, medical equipment or venue space contact hsem.ppp@state.mn.us or fill out this form

 

Mask Up MN

 

ADDITIONAL COVID-19 INFORMATION:

 

The presence of coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in Minnesota is cause for concern but not cause for panic. While closings, social distancing, and changes to our daily routines can are disruptive, please know it's the pragmatic and responsible approach to protecting our families, workers, and small businesses in the long term. We will succeed together. We all have a role to play in keeping our community healthy - cover your cough, wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water, only share information from trustworthy sources, wear a mask, get vaccinated as soon as you are able, and please stay home if you are sick.

 

Mask Up MN

 

COVID-19 Case Updates

Trusted Public Health Resources