Councilman Chiariello discusses the recent COVID-19 outbreak in Sparta.


"I’m sharing an update of the weekly COVID-19 positive cases for Sparta, as identified on the County health department site. Nineteen additional cases were noted last week (through Oct. 1), which still represents a significant spike as compared with weekly counts since April.

Following the September22 meeting between representatives from the council, board of education, and county health department, all three organizations passed a similar resolution. I cannot find the Council resolution online, but I am able to find the Board of Education resolution, which was nearly identical:
In it we resolve to do the following:
1. Commitment to collaboration amongst our organizations through the sharing of available resources and communication outlets.
2. Continual, sustainable dialog around the mitigation and management of COVID 19 cases.
3. We will work together to build and follow standard protocols around the handling of information gathered through contact tracing.
4. Our collective actions will recognize and minimize the social stigmatization of COVID 19 contact tracing through all messaging and controls.
5. Support ONE clear public health message to our community to minimize confusion and streamline messaging.
6. All parties agree that it is critical that these matters be handled with the highest degree of fidelity and confidentiality.
7. To develop practices and policies that are supportive of those affected by this pandemic, as well as their families.
8. In accordance with our the Township of Sparta’s Stigma Free policy we will encourage open dialog and support of all affected throughout our community and the enhanced spirit of #spartastrong (no blame – no shame).
I have been told that as of this writing no follow-up meetings are planned or anticipated. The Board of Education did release a joint communication sharing a reassuring message and broad recommendations, but having no discernable policy changes.
I still feel more substantive measures are needed, and will continue to follow up."