As COVID-19 continues to spread throughout our communities, we want to make sure clergy, laity and all leaders of churches are prepared for a potential outbreak.

Local Church Leaders: Plan & Prepare

Below are guidelines for faith leaders, found on the CDC’s website, that will better prepare you to make important decisions for your congregation and your community.

  • Update your emergency operations plan with the help of your local public health department, emergency operations coordinator or planning team, and other relevant partners to include COVID-19 planning.
  • Identify space that can be used to separate sick people if needed.
  • Develop an emergency communication plan for distributing timely and accurate information to workers and those you serve.
  • Identify actions to take if you need to temporarily postpone or cancel events, programs, and services, especially for groups at greater risk such as older adults or people with chronic health conditions.
  • Promote the practice of everyday preventative actions.
    • Frequently wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
    • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or use the inside of your elbow.
    • Clean frequently touched objects and surfaces.
    • Stay home when sick.
  • Provide COVID-19 prevention supplies at your organization (e.g., soap, hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol, tissues, trash baskets, and a couple of disposable facemasks, just in case someone becomes sick during an event).
  • Plan for staff absences by developing flexible attendance and sick-leave policies, plan for alternative coverage and monitor and track COVID-19 related staff absences.
  • Engage with stigmatized groups and speak out against negative behaviors to help counter stigma and discrimination.

Important Steps for Everyone to Take (If COVID-19 is in your community)

  • Stay informed about local COVID-19 information and updates.
  • Put your emergency operations and communication plans into action.
  • Communicate with your community members if events and services are changed, postponed, or canceled.
  • Emphasize everyday preventive actions through intensified communications with employees and visitors to your organization.
  • Stay home when sick.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or use the inside of your elbow.
  • Wash hands often.
  • Limit close contact with others as much as possible (about 6 feet).
  • During an event, if someone becomes sick separate them into an isolated room and ask them to leave as soon as possible.

*All information gathered from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website, cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html

For up-to-date information regarding what you can do to prevent the spread of COVID-19, visit the Center for Disease Control & Prevention website at www.cdc.gov. Tips for faith and community leaders can be found here www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/index.html.

For Little Rock Residents: Please continue to check the City of Little Rock’s website at www.littlerock.gov/city-administration/mayors-office/covid-19-information/

  • The City of Little Rock is implementing a curfew, beginning Wednesday, March 18. The curfew will be from 12 a.m. – 5 a.m. (this excludes overnight workers)
  • Gatherings of more than 50 people are also postponed until further notice, following new guidelines from the CDC.

We will continue to update this post as new information from federal, state, and local governments becomes available.