May 29, 2020
The RPC will remain closed to the public for at least the next few weeks until safeguards are fully implemented to protect the public and staff from any potential transmission of COVID-19. This closure includes the organization’s main office at the Brookens Administrative Center (1776 E. Washington Street in Urbana), which will have limited staffing in June. Individuals and families seeking to be enrolled in RPC programs will continue to be served through phone calls and online consultations, while signs will be posted at all RPC locations alerting members of the public that they are not open.
Individuals or families who have scheduled appointments, such as with the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), will continue to be contacted by their case managers by phone. Individuals and families are encouraged to continue reaching out to their assigned case managers by phone or e-mail with any questions. LIHEAP applications and documentation may also be returned to a lockbox located outside the Brookens Administrative Center at the Washington Street entrance.
“We are fully committed to ensuring the safety of our staff and members of the public,” says RPC CEO Dalitso Sulamoyo. “In the few weeks ahead, we will have put safeguards in place to make sure everyone who enters our buildings feels comfortable and safe. A decision on when exactly to reopen our doors to the public will be made in the very near future.” One such safeguard will be the requirement for all staff to wear masks in public areas during office hours, while all clients who come into the buildings will also be required to wear masks or they will not be able to be seen for their appointments at that time.
The RPC’s Early Childhood Education Program, which operates five centers in Champaign County, is in the process of drafting a reopening plan, which must be approved by the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS). The program is also waiting on the delivery of supplies, such as masks and sanitizer sprayers, to support a healthy environment. In addition, all employees of the Early Childhood Education Program will be required to complete training prior to returning regarding the prevention of the spread of COVID-19 and other illnesses. Therefore, no specific date for reopening has yet been established. As soon as approval has been received from DCFS and public health, the program will send out notifications and provide families with a copy of the reopening plan.
Services provided by the RPC’s Workforce Development staff at the Illinois workNet Center (1307 N. Mattis in Champaign), as well as the program’s Paxton, Watseka, Monticello, and Tuscola office locations, will continue through e-mail and phone calls. Individuals can also drop off paperwork to case managers using the lockbox labeled “RPC” at the Illinois workNet Center. Workforce Development case managers will be performing intakes and follow-up appointments via telephone. Customers are encouraged to reach out to their case managers with questions.
The RPC’s Youth Assessment Center (YAC), located at 2011 Round Barn Road in Champaign, will also not yet be open for in-person appointments. Those who would like to submit a referral for the YAC can send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. YAC staff will be performing all intakes and follow-up appointments via phone.
Champaign County residents are reminded that they can check for updates online on the RPC home page. The RPC thanks all its clients and community partners for their understanding and patience.