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BENNINGTON — The temporary closure of the Berkshire Family YMCA in Pittsfield, Mass., after a staff member had tested positive for COVID-19 has ended, and the Bennington Recreation Center, which the organization manages, was not affected, officials said.

Kayla Becker, director of the Recreation Center, said Tuesday that the facility was not impacted.

“After doing contact tracing with their local Department of Health, the Pittsfield branch worked with the DPH, who did their contact tracing, and determined that the [Pittsfield] branch was OK to be open,” Becker said Tuesday in an email. “They had closed with abundance of caution while waiting for the health department to give them professional direction.”

She also forwarded a notice sent to staff members by Jessica Rumlow, CEO and executive director of the organization, which said the Pittsfield YMCA was closed Monday but reopened on Tuesday.

Rumlow said the staff member there who tested positive had last worked on Nov. 9.

“Pittsfield’s DPH has completed contact tracing,” she wrote. “Per DPH guidance, upon learning the onset of symptoms followed their last shift worked, it has been determined by DPH that our Pittsfield branch is safe to reopen to child care and members. The facility has been deep cleaned and sanitized in preparation for reopening Tuesday, November 17.”

Rumlow added in the staff notice, “We take the health and well-being of our families, members, staff, and residents seriously. Our COVID-19 prevention policies continue to be strictly enforced. Given the nature of this relentless virus, we know we are not immune, but we feel confident that we are doing our part in preventing the spread. We are all in this together.”

The Berkshire Eagle had reported the closure on Monday and that the staff member had tested positive on Sunday.

The newspaper reported that in a separate statement to the YMCA community that Rumlow posted Friday, she said the local increase in coronavirus cases has everyone on “high alert.”

“Our Y staff continue to wear masks, maintain 6 feet social distance, wash/sanitize hands, and work hard maintaining clean and disinfected facilities to support your health and well-being,” she wrote, adding that staff must complete an internal health screening questionnaire before each shift.

“We expect visitors to our facilities to wear masks at all times, wash/sanitize hands, maintain 6 feet social distance, and be understanding as we make swift adjustments as local and state COVID-19 prevention guidance changes,” Rumlow stated.

The Berkshire Family YMCA manages the Bennington Rec Center under a management contract with the town.

Jim Therrien writes for New England Newspapers in Southern Vermont. Email jtherrien@benningtonbanner.com

Reporter/editor

Jim Therrien reports for the three NENI newspapers in Southern Vermont. He previously worked as a reporter and editor at the Berkshire Eagle, the Bennington Banner, the Springfield (Mass.) Republican and the former North Adams Transcript.


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