Recently, the positive number of COVID-19 cases and fatalities have spiked in Houston over the past couple weeks. All Houstonians are encouraged to get tested. Below are locations and contact information for each of our testing sites for this week. Be sure to visit www.HoustonEmergency.org/covid19 for current Houston test sites and information about stopping the spread of the virus. We all need to be responsible, socially distance, and mask up!
Are You Prepared for Hurricane Season?
Hurricane Season is well underway, and being located on the Gulf Coast puts Houston in an especially vulnerable position when it comes to big storms. Because of the current COVID-19 pandemic, it’s even more important to prepare ahead of time should a significant weather event hit our area. Be sure to have a plan and an emergency supply kit ready for you and your family to either safely stay home or evacuate if need be.
The City of Houston offers emergency alerts through the AlertHouston emergency notification system. Register for alerts today at www.alerthouston.org. You are also encouraged to stay informed by visiting either the Houston Office of Emergency Management at www.houstonoem.org or the Houston Emergency Site at www.houstonemergency.org.
Complete Your Census Form Today
Be sure to complete the Census for your household. It’s imperative that every home complete the Census to ensure District J receives as many resources as possible for our residents. Your neighborhood cannot receive adequate funds to support services such as hospitals, transportation, schools, roads and other needs if there isn’t an accurate count of our residents. In order for District J to be the best it can be, every person must participate. To access the census, visit www.2020census.gov.
District J Partners with Exotic Pop for Rent Relief Program
Council Member Edward Pollard’s office has partnered with beverage brand Exotic Pop to help District J residents with rent relief. From now through the end of the year, one family residing in District J will be selected each month to have their rent paid.
The first recipient of the program received funds last week. She was scheduled to begin working at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo when COVID forced the closure of the event.
If you’re interested in applying for rental assistance, please read the eligibility guidelines below. If we all do our small part we can make a huge impact.
Department of Justice Investigates Ahmaud Arbrey Murder
On May 9, Council Member Edward Pollard sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General William Barr urging him to call for an independent investigation into the murder of Ahmaud Arbery. CM Pollard received a letter from the U.S. Department of Justice indicating that they have launched an investigation into the evidence in the case to determine if any federal charges, including hate crimes, are warranted and appropriate.
Click here to read the letter from the Department of Justice.
Houston Restaurant Association Supports Black Restaurants
The Greater Houston Restaurant Association (GHRA) held a Juneteenth Tasting Tour, where they patronized Black restaurants in the area as a way of highlighting diverse eateries during the month of June.
The GHRA invited the District J office to join them as they visited Neyow’s Cajun Cuisine on Richmond Ave. This was just one stop of many to bring to the forefront the value of Black restaurants to the Houston area. We encourage you to also patronize District J businesses to help them remain operational and we continue fighting during the current pandemic.
Suit Drive to Benefit Local Youth
Council Member Pollard’s nonprofit, Suits for Success, has partnered with Gameplan U for a Suit Drive throughout July. If you or someone you know has a gently worn men’s business suit you’d like to donate to a student in need, please refer to the details listed on the flyer. For more information on Suits for Success, please visit https://suitsforsuccesshouston.org/.
Mask Up: Protecting Seniors in District J
Council Member Edward Pollard visited several senior living communities in District J to deliver face masks to the residents and staff members at those locations. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), seniors are at the highest risk for contracting COVID-19, with 8 out of 10 COVID-19-related deaths being among adults aged 65 and older. We want to give special thanks to Basel Mujarkesh of Dalia Ambulance Service for donating 2,000 masks toward this effort. Please remember to wear a mask or face covering when in public.
Westward Square Apartment Community Center Opening
The Westward Apartment Community Center, located in Gulfton, officially opened in June. The District J office, in collaboration with Bridging the Digital Divide, proudly sponsored an onsite computer lab, which was presented in memory of native Houstonian George Floyd. The lab will be open daily and serve as a safe place where visitors can participate in STEM programs, language classes and other educational opportunities.
District J Projects
Water Well Project
The Sharpstown-2 area is part of a new project to rehabilitate or construct water wells throughout the city. The project will involve a well located at 8619 Bellaire near S. Gessner. Additional wells will be constructed or replaced at IAH airport, Sims Bayou and in Southwest Houston. The purpose of the project is to optimize the well structure to meet water demand in the district and ensure compliance with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality regulations.
Keegans Bayou Trail
The District J office initiated an order to beautify Keegans Bayou Trail. The area was overrun with grass and weeds, and the trash receptacle was overflowing with garbage. The refreshed area allows residents to enjoy the green space.