Photo Credit: East Lake Corps & Community Center / Facebook
The Tennessee Conservative Staff –
Chattanooga Mayor Tim Kelly on Wednesday (Dec.1) announced the next phase of reopening of the City’s community centers effective yesterday.
Most Community Centers are reopening—with the last remaining exceptions being East Lake due to remodeling; as well as Cromwell and Frances B. Wyatt, both of which are closed due to staffing shortages.
To address the current staffing shortages at the Cromwell and Frances B. Wyatt Community Centers, the Department will soon be posting position vacancies and taking applications via the City job board at Chattanooga.gov.
A mid-November phase of reopening included the Avondale, Brainerd, Carver, Hixson, John A. Patten, Shepherd, South Chattanooga, and Westside Community Centers.
According to the Mayor’s office, the phased reopening plan was implemented in light of improving pandemic conditions and the community centers will provide a safe space for youth and families heading into the winter.
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The reopening of the community centers will also once again make mentorship and programming available in the city’s neighborhoods.
“Community centers play a critical role in uplifting our city’s youth by offering them healthy activities and access to mentors in a safe and educational environment,” said Mayor Kelly.
The city’s Department of Community Development will phase in programming and other opportunities over the coming months, eventually allowing community centers to be booked for events and restoring all programming over time.
The city states that the centers must follow CDC guidelines for social distancing and enhanced cleaning in all buildings, and note that officials will continue to monitor pandemic conditions.
Earlier this year, the mayor ordered all City community centers closed citing increased cases of COVID in the community. In the months since, Hamilton County has seen a sharp decline in COVID cases as measured by new cases, hospitalizations, and deaths.