VAMA: Virginia Automatic Merchandising Association


VAMA Update
COVID-19 Crisis 

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Stay Safe Virginia!

Thank you to The Smith Group for the links to several articles below.

A list of essential and nonessential businesses in Virginia, according to the governor

Richmond Times-Dispatch (Access to this article limited to subscribers)

The following recreation and entertainment businesses are considered nonessential and must close to the public beginning at 11:59 p.m. Tuesday, according to Gov. Ralph Northam: theaters, performing arts centers, concert venues, museums and other indoor entertainment centers;...

Governor orders more businesses to close as of midnight Tuesday

By KIMBERLY PIERCEALL, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

Starting at 11:59 p.m. Tuesday and for at least 30 days, there will be no haircuts, no massages, no tanning, no tattoos, no trampolining, no gym-going, and no indoor public amusement outside of the confines of one’s own home. On Monday, Gov. Ralph Northam ordered all businesses considered recreational or entertainment (see a longer list below) to close.

Virginia K-12 schools closed for remainder of academic year

By CLAIRE MITZEL, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 18 articles a month)

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam on Monday ordered the state’s K-12 schools to remain closed for the rest of the school year. “School closures are necessary to minimize the speed at which COVID-19 spreads and protect the capacity of our health care system,” he said.

Decision to close schools 'takes your breath away'

By JUSTIN MATTINGLY, Richmond Times-Dispatch (Access to this article limited to subscribers)

Virginia schools will stay closed for the rest of the academic year, Gov. Ralph Northam ordered Monday, a step only one other state has taken in hopes of mitigating the spread of the coronavirus. Northam’s announcement came four days before his first round of mandated school closures was set to expire, on March 27.


Election officials raise questions about safety of upcoming elections

By ALISON GRAHAM, Roanoke Times (Metered Paywall - 18 articles a month)

Electoral boards and registrars across the state are concerned about offering in-person voting for the upcoming May and June elections amid the coronavirus pandemic. In a letter sent last week, two associations asked the state to close polling locations and accept only mail-in ballots.


Va. schools closed for rest of year; state educators seek guidance

By DAVID MCGEE, Bristol Herald Courier (Metered Paywall - 15 articles a month)

Virginia educators hope to receive some clear direction today on how to proceed with instruction after Gov. Ralph Northam on Monday ordered schools closed for the remainder of this academic year. On Monday, Northam directed that all public and private schools in Virginia close as part of sweeping new regulations designed to reduce the spread of COVID-19.


More than 23,000 hotel jobs lost so far in Va.

By SYDNEY LAKE, Virginia Business

As of Monday, the lodging and hotels industry has lost more than 23,000 jobs in Virginia as a result of the coronavirus crisis, according to Eric Terry, president of the Virginia Restaurant, Lodging & Travel Association. The American Hotel and Lodging Association (AHLA) on Monday released the results of a study estimating that Virginia’s lodging industry will lose a total of more than 78,000 total direct and indirect jobs before the pandemic is over.

2 Newport News shipyard employees test positive for coronavirus

By DAVE RESS, Daily Press (Metered Paywall - 1 article a month)

Two workers at Newport News Shipbuilding tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, shipyard president Jennifer Boykin reported in a social media message. The first employee was diagnosed over the weekend and called in Monday to report the positive result to the yard. That individual, who works on the second floor of Building 600, has not been on company property since March 16. Yard executives have met with employees who work near the individual and have advised them to check in at the company clinic.

Gun sales spike across Virginia as people worry about coronavirus

By PETER COUTU AND KATHERINE HAFNER, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

The phones are ringing off the hook and firearms flying off the shelves at gun shops around Hampton Roads. “We’re jammed,” said one guy who answered the phone at Superior Pawn & Gun in Virginia Beach, which hosted an outdoor “social distancing friendly” gun event on Friday.


HRT to end ferry service early starting Wednesday

Southside Daily

Elizabeth River Ferry is ending its daily and weekend service 9 p.m. starting Wednesday in response to coronavirus (COVID19). In addition, Hampton Roads Transit also announced on Monday that it will accelerate the cleaning of its vehicles, transit centers and administrative offices using disinfecting agents delivered with an electrostatic misting device that disinfects all surfaces, including hard-to-reach areas.


Watch how coronavirus has spread throughout Virginia, reaching 39 cities and counties

By PETER COUTU, Daily Press (Metered Paywall - 1 article a month)

A little more than two weeks ago, Virginia saw its first case of the novel coronavirus. A U.S. Marine assigned to Fort Belvoir tested positive for COVID-19 on March 7. A few days later, it reached Hampton Roads, with a couple testing positive after going on a Nile River Cruise. . . . By Sunday, at least 219 people — an increase of 67 from Saturday — had tested positive for the virus, likely a fraction of the total outbreak in Virginia due to limited testing and a lag in reporting from state officials.

Virginia Beach Health Department reports first coronavirus death

By JESSICA NOLTE, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

The Virginia Beach Health Department reported Monday its first death from COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. The patient was a man in his 70s, according to a news release from the health department. He was hospitalized and had underlying conditions.

Jefferson Lab suspends operations out of concern about coronavirus spread

By DAVE RESS, Daily Press (Metered Paywall - 1 article a month)

Jefferson Lab suspended on-campus operations Monday and began procedures to shut down the facility. The aim is to bring the the U.S. Department of Energy research facility into an idled, safe and stable configuration by Friday.

Nursing homes, assisted living facilities add new restrictions to curb COVID-19. Will they be enough?

By KATE MASTERS, Virginia Mercury

By March 12, Westminster Canterbury Richmond — a nearly 900-resident senior living facility near the city’s picturesque Bellevue neighborhood — was on lockdown. That day, staff got the news that a resident in neighboring Hanover County had tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by a new strain of coronavirus. The proximity of the case activated the emergency response plan at Westminster Canterbury, which offers independent and assisted living as well as a nursing facility, said CEO John Burns. . . .The strict new measures still didn’t prevent COVID-19 from getting in.

Navy hospital ship docked in Norfolk could take weeks getting to New York

Southside Daily

As the Navy gears up to send hospital ships to areas hit hard by the Coronavirus (COVID 19), the one heading to New York likely won’t be ready to operate there for weeks, defense officials said. President Donald Trump said Sunday the Navy’s pair of hospital ships, the USNS Comfort and its sister ship, the USNS Mercy will soon be stationed on the East and West coasts to help relieve stress on American medical facilities.

Want to make masks for hospitals? Some might not know how to make use of them.

By ELISHA SAUERS, Daily Press (Metered Paywall - 1 article a month)

Girl Scouts are stitching like the wind. A regional crafting group is sourcing elastic to do its part. As with national crises of the past, people with good intentions are searching for ways to support the cause. With ample social-distancing time on their hands, community volunteers got busy this week sewing masks for their hospitals, which are low on protective supplies.

As COVID-19 spreads, Virginia coal mines remain open

By SARAH VOGELSONG, Virginia Mercury

Coal mining continues in Southwest Virginia even as workplace constraints prevent miners from following many of the social distancing practices recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. As of Monday, all of Virginia’s coal and mineral mines that had been open before the appearance of COVID-19, the disease caused by a new strain of coronavirus, were still operating, said Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy spokesperson Tarah Kesterson.

EVMS urges at least 145 students and faculty to quarantine after a positive case

By ELISHA SAUERS, Virginian-Pilot (Metered Paywall - 2 articles a month)

An Eastern Virginia Medical School student training to be a physician assistant was infected with the coronavirus after coming into contact with a patient suspected of having it. The student, who tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the new virus, self-reported the illness to school officials, said Vincent Rhodes, an EVMS spokesman.

United Way reports big needs on Peninsula as coronavirus hits nonprofits hard

By DAVE RESS, Daily Press (Metered Paywall - 1 article a month)

In one of Virginia’s COVID-19 hotspots, the coronavirus is tearing at the social safety net that the Peninsula’s volunteer and nonprofit agencies run. School closings and stay-at-home directives mean groups are struggling to find ways to deliver critical services to some of the Peninsula’s most vulnerable, said Steve Kast, president of the United Way of the Virginia Peninsula.

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