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Pittsfield's COVID-19 Metrics Continue to Improve

By Brittany PolitoiBerkshires Staff
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The city remains in the green risk category for having less than four COVID-19 infections per 100,000 people and is one day away from entering the lowest risk gray category for having less than five reported cases.

Pittsfield has a nine-day pattern of zero hospitalizations and its estimated active case count is currently at 2. It's possible the city will drop into gray once the new figures are released on Thursday evening, bringing the entire county into the gray.

In addition, the 14-day average and percent positivity rate has dropped dramatically in the last two weeks.

Mayor Linda Tyer was pleased to present these metrics to the City Council in her bi-monthly update on Tuesday.

"We have a very, very positive downward trend," she said. "Very promising trends in both our average cases and positivity rates."

The 14-day average case rate is now 1.79 percent compared to the case rate of 6.5 percent at Tyer’s last update on May 25.

The 14-day average positivity rate is now 0.44 percent, down from 1.23 percent.


As of Tuesday, 64 percent of Pittsfield residents have received at least one dose and 51 percent have been fully vaccinated.  At Tyer’s last update, she hoped the city would be at 50 percent fully vaccinated but it was not yet reached.

Pittsfield has reached a milestone with testing, as more than 100,000 tests have been administered to Pittsfield residents since testing began back in March 2020.

In accordance with the positive data, Tyer asked the councilors if they see it fit for her to continue these updates.

Ward 7 Councilor Anthony Maffuccio said he would prefer Tyer to continue with City Council updates until two weeks after the Fourth of July and Ward 1 Councilor Helen Moon said she preferred if updates were continued through the month.

Last week, the Board of Health voted to rescind two local emergency orders that were set in place during the pandemic. The first was enacted in May 2020 and outlined occupancy, social distancing, and facial covering guidelines, and the second was enacted in December 2020 and outlined additional safety standards for indoor dining to reduce possible exposure.

The December order included a table size restriction of six people and required eateries to take contact information from diners.


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Berkshire NAACP President Reflects on Juneteenth Origins, Plans Rally

By Brittany PolitoiBerkshires Staff
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Juneteenth was celebrated Saturday for the first time as a local, state, and national holiday.  
 
The city of Pittsfield added the holiday to its municipal roster in May, Gov. Charlie Baker signed a bill making Juneteenth a state holiday last July, and President Biden signed a bill making it a national holiday on Thursday.
 
Berkshire NAACP President Dennis Powell spoke to iBerkshires about the origins of the date and its implications in modern-day society.
 
Though he is glad to see it adopted nationally, Powell expressed mixed feelings about Juneteenth, which commemorates the end of slavery and has been celebrated in some parts of the country as Emancipation Day.  
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