A Message from Virginia Chamber President & CEO, Barry DuVal

It has been one week since additional restrictions were placed on the Hampton Roads region in hopes to to lower the number of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. Governor Northam’s Executive Order 68 prohibits the on-site sale, consumption, and possession of alcohol after 10:00 p.m. in restaurants, bars, and other food/beverage establishments located in Hampton Roads. Additional details on this new mandate can be found below.

On Wednesday, August 5, Virginia became first in the nation to launch a COVID-19 exposure notification app. Using Bluetooth Low Energy technology developed by Apple and Google COVIDWISE notifies users who have likely been exposed to reduce the risk of infection and help Virginia stop the spread. COVIDWISE does not rely on personal information or location data and participation is on a completely voluntary basis. Users can opt-in by downloading this free app through the iPhone App Store or the Android Google Play Store. COVIDWISE generates an anonymous token for each device that has signed up. These tokens cannot be used to identify users or their locations and change every 10-20 minutes to ensure complete anonymity. I encourage citizens of the Commonwealth to learn more about COVIDWISE by visiting their website and reading the full summary below. 

Virginia has joined five other states in entering the first interstate testing compact of its kind with the intention to purchase large quantities of rapid, point-of-care antigen tests. Virginia along with Maryland, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Ohio sent a letter of intent to the Rockefeller Foundation as part of a joint effort to respond to the ongoing pandemic and purchase 500,000 antigen tests for each state. The wide availability of rapid testing is critical to effectively stopping the spread of COVID-19 around the Commonwealth and nation. More information on this bi-partisan effort can be found here

This week, the Virginia Chamber is pleased to recognize Cox Communications for its vital investments to support COVID-19 relief efforts, helping communities across the Commonwealth.    

Cox Communications has long been recognized for their dedication to empowering communities throughout the Commonwealth in many ways. In addition to their continued commitment to keep Virginians connected, Cox Communications has made significant investments in programs, grants, and nonprofits dedicated to supporting our citizens during the ongoing pandemic. Cox Communications has developed the Connect2Compete program to offer low-cost internet for families on government assistance who have K-12 children. With no annual contract, no equipment fee and an easy installation, families can get a broadband connection at home for less than $10 a month. In response to the growing strain on feeding the community during COVID-19, Cox Charities and the James M. Cox Foundation have donated a total $125,000 in grants to local food banks and meal delivery services including Meals on Wheels, the Virginia Peninsula Foodbank and the Fredericksburg Regional Foodbank. More information on this week’s “Member Spotlight” can be found below. 

Best regards,
Barry DuVal
President


Member Spotlight: Cox Communications

Virginia is an amazing place to live, work and raise a family. But that doesn’t happen without private investment. As the largest private telecommunications company, we’ve invested billions of dollars in our regional network and we’ll continue to invest to prepare for the future. With speeds rivaling any major city in the US, our world-class broadband infrastructure brings more comfort, convenience, security, entertainment and connectivity to Virginians every day. 

With thousands of miles of fiber across the Commonwealth, we’re proud to connect Virginians to the things that matter most. From startups to data centers, homes and schools to biomedical research facilities, our carrier-grade network connects families to the entertainment they love, and businesses to the global economy they require. 

We also believe in empowering our communities thought investment – not only financially but with kindness and compassion. 

  • Connect2Compete: There are still some families who aren’t currently connected to high-speed internet at home. Children in those families are at risk of falling behind in school, especially during this time of distance learning. Our Connect2Compete program offers low-cost internet to families on government assistance who have K-12 children. With no annual contract, no equipment fee and an easy installation, families can get a broadband connection at home for less than $10 a month.
  • Grants: In response to the growing strain on feeding the community during COVID-19, Cox Charities and the James M. Cox Foundation donated a total $125,000 in grants to local food banks and meal delivery services including Meals on Wheels, the Virginia Peninsula Foodbank and the Fredericksburg Regional Foodbank. 
  • Heroes of Distance Learning: To celebrate those teachers going above and beyond to keep their students engaged during distance learning, we awarded 11 Heroes of Distance Learning $1,000 grants for virtual classroom makeovers. 
  • PPE Donation: In response to the growing strain on hospitals as the number of COVID-19 cases continue to climb, the company announced that mask donation valued at more than $2.2 million will be distributed across 12 hospitals in Cox markets including Sentara Healthcare and Inova Health System.
  • Summer Reading: Books can be both windows into new perspectives and mirrors that reflect a reader’s own experiences. With this in mind, we donated more than 500 books to Roanoke City Public Schools that feature diverse characters, storylines and authors in an effort to encourage social justice dialogue in schools, families and communities. Additionally, we donated $10,000 worth of incentive prices to encourage more students to read this summer. 

To learn more, visit coxenterprises.com or connect with us on Twitter @coxva.