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Coronavirus hits downtown St. Pete, #WFH pics and other info you need to know

Margie Manning



Photo credit: Brookings

A resident of ONE St. Petersburg has been diagnosed with Covid-19 coronavirus, local workers are transitioning to home offices and the area’s leading grocery chain is setting aside time for senior shoppers as the Tampa-St. Pete area learns how to live in the midst of a pandemic.

As of 11 a.m. Thursday, there were 14 confirmed cases of the illness in Pinellas County — nine men and five women, all Pinellas residents. Seven of the cases were travel-related, three were not travel related and it was unknown whether travel played a role in the other four cases, according to the Florida Department of Health, which is updating county information twice daily on its dashboard here.

One of the confirmed cases is a resident at ONE St. Petersburg, the downtown St. Petersburg condo high-rise that opened last year. That unidentified resident initially self-quarantined after returning from a domestic trip on March 8 and now is hospitalized following the positive diagnosis on March 14, according to a letter sent to residents by the board of directors. The resident’s spouse, who made a trip to the ONE pool on March 12, also self-quarantined and is working with the health department, the letter said.  Both residents want everyone to know they followed CDC guidelines and will continue to take all appropriate precautions as directed by their health professionals, the letter said.

The hashtag #WFH (work from home) has been trending on Twitter. St. Petersburg-based Dynasty Financial Services put together a photo montage of its St. Pete employees in their home offices.

Dynasty Financial employees work from home

KnowBe4 in Clearwater  mobilized its entire workforce of 884 global employees to work from home in only one day, beginning March 18. The cybersecurity training firm is offering every employee $200 in additional compensation to help offset any extra costs they may incur for internet or phone, and for benefits they receive in the office such as free snacks and end of month lunches.

An IT employee at KnowBe4 helps another employee put equipment in her car to work from home.

The largest grocery chain in the area has set up special shopping hours for those most at risk for coronavirus.

A top bank here is limiting public contact as well.

The Bank of Tampa, one of the largest community banks in the area, took a similar step.

Starting Saturday, Truist Financial, the company created by the newly merged SunTrust and BB&T, said it will make changes to bank branches as well.  For most locations, this includes continued access through drive-thru lanes and in-branch consultations by appointment only. Some branches without drive-thru lanes that serve a critical community need will remain open, but with regular enhanced cleaning and sanitization protocols, Truist said.

Much generosity has emerged amid the crisis as well.


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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Avatar

    Velva Heraty

    March 21, 2020at7:00 pm

    You missed the very generous offering of free food for laid-off hospitality workers from Tony Magnificio from Gratzzis Italian Grill on 2nd/2nd S. Been going on for four days now. Check it out.

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