Food Bank staff member tests positive for COVID-19, volunteer events postponed


ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) – A staff member at the Food Bank of the Southern Tier has tested positive for COVID-19, according to the food bank.

Due to the positive test, the Food Bank has canceled all volunteer and production activities.

The Food Bank of the Southern Tier’s priority during the COVID-19 pandemic is to continue to provide emergency food assistance for our region, which is currently experiencing a 14 percent increase in demand for our services.

In accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance, the Food Bank has been actively monitoring developments related to COVID-19 and taking proactive measures to protect the health and well-being of our staff, volunteers and neighbors as we continue to serve our community during this critical time.

Yesterday afternoon, October 28, the Food Bank was notified that a staff member working in our facility tested positive for COVID-19.

In response, the Food Bank has cancelled all volunteer and Production activities in our Warehouse effective today, October 29. The Food Bank is still committed to making sure our friends and neighbors have food to eat. To do this, a few staff members will be working in the Warehouse and making limited deliveries. In addition, the following Mobile Food Pantries are postponed:

Friday, October 30 – Deposit Mobile Food Pantry

Monday, November 2 – Endwell Mobile Food Pantry

Wednesday, November 4 – Spencer Van Etten Mobile Food Pantry

The Food Bank is working closely with the Health Department on this matter. The Health Department is conducting contact tracing and will personally notify all individuals who have been in close contact with this staff member and provide next steps. Close contact is identified by the CDC as someone who was within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period starting from 2 days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic patients, 2 days prior to testing specimen collection) until the time the patient is isolated.

The Food Bank and our partners have accomplished so much over the last year and we know that we will continue to work together to safely serve our communities as these hardships persist, because our services are needed now more than ever.

The Food Bank will continue to diligently monitor and assess our internal and external environments to ensure we are providing a safe setting for all. Please visit the Food Bank’s website at for the most up-to-date information and for food resources near you.

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