The Rhode Island Department of Revenue announced that beginning today, Wednesday, March 25, 2020, visitors to the R.I. Division of Motor Vehicles will be screened by R.I. National Guard and law enforcement personnel before being allowed entry into the Division’s Cranston office.
According to Paul Grimaldi, Chief of Information and Public Relations for the R.I. Department of Revenue, the new verbal screening pilot was implemented for employees at the Cranston office on Tuesday and today will be extended to all members of the public.
“This step is being taken out of an abundance of caution. There has been no indication yet that any Division employee or visitor to its offices has contracted COVID-19”, Grimaldi says in an email.
Grimaldi continues, “The public is reminded that only those who have a service reservation will be allowed into the building currently. Those that do arrive should expect there visit to extend a few extra minutes to accommodate the COVID-19 screening process. The screening process at the DMV is serving as a pilot effort before being extended to other R.I. Department of Revenue and state agency buildings over the next few days”.
Members of the Rhode Island National Guard and the Division of Sheriffs will assist at some locations with administering the screening. Employees and visitors will be asked if they are experiencing any of the following symptoms: cough, fever of 100.4F or greater, shortness of breath/difficulty breathing, chills, runny nose, stuffy nose, and sore throat. They will also be asked if they have returned from international travel or travel on a cruise ship within the last 14 days; if they have traveled domestically (within the U.S.) or an airline within the last 14 days; and if they have had a known exposure to someone with, or under investigation for, COVID-19.
Based on their responses, employees and visitors will either be allowed or not allowed to enter the facility.
The health and well being of our employees, our visitors and all Rhode Islanders is paramount to us, and we advise anyone who is not feeling well, to remain home.
Today’s step is the next in a series health and safety precautions implemented by the DMV since the onset of COVID-19. The DMV first began by closing branch offices, then metering the number of people allowed into its Cranston headquarters before moving to a full reservation system and a staffing arrangement intended to allow for the social distancing recommended by federal and state health officials throughout the building as we seek to continue essential public services.
The R.I. Department of Revenue oversees six agencies. In addition to the Division of Motor Vehicles, it also oversees the Division of Lottery, Division of Municipal Finance, Division of Taxation, Office of Revenue Analysis and Central Collections Unit.