Citing delta and schools, Martin to bring back Stamford’s COVID updates

Stamford Mayor David Martin speaks to the media during a visit with Gov. Ned Lamont to Children's Learning Center in Stamford, Conn., on Tuesday September 21, 2021. Lamont held the news conference to discuss the importance of investing in early childhood and highlighted the center’s work to address education, public and mental health disparities, especially during the pandemic. CLC received $1.4M. from the state.

Stamford Mayor David Martin speaks to the media during a visit with Gov. Ned Lamont to Children's Learning Center in Stamford, Conn., on Tuesday September 21, 2021. Lamont held the news conference to discuss the importance of investing in early childhood and highlighted the center’s work to address education, public and mental health disparities, especially during the pandemic. CLC received $1.4M. from the state.

Christian Abraham / Hearst Connecticut Media

STAMFORD — For the first time in months, outgoing Mayor David Martin will hold a virtual update on COVID-19 in Stamford on Tuesday. The updates will continue on a biweekly basis.

Martin suspended his regular pandemic updates in June when the local caseload was at an all-time low, and an end to the pandemic felt possible for some. But with relaxed social distancing protocols statewide and the rise of the delta variant, the virus returned with a vengeance, he said.

“I probably have a couple more COVID shows unless we can get rid of this delta variant,” he said, after acknowledging that the weekly updates fell by the wayside “with all the campaigning going on.” Martin, who has been mayor since 2013, lost September’s Democratic primary to party-endorsed candidate Caroline Simmons. Simmons will go on to face unaffiliated candidate Bobby Valentine in the November election.

Local infections bottomed out at less than one new daily case per 100,000 during the summer months. Now, Stamford is reporting 13.1 cases per 100,000 residents, according to the latest data from the state Department of Health.

Following guidance from the state Department of Education, Stamford Public Schools are not offering remote learning for the current school year.

“You’ve got more than twice as many kids in the school at any given time than you had before, and the delta variant is just so much more contagious,” Martin said. As of Sept. 17, the district has documented 90 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 among staff and students since school started on Aug. 30.

“We’re nervous,” the mayor admitted, “we’re nervous.”

The shows will resume every other week at 6 p.m. starting on Sept. 28. Martin’s coronavirus updates will stream via YouTube on the city’s website.

veronica.delvalle@hearstmediact.com