Information for Maine Nonprofits During COVID-19

Reopening to the Public and Restarting Maine's Economy

The COVID-19 pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for Maine’s economy. Like our peers in the corporate sector, nonprofit organizations are assessing when and how to safely reopen offices, resume or expand in-person services, and reimagine work.

One thing is clear: nonprofits are a vital part of Maine’s current and future economy.

Below we are compiling resources and tools to help nonprofits navigate “reopening” Maine’s economy during and after the coronavirus pandemic. If your organization is developing tools to support other nonprofit organizations, let us know!

Image of guidebook cover

Reopening with Purpose: Guidance for Maine Nonprofits Impacted by the Pandemic

MANP has developed a nonprofit-specific guidebook to assist nonprofits in shaping their plans to reopen offices and re-engage with the public. Learn more and download your free copy!

State + Federal Plans

  • April 28th, Governor Mills outlined a phased plan to restart Maine’s economy
  • May 8th, Governor Mills introduced a Rural Reopening Plan
  • October 6th, Governor Mills Gov. Janet Mills announced the state will be entering Stage 4 of Reopening. Her Executive Order also expands the face covering mandate to more groups including private schools and municipalities. The order also expands enforcement to the whole state and not just coastal towns and cities.
  • Maine Department of Economic and Community Development has created checklists of best practices for safely operating during COVID-19.
    • There are also checklists for some specific industries, but they do not yet provide clear guidance to many nonprofit industries. MANP continues to advocate with state officials for more direction. As more nonprofit-related industries are addressed we will add them in the mission-area specific section below.
    • In order to open, businesses must commit to complying with the requirements of these checklists by filling out the brief COVID-19 Checklist Compliance Form
    • Weekly updates with MDECD Commissioner Heather Johnson, Wednesdays from 3:30-4:30pm (Zoom link & schedule at https://www.maine.gov/decd/home).
  • CDC Activities and Initiatives Supporting the COVID-19 Response and the President’s Plan for Opening America Up Again, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, May 2020.

Advice for Boards


General Guidance + Resources

Industry/Mission-Area Specific Tools

*Note – many of the MDCED lists are being regularly updated, so cross-check the MDCED website to see if there is more updated guidance than what is listed below

  • The Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) understands that not every sort of business is described in the phased outline set forth in the Restarting Maine’s Economy plan. To address this, DECD has established a way for individual businesses to submit a plan for reopening and request permission following that plan. If the function of your business is not listed in Phase I of Restarting Maine’s Economy, but you believe that it should be included, you may submit a request for consideration using this form. The portal asks for “a description of the service provided and details on how you would open safely.” I recommend that business owners filling out this form be very specific and detailed about what protective measures you will take to protect customers and staff.

Samples, Templates, Tools + Graphics

Input + Feedback

  • U.S. Labor Department is inviting employers to provide input on “Opening America’s Workplaces Again National Online Dialogue.” The public – including employers, workers, local authorities and advocacy groups – is invited to share ideas on six topics: 1) Reopening businesses; 2) commuting safely; 3) working safely; 4) accommodating members of vulnerable populations; 5) supporting America’s families; and 6) reducing regulatory burdens. Please weigh in here.
  • The Mills administration is using this comment form to collect input on their plans/approach to re-open the economy.

Maine’s Economic Recovery – The Big Picture

Planning for “reopening” is taking place within the broader context of conversations about Maine’s economic recovery and economic development. In May 2020, Governor Mills formed an Economic Recovery Committee to develop specific policy recommendations to stabilize the state’s economy and build a bridge to future prosperity in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. MANP’s Executive Director, Jennifer Hutchins, serves on this committee. Learn more about the committee’s work.