Salvation Army will gather donations early due to virus

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — The Salvation Army is planning to start its Red Kettle campaign earlier this year — in November — because of the need caused by the coronavirus pandemic, and people won't need change or cash in hand to donate.

“We’re going to have a code right on the kettle so that people can just take their phone and scan it, so it’s simple and easy,” Rosemarie Dykeman of the Salvation Army of Greater Nashua told WMUR-TV.

People also can text “Kettles" to 91999 and fill in the amount.

The Salvation Army of Northern New England said that it could end up serving many more families this Christmas. In 2019, 553 families were served; this year, it estimates the number to be 857 families.

“We're getting a lot of new families that have lost a job due to the pandemic or the fact that their hours have been cut," Dykeman said.

Other coronavirus-related developments in New Hampshire:

MASK ORDINANCE

The city of Portsmouth is the latest New Hampshire community to approve a face mask ordinance.

The City Council voted 7-2 Monday night to approve the measure, which went into effect immediately and lasts until Jan. 4, 2021, Seacoastonline.com reported.

The masks are required inside public places and outdoors when social distancing of 6 feet (2 meters) between people who aren't in the same household can't be maintained.

The penalty for not wearing a mask won't exceed $25.

Those exempt from the ordinance are people with medical and health-risk conditions; children age 6 and younger; and people eating or drinking at a business licensed in the city for that purpose.

Some of the other communities that have passed a face mask ordinance include Exeter, Newmarket, Durham, Concord, Nashua, Keene, Lebanon, and Plymouth.

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THE NUMBERS

As of Tuesday, 7,748 people had tested positive for the virus in New Hampshire, an increase of 34 from the previous day. Two new deaths were announced, for a total of 438. The seven-day rolling average of daily new cases in New Hampshire increased over the past two weeks, going from 20 new cases per day on Aug. 31 to 34 new cases per day on Sept. 14.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia or death.