We're living through an unprecedented moment in our shared history, and as a State Senator, I've been focused on doing everything I can to support my constituents during this impossible time. With so much change taking place so quickly, it can be hard to keep track of everything that effects you and your family. To help, I've created a newsletter called Nassau Coronavirus Update, which you can have delivered straight to your inbox by clicking the button above or below. My staff and I have also assembled this comprehensive resource guide to help you access important programs and services.
It's my great honor and privilege to be your Senator, and I want you to know that I'm here for you through this, and I'm always here to help you and your family with whatever I can. Don't hesitate to contact my office at any time if I can be of service.
- Our District Office is currently closed. However, our staff is fully available to assist you via phone or email. Please reach out to us if you have any questions! We would love to hear from you.
- Phone: 516-746-5924
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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What You Need to Know (Updated 7/16) Read More
What You Need to Know (Last updated 7/8/20)
- Governor Cuomo has issued an executive order requiring all people in New York to wear masks or face coverings in public.
- With New York's Contact Tracing program under-way, New Yorkers should be on the lookout from calls that come through on your phone from “NYS Contact Tracing”.
- If you get one of these calls, please pick up your phone. It’s important to speak with our local contact tracers if they’re trying to reach you, so that you can make informed decisions about your health.
- New Yorkers who have recovered from COVID-19 are encouraged to donate blood. Here’s information on how to donate.
- New Yorkers without health insurance can apply through the NY State of Health through August 15, 2020; must apply within 60 days of losing coverage. For more information, click here.
- The Emergency Rent Relief program that we passed in the legislature and that was signed into law by Governor Cuomo is now in effect and qualifying New Yorkers may apply through New York State Homes and Community Renewal at https://hcr.ny.gov/RRP Eligible households must meet income requirements and must have lost income during the period of April 1 to July 31. Applications must be submitted by July 30, and HCR will prioritize eligible households with the greatest economic and social need.
- There are more than 145 coronavirus vaccines in the development pipeline around the world, with several progressing to limited human trials, and a handful in phase II and III testing. If you’re interested in seeing real-time information about vaccines currently in development, check out the New York Times Coronavirus Vaccine Tracker for up-to-date information.
- The Board of Law Examiners has canceled the September 9-10 bar exam in New York due to concerns over the health and safety of all participants. For more information about the implications of this decision, visit http://nycourts.gov/ctapps/
- The CDC has put together a “Resuming Business Toolkit” designed to assist employers in slowing the spread of Covid-19 and lowering the impact in their workplace when reintegrating employees into non-healthcare business settings. No sure whether you’re ready to resume business? Use CDC’s decision tools as a start. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/resuming-business-toolkit.html
Current Reopening Stage (Phase 4) Read More
Governor Cuomo has provided extensive details on how New York will proceed with a careful and methodical reopening of our communities. As has been detailed before, each region will be opened on its own timeline, based on the circumstances on the ground in that region. To guide the decision on timing, four key metrics will be used: the number of new infections, health care capacity, diagnostic testing, and contact tracing. For the full details, please click here.
Starting Wednesday, July 8, Long Island will enter Phase Four of reopening. Phase Four will include everything from Phase Three (see below), plus:
- Higher education: including but not limited to community and junior colleges, universities, graduate and professional schools, medical schools, and technical schools.
- Low-risk outdoor arts and entertainment: outdoor zoos, botanical gardens, nature parks, grounds of historic sites and cultural institutions, outdoor museums, outdoor agritourism, local agricultural demonstrations and exhibitions; and other similar institutions/activities.
- Low-risk indoor arts and entertainment: indoor museums, historical sites, aquariums, and other related institutions or activities.
- Media production: All activities undertaken in motion picture, music, television, and streaming productions on set, on location, or at any production or recording site.
- Professional sports competitions with no fans: Stadiums or arenas with professional sports events, except for collegiate sports, horse racing or auto racing.
What won’t be reopening just yet? Because we continue to make adjustments to our reopening strategy based on the best data we have available to us at all times, Phase 4 will not include casinos or movie theaters, as the state continues to review the science and facts on their reopening.
Malls on Long Island are now open for business after making changes and improvements to meet state standards for air quality and safety. Changes include upgraded HVAC systems with advanced filters that trap the Coronavirus, increasing outdoor airflow into the space, reduced circulation, longer system run times and frequent filter checks.
Certain outdoor sports and activities can now resume statewide with restrictions, including baseball, softball, soccer, swimming, field hockey, gymnastics, paintball, and no-contact lacrosse. The guidelines on what type of play is allowed, and guidelines for ensuring player safety, can be found on Governor Cuomo’s website.
In order to protect our hard-won successes, Governor Cuomo announced new regulations for bars and restaurants to ensure compliance with social distancing and face covering orders. The “Three Strikes and You’re Closed” initiative will apply to New York City restaurants, and under it, any establishment that receives three violations will be closed for business. Egregious violations can result in immediate loss of liquor license or closure before a third strike. If the state is alerted to similar noncompliance in other regions of the state, these restrictions will be extended to those areas immediately. This measure became necessary after similar scenes played out across NYC where streets were becoming open-air bars with customers blatantly ignoring social distancing rules and creating an atmosphere ripe for transmission of coronavirus.
- Additionally, all restaurants and bars statewide will be subject to new requirements that they must only serve alcohol to people who are ordering and eating food and that all service at bar tops must only be for seated patrons who are socially distanced by six feet or separated by a physical barrier. Under current law, only establishments that serve food are permitted to serve alcoholic beverages. With so many other states starting over and shutting down their economy, we know what’s at stake here—please social distance and please continue wearing a mask in public.
Phase 3 includes everything in Phase 2 (please see below) plus gatherings of up to up to 25 people, personal care services like nail salons, and dine-in restaurants.
- For more information on what businesses are open in Phase 3, as well as guidance for businesses reopening, visit https://forward.ny.gov/phase-three-industries
- To monitor Long Island’s reopening progress, visit the regional dashboard and select Long Island in the upper right corner.
Phase 2 includes:
Restaurants can reopen for outdoor dining with restrictions:
- Servers and staff must wear masks at all times
- Patrons must wear masks when not seated at their table
- All other social distancing rules apply including maintaining 6 feet between tables
All office-based jobs can resume with restrictions:
- Office building will be limited to 50% of occupancy capacity
- Employees will need to undergo daily screenings with tools like temperature checks and questionnaires
- Masks, plexi-glass, or other barriers will be required if 6 feet distance can’t be maintained
- Signage and distance markers will be required in close quarters like bathrooms and breakrooms
- No congregation will be able to take place in small areas and in-person meetings will be limited
- No meetings can take place without social distancing
- No communal sharing of food or beverages.
In-store retail shopping can resume with restrictions:
- Retail stores will be limited to 50% maximum occupancy
- Employees must wear face coverings when interacting with customers and coworkers
- Customers must wear face coverings, if medically able
- Stores must control foot traffic with designated signage and markers
- Stores should continue use of curbside/in-store pickup where possible
- Shared amenities should be closed including self-serve sampling stations and bars
- Store owners can prohibit customers who don’t wear masks
- Malls are closed except stores that have external entrances. All mall retail may proceed with curbside pickup.
Barbershops and hair salons will reopen with limited services and restrictions:
- Salons and barbershops will be limited to 50% of maximum capacity
- Only hair services will be available. Massages, hair removal, beard trimmings, facials, and nail services will remain prohibited.
- Employees must wear face coverings and face shields while performing hair services at all times
- Customers must wear face coverings at all times
- Services will be available by appointment only
- Employees are strongly encouraged to get tested before reopening
- Customers are urged to inquire about employee testing status
- Employees interacting with customers must be tested at least once every two weeks
- Shops will be required to keep a log of customers to perform tracing in the event staff test positive
The CDC posted a detailed guidance document for reopening schools, mass transit, and nonessential businesses. The plan outlines a three-phased approach for reducing social distancing and proposes the use of six “gating” indicators to assess when to move through to another phase. The guidance recommends that schools remain closed in the first phase, along with most child-care programs, and bars, and that restaurants should be limited to takeout only. They also recommend that mass transit remain closed to all but essential workers in the first phase. You can read the full guidance document here.
Certain outdoor sports and activities can now resume statewide with restrictions, including baseball, softball, soccer, swimming, field hockey, gymnastics, paintball, and no-contact lacrosse. The guidelines on what type of play is allowed, and guidelines for ensuring player safety, can be found on Governor Cuomo’s website
Travel Restrictions Read More
Last Update: 7/7/2020
In response to increased rates of COVID-19 transmission in certain states within the United States, and to protect New York’s successful containment of COVID-19, the State has joined with New Jersey and Connecticut in jointly issuing a travel advisory for anyone returning from travel to states that have a significant degree of community-wide spread of COVID-19.
Based upon Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order 205, issued June 25, 2020, the following states meet the criteria for required quarantine:
This is based upon a seven day rolling average, of positive tests in excess of 10%, or number of positive cases exceeding 10 per 100,000 residents.
For more information, please see the State coronavirus website.
Resources for Businesses Read More
Resources for Businesses
- Empire State Development Covid-19 Resources
- PSEG-LI is launching a Small Business First program to provide upwards of $2,500 in rebates to upgrade to more efficient lighting, which can help lower electric bills. Learn more about the program and how to apply at https://www.psegliny.com/businessandcontractorservices/businessandcommercialsavings/
- If you were unable to attend my recent webinar on “Reinventing your small business in a reopened community,” worry not, you can catch a replay anytime at facebook.com/annamkaplan. The event featured practical advice and a thought-provoking discussion with experts from the US Small Business Administration, the Farmingdale Small Business Development Center, and Empire State Development.
- Long Island SCORE in Hauppauge is a nonprofit organization offering free mentoring and educational workshops for entrepreneurs/small business owners. For more information visit http://longisland.score.org/ or call 631-454-0771 .
- The Economic Injury Disaster Loan Advance Program has exhausted its funding, and the SBA will no longer take applications for the $10,000 grants. However, the companion program, Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) continue to take applications. To apply, go to https://covid19relief.sba.gov/#/
- Legislation to extend the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) through August 8 has been signed into law by the President. This gives businesses and nonprofits an additional 5 weeks to apply for the loan program and allows the US Small Business Administration to resume approving PPP loan applications. As of 7/7/20, there is still more than $130 billion available for PPP loans, which are federally guaranteed loans for up to $10 million with an interest rate of 1% and a five-year term. The loans may be forgiven in some cases, and borrowers must have 500 or fewer employees.
- As New York begins Phase 4 reopening of some regions across the state, the Governor’s Office has created yet another helpful online tool to help you navigate the reopening process. The New York Forward Business Reopening Lookup Tool will help you determine whether or not your business is eligible to reopen. Check it out at https://www.businessexpress.ny.gov/app/nyforward
- The New York Manufacturing Extension Partnership is holding a series of webinars to help Manufacturing Businesses survive our present situation. Check out what’s coming up at https://newyorkmep.org/covid19-webinars/
- On May 26, the state launched the New York Forward Loan Fund, a $100 million fund to provide flexible and affordable loans to help our small businesses, especially MWBEs (Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprises) that did not receive federal Covid-19 assistance. The program will take a smart, targeted approach for distributing these loans, focusing on truly small businesses, with 20 or fewer employees and less than $3 million in gross revenues. If you’re a small business who didn’t get federal assistance, you should learn more about this program. To learn more and apply, visit esd.ny.gov/nyforwardloans
- Town of North Hempstead Supervisor Judi Bosworth and the entire Town Board unanimously approved resolutions designed to help businesses impacted by Covid-19. The package of legislation will be eligible for a vote on June 18th and includes proposals like refunds for certain building department fees, extended hours for commercial construction, local preference in contracting, and expanded opportunity for outdoor seating for restaurants. For more information, click here.
- The National SBDC (Small Business Development Center) Information Clearing House has extensive, industry-specific resources to help your small business weather the coronavirus outbreak and navigate a safe reopening. There’s information, guidance, tools, and support for a wide variety of businesses, from restaurants, to retailers, to service businesses, manufacturers, and so much more. Check it out here.
- Senator Kaplan held two webinars on Facebook Live to help small business owners make sense of the different relief programs that exist to help during this difficult time. You can watch the replays here.
- Newsday hosted a webinar on Helping Long Island Businesses Survive Coronavirus: the latest on the paycheck protection program and economic injury disaster loans. Click here to watch the webinar.
- Guidance for determining whether a business enterprise is subject to a workforce reduction under recent executive orders
- The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) held its weekly webinar on the topic of “Small Business and COVID-19: PPP Loan Forgiveness Explained and Other Questions Answered. To watch, click here.
- The US Small Business Administration (SBA) customer service center can be contacted with any questions about SBA disaster assistance at 800-659-2955.
- The US Small Business Administration is offering several temporary programs to help small businesses during the Covid-19 outbreak, including:
- Paycheck Protection Program, which is a loan program that provides forgiveness for retaining employees
- EIDL Loan Advance - Economic Injury Disaster Loan, which is a loan advance that will provide up to $10,000 of economic relief to businesses that are currently experiencing temporary difficulties
- SBA Express Bridge Loans, which enable small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender to access up to $25,000 quickly
- SBA Debt Relief, which provides financial reprieve to small businesses during the Covid-19 pandemic
- New York Small Business Development Center (SBDC) is offering free remote counseling sessions with business advisers. Get assistance with how to start a business, the small-business loan application process and more. You must schedule an appointment, and you can do so by calling at 800-732-7232, or visiting nysbdc.org/appointment.html
- Hofstra University’s Business Development Center provides education and support to business owners through seminars, workshops, boot camps, and its Entrepreneurship Assistance Center. For more information, visit http://www.hofstra.edu/community/bdc/index.html or contact email@example.com or call 516-463-7214.
- The Farmingdale Small Business Development Center provides education and support to business owners in Nassau and Suffolk. Visit farmingdale.edu/sbdc for more information, or call 934-420-2765
- La Fuerza Unida Community Development Corp. provides economic growth opportunities to low-income, minority and women owned enterprises. It serves Nassau and Suffolk counties. For information about SBA disaster relief, visit https://lafuerzacdc.org/ or call or text 516-666-5071, or email Covid19@Lafuerzacdc.org
- Long Island Development Corporation in Hauppauge provides low cost loans and technical assistance to help small businesses grow. For more information, visit www.lidc.org or call 516-433-5000
- The Main Street Lending Program of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is intended to enhance support for small and mid-sized businesses by offering 4-year loans to companies employing up to 10,000 workers or with revenues of less than $2.5 billion. For more information, visit http://www.uschamber.com/report/guide-the-main-street-lending-program
Availability of Government Services Read More
Availability of Government Services
- Nassau County has reopened 60 fields for youth and adult sports in parks across the county. Baseball, softball, soccer, and lacrosse leagues across the county will be able to use the fields, and summer sports camps will be able to resume. Although the fields are open, social distancing requirements are still necessary for everyone’s safety. People using the fields should wear masks when coming off, and any spectators or coaches on the sidelines should also wear masks. For more details on the steps people should take when using the fields, visit the county's reopening web page.
- State outdoor pools across New York have reopened. The standard operating schedule for the State Parks will be in effect, and pool-goers are reminded to practice social distancing, respect the rules, and do their part to keep the pool safe for everyone. Pool capacities will be reduced and they’re expected to fill quickly, so please plan ahead and have an alternate destination ready.
- The Nassau County Jail is once again accepting visitors with restrictions. Visitors must make an appointment to see an inmate through the sheriff’s website or by phone, must practice social distancing, and must wear masks while visiting inmates. All visits will be limited to 30 minutes, and visitors who show up at the East Meadow facility without booking an appointment will be denied access.
- Sunday Residential Drop-Off at the North Hempstead Town transfer station in Port Washington will be continuing throughout the summer with a modified schedule. The Sunday Residential Drop-Off is currently open every other Sunday through September 20. Accepted items will include recyclables, e-waste, yard waste, household DIY project waste and rubbish (excluding curbside solid waste). No commercial waste will be accepted. All residents will be asked to show a valid driver’s license to ensure they reside in the North Hempstead. Dates for the Sunday Residential Drop-Off include July 12, July 26, August 9, August 23, September 6 and September 20.
- Spray pads located at North Hempstead Town parks have now reopened. The spray pads located at Blumenfield Park, Broadway Park, Donald Street Park and Mary Jane Davies Green will be opened daily from 9 a.m. to sunset.
- Nassau County has once again postponed the deadline for filing assessment challenges in small claims court, until September 4th. Homeowners who plan on filing an assessment challenge are still urged to do so as soon as possible to avoid any last-minute backlogs.
- Governor Cuomo announced that state beaches will be open starting Memorial Day Weekend, beginning Friday, May 22. Municipalities and other local governments will be making their own decisions about opening beaches within their jurisdiction, and they must inform the state no later than Wednesday, May 20th of their decision to open. They also must put safety guidelines in place that meet or exceed standards for state owned beaches. Visit these links for more information on town and county beaches in Nassau County:
- The safety guidelines that will be in place for state beaches when they reopen include:
- Operating at no more than 50% capacity
- No pools will be open
- No group contact activities, i.e., playgrounds, volleyball, football etc.
- Picnic areas and pavilions will be closed
- No concession areas open
- Masks must be worn by staff at all times and visitors must wear masks when they cannot adequately social distance
- Nassau County has restricted access to Nickerson Beach to county residents only. The emergency measure was adopted after the NYC Mayor refused to take steps to open city beaches, and instead suggested the 9 million residents of the city should overwhelm our recreation areas on Long Island.
- The Town of Oyster Bay has restricted beach access to residents-only, and free beach parking is offered to senior citizens, the disabled, and those on social security disability with new procedures in place to get your pass. To protect your health and safety during this COVID-19 pandemic, you will simply be asked to show your driver’s license and registration from behind the window when visiting the beach for the first time this season. A parking sticker will then be adhered to your vehicle to ensure continued free
- Updates from the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles, and changes that impact drivers:
- All DMV field offices are closed and all road tests have been suspended until further notice. All reservations have been cancelled. Licenses and registrations expiring March 1st or later have been extended until further notice. Many transactions can still be completed online.
- The State has extended the validity of driver licenses that expired on or after March 1, 2020. These licenses will be considered valid for the duration of this emergency.
- All inspections expiring March 31st or later have been extended until further notice.
- All DMV Traffic Violations Bureaus (TVBs) are adjourned until further notice. Those who are scheduled to appear during this time will receive an adjournment notice from the DMV. Please see the Tickets, Points, and Penalties page for many TVB transactions that can be completed online while the office is closed.
- DMV has temporarily stopped downgrading CDLs due to expiring Medical Certifications until further notice. The downgrade process will resume after the state of emergency is lifted and normal processing may occur.
- Have questions? Check out this Q&A from the DMV
- The Village of Flower Hill has established a Volunteer Corps with the goal of identifying village residents who may not be able to get their own food, supplies, or need other assistance during the crisis, and to help them. For any Flower Hill resident in need of assistance, or any resident interested in volunteering, contact 516-627-5000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org .
General Information, Hotlines, Newsletters, and Fact Sheets Read More
General Information, Hotlines, Newsletters, and Fact Sheets
- New York State Department of Health Coronavirus Information/Resource Page
- U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- New York State 24/7 Coronavirus Hotline: 1-888-364-3065
- Sign up to get Senator Kaplan's Nassau Coronavirus Update delievered straight to your inbox each day.
- Sign up to get Governor Cuomo's Coronavirus Update delivered straight to your inbox each day
- Nassau County Coronavirus Hotline: 516-227-9570
- Get updates from Nassau County in English, Spanish, Haitian Creole, Mandarin, Hindi/Urdu
- If you would like to report a violation of social distancing protocols, call 1-833-789-0470 or click here.
- As of April 9, the first round of federal relief payments started and, if eligible, will be deposited directly into your bank account. For more more information, click here.
- Simple steps help stop the spread of Coronavirus and other viruses (Available in several other languages here)
- How to Protect Yourself and Your Family from Coronavirus (from NYS Department of Health)
- What to do if you are sick (CDC Guidelines)
- Nassau County Department of Health
- List of Disinfectant Products Registered in NY for Use Against Coronavirus
- The Nassau County Bar is offering legal help for residents and small businesses of Nassau County. Anyone with legal questions or issues can contact the Bar by emailing email@example.com, and your email will be handled by a volunteer attorney who will assist you through a consultation.
- The Hillside Public Library is holding a webinar on Financial Challenges Dues to Illness or Death of a Loved One which will address financial concerns while breaking down activities that need to be done now, soon, and later. The event, which is taking place Wednesday, July 15, is presented by Daniel Mazzola CFA, CPA in partnership with the Hillside Library. You can register by clicking here.
Testing and Health Care Read More
Testing and Health Care
There are now over 800 locations statewide where New Yorkers can get diagnostic testing, and in order to make sure more New Yorkers are getting tested, Governor Cuomo has created some helpful online resources and loosened restrictions so that ANYONE can get a test.
If you are concerned you might need a test, get one. You don’t need to have symptoms. You don’t need to have encountered someone who was sick. GET TESTED.
To locate a testing site near you, visit https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/find-test-site-near-you and enter your address to view a list and a map view of the nearest testing sites. The state has also partnered with Google Maps to display testing site results when you search "COVID testing near me" on Google Maps.
Please remember you must always schedule an appointment to get a COVID-19 diagnostic test by calling 1-888-364-3065 or your healthcare provider.
Uninsured New Yorkers can get a free diagnostic COVID-19 test at any CityMD urgent care facility. All CityMD locations are offering nasal swab tests seven days a week, and walk-ins are accepted.
- Please do not go to your primary care provider’s office, an urgent care center, or to an emergency room without calling first unless you are experiencing a medical emergency. This is important in order to protect the safety of health care providers and other patients.
- If you have questions about symptoms you are experiencing, or about getting tested for the coronavirus, please call your primary care provider or an urgent care center to discuss your situation. If you do not have a primary care provider, please call the 24-hour state hotline at 1-888-364-3065 or 311 to receive assistance.
- CVS is offering self-administered testing at their drive through locations in Floral Park, New Hyde Park, Mineola, and Westbury. Schedule an appointment here.
- Coronavirus Diagnostic Testing is now available at the Westbury Health Center and Elmont Health Center by appointment Monday-Friday from 9am-1pm. Call 516-396-7500 if you have a fever, cough, or shortness of breath. All are welcome to call regardless of insurance or immigration status. This service is provided in partnership with Nassau County and Long Island FQHC.
- The state is operating a drive-through coronavirus test site at Jones Beach State Park. In order to get tested, you must have an appointment. For more information, please call the New York State Coronavirus Hotline at 1-888-364-3065.
- New York State took the lead by being the first state in the US to issue a formal health advisory defining the criteria for what is now being officially referred to as Pediatric Multi-System Inflammatory Syndrome or PMIS. Only 17 days have passed since warnings about a strange pediatric post-COVID-19 syndrome were first raised by the United Kingdom’s National Health Service. The New York State Department of Health is investigating 110 reported cases in New York that have led to at least 3 children tragically losing their lives.
- If your child is experiencing symptoms such as prolonged fever, severe abdominal pain, change in skin color, racing heart and chest pain, make sure you call your doctor. For more information, click here.
- As directed by Governor Cuomo, all New York insurers will waive cost-sharing for coronavirus testing. If you have questions or concerns about health insurance costs related to Coronavirus tests or care, please call the Office of the Attorney General’s Health Care hotline: 1-800-428-9071.
- The New York State Department of Financial Services announced a special healthcare enrollment period for uninsured New Yorkers and New Yorkers who recently lost their health insurance due to losing their employment.
- Please visit the New York State of Health Marketplace or call Customer Service at 1-855-355-5777, TTY: 1-800-662-1220 to learn more and sign up for coverage
- Be an informed participant in your own health care! Review The 5 Steps to Safer Health Care, a helpful resource for individuals and their families who are preparing to navigate the healthcare system.
- The NYS Cancer Services Program is still open and provides free or low-cost cancer screening services. If someone you know feels a lump or a mass please contact Angelica Medina at 516-877-4331 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- The Adelphi Breast Cancer Program remains open and will continue providing free and confidential services to the breast cancer community. If you or someone you know needs support, call Adelphi Breast Cancer Program’s toll-free hotline at 1-800-877-8077.
- NYU Winthrop Hospital Department of Urology is holding a free Men’s Health Webinar Lecture Series, and the next virtual live event is on “Advances in Prostate Cancer & Prostate Cancer Screenings: From Conventional to Holistic Approaches.” It will be taking place on Tuesday, June 4, 2020 at 7pm, and you can register by clicking here.
The state completed its preliminary phase 1 antibody testing study and issued initial estimates:
- 13.9% of the statewide population had antibodies to the coronavirus, meaning they were exposed to it at some point, were infected by it, and developed antibodies to fight the infection.
- 16.7% of Long Islanders (72 positives out of 432 tested) had antibodies. Put in the context of our total identified positives, that means that for every 1 identified positive we know about, there are likely 7 or 8 other Long Islanders who had it but were never tested.
- Elsewhere around the state, 21.2% of NYC residents had antibodies, 11.7% of Westchester/Rockland County residents had antibodies, and across the rest of the state only 3.6% had antibodies.
- Communities of color represented a disproportionate percentage of those who had antibodies, which supports the need to bring more testing and tracing capabilities to communities of color as we seek to un-pause NY. It also further validates the need to address the health disparities impacting communities of color as we seek to build a stronger, better New York on the other side of this crisis.
- These statistics suggest that 2.7 million people may have been infected statewide, at approximately 15,500 total fatalities, which puts the death rate at around .5% of those infected.
- It must be noted that this data does not include in-home deaths in it’s measurements, and recent studies show that there are likely many more coronavirus-related deaths than previously measured.
- People who have antibodies are not necessarily immune to the virus.
- The Dialysis Patient Citizens (DPC) Education Center website at https://www.dpcedcenter.org/ is a helpful resource dedicated to improving kidney patients’ quality of life and reducing the impact of End Stage Renal Disease through education and awareness of dialysis and kidney disease issues. While the website can be translated into multiple languages via Google Translation, there is also a dedicated Spanish language section (https://www.dpcedcenter.org/resources/spanish/) for those who prefer to read content in Spanish.
- Cancer Services Program of Nassau County provides breast, cervical, and colorectal cancer screenings at no cost to men and women who do not have health insurance, and people whose health insurance doesn’t cover the cost of these screenings, regardless of immigration status. Staying healthy right now doesn’t just mean from coronavirus: please consider getting a cancer screening today in a safe environment with all necessary precautions being taken to protect your health. For more information, call 516-470-4165, email email@example.com, or check “Cancer Services Program of Nassau County” on Facebook.
- The State Office for People with Developmental Disabilities has released guidance to allow the resumption of home visits, community outings, and day services, as well as returning to residential settings following extended home visits. The guidelines are now effective for regions in Phase 4, and more information on the guidance can be found at https://opwdd.ny.gov/news/interim-guidance-home-visits-community-outings-day-services-and-return-residences-after
Pre-K - 12 Schools Read More
Pre-K - 12 Schools
The State Education Department released its final guidelines for reopening schools this fall, a 145 page document detailing district responsibilities to students and in order to safely reopen facilities. The report provides guidelines for health and safety, facilities, nutrition, transportation, technology, school schedules, and student well-being. The most important guiding element in the document is that social distancing of six feet is mandatory, and that class sizes and cohorts need to be designed to reflect social distancing capabilities. If you’re interested in reading the guidance, the complete document can be viewed here.
The New York State Public High School Athletic Association voted to delay the official start date of the Fall 2020 sports season, cancel the Fall 2020 Regional and State Championships, and prepare to implement a condensed season schedule in January 2021 if high school sports remain prohibited throughout 2020 due to Covid-19. The decision delays the start of fall sports to Monday, September 21, waives the seven-day practice rule, maintains current practice requirements, encourages geographic scheduling for games and contests, and allows schools the option, if permitted by state officials, to offer off-season conditioning workouts. For more information, visit http://nysphsaa.org/
- Schools in our area are continuing to provide free meals for students who typically receive free or reduced lunch or breakfast in the classroom.
- Click here for more information about school meal programs being provided in our community
- In response to COVID-19, The College Board is developing AP Exams for this year that students can take from home. Students can take this year's online AP Exams either during the May 11-22 window or the June 1-5 window. For more information, click here.
- The State Education Department has suspended all state assessments for grades 3 to 8 for the remainder of the school year. The state has applied for federal waivers for testing, accountability and reporting requirements, and the federal education department has announced that they will grant waivers to states in these circumstances. Cick here for more information.
- The State Education Department (SED) has cancelled this year's regents exams.
- Governor Cuomo announced that summer school will be conducted through distance learning this year to help reduce the risk of spread of the coronavirus.
- The State will make a determination on the fall semester and issue guidelines in June so schools and colleges can start to plan for a number of different possibilities.
- The College Board has cancelled the June 6 SAT exam, but plans to expand opportunities for high school students to take the SAT, including offering the college entrance exam once a month beginning in August if public health allows. The organization said it is also considering administering the test at home if schools remain closed in the fall. More updates on the PSAT and SAT available here.
- The National Federation of State High School Associations released a 16 page guidance document titled “Guidance for State Associations to Consider in Re-opening High School Athletics and Other Activities,” outlining protocols during the COVID-19 pandemic. It advises that high school sports return in three phases. In the first, there are highly modified practices in lower- and moderate-risk sports. Only in the third phase do higher-risk sports like football, wrestling and competitive cheerleading begin competition. Now common practices like social distancing, disinfecting equipment and donning face coverings wherever possible are central in each phase. You can read the full guidance document here.
- If you’re looking for a fun activity for your child this summer, consider joining me for this year’s Summer Reading Program! This year, libraries across the state will be offering a selection of exciting online and virtual programming – special events, reading challenges, fun activities, and more – throughout the summer months from June through August. To sign up for Summer Reading and find out what YOUR local library has planned for summer reading and summer learning programs, check out your local library’s website . And don’t forget to visit https://www.nysenate.gov/nyread to sign up and record your child’s progress, so that I can recognize their achievement with a special Senate Certificate!
- The Herstory Writers Workshop is offering free community workshops in English and Spanish for students, as well as parents, grandparents, and guardians, helping empower you to find your voice and raise it up. If you’re already an avid writer, or you’ve never taken the journey on your own, now is a great time to explore your story. Learn more at http://www.herstorywriters.org/online-workshops-for-our-time
Child Care Providers Read More
Child Care Providers
The Office of Children and Family Services is working closely with the New York State Department of Health to supply child care providers with the most up-to-date information regarding the coronavirus
Resources for Parents and Expecting Parents Read More
Resources for Parents and Expecting Parents
- Adelphi University has an Institute for Parenting "Warmline" (calls are returned Mondays & Thursdays) for parents, caregivers, and educators of young children (ages 0-6) who have questions regarding babies' and young children's development and wellbeing, especially in times of heightened stress. Your call will be returned by an infant and early childhood specialist from the Institute for Parenting at Adelphi University. Contact 516-515-1948.
- Expecting mothers understandably are experiencing a lot of fear and concern right now, and to help address their concerns and get answers to their questions, Northwell Health has set up a hotline for expecting parents. If you’ve got questions, call: 833-487-2273.
- New York State will provide child care scholarships to essential workers. Child care costs will be covered for essential staff whose income is less than 300% of the federal poverty level — or $78,600 for a family of four. Essential workers (including health care providers, law enforcement, food delivery workers, grocery store employees and others) can use these scholarships to pay for their existing care arrangement.If an essential worker needs child care, they can use the below link to begin the application process (select by language spoken)
Below, you can find some helpful Online Education Resources to supplement your child's online learning:
- Khan Academy
- Fun Brain
- National Geographic Kids
- Learn to Code
- Tips for talking to your kids about coronavirus.
- Port Washington residents Dr. Lauren Block and Adam Block PhD created a beautifully illustrated e-book for kids aged 4-11 to help them make sense of the coronavirus and the world we’re living in today. The book is called “Kelly Stays Home: The Science of Coronavirus” and it's available FREE for download to anyone who is interested. If you have children in your family, visit https://www.kellystayshome.com/ and check it out!
- If you’re looking for a fun activity for your child this summer, consider joining me for this year’s Summer Reading Program! This year, libraries across the state will be offering a selection of exciting online and virtual programming – special events, reading challenges, fun activities, and more – throughout the summer months from June through August. To sign up for Summer Reading and find out what YOUR local library has planned for summer reading and summer learning programs, check out your local library’s website. And don’t forget to visit https://www.nysenate.gov/nyread to sign up and record your child’s progress, so that I can recognize their achievement with a special Senate Certificate!
The Junior Knicks and Junior Rangers are holding FREE Virtual Summer Camps for kids that will get kids active with a variety of guided drills, workouts and other bonus features, such as Q&A’s with players, alumni and special guests. Kids aged 6-16 can register for the Junior Knicks at https://www.nba.com/knicks/junior/camp and kids aged 7-14 can register for the Junior Rangers at https://www.nhl.com/rangers/community/junior-rangers-virtual-camps
Mental Health and Substance Abuse Resources Read More
Mental Health° and Substance Abuse* Resources
The outbreak of the coronavirus is a source of significant stress, anxiety and fear for many people, potentially causing overwhelming emotions in adults and children. If you begin to feel these or related emotions, please reach out to friends, family, or the resources below. We are all in this together.
- LICADD 24/7 Substance Use Hotline*: 516-747-2606 or 631-979-1700 (secure video sessions available),
- Long Island Crisis Center 24/7 Crisis Hotline°: 516-679-1111,
- Family & Children's Association°*: 516-746-0350
- RESPONSE Suffolk Crisis Hotline°: 631-751-7500
- Central Nassau Guidance & Counseling Services°*: 516-822-6111
- DASH (Diagnostic Assessment and Stabilization Hub)°*: 631-952-3333
- Mobile Crisis Intervention Team for Adults and Children°: 516-227-8255
- Phone and Online AA Meetings*
- SMART Recovery Online Community*
- NA Meetings Online*
- The State’s volunteer mental health hotline° is available for anyone who wants to call and make an appointment to talk to a professional, free of charge. We’re all going through a lot right now, and there are people who are standing by to help you through it. Call 844-863-9314
- In order to ensure New Yorkers have equitable access to critical mental health and substance abuse treatment, Governor Cuomo and the NY Department of Financial Services issued proposed regulations that would improve access to coverage for services and safeguard all New Yorkers rights under state and federal parity laws. For more information, visit Governor Cuomo’s website.
- Headspace has teamed up with the New York Governor’s Office to offer free meditation and mindfulness content, curated specifically for the people of New York. To access this offering, please simply visit headspace.com/ny.
- Long Island’s two leading, county-based mental health organizations have begun offering online bereavement support groups designed to provide comfort, support, and “grief tools” to those who have lost loved ones to the COVID-19 virus. For more information and to register, go to www.bereavement.mhaw.org.
- Opioid overdoses have skyrocketed since the pandemic began, so knowing how to stop an overdose and save a life is more important than ever. While in-person opioid overdose prevention trainings may be on pause for a while, you can now do it remotely just like everything else these days. Check out the NYS Community Calendar of Opioid Overdose Prevention Trainings to learn more: https://nyoverdose.org/Home/Calendar
Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault Read More
Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault
Amid an uptick in domestic violence incidents, NYS has launched a new 24/7 texting program and confidential online service to help abuse victims safely interact with the Domestic Violence hotline without being overheard by their abuser. If you’re in an unsafe situation, know that you’re not alone, and you’re not trapped. There is help—text 844-997-2121 or visit opdv.ny.gov.
The Safe Center LI provides the following services to anyone in need:
- 24/7 Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault hotline, always operational and answered by a live person: 516-542-0404
- Ongoing Legal, Counseling, Advocacy, and Case Management (services will continue remotely)
- The Child Advocacy Center is always operational to assist children and families
- Nassau County’s only domestic violence shelter will remain open
- For More Info: http://www.tscli.org/
- Thanks to the support of Uber, Nassau County residents who need to escape a dangerous situation, or access support services, will have one less thing to worry about when seeking help. Anyone in need can call The Safe Center’s 24/7 hotline, and operators will deploy an Uber to their location to bring them to a safe shelter or someplace else in order to access services, and the caller’s privacy will always be protected by personnel at the hotline.
Colleges Read More
State University of New York and the City University of New York will implement distance learning and eliminate in-person classes, beginning March 19, 2020, for the remainder of the Spring semester.
- All campuses will develop plans catered to the campus and curriculum-specific needs while reducing density in the campus environment to help slow possibility for exposures to coronavirus. Distance learning and other options will be developed by individual campuses.
- In response to growing financial impairments resulting from the spread of coronavirus, the New York State Attorney General will temporarily halt the collection of medical and student debts that are owed to the State of New York and that have been referred to the OAG for collection for at least a 30-day period, from March 16, 2020 through April 15, 2020. After this 30-day period, the OAG will reassess the needs of state residents for a possible extension. It is important to note this relief only applies to students that owe student debt to the State of New York -- this does not apply to federal or private student loans.
- President Trump announced he would waive the interest on all federal student loans, but this does not mean federal and private student loan payments are being stopped as of this time.
- If you have student loans and need guidance, the Community Service Society EDCAP program is providing remote counseling services to help you. The helpline is available M-F, 9am-4pm at 1-888-614-5004. You can also visit edcapny.org for more info.
Consumer Protection Tips Read More
Consumer Protection Tips
- If you become aware of any stores that may be price gouging on items such as cleaning supplies and hand sanitizer, please call the State Division of Consumer Protection at 1-800-697-1220 or call 311 to file a complaint. Report incidents of price gouging in Nassau County to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- New York Attorney General Leticia James has created a dedicated price gouging complaint form specifically for offenses related to coronavirus.
Unfortunately, there are people who are seeking to exploit our crisis in order to scam people in our community. Please be vigilant and visit the following resources to learn more about the types of scams that exist, and how to avoid them.
Employment Protections and Assistance Read More
Employment Protections and Assistance
The New York State Department of Labor administers unemployment insurance benefits for New York State, and their website is a great first-stop if you're looking for answers to questions about unemployment benefits.
As Long Island continues to reopen, the New York State Department of Labor Jobs Express Website has a growing number of positions available in our region, with over 12,500 jobs available in a number of different fields from businesses looking to hire immediately. Visit the Jobs Express website at jobs.ny.gov to check out what’s available.
The CARES/HEROES Act
HEROES ACT: Democrats in the House of Representatives introduced a new coronavirus stimulus bill called the HEROES Act. This proposal calls for more than $3 trillion in aid to state and local governments, increases testing, extends unemployment insurance and provides for expansion of voting by mail.
- The bill also proposes to give Americans another $1,200 in direct payments and additional mortgage relief. While the bill will likely pass the House, it will have an uphill battle in the US Senate. However, it is vital that state and local governments which have been devastated by the effects of this virus be given financial assistance in order for them to continue to fund basic public services including education, police and fire departments, road maintenance and sanitation services. I am hopeful that reason prevails, and this bill does not fall victim to another series of partisan divides. New York cannot wait any longer!
- The federal CARES Act was signed into law March 27, 2020.
- The Act provides enhanced UI benefits and Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) for New Yorkers.
- Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) provides payment to workers not traditionally eligible for unemployment benefits (including people who are self-employed, independent contractors, workers with limited work history and others) who are unable to work as a direct result of the coronavirus emergency. For more information, click here.
- Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) provides payment to workers not traditionally eligible for unemployment benefits (including people who are self-employed, independent contractors, workers with limited work history and others) who are unable to work as a direct result of the coronavirus emergency. For more information, click here.
Coronavirus Emergency Paid Sick Leave Bill
- On March 19, 2020, the State Legislature passed an emergency bill to enact paid sick leave for New Yorkers facing quarantine due to exposure to the virus, and waiving the 7-day waiting period for unemployment insurance. Effective immediately, employees in New York subjected to mandatory or precautionary orders of quarantine or isolation are eligible for some form of paid leave. Sick leave for coronavirus will not be charged against existing accrued sick leave.
Who does this apply to?
- Employers with 10 or fewer workers - unpaid sick leave until the termination of the emergency order. Eligible for paid family leave program ($840.70 per week) with any difference made up by disability insurance program (up to $2,043 per week).
- Employers with between 11 and 99 employees, also includes high earning small employers - 5 days paid sick leave
- Employers with 100 or more employees and all public employers - 14 days of paid sick leave during the order.
To find out if you are eligible, and to apply for paid quarantine leave if you are, call 1-888-364-3065 or visit https://www.governor.ny.gov/programs/paid-sick-leave-covid-19-impacted-new-yorkers.
Additional Employment Protections and Resources:
- NYS is waiving the 7-Day waiting period for Unemployment Insurance benefits for people who are out of work due to Coronavirus closures or quarantines. You can apply for UI benefits here
- The legislature passed a new law to provide death benefits for public frontline workers who died from COVID-19 during the state of emergency. See the bill here.
- Workers in New York State have up to 10 weeks of paid leave to care for a family member with a serious health condition. This leave may not be used for your own health condition. For more information, please visit the NYS Paid Family Leave resource site or call the Paid Family Leave toll-free helpline at (844)337-6303.
- The Family and Medical Leave Act provides for up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave if you have a serious health condition or are caring for a family member with a serious health condition. You must have worked for your employer for a year and your employer must have 50 or more employees. For more information, please visit the U.S. Department of Labor.
- If you are sick, you may also be able to request unpaid leave as a reasonable accommodation under laws that prohibit disability discrimination. For more information, please visit the NYS Division of Human Rights
- If you have questions about your rights in the workplace or if you believe your employment protections have been violated, including violations of workforce reduction mandates and essential business guidance, please contact the OAG’s Labor Bureau: 212-416-8700.
- Short term disability insurance is potentially available to workers who take time off due to illness. For more information, please visit the NYS Workers’ Compensation Board
- Attorney General Letitia James’ office is closely monitoring the treatment of employees across the state as the workforce reduction mandates go into effect, and she’s publicized a hotline and email address for anyone to report a violation of existing state labor laws or any recent executive orders that are potentially putting workers in harm's way. Her office can be reached is 212-416-8700 or by email at email@example.com
Student and Medical Debt Relief Read More
Student and Medical Debt Relief
- New York Attorney General Letitia James has temporarily suspended medical and student debt collections referred to her office amid the coronavirus crisis for at least 30 days.
- New Yorkers with non-medical or non-student debt owed to the State of New York and referred to the OAG, may also apply to temporarily halt the collection of state debt. Individuals seeking to apply for this temporary relief can fill out an application online or visit the OAG's coronavirus website to learn more about the suspension of payments. If an individual is unable to fill out the online form, they can also call the OAG hotline at 1-800-771-7755 to learn more.
Food Assistance, Local Restaurant and Supermarket Promotions Read More
Food Assistance, Local Restaurant and Supermarket Promotions
- Local school districts are distributing grab-n-go meals to students who qualify for free and reduced-price meals. For details about these programs in our community, click here.
- In addition to operating food banks around Nassau, Island Harvest provides free referrals and free assistance for SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) over the phone, and you do not have to go to the Department of Social Services. Island Harvest can walk you through the online application by telephone or complete a short intake and submit the online application for you. Give them a call at 631-873-4775 for assistance.
- Long Island Cares provides several mobile outreach programs that deliver emergency food to seniors, veterans, children and the homeless. A list of mobile events can be found on their Facebook page. If you are unable to get to any of these locations and are in need of immediate help or you know of someone, please call 631-582-FOOD (3663) ext. 109 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Grocery stores in our district are now offering special shopping hours for the elderly and immuno-comprimsed. For a list of participating stores and further details, click here.
- Meals on Wheels provides meal services to seniors and other at-risk individuals. For more information, click here or call 1-888-998-6325.
- Many restaurants in our community are still open for delivery and takeout service. For a comprehensive list of restaurants in our district, along with details as to who is offering takeout and delivery, click here.
- S.N.A.P (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) has expanded benefits and eligibility in response to COVID-19. To see if you're eligible, click here.
Housing Read More
- The county sheriff has been directed to stop all eviction proceedings, and Governor Cuomo has issued an executive order stopping all eviction proceedings during this crisis. If you experiencing eviction or harassment, call the Sheriff's Department at 516-571-2120.
- The Department of Financial Services has issued a new directive to New York State mortgage servicers to provide 90-day mortgage relief (forbearance) to mortgage borrowers impacted by the coronavirus. Click here for more information.
- The Federal Housing Finance Agency has released a new mortgage directive in the wake of coronavirus. If your ability to pay your mortgage is impacted, and your loan is owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, you may be eligible to delay making your monthly mortgage payments for a temporary period. Click here for more information.
- The Governor has issued an executive order putting in place a rent freeze to prohibit rent prices from rising during the coronavirus crisis. Please contact the Attorney General’s office for more information and to file a report.
Utilities Read More
- Utility companies (PSEGLI, National Grid, and local water authorities) have been ordered to maintain service even if an account becomes delinquent. Additionally, there is a moratorium on all new rate increases during the crisis. If you experience a service shut-off, please let my office know by calling 516-746-5924 and emailing email@example.com, and contact the Department of Public services here.
Public Transportation Read More
- Nassau Inter-County Express / NICE Bus in Nassau County will switch to a reduced schedule beginning April 5th. The service will operate on a Saturday schedule from Monday-Saturday, and Sunday service will be unchanged. This does not apply to the Elmont Flexi Shuttle, the Mercy Medical Community Shuttle, the Port Washington Shuttle, and the n19, n57, and n80 routes, which will all continue to run normally. For more information, click here.
- The Long Island Railroad is running the MTA Essential Service Plan until further notice. For more information and schedules, call the LIRR customer service center at 718-217-5477 or click here.\
- The MTA announced that it will clean and disinfect trains and buses on a daily basis and the LIRR will add more cars to trains where necessary to meet social distancing requirements. Please remember that wearing a mask or face covering is mandatory when riding public transportation.
Resources for Frontline Healthcare Professionals Read More
Resources for Frontline Healthcare Professionals
- Hotels in our area are offering discounting rates for healthcare professionals during the coronavirus crisis. Click here for more information.
Nursing Homes/Long Term Care Facilities/Senior Centers Read More
Nursing Homes/Long Term Care Facilities/Senior Centers
The State Health Department has concluded an in-depth analysis of Covid-19 data from the state’s nursing homes in an effort to learn for the future from what took place during the earliest days of the pandemic. The study demonstrated that Covid fatalities in nursing homes were related to infected nursing home staff, and that, like in other congregate settings such as workplaces, hospitals, and houses of worship, asymptomatic carriers helped the virus to spread quickly throughout the facilities. The report details extensive findings with significant supporting data, and I can’t do it justice by summarizing it in just one paragraph, so if you’re interested in learning more about this topic, I strongly encourage you to learn more about the study and its findings or read the report it in its entirety.
- Starting July 20th, New York will allow visits to nursing homes and long-term care facilities on a limited basis. Visits will be allowed at facilities that have been free of new Covid-19 cases for at least 28 days in alignment with CDC guidance. There will be a limit of two visitors able to visit a resident at a time, with one of them being at least 18 years old, and all visitors must undergo a temperature check upon entry, wear a mask, and practice social distancing.
On March 20, 2020, Governor Cuomo announced Matilda's Law to protect NYers aged 70+ and those with compromised immune systems. The guidelines are as follows:
- Do not go to the homes of your relatives or homes with multiple people in them.
- Limit visits in your own home to immediate family members or close friends for emergency purposes only.
- Any visitors to your home should be screened for fever before being allowed to enter.
- Everyone in the home of a senior or vulnerable person (including the vulnerable person themselves) should wear a mask for the duration of the visit.
- Engage only in solitary outdoor exercise activities (taking a walk, etc.)
- Stay home unless necessary to obtain supplies, medical care, or emergency services.
Older adults are one of the most vulnerable populations for contracting a severe case of the coronavirus. Out of an abundance of caution, the State has issued a directive, effective Friday, March 13th at 5 p.m., prohibiting non-medical visits at nursing homes and long term care facilities until further notice. If your family member is currently at a nursing home, you can inquire about the possibility of setting up a Skype or other type of virtual visit. Staff will be screened and will be required to wear face masks to help prevent any spread of the virus. Additionally, please find the below resources for Seniors:
- LICC Senior Helpline: 516-679-0000
- RSVP Suffolk Senior Reassurance Line: 631-979-9490
- Circulo de la Hispanidad, Inc – Project SALVA 24/7 Billingual Domestic Violence Hotline: (516) 889-2849
- Nassau County Department of Senior Citizen Affairs Senior HELP-LINE Available Monday-Friday 9am-5pm: (516) 227-8900
- Supervisor Bosworth and the Town of North Hempstead launched a new program to provide our seniors with remote companionship during these isolating times. The “Neighbors Helping Neighbors” program matches volunteers with seniors in the Project Independence program, and is designed to provide a sense of reassurance and comfort. To participate or to volunteer, call 311 or 516-869-6311.
- The Alzheimer's Association is running support groups via telephone/webinar, as well as a 24/7 hotline for those in need. For more information, call (800) 272-3900 or click here.
Governor Cuomo announced efforts to provide further oversight of the conditions inside New York’s nursing homes. The State DOH and Attorney General Tish James will be reviewing compliance with all DOH directives, CDC directives, and executive orders, and will inspect any facilities found out of compliance with any of these rules, including staffing policies, family/resident notification policies, staff safety provisions, and policies around usage of PPE.
- Are you concerned that a family member of yours isn't getting proper care in a nursing home? If so, we encourage you to file a complaint by calling 833-249-8499 or by visiting www.ag.ny.gov/nursinghomes.
Island Harvest has launched a free food package distribution program specifically to help out our seniors in need. Food packages include items like cereal, rice, pasta, beans, canned vegetables and fruits, canned proteins, cheese, shelf-stable milk, juice, peanut butter, and soup. To qualify, you must be 60 or over, a NY State resident (US & Non-US citizens are eligible) and verify your income. To see if you qualify, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 631-873-4775
This year’s Town of North Hempstead FunDay Monday series will be held virtually and broadcast on North Hempstead TV (NHTV) channel 18 or 63 on Cablevision and channel 46 on Verizon FIOS or by visiting www.mynhtv.com. The program began airing on July 6, 2020. Each Monday throughout the summer, residents can tune in from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to see a new episode. A special Salute to our Veterans and Armed Forces will air on August 24.
In order to help our seniors during this difficult time, the Town of North Hempstead has waived all Project Independence taxi ride fees for regular food shopping, medical appointments, and COVID testing during the pandemic, and they have expanded the shopping program to seven days per week, town-wide. TONH Residents can call 311 to make an appointment.
Veterans Read More
The Nassau County Veterans Services Agency is continuing to provide critical services to our county's heroes. If you are a Vet in need, please call the VSA to see how they can help at 516-572-6565.
- Counseling services for veterans will take place over the phone
- Transportation services will continue to drive Veterans to important medical procedures.
- Vehicles are thoroughly cleaned before and after each trip.
- Nassau County's "Vet Mart" food pantry is open to vets in need, and now has a drive-up program. If you can't pick up, volunteers can come to you. The pantry is located at 2201 Hempstead Turnpike, Building Q, East Meadow, NY and is open Monday-Friday from 9 AM to 12 PM. Contact: 516-572-6526
How You Can Help Read More
How You Can Help
- The Nassau Veteran's Association is in need of drivers to help with deliveries and transportation services. Call 516-572-6565 for more info.
- New York State is seeking highly trained technologists to assist with our Covid-19 Technology SWAT team. Individuals from leading global technology companies are being deployed across high-impact and urgent coronavirus response activities across a range of functions, including Web/Mobile Development, Data Science/Analytics, End User Support and Digital Content Strategy. Individuals, technology companies, universities, nonprofits, research labs, and other organizations with technology expertise are invited to submit an expression of interest. Learn more at https://www.ny.gov/programs/new-york-state-covid-19-technology-swat-team
- In order to help research effective treatments for Coronavirus, plasma donations are needed from people who tested positive for coronavirus but have since resolved and gotten better. Your plasma will be used to help save lives of ill patients using the convalescent plasma method, and you can learn more and donate by visiting https://www.nybc.org/donate-blood/convalescent-plasma/
- The State established a new partnership with the New York State Court System to create a pro bono network of volunteer lawyers to provide New Yorkers in need with free legal assistance. Volunteers will begin to receive training and start offering assistance next week. Lawyers interested in volunteering can sign up at www.nysba.org/covidvolunteer
- To help support our First Responders, New York created the First Responders Fund. The fund will assist COVID-19 health care workers and first responders with expenses and costs, including child care. The State Department of Health is accepting donations for the fund, and received an anchor $10 million contribution from Blackstone. Donations can be made electronically at www.healthresearch.org/donation-form.
- If you see people putting themselves and others at risk of infection by defying the Governor’s executive orders, the Nassau Police urge you to contact email@example.com or call Nassau County Fire Communications - Firecom on their 24/7 hotline at 516-742-3170 for a more urgent situation.
- The Governor increased the maximum fine for violations of the state’s social distancing protocols from $500 to $1,000. If you would like to report a violation of social distancing protocols, call 1-833-789-0470.
- Amid a shortage of personal protective equipment — or PPE — products in the state, including gloves, masks and gowns, the Governor is asking all PPE product providers to sell to the state any products that are not essential or not currently being used. Businesses interested in selling products to the state should contact Simonida Subotic at 646-522-8477 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- The Governor is encouraging any company with the proper equipment or personnel to begin to manufacture PPE products if possible. The state is willing to provide funding to any company to obtain the proper equipment and personnel. Businesses interested in receiving state funding to manufacture PPE products should contact Eric Gertler at 212-803-3100 or email@example.com.
- NYS is accepting donations of essential goods, services, and spaces to support New York’s response to the coronavirus public health emergency. For more information, click here.
- New York Blood Center is reporting critical shortages of donated blood, which is becoming even more important during this national emergency. If you are unsure if you can donate, but would like to, call the NYBC experts at 800-688-0900 or visit nybloodcenter.org for more information.
- RXR Realty has created a platform called RXR Volunteer, where accountants, attorneys, consultants and others with important skill sets, can offer their services to small business owners, non-profit leaders and others trying to navigate through our present crisis. The site is currently open to volunteers and those seeking help. Click here for more information.
- Frontline Foods is now in Nassau County and they need donations to do their great work supporting our local restaurants and our healthcare heroes. This innovative nonprofit organization takes your 100% tax-deductible donation, uses it to purchase food at local restaurants in our community, and brings the food to our healthcare heroes in local hospitals. Visit https://www.frontlinefoods.org/nassaucounty to learn more and make a donation.
- To help get the message across about wearing masks, the Governor and the State launched a contest asking New Yorkers to create a video and share in their own words why New Yorkers should wear masks in public. After receiving over 600 great submissions, five finalists have been selected. The winning video will be chosen by an online vote and will be used as a PSA. Watch the videos and vote for your favorite here: wearamask.ny.gov.
Stay Connected Read More
While we are all doing our best to ensure that we practice effective physical distancing, it's important that we remain socially connected. Below are some virtual activities for you to engage in to keep healthy both physically and mentally during this difficult time.
- Organize weekly virtual hangout sessions with family and friends where you watch a movie, drink tea, talk about life and helpful coping mechanisms, play games and enjoy each others’ company!
- Sign up for Senator Anna M. Kaplan’s Coronavirus Update Emails here.
- Remember to virtually celebrate important milestones such as birthdays, anniversaries, test grades and more.
- The Adelphi Breast Cancer Program is hosting numerous online self-help programs, including a four-week Paths To Wellness Online Series and a six-week Art Therapy Support Group. For more information, visit the Adelphi Breast Cancer Program website here.
- Subscribe to one (or more) of our fabulous local news publications. For a list of community newspapers serving our area, click here
- The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is hosting weekly Virtual Creativity Exhibits. To learn more and to participate, click here.
- The Herstory Writers Workshop is offering free community workshops in English and Spanish for students, as well as parents, grandparents, and guardians, helping empower you to find your voice and raise it up. If you’re already an avid writer, or you’ve never taken the journey on your own, now is a great time to explore your story. Learn more at http://www.herstorywriters.org/online-workshops-for-our-time.
- Ellis Island and Liberty Island will begin to reopen on July 20th for the first time since the beginning of the pandemic. Visitors will have access to the grounds of Liberty and Ellis Islands (Liberty Information Center closed), the Statue of Liberty Museum (immersive theater and interactive exhibits closed), the Ellis Island National Museum of Immigration (theaters, interactive exhibits and library closed) and limited food and gift shop services. The interior of the Statue of Liberty, including the pedestal and crown, remain closed.
- The Bronx Zoo, Central Park Zoo, Prospect Park Zoo, and Queens Zoo will all reopen July 20-24th for members, and then the general public on the 25th. Capacity will be limited to 1/3 and guests will need to purchase a ticket in advance. Visit wcs.org/parks for more information and to purchase tickets in advance.
Pet and Animal Care Read More
Pet and Animal Care
Below are some helpful tips and information for keeping your fur-family members healthy and safe during this time.
- Please refer to the Interim Guidance for Animal Care Operations for important information regarding essential animal care services
- Veterinarian practices are allowed to resume full operations statewide.
- North Shore Animal League: Temporarily closed to the public but accepting pre-approved adoptions on an appointment basis. The Veterinary Medical Center remains open for sick and emergency patients only. All routine check-ups will be postponed/rescheduled.
- Ensure you have enough food and treats for your four-legged family member! Online distributors and pet retailers remain open for these needs.
- Have an emergency plan in place in case you can no longer care for your animal at this time. This includes stocking a bag with food, medicine/chip information, a picture of your animal, contact information for yourself and who your designated caregiver is.
- Consider fostering an animal! Contact your local shelter to see if they are in need of foster homes during this difficult time. To find animal shelters in your area, click here.
- The Nassau County SPCA has launched a Coronavirus Hotline for Pet owners. The hotline will help pet owners get information they need, as well as help find important resources for their pets, including accessing pet food, medical services, temporary shelter, and supplemental care. Call 516-843-7722 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for assistance.
Considerations for coronavirus patients under home care and isolation who have pets or other animals:
- Let your public health point of contact know that you have pets or other animals in your home.
- Limit interaction with pets and other animals. Specifically, while symptomatic, maintain separation from pets as you would with other household members.
- Service animals are permitted to remain with their handlers.
- Designate another household member to care for pets in the home. If this is not possible, ensure good hand washing before and after caring for pets.
The 2020 Census Read More
The 2020 Census
- Please visit https://www.census.gov/ to complete the census survey online or by phone at 844-330-2020.
- Review these guides for helpful instruction on completing the survey Responding Online Responding by Phone Responding by Mail
- You can complete the census online or by phone in 13 different languages: English, Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, Russian, Arabic, Tagalog, Polish, French, Haitian Creole, Portuguese, and Japanese. For language support, please visit Language Support.