Latest Updates on Coronavirus from Senator James Sanders Jr.

June 05, 2020

The Latest Updates on Coronavirus from Senator James Sanders Jr.

Important Note: For your safety as well as ours, Senator James Sanders Jr. asks that if you need to contact his office please do so via phone at 718-523-3069 or email at sanders@nysenate.gov

June 5, 2020 Update Read More

Governor Cuomo announces NYS has reached the lowest number of deaths and hospitalizations since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

Governor Andrew Cuomo today announced the state has reached the lowest number of deaths and hospitalizations since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Yesterday, 42 people in New York passed away due to COVID-19, down from a record-high of 800 just eight weeks ago. The number of total hospitalizations was down yesterday to 2,728 from a record-high of 18,825 during the peak of the pandemic.  

 

NYC curfew has been extended through Sunday.

There is a curfew in effect from 8 p.m. until 5 a.m. each day, ending at 5 a.m. on June 8th. Below is a link to some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

https://www1.nyc.gov/…/counseltoth…/downloads/Curfew-FAQ.pdf

How to Report Police Misconduct

The Civilian Complaint Review Board (CCRB) is aware of numerous allegations of police misconduct from this weekend. Since Friday, they have received more than 430 complaints.

Last week's court decision changed the law on who can file a complaint with the CCRB. If you see what you believe to be NYPD misconduct on social media, in the news, or elsewhere, you can file a complaint, and the CCRD office will open an investigation. Please contact them at 1-800-341-CCRB or http://nyc.gov/ccrbcomplaint. They will thoroughly and impartially investigate allegations under their jurisdiction. This includes allegations of excessive use of force, abuse of authority, discourteous language or gestures, and offensive language.

As a reminder, you do not need to have an officer’s name/badge number to file a complaint. Under the law, the CCRB has access to resources–such as body-worn camera video, surveillance video, and command logs–that investigators can use to ID a member of the NYPD who was on the scene.

Census:

Unfortunately, COVID has hampered the Census response rate. The current Census self-response rate for NYC is at only 49%. The response rate is incredibly important given how much it affects our representation and share of federal funding. Please tell all of your friends to go to my2020census.gov to fill out the Census!

 

Fire Safety:

Even though FDNY CPR classes are currently postponed, we encourage New Yorkers to take the time during National CPR and AED Awareness Week to watch this #FDNYSmart video to gain an overall awareness of hands-only CPR, and to learn how #CPRSavesLives

Visit www.fdnysmart.org/connect to watch the full presentation. Use these safety tips when performing Hands Only CPR, and remember that early recognition and action improve chances of survival and recovery for victims of cardiac arrest.

What You Need to Know
  • Long Island and Mid-Hudson Valley Regions have met all seven metrics required to begin phase one of the state's regional phased reopening plan; Capital Region, Western New York, Central New York, Finger Lakes, Mohawk Valley, North Country and Southern Tier can enter phase two.

  • New York City will enter phase one of reopening on June 8.

  • The Mid-Hudson Valley is on track to enter phase two of reopening June 9 and Long Island is on track to enter phase two on June 10.

  • The state is expanding COVID-19 testing criteria to include any individual who attended recent protests.

  • Schools will be permitted to hold drive-in and drive-through graduation ceremonies this year; the Department of Health released interim guidance for these ceremonies.

  • Medical schools statewide will be allowed to reopen on June 22nd.

  • Governor Cuomo announced the implementation of a new early warning dashboard to monitor and review how the virus is being contained on an ongoing basis.

  • As New York City prepares for phase 1 of reopening on June 8th, 10 additional testing spots will be added to hotspot areas who are predominantly low income and minority communities. 

  • Governor Cuomo released a guide to the state's "NY Forward Reopening" Plan, along with the state's regional monitoring dashboard.

  • The $100M New York Forward Loan Fund will provide loans to small businesses, focusing on minority and women owned small businesses, that did not receive federal COVID-19 assistance.

  • The New York State sales tax filing deadline has been extended to June 22, 2020.

  • Governor Cuomo issued executive orders 202.17 and 202.18 requiring all people in New York to wear masks or face coverings in public, including when taking public or private transportation or riding in for-hire vehicles.

  • New Yorkers without health insurance can apply through NY State of Health through June 15, 2020; must apply within 60 days of losing coverage.

  • Health care workers can text NYFRONTLINE to 741-741 to access 24/7 emotional support services.

  • New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling.

  • Testing is free for all eligible New Yorkers as ordered by a health care provider.

  • Your local health department is your community contact for COVID-19 concerns.  

June 4, 2020 Update Read More

What You Need to Know
  • Long Island and Mid-Hudson Valley Regions have met all seven metrics required to begin phase one of the state's regional phased reopening plan; Capital Region, Western New York, Central New York, Finger Lakes, Mohawk Valley, North Country and Southern Tier can enter phase two.

  • New York City will enter phase one of reopening on June 8.

  • The Mid-Hudson Valley is on track to enter phase two of reopening June 9 and Long Island is on track to enter phase two on June 10.

  • The state is expanding COVID-19 testing criteria to include any individual who attended recent protests.

  • Schools will be permitted to hold drive-in and drive-through graduation ceremonies this year; the Department of Health released interim guidance for these ceremonies.

  • Medical schools statewide will be allowed to reopen on June 22nd,

  • Summer day camps statewide can open on June 29, and a decision on sleep-away camps will be made in the coming weeks.

  • Governor Cuomo announced the implementation of a new early warning dashboard to monitor and review how the virus is being contained on an ongoing basis.

  • As New York City prepares for phase 1 of reopening on June 8th, 10 additional testing spots will be added to hotspot areas who are predominantly low income and minority communities. 

  • Governor Cuomo issued an Executive Order authorizing businesses to deny entry to individuals not wearing masks or face-coverings.

  • Outdoor dining at restaurants will be permitted in the seven regions currently in phase two of reopening starting June 4th. 

  • Governor Cuomo released a guide to the state's "NY Forward Reopening" Plan, along with the state's regional monitoring dashboard.

  • The $100M New York Forward Loan Fund will provide loans to small businesses, focusing on minority and women owned small businesses, that did not receive federal COVID-19 assistance.

  • The New York State sales tax filing deadline has been extended to June 22, 2020.

  • Governor Cuomo issued executive orders 202.17 and 202.18 requiring all people in New York to wear masks or face coverings in public, including when taking public or private transportation or riding in for-hire vehicles.

  • New Yorkers without health insurance can apply through NY State of Health through June 15, 2020; must apply within 60 days of losing coverage.

  • Health care workers can text NYFRONTLINE to 741-741 to access 24/7 emotional support services.

  • New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling.

  • Testing is free for all eligible New Yorkers as ordered by a health care provider.

  • Your local health department is your community contact for COVID-19 concerns.  

 

June 3, 2020 Update Read More

Today Senator James Sanders Jr. has partnered with the NYS Board of Elections, NYC Board of Elections and Senator Leroy Comrie, Assembly Member Alicia Hyndman, and City Council Members Donovan Richards & Adrienne Adams  to host a training on how to fill out an absentee ballot application form.

The Governor has issued Executive Orders relating to absentee ballot applications for the June 23, 2020 primary and special election. In addition to the potential to contract COVID-19, a voter may request an absentee ballot application for various reasons.

You can request an absentee ballot here:
https://www.elections.ny.gov/NYSBOE/download/voting/AbsenteeBallot-English.pdf

 

Census:

Unfortunately, COVID has hampered the Census response rate. The current Census self-response rate for NYC is at only 49%. The response rate is incredibly important given how much it affects our representation and share of federal funding. Please tell all of your friends to go to my2020census.gov to fill out the Census!

 

NYC curfew has been extended through Sunday.

There is a curfew in effect from 8 p.m. until 5 a.m. each day, ending at 5 a.m. on June 8th. Below is a link to some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

https://www1.nyc.gov/…/counseltoth…/downloads/Curfew-FAQ.pdf

How to Report Police Misconduct

The Civilian Complaint Review Board (CCRB) is aware of numerous allegations of police misconduct from this weekend. Since Friday, they have received more than 430 complaints.

Last week's court decision changed the law on who can file a complaint with the CCRB. If you see what you believe to be NYPD misconduct on social media, in the news, or elsewhere, you can file a complaint, and the CCRD office will open an investigation. Please contact them at 1-800-341-CCRB or http://nyc.gov/ccrbcomplaint. They will thoroughly and impartially investigate allegations under their jurisdiction. This includes allegations of excessive use of force, abuse of authority, discourteous language or gestures, and offensive language.

As a reminder, you do not need to have an officer’s name/badge number to file a complaint. Under the law, the CCRB has access to resources–such as body-worn camera video, surveillance video, and command logs–that investigators can use to ID a member of the NYPD who was on the scene.

What You Need to Know

New York City will enter phase one of reopening on June 8.

Summer day camps statewide can open on June 29, and a decision on sleep-away camps will be made in the coming weeks.

Governor Cuomo issued an Executive Order allowing low-risk, outdoor recreational activities and businesses to open in regions that have met the metrics required for phase one.

Governor Cuomo announced the implementation of a new early warning dashboard to monitor and review how the virus is being contained on an ongoing basis.

As New York City prepares for phase 1 of reopening on June 8th, 10 additional testing spots will be added to hotspot areas who are predominantly low income and minority communities. 

Governor Cuomo issued an Executive Order authorizing businesses to deny entry to individuals not wearing masks or face-coverings.

Outdoor dining at restaurants will be permitted in the seven regions currently in phase two of reopening starting June 4th. 

Erie county is eligible to resume elective surgeries and ambulatory care. 

Governor Cuomo released a guide to the state's "NY Forward Reopening" Plan, along with the state's regional monitoring dashboard.

The $100M New York Forward Loan Fund will provide loans to small businesses, focusing on minority and women owned small businesses, that did not receive federal COVID-19 assistance.

The New York State sales tax filing deadline has been extended to June 22, 2020.

Governor Cuomo issued executive orders 202.17 and 202.18 requiring all people in New York to wear masks or face coverings in public, including when taking public or private transportation or riding in for-hire vehicles.

New Yorkers without health insurance can apply through NY State of Health through June 15, 2020; must apply within 60 days of losing coverage.

Health care workers can text NYFRONTLINE to 741-741 to access 24/7 emotional support services.

New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling.

Testing is free for all eligible New Yorkers as ordered by a health care provider.

Your local health department is your community contact for COVID-19 concerns.  

June 1, 2020 Update Read More

MAYOR DE BLASIO AND GOVERNOR CUOMO ANNOUNCE CITYWIDE CURFEW IN NEW YORK CITY BEGINNING AT 11 PM TONIGHT

Today, Mayor de Blasio and Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced a citywide curfew in New York City will take effect beginning at 11 PM tonight and will be lifted at 5 AM tomorrow morning

The Mayor and the Governor also announced that the New York City Police Department will double its police presence to help prevent violence and property damage. The additional officers will be deployed to areas where violence and property damage occurred during last night’s protests – specifically in lower Manhattan and Downtown Brooklyn. ​ The Governor and the Mayor also reminded New Yorkers participating in protests to take proper health precautions and wear face covering while we continue to fight the COVID-19 virus.

What You Need to Know
  • New York City will enter phase one of reopening on June 8.

  • Governor Cuomo announced the implementation of a new early warning dashboard to monitor and review how the virus is being contained on an ongoing basis.

  • As New York City prepares for phase 1 of reopening on June 8th, 10 additional testing spots will be added to hotspot areas who are predominantly low income and minority communities. 

  • Governor Cuomo issued an Executive Order authorizing businesses to deny entry to individuals not wearing masks or face-coverings.

  • Dentists statewide can reopen while adhering to best practices for safety and social distancing guidelines. 

  • Governor Cuomo released a guide to the state's "NY Forward Reopening" Plan, along with the state's regional monitoring dashboard.

  • The $100M New York Forward Loan Fund will provide loans to small businesses, focusing on minority and women owned small businesses, that did not receive federal COVID-19 assistance.

  • The New York State sales tax filing deadline has been extended to June 22, 2020.

  • Governor Cuomo issued executive orders 202.17 and 202.18 requiring all people in New York to wear masks or face coverings in public, including when taking public or private transportation or riding in for-hire vehicles.

  • New Yorkers without health insurance can apply through NY State of Health through June 15, 2020; must apply within 60 days of losing coverage.

  • Health care workers can text NYFRONTLINE to 741-741 to access 24/7 emotional support services.

  • New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling.

  • Testing is free for all eligible New Yorkers as ordered by a health care provider.

  • Your local health department is your community contact for COVID-19 concerns.  

News from ConEdison

Please be aware that Con Edison’s AMI Smart meter project is set to relaunch in Richmond Hill, Queens this week. As with most businesses, some operations including the smart meter installations were temporarily suspended during the height of the pandemic. However, beginning this week, smart meter installations will resume with residential customers with outdoor meter locations.

Customers who received their 45-day meter installation notification letters prior to the program’s suspension, can schedule an appointment for installation beginning this week.

For the safety of company employees and customers, installers will wear appropriate face coverings and practice social distancing while completing installations. Most installations will take 15 minutes to complete with a temporary interruption in service during the brief installation.

All company employees and contractors will have Con Edison ID when working in the field. Customers may call Con Edison’s customer service center at (800) 752-6633 to verify the identity of a contractor.

 

 

May 29, 2020 Update Read More

Reopening – Phase One:
With the Test and Trace Corps set to launch June 1, and the number of positive cases, hospitalizations, and cases in the ICU in continuous decline, New York City is moving closer to the beginning of reopening. Industries eligible for reopening during Phase 1 include construction (residential, nonresidential, roads and bridges, land subdivision, utilities), manufacturing (apparel, electronics, machinery, textiles, printing), wholesale suppliers (apparel, chemical products, household appliances, electronics, metals), non-essential retail (clothing, electronics, appliances, furniture, office supplies, sporting goods). With this first phase of reopening the City expects an estimated 200,000-400,000 workers to return. To ensure this is done safely, all businesses will need to adhere to specific hygiene, distancing, and health protocols.
 
Basic rules for all sectors:
●       Social Distancing
○       Require 6 feet of distance unless safety or core function of the work activity requires less
○       Reduce occupancy to under 50%, limit confined spaces to 1 person (elevators, behind cash registers, etc)
○       Limit all in-person gatherings and meetings, and only hold them in large, well-ventilated areas with social distancing
●       PPE
○       Provide employees with free face coverings or, if warranted, face shields or other  proper protective equipment. Require face coverings if employees cannot keep 6 feet of distance due to safety or core work function
●       Hygiene
○       Ensure frequent cleaning and disinfecting of any shared surfaces
●       Health Screenings
○       Implement mandatory health screenings for employees, including questionnaires, temperature checks
●       Communication
○       Create distance markers, post signage throughout the workplace reminding personnel to adhere to phase 1 guidance and rules
 
Find more guidance from NYS here: www.Forward.ny.gov/industries-reopening-phase
 
Education and Enforcement:
To enter Phase 1 safely and successfully, The City will make sure to provide reopening businesses with information and guidance, and enforce guidelines with proactive inspections to ensure compliance. In addition, the City will require Phase 1 businesses to post reopening safety plans in the workplace. The Department of Buildings, Department of Consumer and Worker Protection and Small Business Services will educate, conduct outreach and provide support to businesses.
 
The City is already training small business advocates and compliance advisors. Next week it will publish plain language industry guides and launch a dedicated Business Restart Hotline. In addition, Sector Advisory Councils will be available to troubleshoot additional necessary guidance or rule changes to help businesses succeed.
 
To help enforce these guidelines, DCWP, FDNY and DSNY will conduct random visits to reopening sites to ensure compliance. Summonses will be issued only in egregious circumstances or repeat violations.  Response to complaints will be coordinated by the Office of Special Enforcement with NYPD, Sheriff and other relevant agencies. People can call 311 to report a business that is violating guidelines.
 
MORE Announcements

●       Test, Trace, and Take CareThe third piece to the testing and tracing program is ensuring New Yorkers who test positive or are symptomatic are able to recuperate safely. The City is providing hotels for those who are unable to isolate at home. It will also provide meals, prescriptions, medication, and mental health support.
○       Find a Testing SiteAll you need to do is type your address: Get Tested in Your Community.
○       Take Care Hotels: We know many can’t safely separate at home. Any doctor, nurse, physician’s assistant across the entire City can email: CommCareCP@nychhc.org  to refer patients to hotels. New Yorkers will receive
●       Emergency Food Program: The Emergency Food Program delivers over 1 million meals per day. The City is looking for more partners; especially providers with expertise in culturally competent meals. The deadline to respond to the City’s Request for Information has been extended to 6/5. 
●       Relief for Survivors of Domestic Violence: The City is partnering with providers to offer “micro-grants” directly to survivors. If you know someone who needs resources, please share the NYC HOPE directory and the Resources for Survivors During COVID-19. The Mayor’s Fund is continuing to pursue additional funds – anyone  can contribute: COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund.
●       DOHMH COVID-19 Data Page: Updated COVID-19 data page detailing additional demographic information about how the outbreak is affecting New York City.
●       COVID-19 Heatwave Plan: The City is purchasing over 74,000 A/Cs for vulnerable New Yorkers. HRA will be reaching out to eligible New Yorkers.
●       NYC Open Streets: Find open streets locations here. Please submit suggestions of streets in your community that could safely be closed with staffing of community partners here. Submitting an application does not guarantee acceptance. Please submit separate applications for each corridor you are proposing to pedestrianize in your community. Email openstreets@dot.nyc.gov if you have any questions.
●       Cure Violence Providers: The City is partnering with community groups to do outreach and education on social distancing.
 
Important Information to Share with Your Friends and Neighbors 

●        Know Your Tenant Rights: The Mayor’s Office to Protect Tenants, Public Engagement Unit, DSS, and OCJ are sending postcards to tenants across the City to give them information about their rights and connect them with resources on how to deal with harassment, evictions, and answer questions about their lease. This campaign is in 11 languages!  
●        Blood Donations Needed: The City is making another urgent push for blood. With the cancellations of big blood drives that typically happen throughout the year, the New York Blood Center is very low on blood. Please consider donating: make an appointment by visiting nybc.org or by calling 800-933-2566.
●        Debt Collection: DCWP released a letter template today in multiple languages that people can use to respond to aggressive debt collectors during the state of emergency. Please share it with your constituents. For more information about scams and other consumer issues, visit nyc.gov/consumers.
●        EBT Cards: Applicants approved for Cash Assistance & SNAP benefits will receive an EBT card in the mail. Call EBT Customer Service at 888-328-6399 for account information or to request a replacement card to be received by mail.
●       Election Day 6/23: Registered voters can request an absentee ballot for the 6/23 elections until 6/16: NYC Absentee. The City is amplifying the DemocracyNYC FAQ using hashtags #DemocracyNYC #NYCVotes #VoteSafely.
●       DemocracyNYC Texting Days of Action June 6: The City will reach out to thousands of New Yorkers to encourage them to request a mail-in-ballot, answer questions about how to vote by mail, and provide a link to the online mail/absentee ballot request form. Encourage everyone to sign up here!
●       Health Insurance Special Enrollment Period: Extended through 6/15, health insurance enrollment is open for uninsured New Yorkers: Get Covered.
●       Job Opportunities:
○       H+H is hiring for several positions. Apply here: http://nyc.gov/getwork.
○      The City is hiring 2,500 Contact Tracers. Apply here: Careers.
○    The City is hiring licensed TLC drivers to deliver food to New Yorkers in need: NYC Food Delivery Driver Portal.

May 28, 2020 Update Read More

COVID-19 Response Map

See the City's response by zip code across areas including testing, supplies and telehealth, food, education, and targeted outreach and support. To view the map visit nyc.gov/covidresponsemap.

(Note: This site is compatible with most browsers. However, you may experience trouble viewing in some versions of Internet Explorer.)

Expanded COVID-19 testing

New York City has expanded the criteria and capacity for individuals to get tested for COVID-19. You should get a COVID-19 test if you:

  • Have COVID-19 symptoms, regardless of age, chronic conditions or occupation
  • Come in close contact with someone who is confirmed to have COVID-19, regardless of whether you have symptoms
  • Work in a congregate residential setting (nursing home, shelter or adult care facility), regardless of whether you have symptoms.

Free testing is available at community sites operated by NYC Health + Hospitals throughout the five boroughs. CityMD offers testing at all of its New York City sites on a walk-in basis, seven days per week. Visit CityMD for locations and hours throughout the five boroughs.

To find a testing site near you visit nyc.gov/covidtest.

Antibody testing

New Yorkers can now sign up for a COVID-19 antibody survey appointment at nyc.bioreference.com/antibodysurvey and via telephone at (888)279-0967 (Hours of Operation are M-F 8 AM-8 PM; Sat/Sun 9 AM-5 PM)

  • NYC residents 18 years and over can sign up by visiting the website or calling (888)279-0967
  • Prior to scheduling an appointment, they'll be asked three screening questions in order to participate
  • Once scheduled, they will receive a confirmation code that they will bring to their appointment
  • Onsite, they'll fill out a survey (which we are working to digitize) and be tested

New York City COVID-19 Heat Plan

New York City has launched a COVID-19 Heat Plan to keep vulnerable New Yorker cool and safe at home, create safer summer cooling options, and prevent and respond to power outages. Read the Mayor's full Heat Plan.

NY State Pause order

New York State has extended NYS PAUSE through at least May 28th. Meaning, all non-essential workers must continue to work from home and everyone is required to maintain a 6-foot distance from others in public.

Phone-a-Clinician

New Yorkers who have symptoms or questions about Coronavirus (COVID-19) can call 1-844-NYC-4NYC to connect to a medical provider free of charge seven days a week from 9 am - 9 pm.

NYC Open Streets

New York City is opening 40 miles of streets to allow greater social distancing during the COVID-19 crisis, with a plan to expand to a total of 100 miles. Open Streets are available daily, 8 am to 8 pm (unless otherwise noted) for pedestrians and cyclists to use the roadbed of the street while maintaining at least six feet of distance from others.

For a list of locations visit nyc.gov/openstreets

Get a face covering

New York City will continue distributing face coverings in parks, DOE Grab & Go meal sites, NYCHA buildings, some Mitchell-Lama buildings, grocery stores, and during social distancing enforcement.

Additional distribution sites will be coming soon and can be found at nyc.gov/facecoverings.

COVID-19 Hotel Program

The City of New York's COVID-19 Hotel Program provides select individuals and groups (e.g., healthcare workers) a place to stay to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

To determine if you are eligible and make a reservation go to nyc.gov/covid19hotel

Face coverings mandate

Starting Friday, April 17th, all New Yorkers are required to wear a mask or face covering when out in public and in situations where a 6-foot distance from others cannot be maintained.

New plan for keeping the city fed

New York City is investing $170 million to ensure no New Yorker goes hungry. To read the plan, go to nyc.gov/feedingnyc. To find out how to get food go to nyc.gov/getfood.

Health and Hospitals hiring non-medical staff right now

Health and Hospitals is hiring 500 non-clinical staff to help with patient transport, clerical work, and cleaning. No medical background is required and hiring will be expanded to thousands soon.

Please visit nyc.gov/getwork for more information and to apply.

 
More News

In response to the myriad of questions, including those who have not yet received their stimulus payments, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has established a special telephone for taxpayers who have questions about their funds.

By calling (800-919-9835) taxpayers can inquire about their checks.

Gov. Cuomo announced that he will sign an executive order to allow businesses the right to deny entrance to customers who aren’t wearing masks or face coverings.

May 26, 2020 Update Read More

The Latest News on Coronavirus 

  • Capital Region, Western New York, Central New York, North County, Finger Lakes, Southern Tier, Mid-Hudson Valley, and Mohawk Valley Regions have met all seven metrics required to begin phase one of the state's regional phased reopening plan.

  • NYS on PAUSE will continue through May 28 for regions that have not started reopening; a region can enter Phase One of reopening as soon as it meets its required metrics.

  • Long Island is on track to reopen Wednesday, May 27th.

  • New York State and local governments will provide death benefits for frontline workers who died from COVID-19 during this emergency.

  • The state is continuing to direct resources and focus efforts on reducing the spread of COVID-19 in lower-income and predominately minority neighborhoods.

  • The winners of the Wear a Mask New York Ad Contest are: "We Heart New York" created by Bunny Lake Films and "You Can Still Smile" by Natalia Bougadellis and Emory Parker.

  • The state will fast-track construction of the new Empire Station at Penn and the new LaGuardia Airport while rail ridership and air traffic is down.

  • Campgrounds and RV parks are opening statewide.

  • Veterinarian practices will be allowed to open in all regions beginning Tuesday, May 26th.

  • Governor Cuomo released a guide to the state's "NY Forward Reopening" Plan, along with the state's regional monitoring dashboard.

  • The $100M New York Forward Loan Fund will provide loans to small businesses, focusing on minority and women owned small businesses, that did not receive federal COVID-19 assistance.

  • Governor Cuomo announced he will meet with President Trump in Washington D.C. tomorrow to discuss infrastructure projects that need federal approval.

  • The New York State sales tax filing deadline has been extended to June 22, 2020.

  • Summer school will be conducted through distance learning.

  • Governor Cuomo issued executive orders 202.17 and 202.18 requiring all people in New York to wear masks or face coverings in public, including when taking public or private transportation or riding in for-hire vehicles.

  • New Yorkers without health insurance can apply through NY State of Health through June 15, 2020; must apply within 60 days of losing coverage.

  • Health care workers can text NYFRONTLINE to 741-741 to access 24/7 emotional support services.

  • New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling.

  • Testing is free for all eligible New Yorkers as ordered by a health care provider.

  • Your local health department is your community contact for COVID-19 concerns.  

 

More News

In response to the myriad of questions, including those who have not yet received their stimulus payments, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has established a special telephone for taxpayers who have questions about their funds.

By calling (800-919-9835) taxpayers can inquire about their checks.

State to begin pilot program allowing visitors at some New York hospitals

Visitors will be allowed back at some New York hospitals today, but there are several rules in place.

Gov. Cuomo calls on federal government to provide hazard pay for front-line workers

Cuomo says state and local government will provide death benefits for front-line workers who died from COVID-19.

 

8 ways to prepare for a possible second wave of COVID-19

It’s important to stay informed on the latest COVID-19 developments and guidelines. Here are a few tips to follow to prepare for, and lessen the impact of, this possible second wave.

1 – Remain diligent about handwashing and using sanitizer when you can’t get to soap and water.

2 – Continue to practice social distancing if you need to go out.

3 – Continue to wear a mask when you can’t social distance.

4 – Manage your expectations of when life will settle into a new normal.

5 – Stay home if you’re sick.

6 – Prepare physically and mentally – specifically when planning for the future. Want to plan a trip, think about paying for a refundable airfare or reservation.

7 – Continue to stock up on essential medications.

8 – Check in on loved ones – either virtually or at a distance.

May 22, 2020 Update Read More

The Latest News on Coronavirus 

By the numbers

* New York reported 23,195 total statewide deaths of New Yorkers who tested positive for COVID-19.

* There were 109 more fatalities in New York yesterday.

* For more numbers, including the latest statewide and borough-by-borough statistics, click here.

* See the governor’s May 22 coronavirus presentation here. 

 

Census:

Unfortunately, COVID has hampered the Census response rate. The current Census self-response rate for NYC is at only 49%. The response rate is incredibly important given how much it affects our representation and share of federal funding. Please tell all of your friends to go to my2020census.gov to fill out the Census!

Senator Sanders' Office is partnering with the Queens Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc to do a census phone bank on Saturday, May 30, 2020. We need volunteers to sign up here  https://bit.ly/CensusPartyDST 

Absentee Ballot Application Deadline is June 16!

You can now apply online for an absentee ballot in the June primary! Voting by mail is a safe, easy, and accessible way to administer elections. How to vote via absentee ballot in the June 2020 primary:

1) Complete the absentee ballot application. Go to https://www.nycabsentee.com/ to complete a request for an absentee ballot. Or, fill out the absentee ballot application that you'll receive in the mail to the address you have on file with the Board of Elections. Check the "Temporary Illness" box as the reason for requesting an Absentee Ballot (per the Governor's executive order). You only need to complete the application once, whether online or in print.

2) Submit your application by June 16!
Postmark, apply online, email or fax completed application for the Primary Absentee ballot by June 16, 2020. You can apply in-person by June 22, 2020.

Click here for more details on absentee voting!

More News

In response to the myriad of questions, including those who have not yet received their stimulus payments, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has established a special telephone for taxpayers who have questions about their funds.

By calling (800-919-9835) taxpayers can inquire about their checks.

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. Also a reminder that New York health insurers have been directed to waive all costs associated with COVID-19 testing. If you believe you have COVID symptoms, don't wait — get tested.

Due to Coronavirus, there is a shortage of blood and blood donations are desperately needed. New York State is working with blood banks to ensure safe social distancing protocols are being followed. Learn how and where you can donate at http://ny.gov/donateblood.

NYPD preparing to enforce beach rules over Memorial Day weekend

The NYPD is encouraging New Yorkers to take common sense precautions this Memorial Day weekend, especially for those going to parks or beaches.

MEMORIAL DAY

Unfortunately, due to the cancellation of May events in NYC, and uncertainty around the public health situation, many of us will be looking for other ways to appropriately observe and honor Memorial Day this year.

So this Memorial Day, the United War Veterans Council (UWVC) and the NYC Department of Veterans' Services (DVS) invite you to help lead our community in remembering America’s fallen through A Flag, a Flower, a Moment of Memorial.

A Flag, a Flower, a Moment of Memorial: Invites the public to come together “virtually” through a shared commemorative activity that can be carried out in our own homes.

To participate, please take an American flag and a flower and reflect on the meaning of Memorial Day.

Afterward, we encourage you to then share your images and videos on social media, using the hashtag #FlagFlowerMemorial.

You can lead the way by sharing this effort with your social media networks by simply creating your own post and release it before Memorial Day weekend – preferably earlier in the week, so that your followers have time to organize their own “Moment of Memorial."

We hope you will join our effort!

If you have any questions, contact connect@veterans.nyc.gov

https://www1.nyc.gov/site/veterans/dvs-news/virtual.page

May 21, 2020 Update Read More

By the Numbers

New York State

23,083 – The number of people who have died after testing positive for the coronavirus in New York state, as of May 21.

105 – The number of deaths from the coronavirus in New York on May 20. The date with the highest single-day total was April 8, with 799 deaths.

65% – The percentage of victims statewide who are 70 years old or older.

356,458– People who have tested positive for the coronavirus in New York, as of May 21.

5,187– The number of people currently hospitalized with the coronavirus in New York, as of May 20. The date with the highest single-day total was April 12, with 18,825 people hospitalized.

1,695– The number of patients in intensive care units in New York, as of May 20.

1,555,055– The number of people who have been tested for coronavirus in New York, as of May 21. 726,176 of the tests have been conducted in New York City.

New York City

15,423– Number of confirmed coronavirus deaths of New York City residents reported by the state, as of May 21. The city reported 20,934 deaths, including 16,153 confirmed deaths and 4,781 probable deaths, as of May 20.

195,675 – Confirmed number of people who have tested positive for the coronavirus, as of May 21.

50,688 – Estimated number of people who had ever been hospitalized with the coronavirus in New York City, as of May 20.

60,025– Confirmed cases in Queens, as of May 21.

53,385– Confirmed cases in Brooklyn.

43,603– Confirmed cases in the Bronx.

25,522– Confirmed cases in Manhattan.

13,140– Confirmed cases on Staten Island.

Census:

Unfortunately, COVID has hampered the Census response rate. The current Census self-response rate for NYC is at only 49%. The response rate is incredibly important given how much it affects our representation and share of federal funding. Please tell all of your friends to go to my2020census.gov to fill out the Census!

Senator Sanders' Office is partnering with the Queens Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc to do a census phone bank on Saturday, May 30, 2020. We volunteers to sign up here  https://bit.ly/CensusPartyDST 

More News

Is cash king? Long a refuge in uncertain times, paper money and coins are now under suspicion.

In troubled times, people have been known to hoard currency at home - a financial security blanket against deep uncertainty. But in this crisis, things are different.

Rockaway Peninsula Disproportionately Affected by Coronavirus 
In the 11691 zip code which encompasses Far Rockaway, Bayswater and Edgemere, 21 percent live below the poverty line. Seventy percent of residents are black and Latino and according to data released this week it has the city's second highest death rate from the Coronavirus, 443 per 100,000 people
 

NYC expands COVID-19 testing to 169 nursing homes

Mayor Bill de Blasio says the city will be focusing on protecting senior citizens amid the coronavirus pandemic.

WIADCA celebrating virtually, offering classes amid crisis

Summertime is usually when the West Indian American Day Carnival Association loves to gather, celebrate and share their Caribbean culture with the community--and they still will virtually during the COVID-19 pandemic.

May 20, 2020 Update Read More

New York reported 22,976 total statewide deaths of New Yorkers who tested positive for COVID-19.

There were 112 more fatalities in New York yesterday.

For more numbers, including the latest statewide and borough-by-borough statistics, click here.

See the governor’s May 20 coronavirus presentation here.

7 guidelines from OSHA on reopening the workforce

As states begin their reopening process, there are many guidelines in place to properly do so. Here are seven guidelines from OSHA on reopening the workforce.

  1. Develop an Infectious Disease Preparedness and Response Plan
  2. Prepare to Implement Basic Infection Prevention Measures
  3. Develop Policies and Procedures for Prompt Identification and Isolation of Sick People, if Appropriate
  4. Develop, Implement, and Communicate about Workplace Flexibilities and Protections
  5. Implement Workplace Controls
  6. Follow Existing OSHA Standards
  7. Classify worker exposure to COVID-19

At each risk level (very high, high, medium and low), there are guidelines and recommendations to follow. To read more about that, click here

To read more about the new guidelines the CDC put into place based on the president’s plan to open America again, click here

 

New research released on syndrome possibly linked to COVID-19, children

New research has been released on a new syndrome that is possibly linked to coronavirus and children.

MTA adding UV lights in fight against COVID-19 during overnight shutdowns

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is adding UV lights to its arsenal when it comes to fighting the coronavirus during the overnight shutdown of subways.

Poor, dense neighborhoods in New York’s outer boroughs have highest rate of COVID-19 deaths, ZIP Code data shows

Canarsie-Flatlands in Brooklyn and Far Rockaway in Queens, both areas with disproportionate amounts of public housing, have been hit hardest by the virus

Resorts World Donates to Jamaica Hospital 

Resorts World Casino New York City recently showed its support for Jamaica Hospital Medical Center’s frontline heroes by donating $10,000 to help with securing personal protective equipment and other essentials.

New data shows Corona leads in COVID-19 cases while Far Rockaway leads in death rate

While western Queens leads in the number of COVID-19 cases, the Rockaways and Flushing experienced some of the highest numbers of deaths per 100,000 residents, according to the data.

SEQ Fights COVID Coalition provides access to resources during coronavirus pandemic

As new statistics from the city’s Department of Health show how neighborhoods in the Rockaways, Jamaica and Rochdale were ravaged by the coronavirus pandemic, a number of Queens-based nonprofit organizations and community stakeholders launched the South East Queens Fights COVID Coalition Monday to connect local residents to pertinent information and resources related to the deadly outbreak.

Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning creates free online arts programs for southeast Queens communities

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning (JCAL) has shifted its classes, workshops and performances to JCAL Online in an effort to continue providing high-quality, accessible arts programming to southeast Queens communities.

Pier 1 to go out of business and close all 540 stores

Pier 1, the seller of wicker chairs and scented candles, said it will go out of business and permanently close all 540 of its stores.

May 19, 2020 Update Read More

New York reported 22,843 total statewide deaths of New Yorkers who tested positive for COVID-19.

There were 105 more fatalities in New York yesterday.

For more numbers, including the latest statewide and borough-by-borough statistics, click here.

See the governor’s May 19 coronavirus presentation here.

Over $9.2 billion in unemployment benefits has been issued to around 2 million New Yorkers, with the state saying that while it has mostly cleared the backlog of pending claims, pandemic unemployment assistance has taken longer to process, State of Politics reports.

New statistics also revealed that the coronavirus pandemic has killed more than 1,200 New Yorkers who live in the city’s public housing complexes and sickened another 6,600 tenants there, the New York Post reports.

New data released by the city’s Health Department is breaking down coronavirus cases by zip code.

NYC parkgoers are urged to properly dispose of masks, gloves and trash. Essential workers with the city's Parks Department have been working through the COVID-19 crisis to keep city parks clean and safe.

Biotech firm say early coronavirus vaccine results are encouraging. An experimental vaccine against the coronavirus showed encouraging results in very early testing, triggering hoped-for immune responses in eight healthy, middle-aged volunteers, its maker announced Monday.

Parks Department urges New Yorkers to follow social distancing guidelines ahead of summer months. As the weather gets warmer, more people will be visiting city parks in their neighborhoods.

It's National Safe Boating Week! With the water likely to be a summer sanctuary due to social distancing regulations, National Safe Boating Week is more important than ever this year.

Alternate Side Parking Rules Back in Effect This Week - Haven’t moved your car in a while? Starting today New Yorkers will have to abide by alternate side parking rules, at least for the next couple of days.
For more information, click HERE

 

May 18, 2020 Update Read More

Gov Says Get Tested for COVID-19

Governor Cuomo encourages eligible New Yorkers to visit a new website to find a nearby testing site.

Click below to find a site near you.

https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/find-test-site-near-you

New York State continues to increase testing capacity for COVID-19 on a daily basis. The guidance below enables New York State to prioritize resources to meet the public health need. Individuals who have questions regarding eligibility or access for testing should call the New York State COVID-19 Hotline at 1-888-364-3065 or visit the NYSDOH website https://covid19screening.health.ny.gov.

Please call the testing site or your health care provider before you go for testing.

HEALTH DEPARTMENT RELEASES NEW COVID-19 DATA PAGE

As the City continues to confront the disparities of COVID-19, the Health Department today released an updated COVID-19 data page detailing additional demographic information about how the outbreak is affecting New York City. The data reveals the disproportionate impact COVID-19 has had on communities of color, with Black and Latino New Yorkers dying around twice the rate of their White counterparts when adjusted for age. The release of this data accompanies an online resource that shows New York City's response to COVID-19 by zip code. The maps include information on testing, supplies, telehealth, food, education, outreach and support.

https://www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/covid/covid-19-data.page

Features of the updated data page include:

An interactive map of rates and counts of cases, deaths, and positive tests by ZIP code that is paired with table with an easy-to-use search function.

Tests conducted daily and percent of people with positive test results

Detailed information of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths by borough of residence, age, sex and race/ethnicity, and neighborhood poverty level.

Rosedale American Legion Volunteers Distribute Food to Hundreds in Need

The American Legion Post 483 in Rosedale, Queens, is one of four American Legion pantries and one soup kitchen in the south Queens area. They each serve 300-400 people each week, Legion officials say.

For more information, click below.

https://qns.com/story/2020/05/15/rosedale-american-legion-volunteers-distribute-food-to-hundreds-in-need/?fbclid=IwAR2JJyr5mDVTAiKHeiytIRAsv_qlL4qniMKkg6XZC7gvBlWiWGKTAxdELyI

Alternate Side Parking Rules Back in Effect This Week

Haven’t moved your car in a while? Starting today New Yorkers will have to abide by alternate side parking rules, at least for the next couple of days.
For more information, click below.

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/42140267/need-to-move-your-car-alternate-side-parking-rules-back-in-effect-this-weekHaven%E2%80%99t?fbclid=IwAR2minl--9kcCmf__yWTU66zCpQQk9aiwh6PK6TrQCVdJzI0MUPwzcsz9Pg

Mayor Says NYC Beaches Will Remain Closed for Memorial Day Weekend

Swimming will not be permitted and there will not be lifeguards on duty, although the mayor didn't rule out reopening city beaches later in the season.
For more information, click below.

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/42137282/were-not-ready-yet-mayor-says-nyc-beaches-will-remain-closed-for-memorial-day-weekend?fbclid=IwAR2G50htZatCE4ccgdvuiZmultIGffg0Zed0bmW7cMJXF0XKYIm0pHFbfpQ
 

Increased Social Distancing Rules at Parks

The city is stepping up social distancing efforts Sunday after several parks experienced overcrowding.
For more information, click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/42138591/nyc-steps-up-social-distancing-efforts-after-overcrowding-at-parks?fbclid=IwAR2udTA0GIXqMTazHV6IlTpIfQc28h5WO2zjPfZGHB9L764mZzzOcce15Qg

QEDC Offering - Reboot & Restart Webinar - Navigating Entrepreneurship Post COVID-19

For more information, go to https://www.queensny.org/reboot/

8 Ways to Prepare for a Possible Second Wave of COVID-19

1 – Remain diligent about handwashing and using sanitizer when you can’t get to soap and water.

2 – Continue to practice social distancing if you need to go out.

3 – Continue to wear a mask when you can’t social distance.

4 – Manage your expectations of when life will settle into a new normal.

5 – Stay home if you’re sick.

6 – Prepare physically and mentally – specifically when planning for the future. Want to plan a trip, think about paying for a refundable airfare or reservation.

7 – Continue to stock up on essential medications.

8 – Check in on loved ones – either virtually or at a distance.

Click below for the full article.

https://www.businessinsider.com/how-to-prepare-for-a-potential-second-wave-of-coronavirus-2020-5

The New York State Latino Restaurant Bar & Lounge Association on PPP Loan funding for Minority Owned Businesses 

Magic Johnson Partners with Rafael Martinez and MBE Capital Partners to fund PPP Loans to Minority Owned Businesses.

In a statement yesterday, Magic Johnson confirmed that he was reaching out to aide minority owned businesses in crisis…through funding. He partnered with a Latino and MBE Certified Diversity financing company, MBE Capital Partners and its owner Rafael Martinez to “assist black and Latino business owners wishing to access PPP loans.”

According to Magic, “…we are not leaving anyone behind in this round of stimulus packages from the federal government…” and true to his word, he has supported this initiative with a $100 million dollars in funding.

His partner in this initiative, MBE Capital Partners, is an experienced financing company for MWBE companies for over 20 years. “We know how to structure this program so that it reaches its intended audience, African Americans and Latinos with businesses all over the country who have applied for PPP funding and been denied, and, for those who wish to apply today,” according to Rafael Martinez, the owner.

The Latino Restaurant Bar and Lounge Association will be posting a link to this initiative at https://www.mbecp.com/ on our website and congratulate Rafael and Magic Johnson on the successful launch of this program.

“We need to work together to help the Restaurant Industry recover, this is a great initiative,” according to Jeffrey Garcia, President of NYS Latino Restaurant Bar & Lounge Association.

This link will be available on www.NYRestaurantChannel.com and www.NYSRBLA.org.

The NYS Latino Restaurant Bar and Lounge Association is a local 501(c)6 non-profit organization founded for the purpose of helping Hispanic and minority businesses succeed in commerce and industry, particularly, that of the food and beverage industry. NYSRBLA is one of the largest business organizations of its kind with over 500 restaurant members to date, ranging from individual Latino businessmen/women owning fast food establishments to gourmet larger restaurants to lounges and bars within the tri-state area. Our focus is advocacy, business training and legislative reform for the food and beverage industry, while simultaneously creating opportunities for minority owned businesses throughout the state.

HPD Coronavirus Update for Tenants & Building Owners

Resources for Tenants

HPD continues to perform inspections for emergency complaints, including heat and hot water, and to make emergency repairs. New Yorkers should continue to report conditions through 311 and can contact HPD through the tenant information hotline at 212-863-8307. 

Landlords cannot evict tenants or ask renters to leave their apartment for having COVID-19, for being under home-quarantine, or because of fears and stigma around COVID-19. Tenants who have questions or concerns can call 311 to be connected to free legal advice through HRA's Office of Civil Justice or to the New York City Commission on Human Rights to make a complaint.

HPD Section 8 voucher holders facing rent hardships due to drops in income are encouraged to reach out to us as soon as possible at DTRAI@hpd.nyc.gov or fax us at 212-863-5299. More information can be found on HPD’s website.

Connecting New Yorkers to affordable housing is more important than ever. See the HPD website for projects accepting applications.

Since March 16, all eviction proceedings are suspended indefinitely. Visit the Department of Investigation (DOI) website for more information.

Individuals seeking additional financial support, including emergency Cash Assistance to cover rent or utility arrears, can visit nyc.gov/AccessHRA or call 311 to apply for these benefits.

A senior or a person with a disability living in a rent-regulated unit can call 311 or nyc.gov/RentFreeze to check eligibility for a rent freeze through the Senior Citizens Rent Increase Exemption (SCRIE) or the Disabled Rent Increase Exemption (DRIE) programs.

Resources for Building Owners

HPD is regularly communicating with building owners and property managers that work with HPD to provide the most up-to-date guidance from the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, including how to support seniors and those in supportive housing. Updates can be found on HPD’s website or at nyc.gov/coronavirus.

Various homeowner assistance programs for financing support remain available through HPD. Up to date information can be found on HPD's website.

Building owners with Section 8 questions should email DTROS@hpd.nyc.gov or fax at 212-863-8526.

April 27, 2020 Update Read More

NYS Lockdown to Continue Beyond May 15th

Governor Cuomo says he will extend New York lockdown for 'many parts of the state' beyond May 15th as new antibody study of 7,500 people shows nearly 25% of people in New York City tested positive for COVID-19. Click below for more information.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8261761/Cuomo-says-extend-New-Y...

Gov Says NYC Needs ‘Summer Activities’ Open For Residents

Parts of New York could start reopening as early as May 15, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Sunday as he outlined a two-phase plan to begin reopening the state, emphasizing that different regions will have different schedules but that the dense population of New York City will need to have at least some "summer activities" open for residents, in what appeared to be a contradiction to comments from the city's mayor, Bill de Blasio. Read more at the link below

https://www.forbes.com/sites/lisettevoytko/2020/04/26/cuomo-details-plan...

New York State Bar Association Offers Free Unemployment Insurance Help

The state’s court system and the New York State Bar Association are creating a system to help New Yorkers who are trying to secure unemployment benefits and appealing claims that are denied.

The website, www.nysba.org/legalhelp, will provide resources for filing a claim and match pro bono attorneys with clients who’ve had their claims denied.

Fair Recovery Taskforce, Taskforce on Racial Inclusion and Equity

The Mayor is announced the establishment of a Fair Recovery Taskforce that will develop a plan to restart the economy with focus on racial and economic equity. 
 
Additionally, a Taskforce on Racial Inclusion and Equity (TRIE) will be established within the Administration to monitor the City response in the hardest hit neighborhoods and work with city agencies to narrow long standing racial and economic disparities. The First Lady and Deputy Mayor Phil Thompson will lead the taskforce.

For more information, click below
https://www1.nyc.gov/office-of-the-mayor/news/290-20/mayor-de-blasio-fai...

NYU Langone Offers Video Visits With Doctors

Many health concerns can't wait for the pandemic to pass. To ensure we meet the needs of our patients, we now offer several ways to see your doctors, including specialists, from home. Whether you need a follow-up with your primary care doctor or cardiologist, a new OB/GYN, or have something that comes up in the middle of the night—NYU Langone has video visit options for you.

Many NYU Langone doctors offer video visits from your phone, as an alternative to in-office appointments. Doctors spend the same amount of time with their patients as they would in person, over video chat in the NYU Langone Health app. You can schedule video visits with your current care team as well as new doctors and specialists in the NYU Langone App or Online.

https://nyulangone.org/apps/nyu-langone-health-app?cid=eml_dm&em=IP_Warm...

https://nyulangone.org/doctors?cid=eml_dm&em=IP_Warming_Email1B&subkey=0...

Learn more about video visits below

https://nyulangone.org/locations/video-doctor-visits?cid=eml_dm&em=IP_Wa...

Virtual Urgent Care appointments offered 24/7

If you would like to see someone as soon as possible for flu-like symptoms or minor medical concerns, you can use NYU Langone Virtual Urgent Care. Virtual Urgent Care providers will assess symptoms and advise on treatment options, provide specialist referrals, or send prescriptions to your pharmacy electronically. Virtual Urgent Care is covered by most health plans, including Medicare. Same-day appointments for Virtual Urgent Care are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Learn more about Virtual Urgent Care or schedule a same-day appointment today.

https://nyulangone.org/locations/virtual-urgent-care?cid=eml_dm&em=IP_Wa...

Labs and Essential Services to Stay Healthy

You can continue to get important healthcare services, including lab tests, even if your community is under "Stay-at-Home" restrictions. Check your local community guidelines and visit the LabCorp website for hours and locations.

https://www.labcorp.com/labs-and-appointments?utm_campaign=20_patient_co...

Educational Programming

WNET/WLIW Online and On-air educational content for teachers, families and students - These broadcast schedules were developed to help schools and districts bridge the digital divide and provide equitable access to learning for all students at home, regardless of access to the internet or computers. Each scheduled program includes links to online resources that can be accessed with any Internet connected device, including a smartphone. 

https://www.wnet.org/education/blog/weekly-broadcast-schedules/

NYC Workplace Laws

NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) reminds New Yorkers about NYC Workplace Laws. Please see attached publication for Important Information for Employers and Employees: Update about Workplace Laws as NYC Seeks to Stop the Spread of the New Coronavirus (COVID-19). Created by DCWP, this publication includes a summary of City labor laws for employers and employees as you deal with the impact of COVID-19 on your workplace. You can also download the publication at the link below.

https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/dca/downloads/pdf/workers/Complying-with-NYC...

NYC Paid Safe and Sick Leave Law:

Employees can use sick leave for themselves or for a family member for diagnosis, care, or treatment of an illness, injury, or health condition or for preventive medical care(for example, staying home to observe symptoms of COVID-19).

NYC Temporary Schedule Change Law:

Employees can ask to make temporary changes to their schedules for certain personal events twice per year, totaling no more than 2 days.

NYC’s Fair Workweek Law:

Under the law, fast food and retail employers must give workers advance notice of work schedules, including schedule changes. Fast food employers must pay a premium for certain schedule changes.

NYC Freelance Isn’t Free Act:

All contracts worth $800 or more must be in writing. The written contract must spell out the work freelancers will perform; the pay for the work; and the date freelancers get paid. Freelancers and hiring parties must keep a copy of the written contract.

NYC Financial Empowerment Centers

Due to the COVID19 crisis, for the health and safety of our providers and clients, all DCWP Financial Counseling sessions will be conducted over the phone. Counselors can help New Yorkers manage their bills amidst the coronavirus crisis, understand student loans, and more. Book an appointment at www.nyc.gov/talkmoney

Rutgers Launches COVID-19 Study of Healthcare Workers

Rutgers University announced that it has launched the nation's largest prospective study of health care workers exposed to COVID-19. For more information, click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/42058430/rutgers-launches-nations-large...

 

Honoring Essential Workers

New York essential workers will be honored with an air show on Tuesday. The US Navy's Blue Angels and the Air Force Thunderbirds will fly over the New York Metropolitan area as a tribute to all the workers on the frontlines of this pandemic. "This is [] our way of showing that we are all in this together and that America's spirit will prevail," said Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein and Navy Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Michael Gilday in a joint statement.

https://nypost.com/2020/04/26/blue-angels-thunderbirds-to-fly-over-nyc-i...

Funeral and Burial Guidance and Assistance

Funeral and Burial Guidance and Assistance:
https://www1.nyc.gov/site/helpnownyc/get-help/funeral-burial-guidance.page

HRA will provide financial assistance to individuals in need of assistance to meet qualifying funeral expenses. View the Application for Burial Allowance and find out more about what HRA will cover. Learn more about the application process below.

Burial Allowance Applications and supporting documents may be submitted in person, or by email at BurialServices@hra.nyc.gov or by fax at 917-639-0476.

April 23, 2020 Update Read More

Updates from the Governor's Office

Governor Cuomo launched a new nation-leading COVID-19 contact tracing program to control the rate of infection of the virus. This program will help us control the infection rate of Coronavirus and will be executed in coordination with New Jersey and Connecticut. It will serve as an important resource to gather data and be a model to replicate across the country. Bloomberg Philanthropies is committing $10.5 million, along with organizational support and technical assistance, to help build and execute this new program, and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health will build an online curriculum and training program for contact tracers. This program will be crucial as we start our work to safely reopen our economy. 
 
While New York is on PAUSE, families of public employees won't need to wait to access retirement benefits. A recently signed Executive Order waives the 15-day waiting period. This allows families who may lose a relative to Coronavirus to receive these benefits sooner.
 
The New York State Department of Financial Services announced new measures to help hospitals. DFS will direct health insurers to provide financial and administrative relief to New York State hospitals in response to COVID-19. Health insurers will be required to immediately pay out claims to hospitals and to work with the neediest hospitals to provide additional financial assistance. That means hospitals can focus more on life-saving medical care.
 
The NY National Guard Civil Support Team is helping test medical workers for COVID-19. The 22 Soldiers and Airmen on the team are trained to detect the presence of biological, chemical and radiological hazards using a sophisticated mobile laboratory. They have adapted this technology to run COVID-19 tests, and are now testing on-site medical workers stationed at the Javits Center, which has been used as an overflow facility for COVID patients.
 
The Port Authority of NY and NJ helped find a good home for over 30,000 pineapples. When a NYC food distributor received a shipment of thousands of pineapples from Costa Rica, they worked with the Port Authority to donate the pineapples to New Yorkers in need. They are just one of many food distributors that are giving away excess food product to food pantries, houses of worship and community groups. More donations are expected — of not just pineapples, but bananas, rice, tomatoes, apples, oranges and more.
 
The State's antibody testing survey results will be announced in a few days. Earlier this week, New York began administering the survey in supermarkets and other locations statewide. The results of the random testing will show us for the first time what percentage of the population has actually had the virus and will help us to reopen and rebuild without jeopardizing what has already accomplished.

Five COVID-19 Walk-In Locations Officially Open With Seniors Receiving Priority Treatment

Five COVID-19 walk-in testing locations are officially open for those who are in need of testing. Seniors, 65 years of age and older with pre existing conditions receive immediate service. Although these are "walk-in" centers it might be a good idea to call 311 or one of the number below just to be sure.

https://nyforseniors.com/five-covid-19-walk-in-locations-officially-open...

CDC Announces New Guidelines for Pets

Following the announcement of the first confirmed cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection in two pet cats, the CDC has new recommendations for pets. For more information, click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/42041174/cdc-announces-new-guidelines-f...

Worried about planned concerts? Ticketmaster will give refunds to customers

Ticketmaster is assuring customers it will issue refunds for all events affected by the coronavirus pandemic. For more information, click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/42041086/worried-about-planned-concerts...

 

April 22, 2020 Update Read More

Three Queens NYCHA Developments Will Host On-Site COVID-19 Testing

The Queensbridge Houses in Long Island City, Hammel Houses in Rockaway Beach and Red Fern Houses in Far Rockaway are three of the 11 campuses included in a pilot program that will provide onsite health services and testing in NYCHA developments. For more information, click below

https://queenseagle.com/all/three-queens-nycha-developments-will-host-on...

COVID-19 Hospitalizations Statistics

The number of hospitalizations continue to fall. Yesterday, total hospitalizations fell to 16,076, the eighth straight day of declines. Notwithstanding this encouraging trend, infections remain high and the virus is still spreading. See the latest data at covid19tracker.health.ny.gov

Virtual Services from Queens Library

As we all continue to deal with this unprecedented situation, Queens Public Library continues to serve every community in Queens.

Unfortunately, many people now find themselves unemployed because of the shutdown of various sectors of the economy. QPL's Job & Business Academy is providing virtual resume assistance to anyone looking to create or update their resume. Our career coaches and employment counselors will also assist with any job search questions your constituents may have. Please feel free to share the flyer below with them so that they may become aware of this service.

There are many other services we are providing to the community free of charge, such as Brainfuse HelpNow, an online eLearning platform.
https://landing.brainfuse.com/authenticate.asp

A list of additional programs and services can be found here on our QPLatHome digital resource page.
https://www.queenslibrary.org/about-us/news-media/blog/2041

Virtual Resume Assistance from our Job & Business Academy. Email Your Resume or Questions jobsearchhelp@queenslibrary.org

Looking for a Quarantine Buddy?

To help curb loneliness and isolation during the pandemic, three Cornell students developed an app to help make a "Quarantine Buddy" and connect people of all ages from around the world as we are all social distancing. For more information, click below

https://www.syracuse.com/coronavirus/2020/04/looking-for-a-quarantine-bu...

April 21, 2020 Update Read More

Are you ready to buy a home COVID-19?

Neighborhood Housing Services of Jamaica (NHSJ) will be hosting a virtual home buying workshop via ZOOM on Wednesday April 22, 2020 from 3 pm to 5 pm. Please share with participants who are interested in buying a house or looking to buy a house.
To RSVP Register at
http://nhsjamaica.ticketleap.com/covid-19-are-you-ready-to-buy-a-home/

Hazard Pay for Frontline Workers

Governor Cuomo is calling on the federal government to provide hazard pay to these frontline workers and give them a 50 percent bonus because they are the true heroes in this crisis. For more information, click the link below

https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/amid-ongoing-covid-19-pandemic-governor...

NYCHA residents will get coronavirus testing, face masks and hand sanitizer

The state will deliver 500,000 cloth masks — at least one for every resident — and 10,000 gallons of hand sanitizer to public housing communities. It is now mandatory for all New Yorkers to wear face coverings in public settings, where social distancing measures are difficult to maintain and when using public transportation. For more information, click the link below

https://nypost.com/2020/04/20/nycha-residents-will-get-coronavirus-testi...

Curbside Composting Suspension

The Department of Sanitation will temporarily suspend curbside composting service beginning on Monday, May 4th 2020. The City is suspending service to divert resources to emergency COVID-19 response efforts. Additionally, this crisis, and the resulting decrease in economic activity, have forced the City to make significant budget cuts to maintain emergency services and core municipal services. Residents should put their food scraps, food-soiled paper, and yard waste in the garbage for the duration of the suspension. Any material set out in a brown bin on or after May 4th will be collected as garbage.

This is a temporary suspension with service expected to resume in July 2021. Residents should keep their bins for when service resumes. DSNY will not take back brown bins. After your last collection, use soap and water to clean your bin and place it in storage for when the program resumes. Do not leave your bins on the curb.

While curbside composting is suspended, you can make compost at home. Download PDFs of educational materials at: nyc.gov/recyclingmaterials. Compost education materials are in the Food Scraps + Yard Waste section.

Please use the attached Curbside Compost Suspension Guide and Flyer to find answers to frequently asked questions about the curbside composting suspension and share with your neighbors to help notify NYC residents of this service change.

SUNY Distributing Over 8,800 Laptops to Students in Need

To fulfill technology needs while remote learning continues, SUNY is distributing more than 8,800 laptops to students in need who are currently completing their spring semester coursework online amid the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information, click the link below

https://mylittlefalls.com/suny-distributing-over-8800-laptops-to-student...

DOE Opens Kosher Meal Sites

The Department of Education is announcing the expansion of its program to address food insecurity during the COVID-19 crisis to now include sites that offer exclusively kosher certified meals starting on April 20th. Three Kosher meals a day will be available to any New Yorker who wants one at ten sites in Brooklyn and Queens.

Kosher meals follow the USDA meal nutrition guidelines and are produced in partnership with a certified kosher distributor. Our kosher meal sites are housed in DOE school buildings and staffed by DOE food service staff. Meals offered at our kosher meal sites are free and available to any New Yorker that requests them and we will continue to assess site location with potential to expand to meet community needs.

To find the kosher meal site closest to you, find the full list of sites at schools.nyc.gov/koshermeals.

Starting on March 16, the DOE began distributing three free meals a day to any student that needed one across the city. On April 3 that program was expanded to include all New Yorkers. To date, approx. 4.5 million meals have been served at our over 400 Meal Hubs across the city. Currently, both halal and vegetarian meals are available at all Meal Hubs.

Kosher Meal Sites Opening Tuesday, April 21st

Williamsburg

PS 132 The Conselyea School – 320 Manhattan Avenue, Brooklyn 11211
PS 257 John F Hylan – 60 Cook Street, Brooklyn 11206
Kosher Meal Sites Opening Thursday, April 23rd

Far Rockaway

P.S. 197 The Ocean School - 825 Hicksville Road, Queens 11691
P.S. 253 - 1307 Central Avenue, Queens 11691
Flushing/Kew Gardens

P.S. 154 Queens - 75-02 162 Street, Queens 11366
P.S. 215 - 535 Briar Place, Queens 11691
Crown Heights

P.S. 289 George V. Brower - 900 St Marks Avenue, Brooklyn 11213
I.S. 2 - 655 Parkside Avenue, Brooklyn 11226
Boro Park

P.S. 192 - The Magnet School For Math And Science - 4715 18 Avenue, Brooklyn 11204
Midwood

P.S. 197 - The Kings Highway Academy - 1599 East 22 Street, Brooklyn 11210

Information on HRA Assistance with Funeral Expenses

Assistance with funeral expenses:

HRA - https://www1.nyc.gov/site/hra/help/burial-assistance.page
Cash assistance
No time limit on applications
Applications may be submitted online (preferable) or faxed. (HRA staff are in the office Wednesdays only).
Families will be contacted by a caseworker
Applications for undocumented persons will be accepted

April 20, 2020 Update Read More

Donate Plasma - Help Save Lives

New York Blood Center and H+H Needs YOUR Help

Plasma from people who have recovered from COVID-19 has been used by H+H to successfully help patients recover. H+H is participating in trials using plasma to improve COVID-19 care. Please visit New York Blood Center to schedule an appointment and donate today.

Citywide Social Distancing Enforcement

As weather gets nicer, remember to stay home and do your part. NYPD and Parks stepped up enforcement citywide, targeting hotspots for complaints and non-compliance. Fines will be up to $1,000. Text photos to 311-692 or use the 311 app to report social distancing complaints.

311 is Experiencing High Call Volume

311 is experiencing high call volume. The city wants to make sure the highest priority calls are answered as quickly as possible. Constituents who are not calling to be connected to a COVID-19 related resource, or with an urgent request, please submit a service request online by visiting NYC.gov/311 or by using the 311 app. Or, if you cannot submit a request online, consider calling after 7PM or during weekend hours.

5 Foods To Help Boost Your Immune System During Coronavirus

5 Foods To Help Boost Your Immune System During Coronavirus:
1. Red Bell Peppers
2. Broccoli
3. Strawberries
4. Garlic
5. Spinach
For more information, please click below

https://nyforseniors.com/5-foods-to-help-boost-your-immune-system-during...

City to Prioritize Seniors on 311 Calls

The 311 system will now prioritize coronavirus-related calls, including inquiries relating to food insecurity and complaints about failures to socially distance. The city is hiring 120 people to help staff the call center. For more information, please click below

https://nyforseniors.com/de-blasio-promises-new-york-city-seniors-will-r... calls/?fbclid=IwAR3Ik_PfwzLOvm2yDuC6z6C7zt44eEoYW2lSqZzB0IpfcE4LtDwF4o7RFd4

Grants for Cultural Organizations

Grants for Cultural Organizations: The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) has issued guidance on applying for the $75 million it was allocated in the CARES Act. If a nonprofit cultural organization has received NEA support in the last four fiscal years, they are eligible to apply for a direct grant. Apply by April 22, 2020. For more information, please click below

https://www.arts.gov/grants/apply-grant/grants-organizations?fbclid=IwAR...

Ordering From Eateries During The Pandemic

According to Business Insider, there are a few things that restaurant owners want customers to know about ordering delivery and takeout during the coronavirus pandemic. For more information, please click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/42020809/video-what-you-should-know-abo...

Sports After Coronavirus  

The PGA Tour will reportedly resume play in June, but as sports try to a make a comeback, they will look much different than we're used to. For more information, please click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/42014025/the-world-of-sports-what-will-...

Free Online Virtual Tutoring Service

An online service is helping New York City students keep up with their studies while they’re out of the classroom due to the coronavirus pandemic. For more information, please click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/42021135/online-service-connects-studen...

The following phone numbers are for domestic violence support

Safe Horizon 800-621-4673 (24/7)

Crime Victim Advocate for 103 Precinct

(929-335-4219 Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

Assistance with petitioning for family court orders virtually

718-262-0202 (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

Queens Family Court Services 646-599-3308

(Mon-Fri 9am-5pm)

April 17, 2020 Update Read More

Updates from the Governor's Office

Governor Cuomo issued an executive order directing all New York State public and private labs to coordinate with the Department of Health to prioritize diagnostic testing.

·       Schools and nonessential businesses will stay closed through May 15th.

·       Governor Cuomo issued executive orders 202.17 and 202.18 requiring all people in New York to wear masks or face coverings in public, including when taking public or private transportation or riding in for-hire vehicles.

·       Governor Cuomo issued an executive order directing all NYS public and private labs to coordinate with DOH to prioritize diagnostic testing.

·       An awareness campaign encourages low-income New Yorkers to claim their Economic Impact Payments under the CARES Act.

·       An executive order directs employers to provide essential workers with masks free of charge to wear when interacting with the public.

·       A blueprint to un-PAUSE New York will be implemented in coordination with other regional states to get people back to work and ease social isolation without triggering renewed spread of the virus.

·       New COVID-19 testing facilities are opening downstate, primarily in minority communities. Find testing site locations and hours or operation.

·       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 NY State of Health through May 15, 2020; must apply within 60 days of losing coverage.

·       New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling.

·       Testing is free for all eligible New Yorkers as ordered by a health care provider.

·       Your local health department is your community contact for COVID-19 concerns.  

Financial Counseling & Coaching Programs

In response to the COVID-19 state of emergency in NYC, the NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection’s Office of Financial Empowerment has transitioned all of its financial counseling and coaching programs to offer services remotely. Their financial counselors are providing free financial counseling sessions over the phone. Their counselors can help New Yorkers manage their bills amidst the coronavirus crisis, understand student loans, and more. Book an appointment at nyc.gov/talkmoney
It’s free, secure and confidential!

Pandemic Exhaustion

It’s hard enough to fall asleep when times are normal, but add an extra viral pandemic to the mix and millions of Americans are finding themselves up all night due to worry, anxiety, and fear for the future. For more information, click the link below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/42020244/pandemic-exhaustion-coronavirus-affecting-sleep-habits-for-77-of-americans?fbclid=IwAR26raY2pg5KzQH2qBkHX01V3sM_HBCNPnKScy6SCAZEf05hEfAz8nX2uG4

Broadway Shows Streamed Online

While Broadway shows have been temporarily canceled during the coronavirus outbreak, fans can do the next best thing – watch them at home. For more information, click the link below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41905913/live-performances-to-watch-from-the-comfort-of-your-home?fbclid=IwAR1uzlBY0rvXFMYDFFShsbyDSmYlrRd7amrttChk9-6pOtvBDCFRTv6C23M

April 16, 2020 Update Read More

Gov. Cuomo extends 'New York on Pause' through May 15
During a press conference, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo says in coordination with other states that he is extending the "New York on Pause" initiative through May 15. For more information, click the link below

https://www.msnbc.com/msnbc/watch/gov-cuomo-extends-new-york-on-pause-through-may-15-82138693794?fbclid=IwAR358XxuAGjsKEvgedZzZSzNJCW_CGb3kaXlH6ZShtUTVmwE6_OTQmBQ4Bc

Masks Required on Mass Transit

Statement from MTA Chairman and CEO Patrick J. Foye:
“Pursuant to the Governor’s Executive Order, all customers will be required to wear a face covering while traveling with us during this pandemic, effective Friday April 17. We commend the Governor for his leadership in ensuring a safe environment for the essential workers riding with us. We remind New Yorkers to stay home and observe social distancing measures whenever possible. Walk down the platform, board a different train car or wait for the next train or bus where possible – we all need to change our behavior to protect each other. Wearing masks and other face coverings in public will help stop the spread and ultimately save lives.”

CUNY Emergency Relief Fund

The City University of New York announced it has launched a Chancellor’s Emergency Relief Fund to help students facing financial hardship during the coronavirus pandemic. For more information, click the link below.

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/42010869/cuny-launches-emergency-relief-fund-for-students-in-need-amid-covid19?fbclid=IwAR3Jd5Sb2oEi4Pzk8BdwbH7itN7RLB_Vr0XQ2DoQp-UV8UclywAw7zpHFcI

RIP Sidney Saloway

Our thoughts and prayers are with the family, during this difficult time.

Sidney Soloway, 90, died on April 5 of coronavirus at Mount Sinai South Nassau Hospital in Oceanside. The former owner of PIP Printing & Marketing Services in Inwood had lived in Far Rockaway since 1958. For more information, click the link below.

https://www.liherald.com/fivetowns/stories/far-rockaway-native-sidney-soloway-dies-at-90,124072?fbclid=IwAR0zdXlxu3btwYbdRNhLRVzlwHWSeEnXMjtf7U9TOsnwsSNae4qB38GCWNI

 

April 15, 2020 Update Read More

COVID-19 Testing

The Joseph P. Addabbo Family Health Center, has launched "COVID-19 Tent Testing Center"

Joseph P. Addabbo Family Health Center
COVID-19 Tent Testing Center (Parking Lot)
1288 Central Avenue, Far Rockaway, NY

Testing Dates:
Tuesday, April 14th - 12noon - 4pm
Thursday, April 16th - 10am - 2pm

Testing is by appointment only, call 718.945.7150 or visit www.addabbo.org for more details.

Governor Orders Mask Wearing in Public

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said today he is ordering all people to wear a face covering while in public as the state works to combat the nation’s worst coronavirus outbreak.

The executive order will take effect after a three-day grace period.

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/04/15/new-york-gov-cuomo-to-order-all-people-to-wear-masks-or-face-coverings-in-public.html

Feeding Seniors and the Disabled

Girls Set The Ground Rules is an organization looking to partner with food pantries in the community to help deliver groceries to senior citizens or disabled community members who can not go outside during this pandemic. If you are interested in partnering or have an idea on how to help please outreach Monique Ullah at 718-350-0895 or email info@girlssetthegroundsrule.org

Job Opportunities

Job Opportunities at H+H: NYC Health and Hospitals needs workers to help transport patients, clerical staff and cleaning staff. You can apply today at http://nyc.gov/coronavirus. Spread the word: https://twitter.com/NYCMayor/status/1249371220811952136

Institute for Parenting WarmLine

The Institute for Parenting WarmLine within Adelphi University supports young children's social and emotional wellness. For non-emergency calls from care-givers, teachers, parents etc with questions about children 0-6. Call and leave a message at 516-515-1948 with questions regarding babies and young children’s development and wellbeing, especially in times of high stress. Your call will be returned by a childhood specialist (English and Spanish speaking clinicians).

Elmcor Youth & Adult Services

Elmcor Youth and Adult Services Inc. are temporarily closed and they are offering services virtually. Attached in this email you can find flyers about their youth virtual groups and outpatient virtual groups. For any question or concerns please feel free to contact Tiara Springer-Love at 718.651.0096 ext 291.

Feeding New York

This morning, the Mayor and Commissioner Garcia outlined the steps that the City is taking to ensure that no New Yorker goes hungry during the COVID-19 health crisis.

This plan, Feeding New York, details the City’s plan to feed hungry New Yorkers throughout this crisis and protect the security of our food supply chain.

In the last three weeks, from Meal Hubs at public schools to home deliveries to seniors and other vulnerable populations, the City has provided approximately 4.5 million meals to hungry New Yorkers, and the City projects serving 10 million meals in April alone.

Feeding New York consists of two central components: meeting immediate needs, and planning for a more resilient future for our food system.

To view the full report: https://www1.nyc.gov/…/pdf/reports/2020/Feeding-New-York.pdf

Additional information on COVID-19 food assistance resources can be found at https://www1.nyc.gov/…/services/COVID-19FoodAssistance.shtml

 

April 14, 2020 Update Read More

COVID-19 Testing

The Joseph P. Addabbo Family Health Center, has launched "COVID-19 Tent Testing Center"

Joseph P. Addabbo Family Health Center
COVID-19 Tent Testing Center (Parking Lot)
1288 Central Avenue, Far Rockaway, NY

Testing Dates:
Tuesday, April 14th - 12noon - 4pm
Thursday, April 16th - 10am - 2pm

Testing is by appointment only, call 718.945.7150 or visit www.addabbo.org for more details.

Help For Victims of Domestic Violence

As with many other human services organizations grounded in direct, in-person service provision, Sanctuary is on the front lines of this crisis and working tirelessly to ensure that it continues to meet its clients’ urgent needs while making every effort to protect their safety. Sanctuary is closely monitoring the additional challenges its clients may be facing – from court closures that may prevent or delay critical legal remedies such as orders of protection, child support, and immigration relief; to school closings forcing many clients to secure childcare so they can continue to work, often for employers who offer little flexibility or sick time; income losses for clients with insecure jobs; and fear among immigrant survivors who are already anxious about accessing public services and may avoid reporting symptoms or visiting urgent care.

Legal helpline available anytime – 212-349-6009 ext. 246
Speak to a lawyer – Monday – Friday ( 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.)
Visit sanctuaryforfamilies.org/get-help

Mental Health Support from the City

New Yorkers can visit the ThriveNYC Resource Guide to Mental Health Services New Yorkers Can Access While Staying Home. This guide includes information on how City agencies are modifying mental health services during the COVID-19 crisis and identifies resources for all New Yorkers as well as services tailored to the needs of aging New Yorkers, veterans, students and young people, and people harmed by violence, crime or abuse. All services are free to New Yorkers, regardless of insurance coverage or immigration status.

https://thrivenyc.cityofnewyork.us/mental_health_support_while_home

Governors Unite Against COVID-19

The governors of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Rhode Island and Massachusetts will join together to create a multi-state council to get people back to work and restore the economy. For more information, click below

https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/governor-cuomo-governor-murphy-governor...

Unemployment Claims

The Department of Labor has put out a new video letting people know they are working around the clock to help answer calls and process unemployment claims. You can view the video by clicking the link below
https://twitter.com/NYSLabor/status/1249874920257052672?fbclid=IwAR0nE2C...

City Launches COVID-19 Ad Campaign

New York City is launching a $10 million ad campaign this week meant to slow the spread of COVID-19. The campaign will include robocalls, live phone calls and texts to residents of the 88 zip codes most impacted by coronavirus, as well as flyers at essential businesses, direct snail mail and TV, radio and digital ads in 15 languages in those areas. For more information, click below

https://bit.ly/2VsWYqN

COVID-19 Resource Guide for Immigrants

COVID-19 Resource Guide for Immigrants: The City put out a resource guide specifically for immigrant communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information, click the link

https://on.nyc.gov/2XBDAug

Free Internet

At this time, there are several options for free internet access:

· AlticeUSA is providing free internet service for all students for 60 days. Please call 866-200-9522 to enroll.

· Comcast - Comcast is offering an internet essentials package for free. To sign up for a free internet essentials package for 60 days, applicants can simply visit www.internetessentials.com. The accessible website also includes the option to video chat with customer service agents in American Sign Language. There are also two dedicated phone numbers 1-855-846-8376 for English and 1-855-765-6995 for Spanish.

· Spectrum - Spectrum is offering free internet access for students. Beginning March 16, Spectrum is offering free internet for 60 days to households with K-12 or college students who don’t already have a Spectrum subscription. To enroll, call 1-844-488-8395.

· Charter - Charter is offering free internet for 2 months. 1 (877) 906-9121

· AT&T - AT&T COVID-19 response. AT&T will offer open hot-spots, unlimited data to existing customers, and $10/month plans to low-income families.

· Verizon - Verizon does not have special offers, but is following the FCC agreement.

· Sprint - Sprint is following the FCC agreement, providing unlimited data to existing customers, and, starting Tuesday, 3/17/2020, will allow all handsets to enable hot spots for 60 days at no extra charge.

· T-Mobile - T-Mobile is following the FCC agreement, plus unlimited data to existing customers, and, coming soon, will allow all handsets to enable hot-spots for 60 days at no extra charge

Virtual Aquarium & Zoo Tours

Aquariums and zoos across the nation are now offering virtual tours and programs for their visitors to enjoy from the couch!

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/42001317/15-aquariums-and-zoos-you-can-...

Brainfuse from Queens Public Library

Queens Public Library (QPL) is committed to offering free and trustworthy programs, services and information to our customers. In this spirit, with support from TD Bank, the Library has introduced Brainfuse, an online learning platform that offers educational and vital resources for individuals of all ages.

https://landing.brainfuse.com/authenticate.asp?u=main.queenspl.ny.brainf...

Students from K-12 can receive free one-on-one tutoring in English and Spanish on:
·               PSAT/SAT, ACT and AP
·               Math, science, reading and writing and social studies
 
For adults, the platform offers:
·               Career resources, including live resume assistance
·               U.S. citizenship preparation and essay writing
·               Information about the high school equivalency exam
 
Live help from Brainfuse is available with our library card seven days a week from 2pm – 11pm.
 
As a reminder, QPL offers an extensive range of digital and virtual content available for our users:
·               Virtual programming, including bilingual children storytimes, exercise classes (i.e. Zumba, meditation), and health lectures.
·               Online resources, including eBooks, audiobooks, eMagazines, music, movies, etc.
·               Virtual reference desk, available via chat and email Monday through Friday from
12pm – 5pm.

April 13, 2020 Update Read More

Expanding Testing

The Mayor announced that the City is expanding COVID-19 testing in hard hit communities bringing five new H+H testing sites online. – East New York, BK; Morrisania, BX; Harlem, MN; Jamaica, QN; and Clifton, SI by the end of next week. Vulnerable New Yorkers who have symptoms or questions about COVID-19 can call 844-NYC-4NYC to connect with a medical provider from Health and Hospitals.

Essential Workers Ordered to Wear Masks

Equipping Essential City Workers: Effective today, according to the Mayor's Office all essential City workers must wear face coverings when interacting with the public while on duty. The City is distributing face coverings to any worker who needs one.

For more information, click the link below
https://abc7ny.com/face-masks-coverings-coronavirus-new-york-ny/6099059/

When to Wear A Mask in Public

Earlier on in the pandemic, Americans were told to wear masks in public only if they were already sick. But that advice is out the window, as experts are saying we should make our own masks to wear whenever in public.

For information, click the link below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41995650/to-wear-or-not-to-wear-when-to...

SNAP Food Resources

Given our city's current situation, many families are becoming unemployed due to their businesses closing. Those who did not qualify for SNAP may be eligible now due to income changes.

This program offers free and confidential full pre-screenings for SNAP,  SNAP application assistance as well guidance on case issues. Additionally, they have partnered with many organizations and agencies where they may be able to offer resources around food assistance if the individual inquires or is not eligible for SNAP.

Apply for SNAP online at nyc.gov/accesshra or contact your local NOEP Coordinator:

Center for Independence of the Disabled, NY
646-849-8077
rcampbell@cidny.org

VA Healthcare Enrollment and COVID-19

Due to COVID-19 many Veterans who were previously denied VA healthcare enrollment due to high-income levels may be eligible to reapply for VA healthcare under the financial hardship provision based on applying for unemployment during the COVID-19 crisis.

The Veteran must provide VA information as to both, their calendar year to date and projected income, expenses, and any other special circumstances he/she believes will help in approving hardship determination. For financial hardships based on loss of employment the projected income information is provided on the VA Form 10-10HS. Note: Veterans must be informed that the information provided for a hardship determination is subject to verification by the Business Office at the health care facility (HCF).

http://vaww.va.gov/vaforms/medical/pdf/vha-10-10HS-fill.pdf

Pro-Bono Volunteer Lawyers

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

Price Gouging is Illegal

A reminder that price gouging is illegal. New York has zero tolerance for price gouging connected to COVID-19 and the NY Department of Consumer Protection is investigating reports of unfair price increases on products like cleaning supplies and hand sanitizer. To report suspected price gouging, call 1-800-697-1220 or file a complaint online at https://www.dos.ny.gov/consumerprotection/

Fun at Home - Virtual Museum Tours

Want to explore the world of art without leaving your home? These 15 famous museums are offering virtual tours so you can explore right from your couch!
For more information, click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41995648/tired-of-watching-tv-these-15-...

Virtual Musical Entertainment

Carnegie Hall’s new online series aims to connect artists with audiences everywhere.
https://www.carnegiehall.org/Explore/Watch-and-Listen/Live-with-Carnegie...

April 8, 2020 Update Read More

Rest in Peace - Community Mourns Another Loss
A Queens-based city sanitation worker died from complications of COVID-19 on April 5, becoming the agency’s first employee to succumb to the illness.

Raymond Copeland, 46, worked in Queens’s district 12, which serves Jamaica, Hollis, St. Albans, Springfield Gardens, Baisley Park, Rochdale Village and South Jamaica. 
For more info, click below
https://queenseagle.com/all/southeast-queens-sanitation-worker-dies-of-covid-19?fbclid=IwAR1zHjcv2BFOZZHlNjY9tZtJzdtlE1PDvkfhWV7SekWMmmM4JYZYIqiYsB0

COVID-19 Data By ZIP Code
Data on COVID-19. Check the number of cases in your ZIP Code by clicking below

https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/covid-19-cases-by-zip-04072020-1.pdf

Help for Domestic Violence Victims 
Call the New York State Domestic and Sexual Violence Hotline at 1-800-942-6906
English & Espanol / Multi-language Accessibility
Deaf or Hard of Hearing: 711

Unemployment Benefits
If you are self-employed, you can now apply for Unemployment Insurance benefits. The best way to file is online at http://labor.ny.gov/signin

Expanded Medicare Resources Due to Covid-19
Medicare has expanded services due to the COVID-19 emergency:

Lab tests for COVID-19. You pay no out-of-pocket costs.
All medically necessary hospitalizations. This includes if you're diagnosed with COVID-19 and need to stay in the hospital under quarantine instead of being discharged from the hospital after an inpatient stay.

https://www.medicare.gov/coverage/coronavirus-test?utm_campaign=20200408_gmd_prv_gal&utm_content=english&utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery&fbclid=IwAR07Ww--zLfbby8AcNoAl2dMdd_PJdS41b0hSgLv6zi-hV9hgZhRe0mCiOk

https://www.medicare.gov/coverage/inpatient-hospital-care?utm_campaign=20200408_gmd_prv_gal&utm_content=english&utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery&fbclid=IwAR1Tf8wynPmjOlKObSeL-swtr8yXsFnv-Y95u_b3jCb9GjL7YUeH6PXxFMg

Virtual Doctor Visits
If you or a family member are sick, need to see a doctor, but are under stay-at-home orders. A virtual doctor visit can help! For a list of 6 things to know about seeing a virtual doctor, click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41982346/6-things-to-know-about-scheduling-a-virtual-doctor-visit?fbclid=IwAR3jvHdzI48nXchJvo9miQAGqnNHz_ztDPZEa3iTC5DUk0MT1GmMh1WkkdY

Free Meal Resources for All

Here is a link for food resources. Please click below and go to Queens and then find food options in your part of the district.

https://www.nycfoodpolicy.org/coronavirus-nyc-food-reports/?utm_source=April+8%2C+2020&utm_campaign=Dec.+6%2C+2017&utm_medium=email&fbclid=IwAR3J1kC7rDhqdhSDerrHbn8gLYApfiVrSKB8uChMT-OJBGiUGbTksc882Aw

Free Meals for First Responders

Fast food chain White Castle is showing its appreciation for the men and women on the front lines of the coronavirus battle with some free food. For more information, click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41985834/white-castle-treats-health-care-workers-to-free-sliders?fbclid=IwAR3P4xpRZJD7xZlloWbmmVs22R6V56BhH9SqCgDPmfD1gXND_Oc_BN3BVBk

COVID-19 & Animals / Pets

COVID-19 and Animals: Due to the news of a tiger testing positive, some of you have asked if there is guidance about the impacts of COVID on animals. Currently, there is no evidence that companion animals, including pets, are contributing to the COVID-19 outbreak. Some animals can get infected, such as dogs and cats, but there are no reports of them spreading the virus. Here’s a link with more information COVID-19 and Animals FAQ from the newly formed Office of Animal Welfare.

https://www1.nyc.gov/…/dow…/pdf/imm/covid-19-animals-faq.pdf

 

April 7, 2020 Update Read More

Today is World Health Day. Let's remember all of those on the front lines fighting coronavirus.

News about COVID-19 Impact Payments for Social Security Beneficiaries

The Department of the Treasury (Treasury) announced on April 1 that Social Security beneficiaries who are not typically required to file tax returns will not need to file an abbreviated tax return to receive an economic impact payment. The IRS will use the information on the Form SSA-1099 to generate $1,200 economic impact payments to Social Security beneficiaries who did not file tax returns in 2018 or 2019.

Treasury, not Social Security, will make automatic payments to Social Security beneficiaries. Beneficiaries will receive these payments by direct deposit or by paper check, just as they would normally receive their Social Security benefits.

For updates from the IRS, visit www.irs.gov/coronavirus

Note for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Recipients:
 
We are working closely with Treasury to address outstanding questions about our SSI recipients in an attempt to make the issuance of economic impact payments as quick and efficient as possible.  We realize people are concerned, and the IRS will provide additional information at www.irs.gov/coronavirus when available.  Please note that we will not consider economic impact payments as income for SSI recipients, and the payments are excluded from resources for 12 months.

Social Security’s COVID-19 web page at www.socialsecurity.gov/coronavirus/ will be updated as further details become available.”

Free Meals

Grab and Go Meals Expanding for All New Yorkers: In this time of historic high unemployment, the City understands that more New Yorkers are experiencing food insecurity for the first time. To this end, grab and go meals are now available for all New Yorkers. No one is turned away, and participants are able to pick up three meals. The hours are:

○ 7:30 am - 11:30 am for families and children

○ 11:30 am - 1:30 pm for adults

To find a location, text “NYCFOOD” or “COMIDA” to 877-877 or visit the DOE website below
https://www.schools.nyc.gov/school-life/food/free-meals

All Non-Emergency Childcare Centers Closed

Starting yesterday all child care centers – with the exception of emergency child services operated or authorized by the Department of Education – have been closed. Programs may reopen when New York City public schools reopen, unless the Health Commissioner authorizes an earlier reopening date. Failure to comply with this Order may result in civil penalties or other enforcement. This was a decision made for the health and safety of workers and families. The REC centers are available for the children of first responders and other frontline workers.

City Closing Dog Runs

Closing Dog Runs: NYC Parks is closing dog runs as a part of ongoing efforts to maintain social distancing in public spaces. The City has been monitoring parks closely, and has observed overcrowding at dog runs and received numerous complaints. This week, NYC Parks will also remove any remaining basketball rims and tennis nets and lock up all courts with a gate, including handball courts. On Friday, the City closed all playgrounds. Parks remain open for the people, and dogs, to enjoy, but it is essential to maintain social distancing.

Increased Fines for Social Distancing Violations 

The Governor has announced that the state is increasing the maximum fine for violations of the state's social distancing rules from $500 to $1,000. This increase is targeted at anyone not following the social distancing protocol. "Now is not the time to be lax about distance," the Governor said. "Localities have the authority to enforce the protocols and they need to do so."

SERVICE NOTICE from Department of Buildings

COVID-19 Response: Weekly Safety Inspection Reports and
New Customer Service Office Hours

As part of the citywide response to the Coronavirus, Department of Buildings (DOB) customers are being urged to immediately limit the amount of walk-in traffic to DOB offices. Effective Saturday, April 4, 2020, Weekly Safety Inspection Reports must be submitted online, and all DOB customer service locations will close at 2:00 pm for drop-offs and in-person 

Practical Energy-Saving Tips for Right Now

Easy Ways to Save
 
Cleaning Closets? If you find LEDs in storage, now’s the time to swap out your old bulbs for more energy efficient ones.
 
Working at Home? Quit unnecessary programs. Use sleep settings. Turn your computer off and unplug it when you’re done working.
 
Check Thermostats. Revisit your thermostat settings to make sure they’re changing with the weather.
 
Plug into Power Strips. Plug your phones and computers into power strips. That makes it easy to switch everything off at the same time when you’re done.
 
TV Always Running? Be sure to turn off your cable box every time you shut your TV and lower your TV’s brightness settings. Then disable "Instant On," "Always On," or "Quick Start" settings. They draw excess standby power.
 
Beware of Vampire Voltage. Don’t leave chargers plugged into the wall if they’re not charging anything. They’re still drawing energy you’re not using.
 
How Are You Saving Energy?
Share your tips with your neighbors, friends, and @ConEdison on social media and tag them #PoweringThruTogether

For coronavirus updates from conEdison, click below

https://www.coned.com/en/about-us/media-center/news/coronavirus/updates?...

 

April 6, 2020 Update Read More

NYS COVID-19 Testing Data Tracker

The State launched a COVID-19 tracker to provide New York State's comprehensive testing data to the public. The website, www.ny.gov/covid-19tracker, which will be updated daily with the latest data, presents visualizations of statewide and county-level testing and results.

FOOD PANTRIES

The New York City Department of Probation runs food pantries at our various NeON (Neighborhood Opportunity Network) offices through our NeON Nutrition Kitchen partnership with the Food Bank for the New York City and the Mayor’s Fund.

In response to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) crisis, they are distributing food at four locations—providing one week of free pre-packed groceries for our neighbors in need. Those in need can get free pre-packed bags of food with non-perishable items and fresh produce according to the location.

Queens: 162-24 Jamaica Avenue
Tuesday / Wednesday / Friday
10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
718-520-2142

Brooklyn: 345 Adams
Monday / Wednesday / Friday
9 a.m. – Noon
718-488-3618

Bronx: 198 E. 161st Street
Tuesday / Wednesday / Friday
9 a.m. – Noon
718-537-5395

Staten Island
340 Bay Street
Monday / Wednesday / Thursday
718-876-8660

Free Meals from Catholic Charities

For more information on free meals from Catholic Charities call
1-888-744-7900.

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41974852/catholic-charities-provides-me...

IRS Warns of Scammers Looking to Steal Coronavirus Relief Checks

Fraudulent schemes may start with phone, social media, email or in-person requests for donations during the COVID-19 outbreak. Check the legitimacy of a charity asking for funds: http://www.irs.gov/teos

For more information, click below

https://bit.ly/2wksG11

Coping With COVID-19 Anxiety Resource Guide

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) has put out a resource guide which includes tips for coping with COVID-19-related-anxiety, how to manage loneliness and isolation while working from home, etc. Click below to view the guide https://bit.ly/2RcaFJm

New Guidance on Face Coverings

People who do not show symptoms may still be able to spread COVID-19. A face covering can help prevent you from spreading COVID-19 to other people, so you should wear one whenever you leave the home. A face covering will not protect you from infection, but it can help others.

A face covering can include anything that covers your nose and mouth, including dust masks, scarves and bandanas. Do not use health care worker masks, as those must be preserved for people in the health care system.

Even if you have a face covering, continue to stay home as much as possible and avoid close contact with other people.

For more information, click below

https://on.nyc.gov/2JLwdZi

https://bit.ly/2XfjNAE

Learn How to Make Cloth Masks

The CDC says that the use of simple cloth masks can help slow the spread of COVID-19. Here are tips on how to use them and make them.
http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41977776/learn-how-to-make-cloth-face-masks-to-help-slow-the-spread-of-covid19

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/apr/06/how-to-make-no-sew-face-mask-coronavirus

Pharmacies Offering Free Delivery of Medications

A reminder that pharmacies offer free home delivery of prescriptions to New Yorkers. Pharmacies, including Walgreens and CVS, have agreed to offer free home delivery of prescriptions to help reduce long lines. New Yorkers can easily get the prescriptions they need without putting themselves or others at risk.

Walgreens Info HERE
https://www.walgreens.com/topic/pharmacy/prescription-delivery.jsp

CVS Info HERE

https://www.cvs.com/content/delivery

Free Flights For Medical Volunteers

United Airlines is partnering with New York City to provide free round-trip flights for medical volunteers looking to help in the fight against COVID-19.
For more information, click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41976679/united-airlines-nyc-partner-to-provide-free-roundtrip-flights-for-medical-volunteers-in-covid19-fight

Be Productive, Learn a New Skill

While you are staying at home, why not learn a new skill or expand your professional development. Some places that have free courses are:
coursera.org
udemy.com
https://asuforyou.asu.edu/

Metroplus Still Providing Service

Metroplus representatives are still helping with insurance enrollment through phone and email. For assistance with renewal or recertification of insurance call 212-908-3300 or if you have any questions or concerns call customer service at 800-303-9626.

NYPD, NYC Police Foundation Purchase 150,000 Units of Masks, Gloves, Sanitizer

The NYPD and the New York City Police Foundation announced that they have purchased 150,000 units of masks, gloves and packets of hand sanitizer for those on the front lines.

The resources, which officials says cost $500,000, were supplied by Winbrook and purchased by the Police Foundation thanks to donors.

For more information click below
http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41971365/nypd-nyc-police-foundation-purchase-150000-units-of-masks-gloves-sanitizer?clienttype=generic&smartdevicecgbypass

April 1, 2020 Update Read More

Important Information from the Department of Labor on Unemployment Benefits

The Department of Labor released a new PSA to help New Yorkers applying for unemployment benefits. The PSA provides information on how to apply for UI benefits and reassures New Yorkers: If your unemployment filing is delayed, you will still receive every cent you are owed. And if you have questions about the expanded COVID-19 UI and whether you qualify, click here for more information.

https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/system/files/documents/2020/04/dol_une...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XZ4QNYyg5dc

News From Governor Cuomo

During his daily press conference today, Governor Cuomo said we currently have 83,712 cases coronavirus cases in New York State and 1,941 deaths.  The number of deaths reflects an increase of 1,550. He said he does not know when the pandemic will be over but model projections indicate that the apex (or peak) will be occur at the end of April and that the entirety will extend into July. The McKinsey model shows that with minimal social distancing we will need 110,00 COVID beds and 37,000 ventilators, but with high compliance with social distancing, the numbers are reduced to 75,000 COVID beds and 25,000 ventilators.
 
The Governor added that in his personal opinion rapid testing is the fastest way to get up and running and end anxiety. In regard to testing kits and swabs – Regeneron is creating 500,000 test kits at no charge with the first batch being delivered Monday with 25,000 per day in ongoing delivery. Corning has donated 100,000 tubes and provided an additional 500,000 at reduced cost and with expedited delivery.
 
The Governor said that living through these difficult times will be a transformative experience but advised that we should take with us the positive information that we learn and leave behind the negativity and the fear.

To see the entire press conference, click below
https://youtu.be/00GKmNkpZxo

ALL Playgrounds Closed Due to Crowding 

Governor Cuomo has closed all NYC playgrounds to stop the spread of coronavirus. This comes one day after Mayor de Blasio said that he would close 10 playgrounds that were problematic with people repeatedly refusing to follow social distancing rules. For more information, click below.

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/04/01/new-york-gov-cuomo-to-close-nyc-playgrounds-as-coronavirus-death-rate-starts-to-climb.html

Spring Break Cancelled For NY Public Schools 

Spring break is cancelled for New York Public Schools Monday, April 13 - Friday, April 17. Thursday, April 9 (Passover) and Friday, April 10 (Good Friday) will be holidays for religious observance.
For more info, click below.

https://patch.com/new-york/new-york-city/spring-break-cancelled-amid-nyc-coronavirus-outbreak

Protect Yourself from Medicare Coronavirus Scams

You may already be taking steps to protect your health during the COVID-19 emergency. Be sure to also protect your identity from scammers by guarding your Medicare Number.

It's easy to get distracted and let your guard down during these uncertain times. Scammers may try to steal your Medicare Number. They might lie about sending you Coronavirus vaccines, tests, masks, or other items in exchange for your Medicare Number or personal information.

Protect yourself from scams:

Only share your Medicare Number with your primary and specialty care doctors, participating Medicare pharmacist, hospital, health insurer, or other trusted healthcare provider.

Check your Medicare claims summary forms for errors.

Visit Medicare.gov/fraud for more information on protecting yourself from fraud and reporting suspected fraud.

Job Opportunities

The City's Workforce1 Career Center launched a Virtual Center (or call 718-960-2458) to help New Yorkers prepare for, and connect to, jobs across New York City's five boroughs and in every sector of the economy. Current employment opportunities include Stop & Shop, Fresh Direct & PBM Guardian Industry Services.

Direct to Home Meals for the Elderly

The Department for the Aging is working to ensure that older New Yorkers have access to daily meals. This week, senior centers across the City have been transitioning from providing grab-and-go meals to a direct delivery system. Questions? Call Aging Connect at 212-244-6469.

Mental Health Resources for Seniors

The City is connecting older New Yorkers who are feeling isolated with friendly volunteers to talk with over the phone. It's called the Friendly Visiting Program. For more information, call 212-AGING-NYC (212-244-6469).

SNAP Offering Online Classes for Seniors

If you are interested in participating in any of the classes, please email Mindy, at mlesser@snapqueens.org

In your email please include your name, telephone number, email and the classes you are interested in. SNAP will contact you to ensure you have the necessary device to participate.

Classes will be held through ZOOM conferencing. You are not required to have a ZOOM account. Some classes may require video. If they do, your device should have webcam capability.

Free Pet Food for Pet Owners

New York City pet owners affected by Coronavirus can get free dog and cat food, and other supplies like cat litter, through the ASPCA's New York City pet food distribution center. New York City residents can call the ASPCA Helpline at 1-800-738-9437 for information and appointments.

Alternate Side Parking Rules Suspended

The Mayor has announced that Alternate Side Parking has been suspended for another two weeks until Tuesday, April 14th.

Stay In Shape While Staying Indoors

Do you want to stay in shape while staying inside? Blink Fitness located at 163-02 on Jamaica Avenue is offering daily online workouts Monday through Friday at 8 a.m. at the link below.
https://www.facebook.com/pg/BlinkFitness/videos/

March 31, 2020 Update Read More

UPDATE: March 31, 2020
 

Updates from NYS and the Governor's Office

Governor Cuomo has directed the state nonessential workforce to continue to work from home for an additional two weeks through April 15th.
In-person workforce restrictions, which have been implemented through various executive orders are also extended until April 15th.
Statewide school closures are extended by two weeks until April 15.
The first 1,000-bed temporary hospital at the Javits Center is open and accepting patients.
Public and private hospitals will implement a new balanced approach to fighting COVID-19 where hospitals that are beginning to reach or exceed capacity can transfer patients to other hospitals that are not as full.
NYS Department of Health will work with statewide healthcare systems to share Information about supplies among hospitals.
There is a new mobile testing site at the Bay Plaza AMC Theater at 2210 Bartow Ave in the Bronx. Site hours are Monday - Sunday, 8am - 6pm. Appointment only.
Pharmacies have agreed to offer free home delivery to help reduce long lines for prescriptions at their facilities.
The NYS's Wadsworth Lab has developed a new test for COVID-19, which is done through a saliva sample and a self-administered short nasal swab.
Three new sites have been identified to serve as a place for emergency beds - South Beach Psychiatric Center in Staten Island, Westchester Square in the Bronx and Health Alliance in Ulster County – adding 695 more beds.
The federal government has approved four new sites for temporary hospitals - the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal, the Aqueduct Racetrack facility in Queens, CUNY Staten Island and the New York Expo Center in the Bronx - adding an additional 4,000 beds.
New Yorkers can call the COVID-19 Emotional Support Hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for mental health counseling.
New Yorkers without Health Insurance can apply through NY State of Health within 60 days of losing coverage.
Department of Motor Vehicles offices are temporarily closed for in-office visits. Online transactions, including for license renewals, are still be available. License and permit expirations will be extended.
Testing is free for all eligible New Yorkers as ordered by a health care provider.
Your local health department is your community contact for COVID-19 concerns.  
https://www.nysacho.org/directory/

DFS Takes New Action for Consumers and Small Businesses Facing Financial Hardship During COVID-19

Health Insurance Special Enrollment Period

The NYC Department of Financial Services announced that uninsured individuals will be able to obtain health insurance coverage through the NY State of Health, New York’s Health Plan Marketplace, under a special enrollment period from April 1st - April 15th. To date, 2,244 New Yorkers have already applied.

New Yorkers who have lost their jobs due to the pandemic may enroll in the marketplace at any time within 60 days from their loss of coverage, or may be eligible to enroll in other NY State of Health programs – Medicaid, low-premium Essential Plan and Child Health Plus. New Yorkers can apply for coverage through NY State of Health online at nystateofhealth.ny.gov, by phone at 855-355-5777, or with the help of enrollment assistors.

APRIL 1ST IS CENSUS DAY

While you are home, don't forget to fill out the 2020 Census. It's ten questions and takes ten minutes and now for the first time you can complete it online as well as by phone or via mail. Complete the census online now at my2020census.gov or by phone at 844-330-2020.

Job Opportunity: City Recruiting TLC Drivers

The CIty is recruiting TLC-licensed drivers through DeliveryTLC to help with work related to COVID-19, such as delivering food to older adults. This work will be paid $15/hour plus reimbursement for gas and tolls. Drivers will be selected on a first-come, first-serve basis. The initial need for drivers will be small, but they expect it to increase as they expand their programs.

For more information, click below

https://cv19engagementportal.cityofnewyork.us/?fbclid=IwAR1JzbqLKiT6KjIS...

Jamaica Center For Arts & Learning Offering Online Classes

The Jamaica Center for Arts & Learning is offering #jcalPOPUPclasses Online on their YouTube Channel.
Click below

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_D_xuUkmrnHrDUFsg7FZCA

NYPD To Issue Fines For Violators of Social Distancing Rules

Police to issue fines to New Yorkers not keeping a distance on MTA trains

Despite rules to enforce social distancing, videos are emerging of crowded trains full of straphangers.

For more information, click below
http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41955938/police-to-issue-fines-to-new-y...

Mourning Loss of Community Leaders to COVID-19

It is with profound sadness that Senator Sanders announces the passing of three beloved leaders in our community who were taken from us too soon by coronavirus.

"I pray for them, their friends, and family and I grieve with this community who will miss them dearly," Senator Sanders said.

They are: Desiree Maple, Deputy Director, Administrative Manager at New York City Department of Transportation, Steven Cooper, member of Community Board 14 and Deaconess Geraldine Gray, mother of Pastor Evans Gray of Macedonia Baptist Church in Arverne.

March 30, 2020 Update Read More

UPDATE: March 30, 2020

News from Governor Cuomo

During his daily press conference today, Governor Andrew Cuomo offered the following information.

He said there are two missions – first, the public must follow the stay-at-home, social distancing and no density rules, and second, we must prevent the healthcare system from getting overwhelmed. The Governor added that our soldiers are our healthcare professionals in this war on coronavirus.

So far 66,497 people have tested positive in New York and 9,517 are currently hospitalized. There are 2,352 ICU patients and 4,204 patients have been discharged – that’s an increase of 632.

The number of deaths in New York is now at 1,218, that’s up from 965.

As far as future steps, the Governor said we must plan ahead so that we can get in front of the problem instead of stuck behind it, get ready for the apex (or the peak in the number of cases), prepare stockpiles now because when the storm hits it will be too late, and finally, follow the science and data.

To view the entire press conference, click below
https://youtu.be/_q8ISM7olHk

NYC DOE Childcare services now available to grocery, pharmacy and food workers!

For our community members who are serving in these vital roles and have no other means of childcare, the DOE is setting up Regional Enrichment Centers (RECs). RECs are open and operate from 7:30am to 6:00pm (Monday-Friday), and will ensure that students have access to remote learning as well as various art, music, and other activities.

If your child is a New York City resident and you would like to enroll in one of these centers, please complete the REC Enrollment Form. Please complete this form for each child you are seeking to enroll. You will then receive an email confirming your child’s center assignment.

Thank you for your service in keeping our city safe. We look forward to supporting you and ensuring your children are in a safe, enriching space.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdDNFMOezuG9mCu99utf3dkloTpdEhz...

DOH-DOL Paid Sick Leave Guidance

Please see linked below updated guidance about orders of quarantine and isolation. This guidance allows medical providers to provide documentation indicating that workers qualify for orders where local health departments are not issuing orders.

DOH-DOL_COVID19 Paid Sick Leave Guidance

https://actionnetwork.org/user_files/user_files/000/040/788/original/DOH...

DOH_COVID19_Paid Sick Leave Advisory
https://actionnetwork.org/user_files/user_files/000/040/789/original/DOH...

Housing Resources

 As of Monday March 16, eviction proceedings and pending orders will be suspended statewide until further notice. Housing court functions such as landlord lockouts, repair orders, and serious code violations will continue.

As of Thursday March 19, New York has implemented a 90-day foreclosure moratorium and mortgage relief period for owners who can demonstrate they are not able to make timely payments due to the impact of the virus.

Tenants Rights Hotline by Met Council - 212-979-0611 (ingles y espanol) or more info  https://twitter.com/Met_Council/status/1239531546996064256

Report attempted evictions - Anyone with knowledge of City marshals attempting to execute on warrants of eviction can report this activity by calling DOI’s Bureau of City Marshals at (212) 825-5953.

Support for eviction prevention: Bronx Works, Catholic Charities (helps regardless of denomination), Coalition for the Homeless

http://www.bronxworks.org/eviction-prevention

https://catholiccharitiesny.org/find-help/need-help-housing

https://www.coalitionforthehomeless.org/resource-guide/

Mental Health Support

Mental Health Hotline/Chat

https://nycwell.cityofnewyork.us/en/

Mental Health Chat For Undocumented People- Instagram Live Chat

https://www.instagram.com/informed_immigrant/

Trans Lifeline- Info

https://www.translifeline.org/

Free, remote peer counseling - Open to anyone in emotional or psychiatric distress. Text (929) 277-8291 to schedule a phone or zoom session.

Mental Health for Front Line Workers/COVID Workers

https://www.nyccovidcare.org/

Happy National Doctors Day 
Thank you doctors for all you do every day, but especially now, during these difficult times. Your dedication puts the patient first and we are grateful for all you do for us and our loved ones.

March is Red Cross Month

March is #RedCrossMonth! Thank you to all #RedCross volunteers in the 10th District and across NY for all they do to help people in need!

Amid ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic, during this month of March; the Greater New York Red Cross provided emergency assistance to 608 adults and 186 children following 179 local disasters.

Virtual Workforce1 Career Center System

 Workforce1 has officially started their Remote Job Access Services.

Workforce1 helps New Yorkers prepare for, and connect to, jobs across New York City’s five boroughs and in every sector of the economy.

Through the Virtual Workforce1 Career Center system, you can be connected via web or phone to one-on-one help from professionals who can help you:

Identify jobs that are a fit for your experience and skills
Prepare for interviews
Access free training

https://www1.nyc.gov/site/sbs/careers/virtual-wf1cc.page

 Senior Center "Grab-and-Go" Meals Replaced with Direct Delivery Service 

Update on "grab-and-go" meals from senior centers. They have been phased out and replaced with direct delivery of meals to homes.

The Department for the Aging (DFTA) congregate meals clients will receive direct delivery, which includes a five-meal package delivered to each older adult every week.

The best way to access direct delivery meals is by connecting your local senior center. You can also call 311 or DFTA's Aging Connect at 212-AGING-NYC (212-244-6469).

Homebound older adults already receiving home-delivered meals through DFTA’s case management agencies will continue as usual.

In addition to helping ensure DFTA clients receive a daily meal, senior center providers are also making thousands of social engagement calls daily to reduce their members social isolation during this crisis. Moreover, DFTA’s in-home services (including friendly visiting, case management, geriatric mental health, and others) have transitioned to a telephonic or virtual approach in an effort to combat social isolation.

 conEdison Scam Alert:
Beware of Anyone Demanding Payments Right Now

 5 Things to Know Today and Tomorrow

1. Beware of anyone visiting, emailing, or calling about outstanding bills or disconnecting service. You are not going to lose your power even if you can’t pay your bill now.

2. If anyone asks you for money for "new meters because of coronavirus," that’s bogus. We don’t charge for meters. And, we’ve put smart meter installation on hold.

3. If someone comes to your door, verify they are who they say they are. We’ll only enter your home or business for emergencies, safety reasons and upon your request for critical issues, including turning on service. If someone claims to be from Con Edison, call 1‑800‑75‑CONED (1‑800‑752‑6633) and check the employee’s name and ID#.

4. If you are making a payment, do it safely. We never accept payment by cash apps such as Venmo, or bitcoin. We only accept online payments through conEd.com and conEd.com/GuestPayment.

5. Suspicious about an email from Con Edison? Don’t click on any links you’re unsure about.

Free WiFi at Home and Some Free Expanded Services Via Smartphone

 WiFi at home 
 Comcast - offering Essentials internet service designed for low-income families free for 60 days for new qualifying customers. Visit https://www.internetessentials.com/ for more information. Call 1-855-8-INTERNET for set up.

Spectrum - households with K-12 students can get free Spectrum Wifi for 60 days (including free installation for new customers). Call 1-844-488-8395 for set up.

Wifi via smartphone

Metro PCS, T-Mobile, Sprint, AT&T and Comcast are all lifting their unlimited data caps for cell phone subscribers for at least 60 days. Contact your cellphone provider for more information.

MetroPCS will allow you to add a free 10GB of mobile hotspot per month by adding an add on service available in the MyMetro app, MyAccount or by calling Care at 611.

T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile are providing customers an additional 20GB of mobile hotspot/tethering service for the next 60 days coming soon.

March 26, 2020 Update Read More

UPDATE: March 26, 2020

Job Opportunities in the Medical / Healthcare Field

St. John's Episcopal Hospital Is currently hiring for the following roles below, to assist on a temporary assignment during COVID-19. If you are interested, please send your resumes to humanresources@ehs.org

RN’s
LPN’s
C.N.A’s
Patient Care Tech’s
Clerks
Housekeepers
Medical Office Assistants
Environmental Service Workers

How New Yorkers Can Get Relief from the Coronavirus Stimulus Package

Single adults earning up to $75,000, heads of households earning up to $112,500, and married couples filing jointly earning up to $150,000 per year in gross adjusted income will receive a one-time payout of $1,200, plus $500 for each child.

That amount decreases by $5 for every $100 in yearly income above that amount.

Single adults earning $99,000 per year or more, and couples earning $198,000, would get nothing. Your income will be based on your 2018 tax returns.

For more information, click below

https://www.ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/news/2020/03/25/how-new-yorkers-can...

Sanitation Suspensions and Garbage Removal  

The New York City Department of Sanitation today announced that core Sanitation services will continue on the normal collection schedule during the City’s COVID-19 response. Residents should follow their normal schedule and place their material at the curb after 4 p.m. but before midnight, the evening before their collection day. Anyone with questions about collection schedules should contact 311.

DSNY has suspended some services in order to limit person-to-person contact and to enable our workforce to refocus on core operations. Suspended services include Food Scrap Drop-off sites and curbside and apartment building electronics collection programs. A full list of service suspensions is included below.

Service Suspensions (as of March 20, 2020):

· Food Scrap Drop-off Sites:

o Food Scrap Drop-off sites will be closed until further notice.

o Residents should not leave food scraps at these locations.

o Visit nyc.gov/dropfoodscraps for updates.

· Household Hazardous Waste:

o The spring SAFE events scheduled have been canceled. We look forward to hosting the next series of events in the fall.

o Special Waste Drop-off sites will be closed until further notice.

o Residents should not illegally dump waste at these locations.

o Visit nyc.gov/safedisposal for updates.

· Compost Giveback:

o Compost giveback events scheduled in April have been canceled.

o Check nyc.gov/getcompost for updates on future events.

· Electronics Recycling:

o Curbside electronics recycling appointments are not being accepted at this time.

o Pickup requests for ecycleNYC are not being accepted at this time.

o Visit nyc.gov/electronics for recycling options and updates.

· Textile Donation and Recycling:

· Pickup requests for refashionNYC are not being accepted at this time.

· Greenmarket clothing collections are suspended until further notice.

· Visit nyc.gov/textiles for donation options and updates.

· In addition, alternate side parking regulations remain suspended through Tuesday, March 24, 2020.

For further updates, New Yorkers should call 311, visit nyc.gov/sanitation or follow @nycsanitation on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Basketball Hoops Removed from Some Parks

The mayor has ordered the removal of 80 (out of 1700) basketball hoops from public courts which were flagged by the Parks Department and NYPD as problem spots where repeated attempts to implement social distancing failed.

For more information, click below

https://www.nydailynews.com/coronavirus/ny-mayor-says-basketball-hoops-w...

March 25, 2020 Update Read More

UPDATE: March 25, 2020

News From Governor Cuomo

During his daily press conference today 3.25.20, Governor Cuomo had some positive news.
 
He said according to projections, the reducing of density appears to be slowing the spread of the virus. He explained that on Sunday it was expected that hospitalizations would double every 2 days, on Monday it was every 3.4 days and by yesterday it had dropped to every 4.7 days.
 
However, he expects the apex (highest point) of cases to occur in 21 days.
 
New York is the most impacted state in the United States, with 10x more cases than the second most affected state – New Jersey, with 3,675 cases.
 
As of yesterday, about 28% of all testing nationwide has been performed in New York State.
 
As far as testing is concerned, the Governor said any hospital statewide can test a person for coronavirus, however the state is strategically testing in the most dense areas.
 
In New York State, there are now 30,811 positive cases, with 5,146 new cases.
 
Regarding current hospitalizations, of the 30,811 people that have tested positive, 3,805 (12%) are currently hospitalized, and 888 (3%) are in the ICU.
 
In addition to the toll on physical health, Governor Cuomo also spoke about the toll that the virus and isolation is having on mental health He said that 6,175 mental health professionals have volunteered to provide free help via phone. Those in need can call 1-844-863-9314.
 
In speaking with President Trump and asking for assistance from the federal government, Governor Cuomo advised that all supplies and resources be directed to New York first since we have the most cases and then as we flatten the curve here, he will make sure those resources and help are passed on to the next hot spot.
 
When opining about why New York is the epicenter of the coronavirus crisis in United States, the Governor said that it was for the following reasons:
 
We welcome people from across the globe
We are close, meaning we live in a densely populated area and our closeness makes us vulnerable.
 
The Governor added that our greatest weakness is also our greatest strength. Our closeness is what makes us special, connected to one another, makes us the human beings that we are, and creates our sense of community, he said.

1199 & Uber to Provide Aid to Healthcare Workers

1199SEIU and Uber Partner to Provide 25,000 Free Meals and Discounted Rides for Healthcare Workers

As Part of the Partnership, Uber Eats will Provide 25,000 Free Meals for 1199SEIU Healthcare Workers

1199SEIU Healthcare Workers Will Receive 20% off Rides to and from Facilities

Partnership WIll Benefit Healthcare Workers in Five States: New York, Florida, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Maryland

1199SEIU and Uber today announced a partnership to provide free meals for 25,000 healthcare workers and discounted rides to and from medical facilities like New York University Hospital in New York City and Boston Medical Center Boston MA. The partnership is designed to help frontline healthcare workers with the closest proximity to areas currently most affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic. The 25,000 free meals is part of Uber’s larger commitment to donate 300,000 meals to first responders responding to the coronavirus.

ASPCA to Provide Relief to Pet Owners

To assist pet owners and shelters affected by the devastating COVID-19 pandemic, the ASPCA (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) is launching the ASPCA Relief & Recovery Initiative, a $5 million multipronged strategic relief response to the crisis. The response includes $2 million in grants to animal shelters in critical need of funds and pet food to pet owners who face challenges providing food for their animals.

For more information, click below

https://www.aspca.org/about-us/press-releases/aspca-commits-5-million-co...

MTA Transit Plan for Healthcare Workers, First Responders, Essential Workers

The “MTA Essential Service Plan” will be phased in beginning Wednesday, March 25 over the course of several days, and includes the following measures:

SUBWAYS AND BUSES: On the subways – starting March 25th, lines will operate our “MTA Essential Service Plan.” Most customers will not notice a difference. This preserves our AM and PM peak to get first responders and essential personnel where they need to go. Some lines will not run Monday through Friday – including the B, W and Z lines, which will be covered by other local service. Also, some express services and branches on some lines will operate only local service. To date, there has been an 87% decline in subway ridership vs. the comparable dates last year.

Even with these changes, the New York City Transit team continues to undertake a line-by-line, hour-by-hour analysis of ridership. So, they're retaining flexibility to increase service as necessary.

“The MTA Essential Service Plan” for buses will start on March 26th. This plan retains 75 percent of normal bus service, allows the MTA to serve essential workers and lessen crowding on transit and in crew facilities. This means that customers who still need to use buses for essential activities will continue to be accommodated. At the same time, the maximum number of buses needed is substantially reduced, requiring fewer operators and lessening crowding of depot facilities. Buses have experienced a more than 60% drop in ridership vs. the comparable dates last year.

LONG ISLAND RAIL ROAD AND METRO-NORTH: Long Island Rail Road has seen a decline of 76 percent in ridership since the pandemic began. Under the new “MTA Essential Service Plan,” Long Island Rail Road will have over 500 weekday trains running, compared to a typical weekday of over 740 trains, beginning March 27. The LIRR will also have crews and equipment on standby to supplement service if necessary.

Metro-North Railroad has seen a 94 percent decline in ridership as a result of the pandemic. Beginning on March 27, Metro-North will provide hourly service on the Harlem, Hudson and New Haven lines, with extra trains added during peak times. Normal weekday capacity will be reduced by approximately 50 percent when compared to a normal weekday. The reduced schedule will run 424 trains, down from 713 during a normal schedule. Beginning the weekend of April 4/April 5, Metro North will provide hourly service while also suspending shuttle service between Wassaic and Southeast on the Upper Harlem line.

These service changes will be reflected on our website, the MYmta app and on countdown clocks in stations and on platforms.

PARATRANSIT: The paratransit program has eliminated shared rides in accordance with the recommended public health guidance, and extended eligibility for existing Access-A-Ride customers. The paratransit system continues to have capacity to serve demand, which has declined by 71% from earlier this month.

The MTA joins a growing list of public transit agencies that have scaled back service due to a drop in ridership resulting from the COVID-19 crisis.

Property Tax Help for Homeowners

For homeowners who are having challenges paying their property taxes, the Department of Finance offers several programs to assist with hardship including exemption programs as well as a new Property Tax and Interest Deferral (PT AID) program, for those who qualify.

For more information, click below

https://www1.nyc.gov/site/finance/benefits/benefits.page

DFS to Provide Financial Relief for COVID-19 Hardship  

The Department of Financial Services (DFS) today issued an emergency regulation requiring that, during a specified time, New York State regulated financial institutions provide residential mortgage forbearance on property located in New York for a period of 90 days to any individual residing in New York who demonstrates financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, subject to the safety and soundness requirements of the regulated institutions.

The emergency regulation also requires that, during a specified time, New York regulated banking organizations eliminate fees charged for the use of Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) that are owned or operated by the regulated banking organization, overdraft fees, and credit card late payment fees for any individual who demonstrates financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, subject to the safety and soundness requirements of the regulated banking organization.

The DFS emergency regulation provides that for the duration specified in the Governor’s Executive Order, which may be extended, New York regulated institutions are required to:

Make applications for forbearance of any payment due on a residential mortgage of a property located in New York widely available to any individual residing in New York who demonstrates financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and grant such forbearance for a period of ninety (90) days, subject to the safety and soundness requirements of the regulated institution, and the federal exceptions listed;

Provide the following financial relief to any individual who can demonstrate financial hardship from the COVID-19 pandemic, subject to the safety and soundness requirements of the regulated banking organizations: (i) eliminating fees charged for the use of Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) that are owned or operated by the regulated banking organizations; (ii) eliminating any overdraft fees; and (iii) eliminating any credit card late payment fees.

Regulated institutions are not limited to offering the types of relief listed above. Regulated institutions are encouraged, consistent with safe and sound banking practices, to assist individuals with a demonstrated financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic in any additional manner they deem appropriate.

This emergency regulation is not applicable to, and does not affect any mortgage loans made, insured, or securitized by any agency or instrumentality of the United States, any Government Sponsored Enterprise, or a Federal Home Loan Bank, or the rights and obligations of any lender, issuer, servicer or trustee of such obligations, including servicers for the Government National Mortgage Association. The emergency regulation also does not apply to any commercial mortgage or any other loan not described in the regulation.

The emergency regulation can be found at Part 119 of Title 3 of the Official Compilation of Codes, Rules and Regulations of the State of New York. Read a copy of the emergency regulation.

For additional DFS regulatory actions on the COVID-19 pandemic, visit www.dfs.ny.gov/industry/coronavirus

Con Edison Halts Meter Reading, Installation of Smart Meters

Con Edison has halted all meter readings and installation of smart meters in an effort to protect customers and employees during the coronavirus pandemic.

Customers can pay their bill online at coned.com or by phone at 888-925-5016.

Anyone who has an appointment for Con Edison service but is in quarantine, or has someone else in quarantine, should notify the company in advance by calling 800-75-CONED.

For more information, click below

https://www.amny.com/coronavirus/con-edison-suspends-on-site-meter-readi...

Mayor Warns Parks May Close If People Don't Practice Social Distancing

The goal of the city is to keep public spaces, like parks, open to give people a space to get fresh air and exercise, but officials continue to stress people shouldn’t be hanging out in groups, but that's something they are seeing.
For more information, click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41936303/mayor-considers-closing-parks-...

Trump, Congress Agree on $2 Trillion Virus Rescue Bill

The White House and Senate leaders of both parties announced agreement early Wednesday on unprecedented emergency legislation to rush sweeping aid to businesses, workers and a health care system slammed by the coronavirus pandemic.

For more information, click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41936105/trump-congress-agree-on-dollar...

 

Restaurants in Jamaica Open for Take Out and Delivery

A new website by the Queens Chamber of Commerce is keeping track of restaurants across the borough that are offering delivery and takeout, with the goal of supporting local restaurateurs who are trying to keep the lights on during the COVID-19 pandemic.

For more info, click below

https://patch.com/new-york/bayside/new-directory-lists-queens-eateries-o...

March 24, 2020 Update Read More

UPDATE: March 24, 2020

Senator Sanders Distributes Food at Local Pantry

On March 23, 2020, Senator Sanders helped at the pantry at Beach 54th Street - Oceanside Apartments in Far Rockaway. City Harvest delivered food for the residents - fresh fruits and vegetables for the community. The pantry is organized by the Tenant Association President, Ms. Doris Mclaughlin.

 Mclaughlin called asking for men to volunteer to unload the truck and Senator Sanders along with some other men provided assistance. They distributed cantaloupes, broccoli and oranges.

 Updates From New York State

The FDA approved the use of a new experimental drug in New York on a compassionate care basis to help treat patients with COVID-19.
Department of Motor Vehicles offices are temporarily closed for in-office visits. Online transactions, including for license renewals, are still be available. License and permit expirations will be extended.
An initial delivery of supplies has been made to the Jacob K. Javits Center where FEMA has started to build a 1,000-bed temporary hospital.
 

 College Board SAT and AP Exam Updates

 The May 2, 2020 SAT exams have been cancelled and all March re-testings have been cancelled.

This link can provide updated information about rescheduling and refunds: https://pages.collegeboard.org/collegeboard-covid-19-updates.

 The ACT has rescheduled the April 4th examination for June 13th and all students registered have received information on how to reschedule for free.

More information is provided here: https://www.act.org/content/act/en/covid-19.html

COVID-19 Testing Sites

The city has begun expanded, appointment-only COVID-19 testing at two Queens hospitals, NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst (formerly Elmhurst Hospital Center) and NYC Health + Hospitals/Queens (formerly Queens General Hospital) in Jamaica.

For more info, click below

https://qns.com/story/2020/03/20/city-begins-covid-19-testing-at-two-que...

People who need more information about the coronavirus or would like to set up an appointment to get tested in New York should call 888-364-3065.

Staten Island: Located on Seaview Avenue in South Beach and will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Appointments can be made by calling 888-364-3065

The Bronx: Lehman College's parking lot. Hours will be 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Appointments can be made by calling 888-364-3065.

Can Your Business Provide Supplies?

EDC launched a new website this weekend for local businesses that want to support the COVID-19 emergency response effort.

https://edc.nyc/covid-19-emergency-supply-sourcing-manufacturing

 These stores have set special hours to help protect at-risk and senior shoppers from COVID-19

BJs Wholesale Clubs
Dollar General
Stew Leonard's
Stop & Shop
Target
Uncle Guiseppe's Marketplace
Walgreens
Walmart
Whole Foods

For More Information, click below

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41924405/these-stores-have-set-special-...

 Price Gouging

On March 16, the NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) announced an emergency rule that makes price gouging illegal for any personal or household good.or any service that is needed to prevent or limit the spread of or treat the new coronavirus (COVID-19).

Examples include:

Cleaning products
Diagnostic products and services
Disinfectants (wipes, liquids, sprays)
Face masks
Gloves
Hand sanitizer
Medicines
Paper towels
Rubbing alcohol
Soap
Tissues

It is illegal to increase prices of these types of goods and services by 10% or more.

Were you overcharged?

 If you think a store excessively increased the price of these items beginning in March, file a complaint at nyc.gov/dcwp or call 311 and say “Overcharge.”

 COVID-19 Services & Resources

 ●       General FAQ: https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/coronavirus-factsheet....

●       Information about school meals and remote learning: https://infohub.nyced.org/in-our-schools/operations/coronavirus-communic...

●       Stop the Spread: https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/stop-the-spread-poster...

●       Services for folks in need: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/em/resources/covid-19-services-resources.page

●       How to Help: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/helpnownyc/index.page

●       For Tenants/Landlords - Disinfection Guidance for Buildings: https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/covid-19-residential-b...

●       Non-Profit Providers: Guidance for Non-profit providers: https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/covid-19-nonprofit-pro...

●       Space Survey: https://edc.nyc/covid-19-emergency-supply-sourcing-manufacturing

March 23, 2020 Update Read More

UPDATE: March 23, 2020

NYPD Will Enforce Lockdown Restrictions

Effective yesterday, March 22nd, at 8:00 PM, all non-essential businesses in New York City will be closed. Only businesses with essential functions will be permitted to operate. Examples include grocery stores, pharmacies, internet providers, food delivery, banks, financial institutions and mass transit. Businesses that provide essential services must implement rules that help facilitate social distancing.

The NYPD will be out in neighborhoods across the City to ensure compliance with these policies.

The City will also enforce the following rules for non-vulnerable individuals with fines and mandatory closures:

No non-essential gatherings; any concentration of people outside their home must be limited to workers providing essential services

Practice social distancing in public (6 feet or more)

Limit use of public transportation to only when absolutely necessary.

Sick individuals should not leave home except to receive medical care.

What Is Considered an Essential Business?

ONLY ESSENTIAL BUSINESSES MAY REMAIN OPEN.

Below are the rules on what are considered "essential businesses" which can continue to operate during the state shutdown.

https://esd.ny.gov/guidance-executive-order-2026

COVID-19 Testing Sites in Queens

The city has begun expanded, appointment-only COVID-19 testing at two Queens hospitals, NYC Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst (formerly Elmhurst Hospital Center) and NYC Health + Hospitals/Queens (formerly Queens General Hospital) in Jamaica.

For more info, click the link below

https://qns.com/story/2020/03/20/city-begins-covid-19-testing-at-two-que...

Calling All Healthcare Workers

Doctors, nurses, physician assistants: WE WANT YOU!

Whether you are active or retired, your city needs you on the front lines of the fight against Coronavirus.

Join us at nyc.gov/helpnowNYC

New MTA Bus Riding Protocol

The MTA says bus riders will board and exit buses using the rear door. Express buses will board as normal, but riders will not be permitted to sit in the first three rows in an effort to practice social distancing from bus operators.

For more info, click the link below:

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41926825/mta-bus-passengers-must-board-...

Please Note: Essentially, for local buses riders will not need to pay the fare. Now for Express and SBS Buses, folks are still expected to swipe when they get on since there is no backdoor on Express buses and to pay for their fare at the sidewalk machine for SBS rides.

Regional Enrichment Centers

In order to successfully fight COVID-19, our first responders, health care providers, transit workers, and other key personnel must be able to come to work. That is why NYC has created Regional Enrichment Centers—places where the children of these front-line workers can be safely cared for while their parents continue to serve the city in this time of need.

For more information, click the link below

https://www.schools.nyc.gov/enrollment/enrollment-help/regional-enrichme...

For those who need it, the City has compiled list of services you may need:

●      Employment Resources

●      Food Assistance

●      Health & Medical Assistance

●      Rent Arrears and Public Assistance

●      Emotional Support & Spiritual Care

●      Other Assistance

For more information, click the link below

https://www1.nyc.gov/site/em/resources/covid-19-services-resources.page

March 20, 2020 Update Read More

UPDATE: March 20, 2020

Governor Orders Strict New Rules

State will Effectively Shut Down Starting Sunday at 8 p.m.

Governor Cuomo has announced that the state is being put “on PAUSE”  effective Sunday March 22nd at 8 p.m. and said people should remain indoors to the greatest extent they can in order to protect physical and mental health.

PAUSE stands for Policies Assure Uniform Safety Everyone

The Governor is also implementing what he has called - Matilda's Law:

Remain indoors
Can go outside for solitary exercise
Pre-screen all visitors and aides by taking their temperature
Do not visit households with multiple people
All vulnerable persons should wear a mask when in the company of others
To the greatest extent possible, everyone in the presence of vulnerable people should wear a mask
Always stay at least six feet away from individuals
Do not take public transportation unless urgent and absolutely necessary
 

What Is Considered an Essential Business?

Below are the rules on what are considered "essential businesses" which can continue to operate during the state shutdown.
https://esd.ny.gov/guidance-executive-order-2026

Managing Student Loans Amid COVID-19

Community Service Society of New York CSS /EDCAP is still assisting student loan borrowers with their debt issues, questions and needs during the coronavirus threat.  

Instead of face-to-face meetings or holding off-site workshops for groups, they are engaging loan holders through the phone and web-counseling.

https://www.cssny.org/news/entry/managing-student-loans-amid-the-coronav...

Emergency Food

Get Emergency Food Now

If you or someone you know is in need of food, please visit the NYC Emergency Food Assistance Program or call the Emergency Food line at 1-866-888-8777.
https://access.nyc.gov/programs/emergency-food-assistance/

Free Meals For Students

Free meals are available daily for all NYC children. Through Friday, March 20, meals are available at the entrance to every school from 7:30am-1:30pm. Beginning March 23, meals will be distributed at more than 400 sites across the city. A site lookup tool will be available soon. For more information, go to

https://www.schools.nyc.gov/freemeals

Free Meals for Seniors

If seniors need home delivered meals or have any questions about services for the elderly, they can contact the Department for the Aging's Direct Access Number at 212-244-6469

Remote Learning for Students

If your NYC public school student needs a device for remote learning, please visit: coronavirus.schools.nyc/RemoteLearningDevices

Job Opportunity 

Domino's is hiring 10,000 new employees in response to an increase in demand during the coronavirus pandemic. The company is looking for delivery drivers, pizza makers, customer service representatives, managers and licensed truck drivers for its supply chain centers. More info here:

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/19/dominos-expects-to-hire-10000-workers.html

Mortgage Relief 

Some good news coming from the Governor - financial relief for those suffering through this pandemic.

90-Day mortgage relief

• waiving mortgage payments based on financial hardship
• no negative reporting to credit bureaus
• grace period for loan modification
• no late fees or online payment fees
• postponing or suspending foreclosures

Waive fees for overdrafts, ATMs, credit cards

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ODj5B_MzyTA

News From the Governor 

Density Reduction, Future Steps 

No more than 25% of the workforce can be in the office except essential services (food, pharmacies, healthcare, shipping, supplies etc.)
 
Plan of Action

Continue reducing density 
Increase current hospital capacity
Identify new hospital beds
 

Total positive cases 4,152
New positive 1,769
 
77 out of 4,152 cases (19 % of cases) hospitalized

Pre-K Appilication Extended 

The Pre-K application deadline has been extended to Sunday, March 29th.

As a reminder, families can apply online through MySchools or over the phone by calling 718-935-2009 (Monday through Friday, 8am to 6pm).
http://queue.myschools.blenderbox.com/

School staff will now have until Friday, April 3 to verify applicants’ sibling status on the MySchools School Portal. Questions can be directed to ESEnrollment@schools.nyc.gov

Pre-K offers will still be released in May.

Get a FREE Coloring Book from DSNY 

Download a Free Coloring Book from DSNY

Families that may have children at home because of COVID-19 that are participating in homeschooling can take a break and download a free coloring book from the NYC Department of Sanitation below here.
https://materials.bwprronline.org/system/tdf/2019-01-30-DSNYColoringBook...

Update From Department of Sanitation 

NYC Department of Sanitation Special Waste Update

Due to concerns over public gatherings, ALL Special Waste Drop-Off Sites are closed until further notice. Additionally, DSNY SAFE Disposal Events scheduled to take place in April have been cancelled and the DSNY Curbside E-Waste program has been suspended until further notice.

Help for Small Businesses 

Help is available for small businesses impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic.

https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/Declarations/Index

BRING THE LIBRARY INTO YOUR HOME

As you know, all of Queens Public Library’s 66 locations are closed until further notice in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 and protect the health and safety of its staff and the public, however they are still able to serve the community

https://www.queenslibrary.org/about-us/news-media/blog/2041?utm_source=o...

https://www.queenslibrary.org/about-us/news-media/blog/2040?utm_source=o...
 

https://www.queenslibrary.org/about-us/news-media/blog/2042?utm_source=o...

COVID-19 Testing Sites 

NYC Health + Hospitals has set up mobile COVID-19 assessment and testing centers at 10 of its hospitals and seven neighborhood health centers to test more New Yorkers for the coronavirus These centers will be available by appointment only. More information on the specific locations is coming soon.

New York City's first coronavirus testing facility is being constructed in Staten Island's South Beach section. For more information, go to

https://abc7ny.com/6024171/?fbclid=IwAR0uGGLjQPWqBq7O3iGMXr8tpwYdJlZH1gk...

March 19, 2020 Update Read More

UPDATE: March 19, 2020

USNS Comfort Deployed to New York Harbor
The USNS Comfort will be deployed to New York harbor and is expected to arrive in April. The 1,000-bed hospital ship has 12 fully-equipped operating rooms and will significantly increase New York's hospital surge capacity. The Governor is meeting with leadership of the Army Corp of Engineers today to discuss ways to increase hospital capacity in New York.

For more info, click here
https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=jnEdL8lj-hM&feature=emb_...

More News From Governor Cuomo

During a press conference yesterday, March 18, 2020, Governor Cuomo gave updates on the coronavirus. They includes the following.

The number of coronavirus cases in New York continues to grow.

Over 14,000 people across New York State have been tested for coronavirus.

New York has the highest number of coronavirus cases in the country by a significant margin.

Current hospitalizations 549 out of 2,382 (23 percent of cases)

We need more ventilators (nationwide need). It's  # 1 device that we need

All workforce is to be at 50% except for essential services, however if that doesn’t reduce the spread, that number could be reduced even further

NYS is requesting from the federal government - FEMA / DOD / Army corps of engineers
• Additional hospital beds
• Mobile hospitals
• Helping retrofit existing buildings

Governor Cuomo said he does not believe a shelter in place - quarantine-type plan will be necessary for NYC.

To see the entire press conference, click here

https://youtu.be/hjU6zSP5ZkI

 

Governor Cuomo confirmed 1,008 additional cases of novel coronavirus, bringing the statewide total to 2,382 confirmed cases in New York State. Of the 2,382 total individuals who tested positive for the virus.

Changes to Access-A-Ride

Statement from NYC Transit Interim President Sarah E. Feinberg

“The MTA is no longer scheduling shared rides for Access-A-Ride services effective tomorrow, March 19. As is our policy, customers will still be permitted to travel with a personal care attendant and approved guest.  Our paratransit customers are particularly vulnerable during this public health crisis and we are doing everything we can to protect their health and safety. We will continue to aggressively disinfect our full fleet of Access-A-Ride vehicles around the clock and work closely with, and follow the guidance of, all our partners and public health officials at the state, city and federal levels.”

Early Shopping Hours for the Elderly

Beginning 3/19, all Stop & Shop stores will open earlier from 6 a.m. - 7:30 a.m. daily to serve customers who are age 60 and over only.
For more info click here

http://brooklyn.news12.com/story/41913696/stop-and-shop-offers-earlier-h...

More Store Closures

New York & Company and Bath & Body Works have voluntarily and temporarily closed their stores as a precaution to curb the spread of coronavirus. Customers can still shop online.

March 18, 2020 Update Read More

UPDATE: March 18, 2020

Alternate Side Parking (ASP) citywide will be suspended for one week, which may be extended based on street cleanliness and workforce availability.

Any New Yorker under isolation who has received a ticket can appeal to the Department of Finance and should provide medical documentation or testimony, which will be taken into consideration when their case is reviewed. To learn how to dispute a parking ticket, visit the Parking Ticket or Camera Violation Dispute page

https://portal.311.nyc.gov/article/?kanumber=KA-02275

Ban on Pool Rides in For-Hire Vehicles

To protect the safety of drivers and passengers, the Mayor signed an Executive Order temporarily banning pooled rides in TLC-licensed high volume (Uber, Lyft, and Via) for-hire vehicles. This ban will not apply to paratransit vehicles.

Emergency Services

Under the current State of Emergency, Agency Commissioners can ask nonprofit vendors with health and human service contracts to perform services in response to COVID-19. The City will also designate its health and service nonprofit workforce – an estimated 40,000 employees – as essential workers.

Healthcare & Hospitals

Medical Reserve Corps

The City will mobilize the NYC Medical Reserve Corps, a group of over 9,000 healthcare workers who volunteer to support NYC in emergency response. This includes physicians, nurses, mental health professionals, social workers, and many others, both retired and currently working in the health care system.

Emergency Executive Order

All elective surgeries at all hospitals and ambulatory service centers across the city will be suspended. Hospitals will retain the discretion to determine what is elective/ non-elective based on patient risk.

Hospital Capacity

The City will create approximately 1,300 hospital beds through the conversion of four buildings into temporary hospital space

Price Gouging

The City has banned any price increase of 10 percent or more on personal and household goods and services that aid in diagnosing or monitoring disease symptoms, preventing the spread of disease, or treating disease. These goods include:

Thermometers
Sanitizing or baby wipes
Paper towels
Latex gloves
Face masks
Fever reducers
Cough suppressants
Aloe Vera
Zinc oxide supplements
Facial tissue
Toilet Paper
Rubbing Alcohol

To file a price-gouging complaint with the Attorney General’s office, see the online form at ag.ny.gov/price-gouging-complaint-form or call 1-800-697-1220 or 311

Tip: Save the receipt from your purchase.

Tax Updates For Business Owners

Businesses should pay their taxes on time.

For any businesses, experiencing hardships directly related to COVID-19, the Mayor has directed the Commissioner of Finance to waive penalties.

The government will postpone the April 15 income tax deadline giving millions of individuals an additional 90 days to pay their 2019 bills in light of the impact of the coronavirus.

Income Tax Filing Extension

Restaurants, Bars and Movie Theaters CLOSED

Beginning Tomorrow, Tuesday, March 17, NYC will limit restaurants, bars and cafes to food take-out and delivery. Nightclubs, movie theaters, small theater houses, and concert venues must all close. The order will go into effect Tuesday, March 17 at 9:00 AM. Read the press statement from the Mayor here.

Gyms have closed as well.

The fees for local, county, and state parks will be waived, so that people can go there as an alternative to being cooped up at home for long periods of time.

Summary of Coronavirus Updates From New York State

The Governor and Legislature have an agreement on a bill guaranteeing job protection and pay for New Yorkers who have been quarantined as a result of novel coronavirus. The bill also includes the permanent comprehensive paid sick leave policy.

Governor Cuomo signed an executive order directing all schools in New York to close by Wednesday, March 18 for two weeks ending April 1.

Casinos, gyms, theaters are closed until further notice.

Bars and restaurants are closed, but takeout can be ordered during the period of closure.

The state strongly advises that only services and businesses that are essential stay open after 8 p.m. These include:

Groceries, Gas stations, Pharmacies, Medical facilities

All local governments must reduce their workforce by at least 50%. Non-essential state workers are working from home.

New York State is waiving all park fees in state, local and county parks.

Testing is free for all eligible New Yorkers as ordered by a health care provider.

Your local health department is your community contact for COVID-19 concerns. 

https://www.nysacho.org/directory/

First Trial of COVID-19 Vaccine Administered

Doctors at Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute in Seattle gave the first shots in the trial aimed at combating the spread of COVID-19.

For more information, click here

https://about.kaiserpermanente.org/our-story/health-research/news/first-covid-19-vaccine-trial-at-kaiser-permanente-washington

Coronavirus Cases and Deaths in New York

Mayor Says the City may implement "Shelter in Place" order

From NBC News

U.S. novel coronavirus cases have surpassed 6,200; more than 100 people have died, including 18 in New York and New Jersey

Tri-state COVID-19 cases have surpassed 1,900; Gov. Andrew Cuomo said it may take 45 days to reach the peak of infection and 110,000 hospital beds could be needed

New York, New Jersey and Connecticut have announced unprecedented joint measures to curb spread: crowds of 50+ banned, schools closed

For more information, click here

https://www.nbcnewyork.com/news/coronavirus/nyc-braces-for-possible-shelter-in-place-as-death-toll-hits-double-digits/2332094/

Yesterday, Mayor de Blasio said New Yorkers should prepare for a decision on shelter in place within 48 hours.

More on that here
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O4VwKkEiBa0

NYC Public School System Closes, Grab and Go School Meals Available, Virtual Learning to Begin Soon

Mayor Bill de Blasio ordered the closing of all NYC Public Schools beginning March 16, 2020. They may re-open on April 20, 2020. During the break, virtual / remote learning will take place. Grab-and-go breakfasts and lunches will be available, meaning students can go to their school where they would have normally sat down to have those meals, and instead pick them up and take them home.

Monday, March 16: Citywide closure. Students, teachers, and principals do not report.  

Tuesday, March 17-Thursday, March 19: All staff reports. Teachers and principals participate in professional development on remote learning. 
Thursday, March 19-Friday, March 20: Students who need it will be able to begin process of picking up the technology necessary for remote learning. More guidance to families will be sent this week. 
Monday, March 23: Remote learning launches, with additional guidance provided throughout the week of the 23rd.  Regional Enrichment Centers will be available for the children of first responders, healthcare workers, and our most vulnerable populations, with more details to follow.

Evictions Suspended 
Eviction proceedings and pending eviction orders will be suspended statewide, until further notice. This includes commercial evictions. For more information go to https://therealdeal.com/2020/03/15/new-york-halts-evictions-statewide-due-to-coronavirus/

Restaurants, Bars, Movie Theaters, Gyms, Casinos CLOSED
By order of the Governor, restaurants, bars, and cafes are limited to food take-out and delivery only. Movie theaters, gyms, and casinos have been ordered to close. These closures begin March 17, 2020 and continue until further notice.

The fees for local, county, and state parks will be waived, so that people can go there as an alternative to being cooped up at home for long periods of time.

LIBRARIES
As a precaution to help limit the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), all New York Public Library locations are temporarily closing on March 14 through March 31.
All Queens Public Library locations are closed starting March 16, 2020 until further notice.

SENIOR CENTERS
All Senior Centers will be closed, but will continue food delivery and grab and go meals.

ARTS
The Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning (JCAL), including both the Jamaica Arts Center and the Jamaica Performing Arts Center, will suspend JCAL's public programming effective Friday, March 13 through Thursday, April 2.

HOSPITALS
All elective surgeries at New York State hospitals have been cancelled to make room for potential coronavirus patients, and to potentially conserve medical supplies, space and staff.

St. John's Episcopal Hospital in Far Rockaway, which has treated a coronavirus patient, has updated their visitor policy. Their website states: "We ask that any individuals experiencing symptoms including, but not limited to: fever, cough, and/or shortness of breath please refrain from visiting. We may request that individuals refrain from gathering in common areas such as the main lobby and the family waiting rooms."

ELECTIONS
The Governor has signed an executive order that will suspend candidate petitioning beginning March 17. This is for the June primaries for Congressional, State Senate, State Assembly and Judicial races.

The Queens special election for Queens Borough President on March 24, 2020 has been suspended. New date TBD.

New Guidelines on Crowd Gathering
New York State has limited gatherings to 50 people or less and cut legal maximum capacity in most gathering places by 50 percent. Meanwhile new guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends against holding any events or group gatherings of 50 or more people across the United States for at least the next eight weeks.

Help for Small Businesses
New York City will be providing relief to small businesses that see a reduction in revenue because of COVID-19.

Businesses with fewer than 100 employees whose sales have decreased more than 25% will be eligible for zero-interest loans of up to $75,000 to help mitigate the losses.
Small businesses with fewer than five employees will also be offered a grant to cover 40% of payroll costs for two months to help retain employees.
Anyone interested in learning more about these programs should call 311 for more information.

The NYC Department of Small Business Services announced that starting on March 17, 2020 small businesses would be able to apply online for an employee retention grant and that the agency has also been working rapidly to setup a zero-interest loan program. For the more details and updates, visit www.nyc.gov/covid19biz  

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on March 8 that the City will provide relief for small businesses across the City seeing a reduction in revenue because of COVID-19. Businesses with fewer than 100 employees who have seen sales decreases of 25% or more will be eligible for zero interest loans of up to $75,000 to help mitigate losses in profit. The City is also offering small businesses with fewer than 5 employees a grant to cover 40% of payroll costs for two months to help retain employees.

Go online for more information
https://www1.nyc.gov/site/sbs/businesses/covid19-business-outreach.page

Price Gouging 
During the coronavirus pandemic there have been reports of price gouging, selling products or services at a price that is higher than what is considered fair, on items such as face masks, disinfecting wipes, and hand sanitizer. The Office of the Attorney General (OAG) is actively monitoring retailers for potential incidents of price gouging of necessary goods and entities selling bogus medical treatments that purport to effectively treat or cure COVID-19.

New York State’s Price Gouging Law prohibits merchants from taking unfair advantage of consumers by selling goods or services that are “vital to the health, safety or welfare of consumers”  for an "unconscionably excessive price" during an abnormal disruption of the market place or state of emergency. 

To file a price-gouging complaint with the Attorney General’s office, see the online form at ag.ny.gov/price-gouging-complaint-form or call 1-800-697-1220 or 311
Tip: Save the receipt from your purchase.

Unemployment Benefits 
NYS is waiving the 7-Day waiting period for Unemployment Insurance benefits for people who are out of work due to Coronavirus (COVID-19) closures or quarantines.
Unemployment Insurance is temporary income for eligible workers who lose their jobs through no fault of their own. To collect benefits, you must be ready, willing, and able to work, and actively looking for work during each week in which you are claiming benefits.

For more information, go to
https://www.ny.gov/services/get-unemployment-assistance

Coronavirus FAQ
Know the Facts, Protect Yourself

*How COVID-19 Spreads

COVID-19 is a new disease and we are still learning how it spreads, the severity of illness it causes, and to what extent it may spread in the United States.

Person-to-person spread

The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.

Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

Can someone spread the virus without being sick?

People are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest).
Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms; there have been reports of this occurring with this new coronavirus, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
 

Spread from contact with contaminated surfaces or objects

It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

How easily the virus spreads

How easily a virus spreads from person-to-person can vary. Some viruses are highly contagious (spread easily), like measles, while other viruses do not spread as easily. Another factor is whether the spread is sustained, spreading continually without stopping.

The virus that causes COVID-19 seems to be spreading easily and sustainably in the community (“community spread”) in some affected geographic areas.

Take steps to protect yourself

Clean your hands often

Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

Avoid close contact with people who are sick

Stay home if you’re sick

Cover coughs and sneezes

Wear a facemask if you are sick

Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily.

*Information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Services / Activities

Zoom, a popular videoconferencing tool, has been giving K-12 schools unlimited temporary meeting minutes for teachers and students with its basic free account. They just have to visit the company’s website and fill out an online form using their school email addresses, which are then verified by Zoom. More info here: https://bit.ly/3b22siy

The Metropolitan Opera will stream operas from its award winning Live in HD series for free while the cultural institution is closed due to coronavirus precautions. The shows will begin at 7:30 p.m. and will remain available via the homepage of metopera.org for 20 hours.

Spectrum will offer students free internet amid COVID-19 school closures. To enroll in the program, call 1-844-488-8395.

For those who have Netflix, the provider has over 150 educational shows available. For a list, go to https://homeschoolhideout.com/educational-shows-on-netflix

Five national parks are offering virtual tours so you can enjoy their beauty and splendor right from home.

Kenai Fjords National Park, Alaska
Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii
Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico
Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida

For more information, go to
https://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/national-parks/virtual-national-parks-tours

12 museums are also offering virtual tours.

British Museum, London
Guggenheim Museum, New York
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
Musée d’Orsay, Paris
National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul
Pergamon Museum, Berlin
Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam
Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
Uffizi Gallery, Florence
MASP, São Paulo
National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City
 

For more information go to
https://www.travelandleisure.com/attractions/museums-galleries/museums-with-virtual-tours

Paris Musées, a collection of 14 museums in Paris have recently made 100,000 artworks available for public use on its website, which include pieces from Rembrandt, Monet, Picasso, Cézanne, and others. For more information go to http://parismuseescollections.paris.fr/en

Resources

The U.S. Government’s Official Web Portal 
https://www.usa.gov/coronavirus

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/

New York State Department of Health
https://www.health.ny.gov/diseases/communicable/coronavirus/

New York City Department of Health
https://www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/health/health-topics/coronavirus.page

NYC Small Business Services
https://www1.nyc.gov/site/sbs/businesses/covid19-business-outreach.page

NYC Department of Education
https://www.schools.nyc.gov/school-life/health-and-wellness/coronavirus-update

If you have questions, you can reach out to the New York State’s novel coronavirus hotline at 1-888-364-3065.

New Yorkers can text COVID to 692-692 to get regular updates on the latest developments regarding COVID-19 from NYC; Text COVIDESP to 692-692 for updates in Spanish.