What You Need To Know About The COVID-19 Pandemic - Resources and Information

What You Need To Know About The COVID-19 Pandemic - Resources and Information

Dear Neighbor,

I hope you and your loved ones are well and exercising caution during these chaotic times. The fabric of our community is strong and together, we will help each other get through this unprecedented pandemic.

With news and updates changing constantly, I am committed to keeping my constituents informed and engaged. To learn more about COVID-19, download the PDF at the top of the page. Below are resources and information to keep you and your family informed. Please share this information with friends and neighbors who may be in need of help.

For COVID-19 updates:

  • Sign up for New York State Coronavirus Updates, visit: https://now.ny.gov/page/s/coronavirus-updates  
  • Sign up for NYC's COVID text notification system to get regular updates on the latest developments with coronavirus in New York City text COVID to 692-692.  New Yorkers can text COVIDESP to 692-692 for updates in Spanish.  

 

I hope you will join me in continuing  to check on and assist our elderly and vulnerable neighbors. Stay healthy and be safe!

Sincerely,

Senator Velmanette Montgomery

25th Senate District

 

Taxes Read More

Friday, March 20th

The IRS moved the national income tax filing day ahead to July 15, three months after the normal deadline for Americans to send in their returns, without incurring interest or penalties.

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New York State Taxes

3-20-20: New York State will forgive interest and penalties for late payment of sales tax due today.

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New York City Taxes

The New York City Department of Finance has also issued a waiver of penalties for those unable to meet certain filing and payment deadlines for DOF-administered business and excise taxes due between March 16, 2020 and April 25, 2020. Taxpayers may request to have penalties waived on a late-filed extension or return, or in a separate request.

NYS Unemployment Assistance Read More

** The following information is from the New York State Department of Labor"

New York State 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.

If you are filing a new unemployment insurance claim, the day you should file is based on the first letter of your last name. If your last name starts with A - F, file your claim on Monday. For last names starting with G - N, file your claim Tuesday. For last names starting with O - Z, file your claim on Wednesday. If you missed your filing day, file your claim on Thursday or Friday. Filing later in the week will not delay your payments or affect the date of your claim, since all claims are effective on the Monday of the week in which they are filed.

For more information, visit https://www.labor.ny.gov/home/

NYC Public School Parents - Remote Learning Device Request Form Read More

Mayor Bill de Blasio and Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza announced the City will move towards a new Remote Learning Model for all school days until Spring Recess.
 

March 19th Update:

The New York City Department of Education wants every student who needs a device for remote learning to have one, even if the student does not have internet access at home. Simply call 718-935-5100 and choose Option 5 on the menu. Someone will help you get a device with internet connection.

 

Parents: Take the Remote Learning Device Request Form

To help students stay connected during emergencies, the DOE is lending internet-enabled iPads to support remote learning for students. If you would like to request a device for a NYC student in your family, please fill out the Request form. The DOE will use the contact information you provide to get in touch with you to discuss when and where you can pick up a device. Priority will be given to students most in need, and all devices are granted on a temporary basis and will later need to be returned. There is a limit of one device per student.

To apply, visit https://coronavirus.schools.nyc/RemoteLearningDevices

NYC Employee Retention Grant Program Read More

As New York City has taken precautionary measures to help reduce the spread of the Novel Coronavirus, the office of Mayor DeBlasio has also established an Employee Retention Grant program to assist small businesses in retaining their employees. 

Small businesses are to begin putting together the necessary paperwork to demonstrate a revenue decrease.  Documentation could include: point-of-sales reports, bank statements, quarterly sales tax filings, 2019 tax returns, or CPA-certified profit & loss statements. 

Eligibility Criteria for the NYC Employee Retention Grant Program
Businesses, including non-profits, must: 

  • Be located within the five boroughs of New York City 
  • Demonstrate that the COVID-19 outbreak caused at least a 25% decrease in revenue 
  • Employ 1-4 employees in total across all locations  
  • Have been in operation for at least 6 months 
  • Have no outstanding tax liens or legal judgements 

 

For best business practices and updates regarding financial assistance, https://www1.nyc.gov/site/sbs/businesses/covid19-business-outreach.page

NYC School Closure Information Read More

All public schools are closed beginning Monday, March 16th and are scheduled to reopen on Monday, April 20th.

To view Mayor Bill de Blasio's annoucement or for more information, visit:

https://www1.nyc.gov/office-of-the-mayor/news/151-20/new-york-city-close...

 

90-Day Mortgage Relief for New Yorkers and Waived Fees for Overdrafts, ATMs and Credit Cards Read More

MARCH 19, 2020  
Albany, NY
 

The Governor announced the Department of Financial Services has issued a new directive to New York State mortgage servicers to provide 90-day mortgage relief to mortgage borrowers impacted by the novel coronavirus. The directive includes:

  • Waiving mortgage payments based on financial hardship;
  • No negative reporting to credit bureaus;
  • Grace period for loan modification;
  • No late payment fees or online payment fees; and
  • Postponing or suspending foreclosures. 

 

Additionally, the Governor has asked DFS to instruct state chartered banks to waive ATM fees, late fees, overdraft fees and fees for credits cards to help lessen the financial hardship of the COVID-19 pandemic on New Yorkers.

Update on Senior Centers Read More

The Mayor is instructing all programs run by Department for the Aging to close and cancel all congregate meal, recreational, and educational services and activities, effective immediately. Senior centers will operate strictly to deliver food to seniors, either as take-home meals or meals delivered to homes. Centers are advised to create a phone bank to call the center’s participants to ensure they are well and to help avoid social isolation.

To view the Mayor de Blasio's annoucement or for more information, visit https://www1.nyc.gov/office-of-the-mayor/news/151-20/new-york-city-close...

NYS Attorney General Price Gouging Complaint Form Read More

Please use this form to submit complaints about sudden price increases of essential goods and services (like water, ice, food, generators, batteries, flashlights, lodging, home repair materials and services, and snow and tree removal services). If a merchant took advantage of you or others by charging unconscionably high prices for essential goods or services during a major weather event, natural disaster or other emergency situation.

To report price gouging in our community during this difficult time contact the State Attorney General at the link below.

https://ag.ny.gov/price-gouging-complaint-form

 

 

Brooklyn Public Library Closures and Information Read More

Updated March 18, 2020

Along with the City's increased efforts to slow the spread of novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), Brooklyn Public Library has decided to close our doors. Beginning Monday, March 16, all our locations will be closed through at least March 31.

While we are closed, we encourage patrons to use our digital resources, many of which are linked at the bottom of this page.

  • If you have received a message that your materials holds are "ready for pick up" during our closure, please expect to find them on the hold shelf 2-3 days following our re-opening.
  • For those materials currently on the hold shelf, they will remain on the shelf for one week following reopening to give you chance to come in to check them out.
  • Though all library locations are closed, you can still place materials on hold and we will begin fulfilling requests once we re-open to the public.

 

Avoid Late Fees and Expiring Accounts:

  • All library card accounts with an expiration date from February 1st, 2020 to April 30th, 2020 have automatically been renewed for an additional six months from the original expiration date. These cardholders can continue to access our eBook and eAudiobook collection without renewing their cards in person. Learn more about these collections and find download guides here.
  • As of March 13, all library materials that had been checked out or renewed with January 1st 2020 to March 31st 2020 due dates have been automatically extended to Monday, April 6th to prevent accrual of fines.  
  • Anyone with a blocked library card (due to accumulation of $15 or more in fines) will now be able to access eBooks and audiobooks without restriction.

 

For more information, visit https://www.bklynlibrary.org/

Guarantee Paid Leave for New Yorkers Under Mandatory or Precautionary Quarantine Due to COVID-19 Read More

UPDATE: Governor Cuomo signs bill into law.

(Albany, NY) On March 18th, the Senate  passed legislation to ensure employees in New York State will be able to access paid leave if they are subject to a mandatory or precautionary quarantine due to the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19). The Senate bill, advanced by the Senate Democratic Majority, also waives the 7-day waiting period before New Yorkers can apply for unemployment insurance. This action builds on legislation passed by the Senate to allocate $40 million to help address this crisis. 

“Workers should not be penalized if they receive a quarantine or isolation order,” Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins said. “The legislation passed by the Senate Majority will ensure every New York employee will be able to continue to receive paychecks, without having to charge their available time if they need to undergo a quarantine or isolation. The Senate Majority will continue to work with our colleagues in government to flatten the curve of the disease and protect New Yorkers’ health.”

Chair of the Senate Labor Committee and Bill Sponsor, Senator Jessica Ramos, said, “Working families are the backbone of New York’s economy, and by providing each New Yorker with guaranteed paid sick leave, we’re no longer forcing people to choose between their health and paying for food, rent, or utilities. This is especially important in the wake of the COVID-19 public health emergency we’re facing, as employers require or advise their workers to self-quarantine. I am proud to carry this legislation, and thank our Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Speaker Carl Heastie, and Governor Andrew Cuomo for leading our communities toward a safer, more equitable New York.”

The legislation advanced by the Senate Majority, S.8091, will help every employee in the State by ensuring they receive paid leave and guaranteed job security if they have to undergo a mandatory or precautionary quarantine or isolation. This paid leave will last for the duration of their order, and is intended so that New Yorkers listen to these precautions and are not financially punished for helping contain the coronavirus pandemic. This legislation is another example of the Senate Majority’s work to support New York’s small businesses, as it will require state insurance programs to cover the full cost of workers’ salaries for New York’s smallest businesses, and everything following a week of leave for medium businesses.

  • Businesses who have 10 or fewer employees as of January 1, 2020, and a net income under $1 million last fiscal year, will have the full cost of employee’s leave provided by New York State insurance programs, capped at benefits coverage equal to annual salaries of $150,000.
  • Businesses who have 11-99 employees as of January 1, 2020 and businesses who have 10 or fewer employees with a net income greater than $1 million last fiscal year will be required to provide 5 days of paid leave to their employees as well as the rest of the required quarantine or isolation days provided by New York State insurance programs, capped at benefits coverage equal to annual salaries of $150,000.
  • Businesses who have 100 or more employees, and all government institutions, will be required to cover at least 14 days of paid leave.

 

NYC Dept of Health Scaling Back Services to Maximize COVID-19 Response Read More

In order to repurpose DOHMH’s capacity and make sure we are maximizing our COVID-19 response we are scaling back many services. Including:

VITAL RECORDS:

  • In-person ordering of NYC birth and death certificates will be suspended until further notice
  • If you have an emergency request due to healthcare coverage, government services, military, immigration, or employment, please call 311 or email nycdohvr@health.nyc.gov
  • During this time, you can order certificates online at: nyc.gov/vitalrecords or by mail  

 

DOHMH CLINICS:

  • All NYC Sexual Health Clinics are closed for non-emergency walk-in services until further notice
  • Clinics will only see patients who were contacted by clinic staff for urgent follow-up, or who need emergency contraception or HIV post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP)
  • These patients can receive services on the following dates at the following clinics:
    • Thursday, March 19 and Friday, March 20: Morrisania, Central Harlem, Chelsea, Fort Greene, Crown Heights, Jamaica and Corona
    • Monday, March 23 until further notice: Chelsea only
  • All immunization testing services are suspended at all clinics
  • All tuberculosis clinics will be closed starting Sunday, March 22, except for the Fort Greene Chest Center, which will remain open

 

DOHMH ACTION CENTERS

  • All Department of Health services and scheduled activities at Health Action Center buildings have been suspended until further notice. Visit our coronavirus page for more information and current guidance.
  • For non-Health Department services in the Health Action Center buildings, such as medical clinics and IDNYC, please call the program directly for specific instructions.

 

NYC Alternate Side of the Street Parking Laws are Suspended Until March 24 Read More

Alternate Side of the Street Parking Laws are Suspended Until March 24

IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Press Release #20-011
Tuesday, March 17, 2020
Contact: Scott Gastel/Alana Morales (212) 839-4850

Suspension of Alternate Side Parking Regulations

The de Blasio Administration today announced that Alternate Side Parking Regulations will be suspended for one week starting on Wednesday, March 18, 2020 through Tuesday, March 24, 2020.

The City may extend the suspension 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. For any additional questions call 311.

Payment at parking meters will remain in effect throughout the City.

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For more information, visit https://www1.nyc.gov/html/dot/html/motorist/alternate-side-parking.shtml

 

NYC Department of Correction Update Read More

To reduce exposure for COVID-19, DOC will suspend in-person visitation beginning Wednesday, March 18. The City is also taking additional measures to help detainees stay in contact with their families and communities, including increased access to phones and postage stamps. For the first time, the City is also working to implement a televisit initiative that will allow people contacting detainees the convenience of using their own personal PC or mobile device to complete the teleconference.‎ 

For more information, please visit https://www1.nyc.gov/office-of-the-mayor

Pre-K application deadline has been extended to March 29th Read More

The New York City Department of Education has announced that 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).

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.

https://www.schools.nyc.gov/enr…/enroll-grade-by-grade/pre-k 

Sttudent, Medical, and Other State-Referred Debt Relief Read More

MARCH 17, 2020  
Albany, NY 

Governor Cuomo and Attorney General James Temporarily Suspend State Debt Collection in Response to Coronavirus

New Yorkers with Student, Medical, and Other State-Referred Debt Will Have Payments Frozen for At Least 30 Days

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and Attorney General Letitia James today announced that — effective immediately — the state will temporarily halt the collection of medical and student debt owed to the State of New York and referred to the Office of the Attorney General for collection, for at least a 30-day period, in response to growing financial impairments resulting from the spread of 2019 novel coronavirus, or COVID-19. Countless New Yorkers have been impacted — directly or indirectly — by the spread of COVID-19, forcing them to forgo income and business. In an effort to support these workers and families and ease their financial burdens, the OAG will halt the collection of medical and student debt owed to the State of New York and referred to the OAG for collection from March 16, 2020 through April 15, 2020. After this 30-day period, the OAG will reassess the needs of state residents for a possible extension. Additionally, the OAG will accept applications for suspension of all other types of debt owed to the State of New York and referred to the OAG for collection.

"As the financial impact of this emerging crisis grows, we are doing everything we can to support the thousands of New Yorkers that are suffering due to disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic," Governor Cuomo said. "This new action to temporarily suspend the collection of debt owed to the state will help mitigate the adverse financial impact of the outbreak on individuals, families, communities and businesses in New York State, as we continue to do everything we can to slow the spread of the virus." 

"In this time of crisis, my office will not add undue stress or saddle New Yorkers with unnecessary financial burden," said Attorney General James. "New Yorkers need to focus on keeping themselves safe and healthy from the coronavirus, and therefore can rest assured that state medical and student debt referred to my office will not be collected against them for at least 30 days. This is the time when New Yorkers need to rally around each other and pick each other up, which is why I am committed to doing everything in my power to support our state's residents."

The OAG collects certain debts owed to the State of New York via settlements and lawsuits brought on behalf of the State of New York and state agencies. A total of more than 165,000 matters currently fit the criteria for a suspension of state debt collection, including, but not limited to:

Patients that owe medical debt due to the five state hospitals and the five state veterans' home;
Students that owe student debt due to State University of New York campuses; and
Individual debtors, sole-proprietors, small business owners, and certain homeowners that owe debt relating to oil spill cleanup and removal costs, property damage, and breach of contract, as well as other fees owed to state agencies.

The temporary policy will also automatically suspend the accrual of interest and collection of fees on all outstanding state medical and student debt referred to the OAG for collection, so New Yorkers are not penalized for taking advantage of this program.

New Yorkers with non-medical or non-student debt owed to the State of New York and referred to the OAG, may also apply to temporarily halt the collection of state debt. Individuals seeking to apply for this temporary relief can fill out an application online or visit the OAG's coronavirus website to learn more about the suspension of payments. If an individual is unable to fill out the online form, they can also call the OAG hotline at 1-800-771-7755 to learn more. 

NYC COVID-19 Testing and Updates Read More

March 20, 2020 Update on Testing Sites:

Update on Testing Sites

Following guidance from the City’s Health Department, NYC Health + Hospitals is reserving testing for patients needing hospitalization or as clinically appropriate. It will continue to have clinicians in its call center to talk to thousands of New Yorkers every day and advise them stay at home if they don’t need to come to the emergency department (ED). NYC Health + Hospitals is no longer doing testing by appointment and will instead use its testing centers (tents) to divert patients from the ED. In line with this new guidance, NYC Health + Hospitals drive up testing sites at H+H/ Jacobi and H+H/ Coney Island are no longer operating. For both locations, resources will be shifted to tents near their emergency departments. 
 

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Mayor de Blasio and NYC Health + Hospitals Expand Appointment-Only COVID-19 Testing Capacity 

March 19, 2020

New Yorkers should text COVID to 692-692 to get regular updates on the latest developments regarding COVID-19; Text COVIDESP to 692-692 for updates in Spanish

NEW YORK—Mayor de Blasio and NYC Health + Hospitals today announced expanded, appointment-only COVID-19 testing capacity across 10 acute-care hospitals, seven Gotham Health community-based health centers, and 4 drive-thru test sites.  

Citywide, there are 3,615 positive cases of COVID-19 and 22 fatalities. Currently, there are 980 cases in Queens, 976 in Manhattan, 1030 in Brooklyn, 436 in the Bronx, and 165 in Staten Island. 

As of 5PM on March 18th, there were 554 people hospitalized with 169 of those people in the ICU.

“If we’re going to curb this epidemic, we need fast and expansive testing for those most at risk for serious illness,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “Now we can get more New Yorkers the care they need at the right time—helping save lives, one test at a time.”

The expanded testing capacity—available by appointment only—will help keep people seeking testing out of emergency departments and ensure testing access for New Yorkers with moderate-to-severe symptoms. Those with mild illness, who are not above the age of 50 or have underlying health conditions, should continue to stay home, practice social distancing, and consult their health care provider if their symptoms do not subside in 3-4 days. 

Eight of the ten acute care "assessment and testing” centers at NYC Health + Hospitals are now open on an appointment-only basis, including H+H/Bellevue, H+H/Elmhurst, H+H/Harlem, H+H/Metropolitan, H+H/Kings County, H+H/Lincoln, H+H/Woodhull, and H+H/Queens. Assessment and testing centers at H+H/Coney Island and H+H/Jacobi will be live early next week. These tents are similar to those utilized during the H1N1 outbreak in 2009. One drive thru testing site, H+H/Jacobi, is currently operational; H+H/Coney Island becomes operational this Friday. Two remaining sites – H+H/Jacobi and H+H/Kings County – will be coming online next week. 

Patients with appointments will receive an expedited consultation with a primary care physician to capture their medical history before their sample is collected for testing. This will ensure that the appropriate medical treatment is provided should a test come back positive. Samples collected by NYC Health + Hospitals will be sent to BioReference Laboratory for testing.

With this expansion of assessment and testing centers, H+H anticipates serving 150 people per day at each of its 10 centers and between 50-75 people per day at each of their 7 Gotham clinics by appointment only. The four drive thru sites will be able to accommodate 100 people per day by appointment only at their respective locations in addition to the State-operated mobile drive-thru facility on Staten Island.

New Yorkers who have high priority because of age, pre-existing conditions and symptoms, call 1-844-NYC-4NYC for more information. New Yorkers can continue to call 311 to be assessed for risk for COVID.

On Tuesday, Mayor de Blasio announced a private-public partnership between the City’s public health system and BioReference that would increase testing capacity to 5,000 per day, with a one-to-two day turnaround for results. All COVID-19 testing is being provided at no cost. These efforts expand on earlier activation of the public health system’s surge management plan to build capacity. 

   

  

For Employers: How New York’s new paid sick leave law affects your employees under quarantine after exposure to COVID-19. Read More

ATTENTION NEW YORK STATE EMPLOYERS

How New York’s new paid sick leave law affects your employees under quarantine after exposure to COVID-19.

Effective immediately, every employee in the State will be eligible for paid leave in some form if they are subject to a mandatory or precautionary order of quarantine or isolation due to exposure to COVID-19 issued by the state of New York, the DOH, a local board of health, or any authorized governmental entity due. The type of paid leave is based on the size of the employer as of January 1, 2020:

Employers with 10 or fewer employees: Employers provide unpaid sick leave until the termination of the order. During this time, the employee will be immediately eligible for payments to make them whole first under the paid family leave program (up to $840.70 per week) with any difference made up by the temporary disability insurance program (up to $2,043.92 per week).

Employers with between 11 and 99 employees, and employers with 10 or fewer employees with a net income of greater than one million dollars in the previous tax year: Employers provide at least five days of paid sick leave, and then after five days of paid sick leave the employee will be immediately eligible for pay- ments to make them whole first under the paid family leave program (up to $840.70 per week) with any differ- ence made up by the temporary disability insurance program (up to $2,043.92 per week).

Employers with 100 or more employees and all public employers: Employers provide at least fourteen days of paid sick leave during the order.

Non-Retaliation: All employees on leave due to an order of quarantine or isolation receive job protections and cannot be discriminated or retaliated against for taking that leave.

Exclusion for Travel: If an employee travels to a country for which the CDC has a designated Level 2 or 3 health notice for a non-work purpose even after the employee was provided notice of the travel health notice and how it would impact their eligibility for leave, such employee shall only be able to use their existing accrued leave or unpaid leave, without any additional paid benefits.

Working Remotely: An employee is not eligible for paid leave if an employee is deemed asymptomatic or has not been diagnosed with any medical condition and is able to work from home.

What if my employee’s child is under quarantine?

The parent is entitled to take leave under the paid family leave program.

 

For more information visit:

https://www.governor.ny.gov/programs/paid-sick-leave-covid-19-impacted-new-yorkers or call: 1-888-364-3065.

Emergency Sick Leave for COVID-19: What it Means for Employees in New York Read More

Emergency Sick Leave for COVID-19: What it Means for Employees in New York

CORONAVIRUS QUARANTINE LEAVE

WHO IS ELIGIBLE FOR EMERGENCY PAID QUARANTINE LEAVE?

Any employee in the state who is subject to a mandatory or precautionary order of quarantine or isolation issued by the state of New York, the Department of Health, local board of health, or any other authorized governmental entity will be eligible for some form of paid sick leave.

Employees who traveled to CDC-designated Level 2 and 3 health notice countries even after receiving notice of the health notice and undiagnosed, asymptomatic employees who can work from home are not eligible.

HOW DO I FIND OUT IF I AM ELIGIBLE, AND HOW DO I APPLY FOR PAID QUARANTINE LEAVE IF I AM?
Call: 1-888-364-3065 or visit: https://www.governor.ny.gov/programs/paid-sick-leave-covid-19-im- pacted-new-yorkers

WILL EMPLOYEES HAVE TO USE THEIR ACCRUED LEAVE BEFORE RECEIVING THESE BENEFITS?
No. Sick leave for COVID-19 will not be charged against existing accrued sick leave.

DOES THIS BILL PREVENT RETALIATION AGAINST EMPLOYEES OR FAILURE TO REINTE- GRATE THEM INTO THE OFFICE AT THEIR CURRENT POSITION AFTER THEIR LEAVE?
Yes. No employee may be discharged, threatened, penalized or discriminated against because of their leave of absence. Employees must be restored to their position.

 HAS YOUR EMPLOYER SHUT DOWN DUE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC?

If an employer closes due to a reason related to COVID-19 or receives a mandatory order from a government entity, there will be no waiting period for the employee to file a claim for unemployment insurance.

WHAT IF MY CHILD IS UNDER QUARANTINE? 

The parent is entitled to take leave under the paid family leave program.

 

For more information visit:

https://www.governor.ny.gov/programs/paid-sick-leave-covid-19-impacted-n... or call: 1-888-364-3065.

NYC COVID-19 Services & Resources Read More

COVID-19 Services and Resources

Due to the impact of COVID-19 on New York City's workforce, the City of New York has developed a list of resources for those who may be unemployed due to COVID-19 or are seeking additional assistance. The list below will be updated frequently.

For information and help with:

  • Employment Resources
  • Food Assistance
  • Health & Medical Assistance
  • Rent Arrears and Public Assistance
  • Emotional Support & Spiritual Care
  • Other Assistance

 

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

NYC Enforcement in Parks Read More

New York City Parks Department Enforcement

The City has already banned team sports and revoked all permits for organized sports and large gatherings, and has increased the presence of NYPD and Parks Enforcement Patrol officers to enforce social distancing.  The City is closely coordinating with the State to evaluate these efforts and will consider expanded restrictions as necessary. 
Signage will be by NYC Parks at all fields and courts to indicate that all tournaments and sports practices have been cancelled. In addition, Parks has closed all nature centers and recreation centers, and many concessions including ice rinks, amusement parks, carousels, indoor tennis facilities.

Playgrounds run by the Parks Department remain open to provide children with solitary, active recreation. It is critical to practice social distancing among people who do not live in the same household while playing on the playground. Playgrounds will be monitored by the NYPD and Parks Enforcement officers, and new signage will warn parents and guardians to maintain social distancing among children. Over the next week, the Parks Department will evaluate compliance and adopt more stringent rules if needed.

All Shape Up NYC fitness classes, Urban Park Ranger tours, and outdoor events including the annual Street Games festival have been cancelled until further notice. 

For all updates on park service changes and closures go to https://www.nycgovparks.org/about/health-and-safety-guide/coronavirus.
 

New York City Ferry Service Read More

NYC Ferry
NYC Ferry will be operating on a modified weekday schedule starting Monday, March 23. Ferry services will run from 6:30 AM- 10 PM daily, with most routes operating with a frequency of at least 45 minutes:
·         East River - operates every 45 minutes.
·         South Brooklyn - operates every 45 minutes.
·         Rockaway - operates every 60 minutes
·         Soundview - operates every 50 minutes.
·         Astoria operates every 50 minutes.
·         Lower East Side operates every 45 minutes

NYC Parking Permits for Healthcare Workers Read More

Parking Permits for Healthcare Workers

To protect frontline workers who are at risk of contracting or spreading COVID-19, the City will issue citywide parking permits to healthcare personnel. The City can make up to 10,000 permits  available to hospitals across the City by tomorrow, Monday March 23rd. Each hospital will receive a set number of permits based on the number of employees who require a permit, and the City will work with hospitals to provide more on an as-needed basis. Hospitals will be responsible for distributing them to their respective workforces and will fill in the make, model, and license plate number. 
 

3-22-20 Update on the City’s Correctional Facilities Read More

Update on the City’s Jail Population

Today, 23 individuals will be released from City jail facilities, bringing the total released up to 27, a subset of the 40 detainees for which the City previously announced plans to release. They are at high-risk for COVID-19 related complications and low-risk of re-offending. Most of the remaining individuals are parole re-offenders and under the discretion of the State. The City is working with the State to pursue their release, as well. 
 
The City has compiled an additional list of 200 detainees for potential release, all of whom are serving City sentences of 90-days or less. Final decisions will be issued tomorrow.
 
Correctional Health Services is now screening detainees before entering and leaving city jail facilities. Those who manifest symptoms while attempting to enter will be isolated from the general population. All staff will be screened before entering, as well. To ensure the Correctional Health Services is able to adequately house detainees with COVID-19, the Department of Correction will utilizing its communicable disease unit and is opening additional housing units to expand spaces for isolation and increase social distancing. 

MTA, TWU and ATU Announce Rear-Door Boarding On All Local & SBS Buses Beginning Monday, March 23 Until Further Notice Read More

March 20, 2020

MTA, TWU and ATU Announce Rear-Door Boarding On All Local & SBS Buses Beginning Monday, March 23 Until Further Notice

 
Starting Monday, March 23 Rear-Door Boarding Will Go into Effect on Local & Select Bus Service
 
New York City Transit Moving Healthcare Workers, First Responders and Essential Personnel; Operators, Customers Instructed to Keep Six Feet Away from Others
 
MTA New York City Transit, Transport Workers Union and Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) today announced a new rear-door boarding policy on all buses, beginning on Monday, March 23. The new policy is the latest action taken by NYC Transit, TWU and ATU to protect frontline employees from the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
 
Customers will board and exit all local and Select Bus Service (SBS) buses using the rear doors. Express bus customers will board as normal, but will not be permitted to sit in the first three rows of the bus to ensure customers are a safe social distance from bus operators. ADA customers will still be permitted to board at the front of all local and SBS buses, and board as usual on express buses. Regular fare policy remains in effect wherever on-board payment boxes or SBS off-board ticket machines continue to be accessible.
 
“While Governor Cuomo has ordered non-essential workers beginning Sunday night to remain in their homes and not take mass transit, we are taking aggressive action to protect our thousands of frontline employees who are delivering a critical service to New York, moving the healthcare workers, first responders, utility workers, and essential employees who are protecting us from this public health crisis,” said MTA Chairman and CEO, Pat Foye. “Transit workers are the lifeblood of this city and region and we are going to do everything we can to protect their health and safety.”
 
“I want to thank the 51,000 men and women of New York City Transit who are on the frontlines of this crisis and saving lives by keeping this city moving,” said Interim President of NYC Transit, Sarah Feinberg. “Rear-door boarding will help ensure a safe social distance.  The safety of our employees and customers is priority one.”
 
“We know we are essential workers providing an essential service during this national emergency – but we also need to be protected to the greatest extent possible,” said President of TWU Local 100, Tony Utano. “This is the right move. It will better protect our Bus Operators, give them some peace of mind, and demonstrate that their concerns have been heard.”
 
“We thank our members for continuing to work in these trying times and appreciate the MTA for listening to bus operators and taking effective action,” said President and Business Agent, ATU Local 726, Daniel Cassella. “We also recognize maintenance workers for their rigorous daily disinfecting of the buses. Hopefully the public will listen to the governor and travel only when essential.”

“I applaud our entire membership of ATU Local 1056 for the tireless work they do every day. This coalition of unions acknowledges the MTA for recognizing their concerns by acting on this initiative,” said President and Business Agent, ATU Local 1056, Mark Henry. “Rear doors access is necessary given the way our state, our city and our nation are dealing with coronavirus. We pray for all residents as the health risks are great and unknown; together we will overcome the challenges before us.”

Frequently Asked Questions for Families About Remote Learning​ Read More

Frequently Asked Questions for Families About Remote Learning

Frequently Asked Questions for Families About Remote Learning

Note from Chancellor Carranza:

Dear Families,

As we weather an unprecedented health crisis with COVID 19, our top priority is the health and safety of our students, families and staff. We are rapidly transitioning over 1 million students across over the City to remote learning to ensure students are still learning during this time. These are unparalleled scenarios for our students, families and staff. I’m incredibly grateful to our school communities for their flexibility as we launch remote learning and to our schools and staff for stepping up to this challenge with an unwavering commitment to our students.

With remote learning, teachers can deliver lessons online, and students can complete assignments, projects, and assessments just like they would in the classroom. Remote learning both creates an opportunity for students and teachers to interact online and allows students to continue learning subjects and material that are a key part of their curriculum. I’m hopeful that the connections with peers and teachers will help create familiarity and comfort for our students in this unfamiliar time.

Remote learning will start on Monday, March 23. As we transition together to a new normal, we know there will be questions and complications that will come up, and we’re committed to partnering with you to make this shift as smooth as possible. Below we’ve laid out answers to the Frequently Asked Questions for Families that we will continue to update as we learn more.

Key support for families:

  To request a device for their students to participate in remote learning, please complete this survey. Call 718- 935-5100 and choose option 5 if for any reason you cannot complete the survey online. We ask everyone to fill out the survey as soon as you can so we can connect you to a device if you need it.

  For information on creating an account, review the instructions on the NYCDOE website

  For curriculum, assignment or instruction questions, please contact your school’s parent coordinator.

In unity,
Chancellor Richard A. Carranza

ACCESSING REMOTE LEARNING AND SUPPORTING MY STUDENT

1. How will my student access remote learning materials?

Every New York City public school student will be given the necessary tools and materials for remote learning. Your school will communicate with you about their platform for remote learning. To keep students connected and meeting academic requirements when learning remotely, the NYCDOE has created student accounts for every student. The account gives you access to Google Classroom and Microsoft Office 365. Review the instructions on the NYCDOE website for more information. If you are unable to access your student’s student account, contact your school’s parent coordinator. See below re: devices

How can I contact my student’s teacher if I have questions?

Each school has established its own way to communicate with families, such as email, Microsoft Teams, or other tools. Your student’s school will let you know the best way to contact teachers. If you need help, contact the school’s parent coordinator. Visit schools.nyc.gov/find-a-school if you need contact information.

How do I get an internet-enabled device if I do not have one?

Many schools are distributing their existing inventory of laptops and tablets, and we are extending that window for pickup to make sure families have what they need. We are also asking families to complete a survey sharing their best contact information over the next few weeks as well as whether they have access to a smartphone, a laptop/tablet/computer, the internet, or none of the above. We will use the information to prioritize device distribution and inform families of pickup location.

ACADEMIC POLICY AND PLANNING

How will attendance affect my student’s grades?

Schools have a system for monitoring student attendance. Schools must base students’ grades primarily on theiracademic performance. Students cannot fail their courses because of absence. If your student’s school includesattendance in grade calculations, they will not include absences due to COVID-19 in their grade calculations. Moving forward, schools will not include attendance in any grade calculations for the rest of the year.

What if my student is not able to complete their work for remote learning?

Remote assignments carry the same weight as in-person assignments. Students are expected to participate in theirschool’s remote learning sessions just like they are expected to attend school. Grades will be assigned for remote work and academic progress will be monitored by teachers during remote learning with flexibility to adapt this policy to remote learning conditions where students may not all have the same degree of access to devices or other supporting materials. If your student is sick or unable to join remote learning for any reason, you should contact your student’s parent coordinator for guidance and support.

How will schools grade student work with the transition to remote learning?

with flexibility to adapt this policy to remote learning conditions where students may not all have the same degree of access to devices or other supporting materials

How will the transition to remote learning impact promotion decisions?

For grades Kindergarten through 8, schools review many pieces of student work to determine if students are ready for the next grade level. For grades 9 through 12, schools make promotion decisions based on credit and exam completion, with flexibility for remote learning conditions where students may not all have the same degree of access to devices or other supporting materials. Promotion decisions must be based on academic progress and not attendance. Families should expect schools to make promotion decisions in June as they normally would. Contact your student’s teacher if you are concerned about their progress and need additional support.

While schools participate in remote learning, teachers will grade student work as usual and in alignment with the school’s grading policy. Students are expected to complete the work and activities assigned by their teachers by their due dates. Each school has its own policies for how and when students complete late work. Contact your student’s teacher or parent coordinator if you need more information about your school’s grading policies during remote learning.

How will this affect students who are in the process of earning high school credits?

Remote learning will focus on preparing students to be successful in their courses and Regents exams. Students will receive credit at the end of their courses if they have earned a passing grade.

How does the transition to remote learning impact physical education instruction?

There are no exceptions to the physical education requirements. Students will participate in physical education instruction as part of remote learning so that they can continue to develop their knowledge and skills. Your student’sphysical education teacher will communicate the expectations for participating in physical education remotely.

How will the response to COVID-19 impact high school students who expect to graduate at the end of this school year?

Schools will make every effort to keep students on track toward graduation. This includes supporting students to master their courses and preparing them for exams in June. Remote learning plans will help students continue with their regular courses.

At this time, NYSED has not changed the graduation requirements in response to COVID-19. Your school will communicate with you about the graduation options available to your child. Students who do not meet requirements by the end of the school year will have the opportunity to attend summer school to continue working toward a diploma.

11. How can I support my high schooler with activities to prepare for college and career?

Students can use the DOE’s learn from home guidance for college and career planning to find resources about career exploration, understanding the financial aid process and student success programs at colleges. Students can also do virtual visits of college campuses.

Your school will also inform you how to connect with your school counselor for additional support with your student’s college and career plans.

SPECIAL EDUCATION

12. How will my child receive instruction?

If your student is recommended for integrated co-teaching, special class, or special education teacher support services, your school will make every effort to have them continue to receive instruction from the same special education teacher(s) and/or teacher team(s) and classroom paraprofessional(s) that usually teach them. Someone from your school will contact you to discuss how instruction will be delivered.

13. Will my child’s IEP meeting still take place?

Yes. IEP meetings will be conducted by phone.

Will I be able to make a referral for initial evaluation or reevaluation?

Parents can make a referral by emailing the principal or specialeducation@schools.nyc.gov, or by calling 311.

Assessments may be conducted remotely.

Will my child still receive their related services?

Related services will be provided via teletherapy, or video-conferencing where clinically appropriate. Providers and schools will contact families to discuss the service plan for each student. Providers will also give families information about activities that can be done at home to reinforce the related services work.

Will my child still have access to assistive technology?

Schools will work with families to ensure that devices are provided to families of students recommended for Assistive Technology, and will contact families to make those arrangements.

Preschool, Charter Schools, and Non-Public Schools?

Charter schools and non-public schools will contact families to discuss their plan for serving students while schools are closed. Students will receive SETSS, SEIT, and related services remotely, whenever appropriate, in the same manner such services are provided to students in district schools.

MULTILINGUAL / ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNERS

How will my student receive services?

Every school will create a remote learning plan to ensure that English language learners and former English language learners receive targeted instruction in English with the appropriate amount of supports in their home language. Your school will continue to consider your student’s specific strengths and needs, such as their current level of proficiency in English and the academic areas where they need the most support. These services will be provided by and in collaboration with an appropriately certified teacher.

How can I change the language on my device to my preferred language?

You can change the default language and settings to a preferred language on most computers, phones, and tablets. This option is commonly found under the “Settings” section of your device.

  •   To change the language on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, follow these directions.
  •   To change the language on your Android device, follow these directions.
  •     How can I translate online content into another language?

 

Google Translate is a free, online application available on most devices. It can also be used without internet connection once downloaded onto your device. Google Translate can be used to translate text, handwriting, speech, and websites in over 100 different languages.

Follow these directions to download Google Translate:

  •  On your computer, install the Google Chrome web browser if you have not already. Google Chrome includes the Google Translate feature.
  • For iPhones and iPads, download the Google Translate app from the app store.
  • For Android devices, download the Google Translate app on Google Play.

 

 

ASSESSMENTS AND ACCOUNTABILITY

21. How will this impact New York State tests for grades 3-8?

The English Language Arts and math exams have been suspended by the New York State Education Department (NYSED).

22. How does the response to COVID-19 impact students taking Regents exams?

Students in Regents courses should plan to take Regents exams in June. Students are always permitted to take the Regents exams for their courses, regardless of their performance or attendance.

For science Regents exams, students must usually complete a 1,200-minute laboratory requirement. The New York State Education Department has waived this requirement this year. Students should complete the activities assigned by their science teachers, but they will not be required to complete 1,200 minutes of in-person laboratory experience.

23. How will the response to COVID-19 impact the NYC School Survey?

The NYC School Survey is in progress and is continuing. If you have your survey already, you can fill it out on paper or online at NYCSchoolSurvey.org. If you have not received a survey or code, you can get yours by calling 1-877-819- 2363. You can also use the code lookup tool by going to NYCSchoolSurvey.org on the survey login page and clicking on one of the surveys where you see “Take the survey NOW.” The deadline to complete the survey is April 8th. If schools re-open later in the spring, we may extend the survey.

REMOTE LEARNING READINESS CHECKLIST

Consider these tips to best prepare you and your child for remote learning:

  •   Get familiar with each of the digital tools your child will use while learning from home.
  •   Review your school’s expectations for completing assignments and appropriate behavior on internet enabled devices.
  •   Set up a space for your child to use that considers their unique learning styles.
  •   Create a routine and daily schedule that will support your child’s success while learning from home.
  •   Make a list of activities that you and your child can use in addition to their classwork.
  •   If you don’t have access to an internet-enabled device, fill out this survey to be connected to one!

 

Updated March 23, 2020

3-23-20 MTA, TWU Announce Cash Transactions to be Conducted Via MetroCard Vending Machines Beginning Tuesday, March 24 Until Further Notice Read More

March 23, 2020 
NYC Transit
IMMEDIATE

MTA, TWU Announce Cash Transactions to be Conducted Via MetroCard Vending Machines Beginning Tuesday, March 24 Until Further Notice

Cash Transactions at All Service Booths Limited to Reduced Fare Purchases; MetroCard Vending Machines Located at All 472 Subway Stations

New York City Transit Continues to Move Healthcare Workers, First Responders and Essential Personnel

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) and Transport Workers Union Local 100 (TWU) today announced all cash transactions, other than reduced-fare purchases will be conducted via MetroCard Vending Machines effective Tuesday, March 24, until further notice. The new measure will reduce person-to-person contact at subway station booths and provide access to full cash capabilities via MetroCard Vending Machines located at all 472 subway stations across the system.

This marks the latest precaution taken by the MTA and TWU to protect workers from the COVID-19 outbreak, as transit workers continue to report to work to move the healthcare workers, first responders and other essential employees on the frontlines of this public health crisis.

Under the new measure, reduced fare purchases, including those for senior citizens and ADA customers will be allowed to continue at station booths. In the event a customer needs change or the MetroCard Vending Machine is out of service, station agents will conduct and complete the transaction.

“New York City Transit’s top priority is the safety of our frontline employees and we are doing everything we can to protect their health as they continue to move this city forward during this crisis,” said Interim President of NYC Transit, Sarah Feinberg. “Reducing cash transactions will help our station agents feel safe on the job and ensure we are taking all precautions against COVID-19 to protect our workforce.”

“This was a big concern for our station agents,” said TWU Local 100 President, Tony Utano. “I raised it with NYC Transit officials at headquarters and I’m glad that they listened and agreed to this common-sense plan that will help protect our members.”

3-24-20 MTA Implements “NY Essential Service Plan” to Move Healthcare Workers, First Responders and Other Essential Personnel on Frontlines of the COVID-19 Crisis Read More

Press Release
March 24, 2020 

MTA Headquarters
IMMEDIATE

MTA Implements “NY Essential Service Plan” to Move Healthcare Workers, First Responders and Other Essential Personnel on Frontlines of the COVID-19 Crisis

Service Plan Will Ensure Healthcare Workers, First Responders and Essential Personnel Get to and From Work By Mass Transit 

New York City Transit, Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North Railroad Move to Reduced Schedule As Ridership Drops As Much As 90% 

MTA Urges Congress to Take Action and Pass $25 Billion Federal Relief Package for Mass Transit with $4 Billion for MTA

MTA Continues Aggressive Efforts to Protect Customers & Employees – Around-the-Clock Disinfection of Workplaces and Rolling Stock, No Cash Transactions and Rear-Door Boarding to Ensure Social Distance

As the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) continues to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and move the healthcare workers, first responders and essential personnel on the frontlines of this public health crisis, the Authority today announced the implementation of the “NY Essential Service Plan.” The reduced schedule will ensure service to and from work for the workers on the frontlines of this crisis, while adapting to never-before-seen ridership lows – dropping by as much as 90 percent across New York City Transit, the Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North Railroad. 

The schedule change follows “New York State on PAUSE” order, which directed New Yorkers use of public transportation for only essential travel and limit potential exposure by spacing out at least six feet from other riders. New York City Transit, MTA Bus Company, Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North continue their aggressive disinfecting procedures at each of its stations twice daily, and continue daily sanitization of its fleet of rolling stock with the full fleet of train cars and buses disinfected every 72 hours or less. The Access-A-Ride dedicated fleet is disinfected daily.

In the midst of this crisis, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority is now facing financial calamity. Farebox and toll revenue, which normally constitutes nearly half of the M.T.A.’s annual budget at approximately $8 billion, has dropped significantly as more and more riders stay home. That’s on top of more than $6 billion in state and local taxes dedicated to the M.T.A. that is likely to evaporate in the inevitable economic downturn. Additionally, the MTA’s enhanced and intensive disinfecting efforts are expected to total over $300 million on an annualized basis.

In response, the MTA is urgently calling on Congress to do the right thing and include at least $25 billion in dedicated funding for mass transit, to ensure that the M.T.A. and systems across the country not only continue to operate through the crisis, but also serve as the catalyst for economic growth in local economies across the nation once the pandemic subsides.

“The MTA is committed to getting the heroes who keep this city moving where they need to go,” said MTA Chairman and CEO Patrick J. Foye. “The dramatic decrease in ridership shows our customers are continuing to follow the advice of health professionals to keep themselves and others safe. But we’re here for the critical workers and first responders, and I also want to thank our transit workers who continue to show up and keep New York moving every single day."

“The service changes announced today will help reduce workplace density and ensure social distancing, including in crew rooms and other facilities,” said MTA Chief Safety Officer Pat Warren. “The MTA has previously taken every precaution to protect our customers and employees, including stepped up disinfecting schedules for stations and rolling stock, the implementation of rear-door boarding on buses, and the elimination of most cash transactions. We will continue to do everything we can to make sure the system remains safe for customers and employees and operating during this challenging time.”

“Like after 9-11 and Superstorm Sandy, our workers have been nothing short of amazing as they continue to show up to work at such a difficult time,” said MTA Chief Operating Officer Mario Peloquin. “The decision to reduce service is not one we take lightly, but feel at this time is in the best interest of our workers, customers and the system as a whole. Our goal has been and continues to be to move New Yorkers where they need to go. That’s never been as important as right now.”

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, we’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.

“The 50,000 brave men and women of New York City Transit will continue moving essential employees and keep them safe during this public health crisis," said NYC Transit Interim President Sarah Feinberg. "The MTA Essential Service Plan is in the best interest of these workers and will keep the first responders, healthcare workers, child care workers and many more on the front lines of this crisis moving forward."

"LIRR's dedicated workforce will continue to move essential workers and those who need to care for loved ones as we fight to flatten the curve," said Long Island Rail Road President Phillip Eng. “This new service pattern will continue to get customers where they need to be, and at the same time help us better ensure that our workforce is safe and healthy and able to continue this vital service."

"Our crews and front line employees at  Metro-North will continue to provide the service our customers deserve during these trying times," said Metro-North President Catherine Rinaldi. "Our ridership has seen a steep decline over the past several weeks, but health care workers and other first responders continue to ride our trains every day.  While some reduction in service makes sense right now, we will continue to run a safe and reliable service to get these critical employees to their places of employment every day.”

NYS Workers’ Compensation Board Response to COVID-19 Read More

As an overarching precaution, in line with recommendations by the Governor and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on social distancing as a preventative tool, the NYS Workers’ Compensation Board (Board) encourages those who need to contact the Board to do so via phone, email and/or your attorney if applicable, limiting any in-person visits to Board offices. Please see the Board’s Contact Us webpage for location and service-specific contact information.

As a result of the issuance of this Executive Order, and the impact that this health crisis is expected to have on the adjudication of ongoing workers' compensation claims, the Board is issuing the following guidance to assist its stakeholders.

All Hearings will be by Remote Attendance 

To preserve public and workforce safety, effective immediately, and until further notice, the Board will conduct all hearings remotely, through the Board's Virtual Hearings. Virtual Hearings allow injured workers, attorneys/licensed representatives, witnesses and other participants to attend hearings online. For the very small number of hearings that are not able to be held virtually, namely Discrimination cases under WCL § 120, the Board will contact the participants regarding further proceedings.

Please visit the Virtual Hearings webpage at wcb.ny.gov/virtual-hearings for further guidance and instructions regarding virtual appearances.

Claimants appearing from home (or wherever safe and convenient) can appear either by video through Virtual Hearings, or may appear at hearings by telephone. To appear by telephone, a claimant should call the Board's Customer Service at (844) 337-6301 on the day of their hearing. If an unrepresented injured worker is unable to participate in their hearing, it will be rescheduled.

DVD and other evidence that the parties wish to introduce should be mailed to the Board and the opposing parties within two days of introducing it at the hearing.

Our goal is to keep the hearing process going without having to cancel hearings, because we don't want to see delays in the system that affect benefit delivery to injured workers. We appreciate everyone's cooperation in this effort. Any questions can be directed to the Board's Customer Service at (877) 632-4996. 

90-day Requirement for Medical Evidence

When a claimant's disability has not been classified as permanent, the claimant's attending physician has the burden of submitting up-to-date medical evidence that the disability is continuing.

Board Rule 325-1.3(b)(3) requires a claimant's attending medical provider to submit progress reports of ongoing medically necessary treatment and "the intervals between [those] follow-up visits shall be no more than 90 days."

The Board understands that a claimant may be unable to see his/her attending physician due to the coronavirus outbreak. This may (for example) be due to the physician's unavailability or the claimant being quarantined. This could result in delays beyond the 90-day period set forth in Board Rule 325-1.3(b)(3) that could affect continuity of lost time benefits. 

To avoid that situation, if a carrier seeks to suspend the claimant's benefits as a result of a failure to comply with Board Rule 325-1.3(b)(3), the Board will take into consideration a claimant's or his or her attorney's assertion that the claimant was unable to secure a required medical report due to the coronavirus outbreak.  

Please be advised that the Board is set to issue an emergency regulation on Telemedicine, which will be effective for 90 days upon adoption. Information will be provided on the Board's website, wcb.ny.gov, and provided to all subscribing stakeholders via WCB Notifications.

Failure to Attend an Independent Medical Examination (IME)

The Workers' Compensation Law provides that a refusal by a claimant to submit to an IME may bar the claimant from recovering compensation for any period during which he or she has refused to submit to such examination (WCL § 13-a[4][b]; see also 12 NYCRR 300.2[d][11]). While the number of non-appearances is not specified by rule, usually any request to suspend would only occur after a second refusal to appear.

There have been circumstances where the Board has held that when a claimant frustrates the employer's right to engage an IME, a suspension of payments is warranted (see Matter of Jasmine v Rainbow Grill, 115 AD2d 862 [1985]). 

However, there is no basis to bar payments where the claimant's failure to attend an IME is not due to a refusal to submit to such examination, or where the claimant's refusal is reasonable (see Matter of Ferguson v Fruehauf Corp., 156 AD2d 880 [1989]).

If a claimant cannot appear at a scheduled IME due to the coronavirus outbreak, he/she should let his or her attorney know, and notify the IME doctor and the Board by email at wcbclaimsfiling@wcb.ny.gov, or by letter to the Board's centralized mailing address at PO Box 5205, Binghamton, NY 13902-5205.  

Benefits will not be suspended if the claimant offers a reasonable excuse for the failure to attend the IME. 

For more information, please visit http://www.wcb.ny.gov/content/main/TheBoard/WCB-Response-COVID-19.jsp

To contact the Workers' Compensation Board, visit http://www.wcb.ny.gov/content/main/Contact.jsp#bureauOfficeContactInfo
 

3-25-20 NYC Health + Hospitals Covid Update Read More

Understanding New Rules for COVID-19 Testing

The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene has directed health care facilities to immediately stop testing non-hospitalized patients for COVID-19 unless test results will impact the clinical management of the patient. In addition, the department also advised providers and hospitals to not test asymptomatic people. This will help direct medical attention to New Yorkers who need it most and will also help preserve PPE for healthcare workers providing medically necessary care for hospitalized patients. Effective immediately, NYC Health + Hospitals will adopt this new guidance. We will:

  • Continue to have clinicians in our call center talk to thousands of New Yorkers every day to have them stay at home if they don’t need to come to the ED;
  • No longer do testing by appointment and instead use testing centers/tents as a place for patients to go as ED diversion;
  • Reserve testing for patients needing hospitalization, or as part of an ED decompression strategy as clinically appropriate.

Here's the message you can pass on to patients, family and neighbors:

  • In line with New York City Department of Health recommendations, NYC Health + Hospitals is no longer testing patients for COVID-19 who do not require hospitalization.
  • If you are sick with fever, cough, shortness of breath, or sore throat, you must stay inside and isolate yourself from others.
  • Isolate yourself for at least 7 days from when your symptoms started. You must also be without fever during the last 3 days of your isolation.
  • Please only go to the emergency room if you are severely ill.
  • We are asking every New Yorker, regardless of symptoms, to stay inside your home.
  • Staying home can save the life of another New Yorker.

 

Together we can slow the spread and protect those at higher risk of severe illness.

 

New Visitor Policy

The New York State Department of Health issued new visitation policies for hospital visitors and caregivers. Effective today, all patient visitation at NYC Health + Hospitals IS SUSPENDED except:

  • When medically necessary and visitor is essential to the patient’s care;
  • The visitor is a family member or legal representative of a patient in an imminent end-of-life situation; or
  • For a visitor of a woman in labor, an infant in the neonatal ICU, or a pediatric patient.

 

Any visitor meeting any of the above exceptions, must be screened for symptoms of cough, shortness of breath, or fever, or potential exposure to someone with COVID-19 prior to entering the hospital. Visitors who exhibit COVID-19 symptoms, or who have potentially had exposure to someone with COVID-19 will not be permitted to visit patients. The length of the visits and number of visitors will be limited.

 

Using Telephonic Visits to Reduce Spread of Virus

NYC Health + Hospitals is stepping up the use of technology to take care of patients remotely to reduce stress on our facilities and the spread of the virus. Nearly all Ambulatory Care visits have now been converted to telephonic visits with providers, with the exception of specific patient situations that require in person visit. Our Community Care team is also using telephonic technology to keep connected to patients who typically receive care at their home. The health system is also exploring the broader use of video visits.

 

Staying Informed

Nearly 700,000 New Yorkers have signed up for the City’s COVID text notification system. To get regular updates on the latest developments with coronavirus in New York City text COVID to 692-692. New Yorkers can text COVIDESP to 692-692 for updates in Spanish. You will receive regular SMS texts with the latest news and developments. If New Yorkers have any questions on finding medical care, they can call 311.

3/26/20 - NYC Parks COVID-19 Update Read More

NYC Parks COVID-19 Update – 3/26/20

In response to the spread of COVID-19 and to eliminate crowding in public spaces, NYC Parks is moving quickly to keep parks open, while encouraging social distancing - and slowing the spread of the virus.  This is a citywide effort, involving all City agencies, including DOHMH, NYCEM, NYPD, OSE, the Sheriff’s Office, DEP, DSNY, DOB, and FDNY.

 

In partnership with these agencies, NYC Parks has:

 

Installed Thousands of Additional Signs

 

·        Field & court signs banning group play

·        Playground caution signs 

 

Enhanced Personnel

 

·        Ambassadors

o   Parks ambassadors have been deployed across the park system to remind patrons that they should only be in parks for as long as necessary.

 

·        Maintenance and Operations Staff

o   Maintenance staff have been trained to reinforce social distancing messages and report persistent disregard of these rules to the Parks Enforcement Patrol.

 

·        Parks Enforcement Patrol

o   PEP officers and Parks Security Service staff are focused on the most high-traffic areas.

 

·        Urban Park Rangers 

o   Rangers are patrolling and assisting with social distancing education

 

·        Partnership w/NYPD

o   We will report overcrowding to NYPD and maintain a list of areas that require more substantial resources and intervention to maintain social distancing of users.

o   Mobile loudspeaker announcements to disperse crowds

o   NYPD is performing aviation runs above large parks to identify large gatherings.

o   Additionally, as the Mayor announced on Wednesday, we are removing basketball rims at 80 park courts, in order to discourage group play that has been persistent.

Several City agencies are also assisting with education and enforcement efforts, including OSE, the Sheriff’s Office, DEP, DSNY, DOB, and FDNY.

During this unprecedented challenge to our city, parks will continue to serve as vital outlets for health and well-being.  The City will continue to monitor conditions and determine if more severe restrictions are necessary.  We are confident that these efforts -- signage blitz, additional personnel, enhanced training, and inter-agency partnerships -- will keep parks open and, most importantly, safe.

For all updates on park service changes and closures, go to: https://www.nycgovparks.org/about/health-and-safety-guide/coronavirus.

For further DOHMH guidance about COVID-19, please refer to the DOHMH website: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/health/health-topics/coronavirus.page

3-26-20 COVID-19 Update - Access to HRA Job, SNAP, and Medicaid Benefits Read More

To help stop the spread of COVID-19, NYC has consolidated their HRA Job, SNAP, and Medicaid Center locations, effective 12:00pm yesterday, Tuesday, March 24. 

As a result of these consolidations, we are advising New Yorkers to apply for public benefits online at ACCESS HRA in order to prevent unnecessary visits to an HRA center. For clients who cannot or do not want to apply online, a list of Job, SNAP, and Medicaid center locations that will remain open (see below for more information)

Clients are being informed of this change via ACCESS HRA, email, robocalls, text messages, flyers, and signage in offices as well as social media. For the most recent information about this and other changes, please visit: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/hra/index.page

 

Brooklyn_SNAP Benefits

Coney Island: You can use ACCESS HRA to apply for benefits, manage your case, and more. This location will remain open to serve clients whose needs cannot be met through ACCESS HRA or over the phone.
Address: 2857-2865 West 8th Street, 1st Fl., Brooklyn, NY 11224
Phone: 929-221-3537 | Fax: 917-639-1108
Monday – Friday 8:30am to 5:00pm
This center includes a children's area that does not provide supervision. 

 

Brooklyn_Medicaid Services

Coney Island*: You can use ACCESS HRA to apply for SNAP and Cash Assistance Benefits. This location will remain open to serve clients whose needs cannot be met through ACCESS HRA or over the phone.
Address: 3050 W 21st St., 3rd Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11224
Phone: 929-221-3790
Monday – Friday 9:00am to 5:00pm 

Brooklyn_Jobs Services

Clinton Hill: You can use ACCESS HRA to apply for benefits, manage your case, and more. This location will remain open to serve clients whose needs cannot be met through ACCESS HRA or over the phone.
Address: 495 Clermont Ave, Brooklyn NY 11238
Phone: 929-221-2809 | 929-221-1568
Fax: 917-639-2511 | HDU Fax: 718-639-7705
Monday – Friday 8:30am to 5:00pm
This center includes a Children's Corner, which provides supervision during limited hours.

Coney Island: You can use ACCESS HRA to apply for benefits, manage your case, and more. This location will remain open to serve clients whose needs cannot be met through ACCESS HRA or over the phone.
Address: 3050 West 21st Street, Brooklyn, NY 11224
Phone: 929-221-3856 | 929-221-3867
Fax: 917-639-2515 | HDU Fax: 917-639-2516
Monday – Friday 8:30am to 5:00pm
This center includes a children's area that does not provide supervision.

NYCHA's Rent Hardship Program Read More

NYCHA's Rent Hardship 

NYCHA's rent hardship program provides assistance to residents who require rent reductions due to income losses.

A household may qualify for a rent reduction based on rent hardship if all the following conditions are met:

  • There is at least a 5% reduction to gross income
  • Current rent is more than 30% of the net household income
  • Reduction in income has lasted at least two months

 

For more information and bilingual flyers, click here.

 

The Department of Financial Services Issues New Emergency Regulations To provide Financial Relief To New Yorkers Demonstrating Financial Hardship From the COVID-19 Pandemic Read More

DFS ISSUES NEW EMERGENCY REGULATION REQUIRING NEW YORK REGULATED FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS TO PROVIDE FINANCIAL RELIEF TO NEW YORKERS DEMONSTRATING FINANCIAL HARDSHIP FROM COVID-19 PANDEMIC 

 

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. This emergency regulation is adopted pursuant to Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s Executive Order No. 202.9. 

“Thanks to Governor Cuomo, DFS is further empowered to step up for New Yorkers during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Superintendent of Financial Services Linda A. Lacewell. “This emergency regulation provides a measure of much needed financial relief to New York residents with New York State mortgages on homes in New York State." 

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. to read a copy of the emergency regulation, click here.

For additional DFS regulatory actions on the COVID-19 pandemic, click here. 

 

ASPCA Commits $5 Million in COVID-19 Relief & Recovery Initiative to Help Shelters and Pet Owners Read More

ASPCA Commits $5 Million in COVID-19 Relief & Recovery Initiative to Help Shelters and Pet Owners 

ASPCA to distribute lifesaving grants to shelters and establish regional pet food distribution centers to provide emergency relief to at-risk pet owners. Effort made possible in-part by the Petco Foundation and Blue Buffalo

 

March 23, 2020

NEW YORK–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.

“In addition to the unprecedented challenges the COVID-19 pandemic has created for people, it is also putting animals at-risk by straining essential owner and shelter resources. Considering the vital role pets play in our lives – especially in times of crisis and stress – it’s extremely important to safeguard their health and welfare as much as we possibly can,” said ASPCA President and CEO Matt Bershadker. 

Added Bershadker, “We are grateful to work with generous donors and the larger animal welfare community who are stepping up, thinking creatively and courageously, and forging new paths to meet this need. Across the world, people are turning to their pets for comfort, and with the ASPCA Relief & Recovery Initiative, we are committed to helping animals return that love and comfort back to their families by working to ensure their health and safety as we weather this crisis together.”

Emergency Relief for Shelters
The ASPCA is launching a minimum $2 million emergency relief fund for shelters that have been hit hard by this crisis. Grants will help shelters fund essential lifesaving services such as basic operations, safety net, adoptions and foster programs, and veterinary services, which are proving to be crucial animal welfare services during this crisis. 
 

Pet Food Distribution
The ASPCA’s response also includes the creation of regional pet food distribution centers, starting first in New York City, one of the U.S. cities most severely affected by the pandemic. The centers, provided in partnership with the Petco Foundation, will give dog and cat owners free access to critical food supplies as the outbreak continues to spread. 

ASPCA will also operate regional food distribution centers in Miami, Los Angeles, and North Carolina, where the ASPCA has operations. More information about specific locations and dates will be available in the coming weeks. 

Petco Foundation President Susanne Kogut said, “At the Petco Foundation, we have been working diligently to mobilize the community to foster or adopt to prevent COVID-19 from becoming a crisis for our pets. We must all come together to support our animal shelters and our community, which is why we’re proud to also support this initiative,” said Kogut. “The health and safety of pets needs to remain a top concern because they provide vital comfort and companionship to people during this very stressful time.”

The COVID-19 relief response speaks to the ASPCA’s longstanding commitment to the animal welfare community and people and their pets. In an effort to create better access to crucial services for underserved pet owners and improve the health and welfare of dogs and cats nationwide, the ASPCA has launched programs and partnerships in New York City, Los Angeles and Miami that make veterinary care more accessible and affordable, and continues to develop initiatives to serve the more than 21 million pets living in poverty with their owners nationwide. In North Carolina, the ASPCA operates the ASPCA Behavioral Rehabilitation Center (BRC), a facility dedicated to rehabilitating fearful, under socialized dogs, and ASPCA Spay/Neuter Alliance, the nationally recognized leader in high-quality, high-volume, low-cost spay/neuter training and services.

For more information on the ASPCA’s efforts to help at-risk animals, click here.

For eligibility and the application process click here. 

3-27-20 NYC Parks Update Read More

NYC Parks' 2020 tennis season is delayed until further notice. NYC Parks tennis courts are currently closed to tennis play, and tennis nets are being removed from courts. NYC Parks tennis permit sales have been suspended. In the event an NYC Parks 2020 season tennis permit has been previously purchased, it will be valid through the 2021 season.

The citywide enforcement effort to encourage social distancing among parkgoers remains in place, involving multiple City agencies, including NYPD, OSE, the Sheriff’s Office, DEP, DSNY, DOB, and FDNY. The City will continue to monitor conditions and determine if more severe restrictions are necessary.

For all updates on park service changes and closures, click here.

For more information and guidance about COVID-19 from the Dept. of Hygiene and Mental Health, click here.

Dept of Consumer Affairs and Workers Protection issues emergency rule to prohibit price gouging Read More

Department of Consumer and Worker Protection Issues Emergency Rule That Makes Price Gouging Illegal for Any Item or Service Needed to Limit the Spread of Coronavirus

The Rule Follows the Department’s Declarations and Expands Protections for Consumers During the Public Health Emergency

 

Please be advised that effective March 17th, DCWP has issued an emergency rule regarding price gouging of products that are used to treat, prevent, or limit the spread of COVID-19.

NEW YORK, NY – Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) Commissioner Lorelei Salas today announced that the Agency has promulgated an emergency Rule under the City’s Consumer Protection Law 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 new coronavirus (COVID-19). The Rule (NYC Administrative Code 20-701(b)) is in effect and makes it illegal to increase prices by 10 percent or more. The Rule follows DCWP’s previous declaration that face masks, hand sanitizer, and disinfectant wipes are in short supply and expands the Agency’s ability to protect New Yorkers from price gouging.

“Now is the time for us to come together, not take advantage of each other for a profit but we continue to hear about and see empty shelves and price gouging,” said DCWP Commissioner Lorelei Salas. “We are using every tool in our toolbox to protect New Yorkers from price gouging during this public health emergency and I encourage consumers to file a complaint if they are overcharged. I also remind New Yorkers about their right to sick leave and encourage employers to let employees use additional sick leave if necessary so they can take care of themselves and not get coworkers or customers sick.”

In addition to complaints about face masks, hand sanitizer, and disinfectant wipes, DCWP has received complaints about items in short supply and price gouging for various items and has observed numerous items in short supply and being sold well above regular market prices. The new Rule is in effect (March 16, 2020) and, under the city’s emergency rulemaking process, will be valid for 60 days. The Rule can be extended once for an additional 60 days.

DCWP is actively inspecting stores based on consumer complaints. Businesses found to be overcharging consumers 10 percent or more than before COVID-19 will be issued a violation. The Rule covers any personal or household good or service—such as disinfectants, soap, and cleaning products, diagnostic products and services, medicines, and tissues—that is needed to prevent or limit the spread of or treat COVID-19. The fine for price gouging is up to $500 per item or service. If businesses are paying more to supply these items, they must provide proof to DCWP.

On March 5, the Commissioner declared face masks in short supply and that declaration was extended with the addition of hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes on March 10. The declarations were made under the Rules of the City of New York (6 RCNY §5-38), which allows the commissioner to declare certain items temporarily in short supply for 30 days during extraordinary circumstances.

DCWP has received more than 1,000 complaints about price gouging since the first declaration on March 5. DCWP has also issued more than 550 violations for price gouging for the three items that had been declared temporarily in short supply. DCWP encourages consumers who are overcharged to file a complaint at nyc.gov/dcwp or by contacting 311 and saying “overcharge.” Consumers who believe they were victimized by price gouging should keep their receipts and any information about the store where the transaction occurred, and file a complaint with DCWP. If the price gouging occurred while the declaration was in effect, or after the new rule was enacted, DCWP can still prosecute the illegal activity.

DCWP also reminds New Yorkers that they have the right to sick leave and should use it if they are feeling ill. Under the NYC Paid Safe and Sick Leave Law, employers with five or more employees who work more than 80 hours per calendar year in New York City must provide paid safe and sick leave to employees. Employers with fewer than five employees must provide unpaid safe and sick leave. Covered employees have the right to use safe and sick leave for the care and treatment of themselves or a family member. Employers may not engage in or threaten retaliation against employees, which includes firing and any act that punishes an employee for or is likely to deter an employee from exercising their rights under the Law. Employers and employees can visit nyc.gov/workers or call 311 (212-NEW-YORK outside NYC) for more information. We also encourage employers to let employees use additional sick leave if necessary so they can take care of themselves and do not get coworkers or consumers sick. Small Business Services provides guidance for Assistance & Guidance for Businesses Impacted Due to Novel Coronavirus, including small business relief.

The NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) protects and enhances the daily economic lives of New Yorkers to create thriving communities. DCWP licenses more than 75,000 businesses in more than 50 industries and enforces key consumer protection, licensing, and workplace laws that apply to countless more. By supporting businesses through equitable enforcement and access to resources and, by helping to resolve complaints, DCWP protects the marketplace from predatory practices and strives to create a culture of compliance. Through its community outreach and the work of its offices of Financial Empowerment and Labor Policy & Standards, DCWP empowers consumers and working families by providing the tools and resources they need to be educated consumers and to achieve financial health and work-life balance. DCWP also conducts research and advocates for public policy that furthers its work to support New York City’s communities. For more information about DCWP and its work, call 311 or visit DCWP at nyc.gov/dcwp or on its social media sites, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.
 

New York Legal Assistance Group work continues Read More

 

The New York Legal Assistance Group (NYLAG) is continuing to serve individuals during the Covid-19 pandemic. Since 1990, NYLAG has provided legal counsel to indigent families. 

NYLAG's intake hotlines are open and they are meeting with clients via telephone and virtual meetings, they are sharing information online, continuing advocacy efforts, and every unit is up and running. NYLAG is still working hard to ensure fair and equal access to justice during this crisis, but please note that the physical office is closed.

Direct Support

  • For free non-criminal legal support (i.e. public benefit appeals, access to healthcare, immigrant protection, workers' rights) or financial counseling, you can find contact information for NYLAG’s legal and financial counseling services by clicking here.

Online Resources

 

Brooklyn Staten Island Covid-19 update Read More

UPDATES FOR 3/28/2020

 

The Governor’s most recent briefing on 3/28/2020: During his Coronavirus briefing, Governor Cuomo confirmed 7,681 additional cases of novel coronavirus, bringing the statewide total to 52,318 confirmed cases in New York State.

New York City has a total of 4,368 new positive cases, bringing its total to 29,766.

The Governor today issued an executive order to move the presidential primary election from April 28 to June 23, aligning it with the congressional and legislative primaries in New York.

The Governor also issued an executive order to enable the tax filing deadline for personal and corporate taxes to be pushed back to July 15. The federal government took similar action earlier this month.

The Governor also announced that the State Department of Health Wadsworth Lab is working in partnership with others labs to evaluate antibody testing that is designed to help very sick COVID-19 patients. 

The Governor also announced three new sites - South Beach Psychiatric Center in Staten Island, Westchester Square in the Bronx and Health Alliance in Ulster County - to serve as a place for emergency beds.

Additionally, in a new approach, the State will begin designating some facilities only for COVID-19 patients. The state has identified three sites - South Beach Psychiatric Facility in Staten Island, Westchester Square in the Bronx and SUNY Downstate in Brooklyn.

The Governor also announced that the Empire State Development Board of Directors approved $7.5 million in COVID-19 Business Counseling support to 70 non-profit partners across New York State. The funding will enable these organizations to provide small businesses with necessary guidance to secure disaster assistance, such as Small Business Administration Economic Injury Disaster Loans, amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Up to 24Entrepreneurship Assistance Centers and up to 23Small Business Development Centers will receive $5 million, with an additional $2.5 million awarded to up to 23Community Development Financial Institutions.

Video, Audio, Photos & Rush Transcript:https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/video-audio-photos-rush-transcript-amid...

 

No. 202.12: Continuing Temporary Suspension and Modification of Laws Relating to the Disaster Emergency

https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/no-20212-continuing-temporary-suspensio...

 

Paragraph 28 of section 171 of the Tax Law, to the extent it limits the allowable period that the Tax Commissioner can disregard when a disaster emergency has been declared, in order to authorize the Tax Commissioner to disregard a period or more than 90 days, but not more than 100 days.

Any presidential primary to be held on April 28, 2020, shall be postponed and rescheduled for June 23, 2020.  

Any special election to be held on April 28, 2020, including for the Twenty-Seventh Congressional District, the Twelfth Assembly District, the Thirty-First Assembly District, the One Hundred and Thirty-Sixth Assembly District, and the Fiftieth Senate District shall be postponed and rescheduled for June 23, 2020, and the ballots shall remain the same. 

Any article twenty-eight facility licensed by the state, shall, as a condition of licensure permit the attendance of one support person who does not have a fever at the time of labor/delivery to be present as a support person for a patient who is giving birth.

New Yorkers who have recovered from COVID-19 and had a positive test before March 7th should visit https://www.mountsinai.org/ to help save another New Yorker by donating plasma.

Check the status of a NYS tax refund online

https://www.tax.ny.gov/pit/file/refund.htm 

Who We Supervise - DFS Portal - New York State

https://myportal.dfs.ny.gov/web/guest-applications/who-we-supervise

Complaints Related to COVID-19 Regulations

https://labor.ny.gov/workerprotection/laborstandards/coronavirus-complai...

NYC Parks Update 4-7-20 Read More

In response to observed crowding at certain Parks sites, and as part of the city’s ongoing effort to maintain social distancing in public spaces to keep all parkgoers safe, NYC Parks will close the following facilities effective immediately:

  • ·        Skate parks
  • ·        Volleyball courts
  • ·        Bocce courts

 

Additionally, adult fitness and exercise equipment areas in parks will be carefully monitored, and NYC Parks will close these areas where necessary to prevent crowding.

Areas of parks outside of these features will continue to remain open for park visitors to enjoy.  The citywide enforcement effort to encourage social distancing among parkgoers remains in place, involving multiple City agencies, including NYPD, OSE, the Sheriff’s Office, DEP, DSNY, DOB, and FDNY.  The City will continue to monitor conditions and determine if more severe restrictions are necessary.

Face Coverings Guidelines Read More

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 helpful FAQ, click here. 

 

NYC Health + Hospitals to triple ICU capacity and expand Personnel Read More

A New Way to Donate to NYC Health + Hospitals

In response to many supporters of our public health care system, we have created an official way to donate to us to support the purchase of items that provide some personal comfort to our heroic teams. We are now accepting cash and select donations to cover meals for every shift, groceries to take home, hotel rooms for those who want to limit exposure to their loved ones at home, and taxi rides to staff who work the overnight shift in our Emergency Departments, ICUs and other vital patient care areas. Cash donations can be made through the NYC Health + Hospitals Network for Good fundraising page. 

To make a donation click here.

NYCHA Update Read More

By Executive Order all Playgrounds are closed to stop the spread of the coronavirus, effective April 1st.

Free Meals for All New Yorkers! 
 

Free grab and go breakfast and lunch meals available Monday through Friday. Children and families can visit meal sites from 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and adults can visit from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Parents and guardians may pick up food for their children. When waiting in line for your food, please maintain a social distance of 6 feet apart!  Click here for updated food locations and times or call 311. 

NYCHA's Heroes: Vladeck Houses 

 

Shoutout to the leaders of our community-- Manhattan Borough President, Vladeck TA and Management staff, who have  facilitated Food Drives at Vladeck Houses! 

Nancy Ortiz, the Resident Association President of Vladeck Houses expressed her gratitude for the donations received from FreshDirect and the volunteers that helped during this time of need. Nancy Ortiz said "it is important to let our most vulnerable know they are not forgotten during these scary times but what was most rewarding was to see all my viejitos face filled with gratitude and their blessings as the food was being delivered." Nancy also shared her grandmother's lesson of "it takes a village to keep one another together but it takes a village to build each other up".

“I’m proud to help facilitate the food box deliveries that FreshDirect -- and their partners BoarsHead and Poland Spring—are making each day to NYCHA developments as part of their Five Borough Food Drive. The thousands of ten-pound boxes they deliver each week are helping to protect not just Manhattan’s  most vulnerable, but the entire city’s most vulnerable. I’m especially proud of my staff and the local tenant association volunteers who are helping execute the drop offs at a different NYCHA facility each day,”  said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer.  

We are grateful for all of the people who are stepping up for the NYCHA community and starting today are going to begin highlighting these heroes!

Nominate a NYCHA hero! Tell us who you think should be showcased in our newsletters by submitting nominations to Intergov@nycha.nyc.gov 

 

Help Now: Donate Supplies to our Healthcare Workers

 

The City of New York launched Help Now as a one-stop shop for New Yorkers to give and get help during the COVID-19 outbreak. New Yorkers can use Help Now to find donation and volunteer opportunities, including how to donate critical medical supplies and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to the City of New York. Businesses can also find opportunities to partner with the City of New York in its COVID-19 response through Help Now NYC. Individuals, businesses, and nonprofit organizations seeking help can find COVID-19-related assistance, including benefits, grants, and loans, on Help Now. To give or get help during the COVID-19 outbreak, click here. 

End of Day Update 4-08-20 Read More

The Mayor announced today that ventilator use is lower than projected and new hospitalizations for respiratory illness are stabilizing. We projected a need for 1,000-1,500 ventilators to get through next Sunday, but we have seen a reduction in daily growth and have enough ventilators in our current supply; 5,500 deployed to hospitals, 135 in emergency reserve, and we will receive 500 more from New York State.

Good news coming from our public safety agencies. We are seeing a recovery in the workforce 276 NYPD personnel who tested positive have returned to duty, and over 1,300 FDNY paramedics, EMTs and firefighters returned to duty who had tested positive, been who finished isolating after exposure or experiencing possible symptoms. 

The Mayor also announced the release of preliminary data by race/ethnicity on COVID deaths within NYC:

  • Hispanic: 34% (29% of population)
  • Black 28% (22% of population)
  • White 27% (32% of population)
  • Asian 7% (14% of population)

We are putting in place several measures to address the disparities:
●       Health Care Justice
○       Keep equipping public and independent hospitals with ventilators, personnel and PPE to save lives
●       Multi-Million Dollar Public Awareness Campaign
○       Information for how to navigate this crisis
○       Focus on zip codes with highest positive cases and in communities of color
○       TV, Radio, Digital and Print in 14 different languages
●       Grassroots Outreach
○       Robocalls, peer-to-peer texting, direct outreach to households in places with greatest need
●       Phone-a-Clinician
○       Offering additional support by building on 311
We will have more information about these programs in the coming days.

We are still working on adding hospital capacity and securing medical supplies. The Billie Jean King Tennis Center has been converted in just 8 days and now houses 470 beds (up from 350), including 20 ICU beds. We have requested 9.2 million surgical gowns requested from the federal government for a 4 week supply, as well as 1,450 military personnel to assist NYC Health and Hospitals.

The outpouring of generosity in New York continues as the city recently received:
●       A generous pledge of $3 million to assist healthcare workers from Tunnel to Towers, an organization born out of 9/11.
●       New York Road Runners also donated $100,000 to the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City to provide 10,000 meals to frontline healthcare workers in the NYC H+H system. Last week, they donated 20,000 airs of examination gloves to the City.
●       And thanks to the FDNY Foundation and the FDNY Family Assistance Unit, approximately 130 first responders, including firefighters, EMTs and paramedics who are afraid of bringing coronavirus home, are being placed in hotels or furnished apartments in between shifts. Donations are accepted by the FDNY COVID-19 Emergency Fund.

In addition, Senator Schumer unveiled the COVID-19 Hero's Fund, which would provide essential workers additional pay up to $25,000 and furnish a one-time $15,000 payment to health care workers, home care workers, and first responders.
                                                                                               
Things happening now:
●       GetFood: This morning on Brian Lehrer, Commissioner Kathryn Garcia spoke about the critical work that her team is doing to secure our current and future food supply chain and to get food into the hands of NYers who are or may become food insecure. As a part of that plan, the city will also be streamlining the home delivery of meals to seniors and working to support our food pantries, who are critical partners in these efforts. In the interim, you can find a list of key resources at nyc.gov/GetFood or by calling 311 and saying “Get Food”.
●       Price Gouging: DCWP filed three additional lawsuits today against price gouging violators, seeking up to $101,500 in fines. These were repeat price gougers who were selling face masks, hand sanitizer, cough medicine and other products at drastically increased prices. For example, one of the businesses was charging $20 for an N95 face mask. DCWP continues to inspect stores based on consumer complaints of price gouging -- if you or your constituents know of businesses overcharging consumers by 10% or more, please report it at DCWP's complaint page or contact 311 and say “overcharge.” And make sure you keep your receipts if you’ve been the victim of price gouging!
●       No-Excuse Absentee Voting: Per the Governor, all New Yorkers will be allowed to absentee vote for the June 23 Democratic primary. Applications for absentee ballots are available at vote.nyc or by calling 1-866-VOTE-NYC.
●       SBA Grant & Loan Update:  The application for the Federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) opened last Friday for businesses and nonprofits under 500 people. It’s first-come, first-served, so please let your constituents know. More information here. These are forgivable loans for: payroll up to $100,000/employee, interest on mortgages, rent, and utility payments. Due to overwhelming interest in the NYC Business Continuity Loan Fund, we have paused application intake as of today and will be reviewing submitting applications on a first-come, first-served basis until funds are exhausted. We encourage businesses to visit the SBA’s website to learn more about grants and loans available. Our NYC Business Solutions Center experts are available to help you identify additional financing available, including local philanthropic financing if you are a nonprofit.
●       Fun at Home: The Mayor announced yesterday a free new digital platform to provide safe, fun, and entertaining virtual activities for New York City’s teens and young adults. This first-of-its-kind campaign combines city and community resources to engage teens who are at home during the COVID-19 crisis, and also provides tips to cope with the public and mental health challenges that may arise during this difficult time. Fun at Home can be accessed at nyc.gov/funathome or texting “Fun” to 97743 to receive the latest updates on resources and activities.
●       Toilets stations: To ensure that people experiencing homelessness have access to facilities to maintain basic hygiene, the City will temporarily place toilets in 12 locations citywide. Locations were chosen based on input from outreach teams identifying specific spots where they were most needed. Hand sanitizer will be available until hand washing stations are installed.
●       USNS Comfort: The Comfort is now approved to take a capacity of 500 COVID patients for hospital overload relief.
●       DFTA FAQ: Working with DFTA, we have put together a FAQ for all things DFTA, including guidance for older New Yorkers, for communities on how to help elder New Yorkers, and general guidance for senior centers.
●       Grab and Go Expanding for All New Yorkers: In this time of historic high unemployment, we understand 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. We appreciate all of you who shared this information with you constituents. The hours are:
○       7:30am - 11:30am for families and children
○       11:39am - 1:30pm for adults
To find a location, text “NYCFOOD” or “COMIDA” to 877-877 or visit https://www.schools.nyc.gov/school-life/food/free-meals
●       New Face Covering Guidance: With new studies that show pre-symptomatic people may be infectious, we’re now advising New Yorkers to wear face coverings when outside and near people to prevent spreading COVID to others. However, we ask people to not use N95 or surgical masks, and save them for medical and other frontline people who need them. Instead, we encourage people to use a scarf or bandana or a piece of clothing, or make their own -- and to continue to adhere to maintaining a social distance of 6 feet from other people. For more information you can visit: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/covid/covid-19-prevention-and-care.page
●       NYPD monitoring - Officers have been out there educating people about social distancing and ensuring adherence to the State PAUSE, including visiting grocery stores and other venues. Yesterday, officers visited 2,748 supermarkets, 7,188 bars and restaurants (5,746 closed), 1,150 public places, and 3,258 personal care facilities (all closed). Please let us know if you have any problematic areas in your district!
●       As of 5pm today, the number of positive cases in NYC is 80,204. We have lost 4,260 New Yorkers. Below is the borough breakdown. DOHMH has added more data available if you click in this link.
○       Total Hospitalized: 20,474
○       Queens: 26,204
○       Brooklyn: 21,580
○       Manhattan: 10,862
○       Bronx: 16,419
○       SI: 5,102

Please help us spread the word with your constituents on the following items::
●       NYC COVID-19 Engagement Portal: DOITT has developed a portal, to help guide the City’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The portal is available in 11 languages and allows New Yorkers to self-report COVID-19 information and will help New York City both better communicate with affected people and identify areas that may need enhanced response. Inputs are confidential. People without internet access or who need help, can call 311. Please share this with your constituents!
●       Support Our Healthcare Staff! We all raised more than $1.6 million from private donors in the last week alone to provide comfort items to front line staff (including meals, groceries, taxi rides, and hotel rooms). Please tell folks to donate here: nychhc.networkforgood.com
●       Supplies:
●       Please visit our new website for all the ways NYers can get and offer help with all issues related to COVID-19:  www.nyc.gov/helpnownyc  
●       Individuals/Organizations/Companies offering to DONATE PPE: Visit www.nyc.gov/ppedonations
●       Companies who have stock on hand and are offering to DONATE or SELL medical supplies and equipment (e.g. gowns, masks, ventilators, face shields): http://www.nyc.gov/covidsuppliers. Those offers will be vetted and respondents will be contacted if there is interest.
●       Local manufacturers and industry sector companies looking to begin producing supplies: https://edc.nyc/covid-19-emergency-supply-sourcing-manufacturing  
●       Food and other non-medical donations should go through www.nyc.gov/donate Note: We are not accepting food donations directly to the City but this site provides a platform to connect with organizations in need of food.
●       We now also have a phone number that folks can use for donations: 1-833-NYC-0040
●       Information about space: We are still identifying and standing up new hospital capacity. We are particularly interested in private spaces that may not be yet on our radar. For those you know who have space they want to offer, please have them fill out this space survey here: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/em/ready/share-your-space-survey.page.
●       Mental Health Resources: This is a stressful time for New Yorkers.  Resources are available for New Yorkers by contacting 1-888-NYC-WELL or Texting “WELL” to 65173.  For more information visit: https://nycwell.cityofnewyork.us
○       We’re also connecting older New Yorkers who are feeling isolated with friendly volunteers to talk with over the phone. Tell your constituents about the Friendly Visiting Program -- they can call 212-AGING-NYC (212-244-6469).
○       For other mental health resources, including for veterans and caregivers, visit: https://thrivenyc.cityofnewyork.us/mental_health_support_while_home
●       Health Insurance - If you have constituents who are uninsured, the NY State of Health Department recently announced a Special Enrollment Period in response to Coronavirus through 4/15. Visit their website or call 1-855-355-5777 to check eligibility.
●       Family Justice Centers: While the centers are physically closed, anyone can call any of our borough centers for help with safety planning, mental health and planning, legal help, or help in connecting to law enforcement agencies. For more information please visit: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/ocdv/get-help/covid-19-update.page or call our 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-621-4673.
●       #AskMyMayor: The Mayor has a new Daily Message available on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube every morning. If your constituents have questions, comments or concerns, they want him to respond to, they can send them using the hashtag #AskMyMayor.
●       More Data - We know you have asked for more data about COVID cases. DOHMH has added different breakdowns of the available data to their website in an effort to be as transparent as possible. Please note, the numbers are constantly changing, and there is sometimes a lag:
○       Data by race
○       Big City Emergency Managers Data Tracker
○       Case counts (including age, gender and borough breakdown)
○       Deaths (including age, gender and borough breakdown along with pre-existing conditions)
○       Hospitalizations (including age, gender, and borough breakdown)
○       Emergency Department Surveillance (date by age group)
○       Percent of patients testing positive by zip code
●       The State Department of Labor created this chart to guide individuals seeking unemployment benefits after passage of the federal CARES Act. The Act provides enhanced Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits and Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) for New Yorkers.
●       The Unemployment Benefits and Health Insurance FAQ also provides guidance for those recently unemployed due to COVID-19.
●       Benefits available for New Yorkers - We’ve created a visual representation of eligibility for various government benefits called “I’ve been affected by Coronavirus (COVID-19). What are some of the benefits I may be eligible for?” You can find it online here: https://access.nyc.gov/coronavirus-covid-19-updates/#section-2s. Monitor nyc.gov/workers for ongoing updates about workplace laws as NYC seeks to stop the spread of COVID-19
●       NYCHA - NYCHA’s journal has information about how they are responding to COVID-19. There is this flyer for hardship reductions for NYCHA residents struggling to pay rent. For more details, contact NYCHA intergovernmental affairs.
●       COVID 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 our newly formed Office of Animal Welfare (h/t CM Brannan!)

As a reminder, vulnerable New Yorkers who have symptoms or questions about COVID-19 can call 1-844-NYC-4NYC to connect with a medical provider from Health and Hospitals.

Lastly, we will continue having conference calls with our agencies for elected officials. We had a call today with Commissioner Barbot on the new health disparities data released today. Here are the next ones scheduled. We will circulate dial-in info ahead of these calls. Please contact our team if you don’t receive it.
●       Every Mondays and Thursdays @ 5PM - Briefing calls with DOHMH for elected officials.
●       Every Tuesday @ 4PM - DSS Commissioner Banks.
●       Every Wednesday @ 5PM - SBS Commissioner Bishop. (Note: Today’s call will be rescheduled)
●       This coming Monday @ 12PM (Normally, every Friday @ 12PM)  - Call with Commissioner Garcia and the Food Task Force team

As always, if you have any ideas, suggestions, or questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Our team is happy to assist any way possible.
Thank you for all that you do. Stay safe. 

Other resources available:

For Everyone:
●       Text 'COVID' to 692-692 to get important COVID-19 related updates sent straight to your phone. You can text 'COVIDESP' to get updates in Spanish.
●       General FAQ website from DOHMH: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/covid/covid-19-main.page
●       OATH: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/oath/hearings/hearing-online.page
●       NYCEM pets planning: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/em/ready/pets.page
●       Information about school meals and remote learning: https://infohub.nyced.org/in-our-schools/operations/coronavirus-communic...
●       Information about Regional Enrichment Centers:  https://www.schools.nyc.gov/enrollment/enrollment-help/regional-enrichme...
●       H+H visitor policy: https://hhinternet.blob.core.windows.net/uploads/2020/03/coronavirus_pat...
●       Latest reduced ferry schedules: Staten Island Ferry / NYC Ferry
●       Map of Essential Construction: https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/buildings/html/essential-active-construction...

How to Help:
●       How to Help: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/helpnownyc/resources/covid-19-relief.page
●       Space Survey: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/em/ready/share-your-space-survey.page
●       Supplies: https://edc.nyc/covid-19-emergency-supply-sourcing-manufacturing

Businesses & Nonprofits:
●       Stop the Spread (other languages available in the link above):
https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/stop-the-spread-poster...
●       For Small Businesses - Grant and Loan information for Businesses:
https://www1.nyc.gov/site/sbs/businesses/covid19-business-outreach.page
●       Non-Profit Providers: Guidance for Non-profit providers: https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/covid-19-nonprofit-pro...
●       Guidance for Employers and Employees about COVID-19 Mandates: https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/dca/downloads/pdf/workers/Complying-with-NYC...

Workers:
●       State List of Essential Business/Services: https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/governor-cuomo-issues-guidance-essentia...
●       Report Labor Issues: please contact 311, the Attorney General’s office at (212) 416-8700 or via email at Labor.Bureau@ag.ny.gov
●       Free Citibike: https://www.citibikenyc.com/critical-workforce-membership-press-release
●       TLC Driver Jobs: https://cv19engagementportal.cityofnewyork.us/#/display/5e7634997ad67502...
●       Jobs through SBS Virtual Workforce One Center: https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=b4i2m1vZ30m4KGuMhuBo...(or call 718-960-2458)
●        Freelancers in NYC: If you're facing nonpayment issues, file a complaint at https://on.nyc.gov/34hE22g
●       Hotels for healthcare workers: https://www.nycgo.com/gnyha   

For Constituents in Need:
●       Services for folks in need: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/em/resources/covid-19-services-resources.page
●       SNAP: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/hra/help/snap-online-shopping.page
●       Domestic Violence: https://www1.nyc.gov/nychope/site/page/home
●       People with disabilities: reach out on Twitter to @NYCDisabilities, 311 or visit http://nyc.gov/disability or connect via video phone at 646-396-5830.

Buildings & Residents:
●       For Tenants/Landlords - Disinfection Guidance for Buildings:
https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/doh/downloads/pdf/imm/covid-19-residential-b...
●       Property Tax issues: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/finance/benefits/benefits.page

 

Mobilization for Justice updated Service Hours Read More

Please note, at all other times, the intake line will remain open for voicemails, and voicemails will be returned within two business days. 
 

Changes include: 

  • Foreclosure Prevention Project's new live intake hours will be 12 pm -5 pm on Tuesdays. 
  • Low Income Tax Center's new live intake hours will be 10 am -1 pm on Tuesdays. 
  • Low Income Bankruptcy Project and Mondays 2pm-4pm
  • Consumer Rights Project has added Monday 2pm-4pm

Additionally, as tomorrow is April 1st, rent is due throughout NYC. Please remember that our housing project has intake hours from 9-5pm, at 212-417-3888 (Citywide)/ 212-417-3889 (BX), and that our attorneys are ready handle any questions your constituents may have.

MTA Essential Service during Coronavirus Pandemic Read More

Updated April 8, 2020

We’re operating MTA Essential Service during the COVID-19 pandemic so we can get health-care workers, first responders, and other essential personnel where they need to go. We’re running as much service as we can with the crews who are healthy and available to work, but service on many lines is limited.

Please: If you’re not traveling for work related to an Essential Business, or for urgent personal business like a medical appointment, do not use the subway or take the bus. We need to keep our limited capacity available for people who must travel.

Here's how the New York State on PAUSE executive order defines Essential Businesses.

Access-A-Ride / Paratransit

We are no longer scheduling shared rides. (You can still travel with a personal care attendant or guest.)

Stay home if your travel is not absolutely necessary. You’ll be helping protect yourself, your family and other New Yorkers. 

Metro-North Railroad

We'll begin running a modified schedule on the Hudson, Harlem, and New Haven lines, starting Friday, March 27, until further notice. 

Long Island Railroad

We'll run half-hourly or hourly service on most branches, with strategically added trains during peak travel times.

About Metrocard refunds and transactions  

You can only make MetroCard transactions at MetroCard Vending machines. This helps limit person-to-person contact for our station agents. Reduced-fare cash transactions can still be made at the booth.

We encourage and appreciate your effort to stop the spread of the virus. That said, we do not provide refunds for MetroCards while the transit system continues to operate. Here's more information about remaining time or value on your MetroCard. 

Unlimited-rides Metrocards

If you haven’t started using your Unlimited-Ride MetroCard, you can hang on to it and start using it anytime until the expiration date on the back of the card.

If you started using your Unlimited-Ride MetroCard, unfortunately we cannot pause it once it’s been activated. 

Pay-per-ride Metrocards

If you have money left on a Pay-Per-Ride full fare MetroCard, that value will remain on the card until the expiration date on the back of the card. Any value on the card when it expires can be transferred to a new card at no additional cost. Additionally, you can make this transfer at any MetroCard Vending Machine within 30 days of the cards expiration date. You have up to a year after the expiration date on the card to transfer the balance at a booth, a MetroCard Vending Machine or by mailing it in to MetroCard Customer Claims. We don’t provide cash refunds for the remaining value on a Pay-Per-Ride MetroCards, we issue a replacement card. 

Pre-tax commuter benefits

Other than damaged MetroCards and cards covered under the Balance Protection Program, we are unable to resolve any issues you may have with the pre-tax MetroCards you received through programs like WageWorks. To stop receiving a pre-tax MetroCard, you must contact the benefit provider directly to pause or cancel your enrollment.

Updates on our in-person and customer service facilities

As a precaution against the spread of the coronavirus, we’re closing some of our in-person facilities. Here’s the latest:

Closed:

  • Our Customer Service Center in Lower Manhattan.
  • Our Metro-North Customer Service Center in Grand Central Terminal.
  • All Metro-North ticket offices.
  • Our lost and found offices.
  • Our MetroCard Mobile Sales Bus and Vans.
  • The North end entrances of Grand Central Terminal.
  • The EasyPay Account Service Center. Use our automated phone service at 877-323-7433, or the EasyPay website.

Open:

  • The Station Master's Office at Grand Central Terminal
  • The OMNY customer service center will be operating at reduced hours. Starting at 5 p.m. Friday, March 20, the service center will be open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m

 

End of Day Update 4-12-20 Read More

The Governor’s most recent briefing on 4/12/2020: During his Coronavirus briefing, Governor Cuomo confirmed 8,236 additional cases of novel coronavirus, bringing the statewide total to  188,694 confirmed cases in New York State.

New York City has a total of 4,900 new positive cases, bringing its total to 103,208.

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced he will issue an Executive Order directing employers to provide essential workers with cloth or surgical masks free of charge to wear when directly interacting with the public.

Governor Cuomo also announced he will issue an Executive Order to expand eligibility of individuals to conduct antibody tests to help ensure as many New Yorkers as possible have access to antibody testing as the state continues to bring this critical testing to scale. The State previously provided labs with the flexibility to allow more workers to do testing for COVID-19; this executive order expands that authority so the same workers can perform antibody tests.

The Governor also joined National Governors Association Chair, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan in a bipartisan effort calling for $500 billion in aid to states. The federal CARES Act contained zero funding to offset drastic state revenue shortfalls. The Governor also reiterated his call for the Federal government to repeal SALT.

NYC End of Weekend update 4-12-20

What the Mayor announced this weekend:

 

●        Expanding Testing: the Mayor announced an expansion of testing across the City in communities of greater need:

○        East New York in Brooklyn

○        Morrisania in the Bronx

○        Harlem in Manhattan

○        Jamaica in Queens

○        Clifton in Staten Island

●        We still need more testing kits. We are asking the federal government for 110K to cover the city for a week.

●        Closing NYC Public Schools: NYC public schools will remain closed for the rest of this school year for two main reasons (1) public health (2) academics.

○        Public Health: NIAID Director Fauci supports schools remaining closed. We expect the City to be in widespread community transmission well into May, possible longer. Even with low-level transmission, we must continue many elements of social distancing to prevent resurgence of the virus.

○        Academics: There is limited academic value of a truncated session. Individual school closures required by new infections would be frequent and disruptive. Finally, educators and parents need predictability.

●        Five point plan for helping Parents and Teachers: The Mayor announced a plan to help parents, teachers, and educators.

1.      Devices for every child without internet at home: Complete deliveries of internet enabled digital devices for remote learning to all remaining students by end of April

○        240K devices will be distributed, have already distributed 66k

2.      Expand parent help line, tech support hours, and staffing

○        Hotline in multiple languages where you can ask any question you want, or just talk to somebody

3.      Creative At-Home Programming

○        Parks Dept. already added some great kid-friendly programing

○        Children’s cabinet programming

○         Will work with media companies on free programing for families

4.       Plan to graduate seniors

○        Approx 75,000 seniors

○        Focus on each senior individually

○        By end of next week, will have full plan to help seniors know if they’re on track to graduate or not

○        For those who aren’t we will set up opportunities between now-June

5.      Comprehensive plan to re-open in September: combat learning loss

○        Have a plan that lets us teach our students safely

○        Extra support for vulnerable students

○        Mental health support for teachers, parents and families

●        Equipping Essential City Workers: Effective tomorrow, 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.

●        Protecting Homeless New Yorkers: The Mayor also announced that a 1/3 of single homeless New Yorkers will be OUT of congregate settings by Monday, April 20th, moving 2,500 more people into hotels by prioritizing:

○        Seniors People with COVID or symptoms

○        People in shelters where we’re not seeing enough social distancing

○        Persuading more clients on streets to accept shelter Starting next week, we’ll open 230 new safe haven and low-barrier beds

○        People over 60                                                      

●        As of 5pm today, the number of positive cases in NYC is 104,410. We have lost 6,182 New Yorkers. Below is the borough breakdown of positive cases. DOHMH has added more data available if you click in this link.

○        Total Hospitalized: 27,676

○        Queens: 32,749

○        Brooklyn: 27,462

○        Bronx:  22,709

○        Manhattan: 13,431

○        Staten Island: 8,004

End of Day Update 4-14-20 Read More

Made in NY: Speaking from City Hall today, the Mayor announced that we will continue to get vital medical supplies to our hospitals and health care workers by putting local manufacturing and biotech industries to work making products here in NYC that are in short supply. Here’s what we’re making:

●        Face Shields: Made by eight firms in Brooklyn Navy Yard, BK Army Terminal and Manhattan

○        Currently making 240,000 per week

○        Growing to 465,000 per week by 4/24

○        Goal: produce 620,000/week

●        Surgical Gowns: Five companies making these in  Brooklyn Navy Yard, Sunset Park, Garment Center and Long Island City

○        Currently making 30,000 per week

○        Growing to: 100,000 per week by Friday, April 24

○        Goal is to produce 250,000 per week

 

Testing: Announcing today: starting in May, NYC will produce up to 50,000 tests a week, right here in New York City. This will help us finally begin to expand testing to communities that need it most. EDC is building new supply chain and pulling pieces from all over city:

●        Academic & commercial labs –producing the liquid solution

●        Local manufacturers and 3-D printers making testing swabs and tubes

●        Starting production at beginning of May

●        If you know an academic or research lab, manufacturer, pharmaceutical, research university, or chemical company who can help – please have them email testhelp@edc.nyc.gov. Thanks for spreading the word!

 

Additional Testing: Aria Diagnostics, based in Carmel, Indiana is donating 50,000 kits and NYCEDC will be purchasing 50,000 kits per week starting April 20.

 

3 Indicators to Track Progress:

●        Daily number of people admitted to hospitals for suspected COVID-19

○        April 12 - 326 (down from yesterday when we had 383)

●        Daily number of people in ICUs across Health and Hospitals for suspected COVID-19

○        April 12 - 850 (up from yesterday when we had  835)

●        Percent of people tested who are positive for COVID-19

○        Citywide: April 12 - 59.6%, (up from yesterday when we had 58.1%)

 

This is a reminder: we have to keep social distancing!

 

Please help us spread the word with your constituents on the following items:

 

●        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!

●        Financial Empowerment Guidance: New York City Financial Empowerment Center counselors are available to support those experiencing financial challenges. Book an appointment here.

●        One Week of Free Groceries: The Department of Probation, Neighborhood Opportunity Network (NeON) Nutrition Kitchens, in partnership with the Food Bank of NYC and the NYC Young Men’s Initiative (YMI) have opened five kitchens – one in each borough – to distribute free food, available to any New Yorker who needs it visit here.

●        Blood Donations: New York Blood Center is seeking donations of plasma from those who have recovered from COVID-19. Visit New York Blood Center for more information.

●        Report Social Distancing: This is a critical way you can help. It’s today’s “if you see something, say something.” Call 311 or visit nyc.gov/Coronavirus. By the middle of this week you’ll have the option to just submit a photo on the 311 app or 311 website.

●        Census Text-a-Thons: It's not too late to RSVP to host a Census Text-a-Thon in your district on April 20th. Participating in a Text-a-Thon from home is an easy and safe way for New Yorkers to do something positive for our City.  NYC Census 2020 will provide access to the peer-to-peer texting tool, Hustle, and will provide all the technical support necessary for people to volunteer to text. RSVP to host a Text-a-Thon in your district on April 20th by emailing Katya Murphy at kmurphy@census.nyc.gov or Jason Reischel at jreischel@census.nyc.gov.

●        COVID-19 Resource Guide for Immigrants: We’ve put out a resource guide specifically for immigrant communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please visit here. Please help by passing it along. Also, FYI, this week is Immigrant Heritage Week!

●        For DACA Recipients: For help renewing your application call ActionNYC at 1-800-354-0365 (we may even be able to help you out with the renewal fee). Please share with your constituents the information on this tweet from Commissioner Mostofi: https://twitter.com/NYCImmigrants/status/1247633689657454593

●        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

●        NYC COVID-19 Engagement Portal: DOITT has developed a portal, to help guide the City’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The portal is available in 11 languages and allows New Yorkers to self-report COVID-19 information and will help New York City both better communicate with affected people and identify areas that may need enhanced response. Inputs are confidential. People without internet access or who need help, can call 311. Please share this with your constituents!

●        Support Our Healthcare Staff! NYC H+H has raised more than $8.2M since it began to accept donations last month. The fundraising campaign will direct funds to purchase comfort items like meals, groceries, taxi rides and hotel rooms to support the heroic health care workers on the front lines. Over 5,000 individuals and organizations have contributed through H+H’s Network for Good page.

●        Supplies:

○        Please visit our website for information on ways New Yorkers can get and offer help with all issues related to COVID-19: Help Now NYC.

○     Individuals, Organizations or Companies offering to DONATE PPE.

○     Companies with stock on hand offering to DONATE or SELL medical supplies and equipment, or Local manufacturers looking to begin producing supplies (e.g. gowns, masks, ventilators, face shields). Those offers will be vetted and we will follow up if there is interest.

○     Food and other non-medical donations should go through donateNYC Note: We are not accepting food donations directly to the City but this site provides a platform to connect with organizations in need of food.

○     You can also refer anyone who wants to donate to call: 1-833-NYC-0040.

○        Information about space: We are still identifying and standing up new hospital capacity. We are particularly interested in private spaces that may not be yet on our radar. For those you know who have space they want to offer, please have them fill out this space survey here: Share Your Space Survey.

●        Mental Health Resources: This is a stressful time for New Yorkers.  Resources are available for New Yorkers by contacting 1-888-NYC-WELL or Texting “WELL” to 65173.  For more information visit NYC Well.

●        Friendly Visiting Program: We’re also connecting older New Yorkers who are feeling isolated with friendly volunteers to talk with over the phone. Tell your constituents they can call 212-AGING-NYC (212-244-6469).

●        Health Insurance: If you have constituents who are uninsured, the NY State of Health Department recently announced a Special Enrollment Period in response to Coronavirus through 4/15. Visit their website or call 1-855-355-5777 to check eligibility.

●        Family Justice Centers: While the centers are physically closed, anyone can call any of our borough centers for help with safety planning, mental health and planning, legal help, or help in connecting to law enforcement agencies. For more information please visit the website here or call our 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-621-4673.

●        #AskMyMayor: The Mayor has a new Daily Message available on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube every morning. If your constituents have questions, comments or concerns, they want him to respond to, they can send them using the hashtag #AskMyMayor.

 

Other things happening now:

 

●        Protecting Homeless New Yorkers: We are moving a third of single homeless New Yorkers out of congregate settings by next Monday, April 20th, and moving 2,500 more vulnerable people into hotels

●        Reaching out to Hardest Hit Communities: Communities of color have been disproportionately affected by the virus, we are moving quickly to address these disparities. The Mayor announced a four-part plan to address last week. Here are more details on some of those plans:

○        Launched an $8.5M ad campaign in Mid-March that included TV, radio, digital ads in 15 languages and subway ads in English, Spanish, and Chinese. That included $1.5M in ads placed in Community & Ethnic MediaPaid Media Campaign.

○        This week we’re launching a $10M campaign that targets 88 high-impact zip codes and will include TV, radio, digital in 15 languages. It will also include direct mail pieces to target homes and grassroots outreach.

○        Expanding Testing - The Mayor announced an expansion of testing across the City in communities of greater need: East New York in Brooklyn, Morrisania in the Bronx, Harlem in Manhattan, Jamaica in Queens, Clifton in Staten Island.

●        Helping Tenants:

○        Calling for a Rent Freeze - Given the current economic crisis, the Mayor is calling on the Rent Guidelines Board to issue a rent freeze for rent-regulated tenants.

○        311 hotline for NYC tenants - For those tenants struggling to pay rent during coronavirus, we are launching a five-borough hotline through 311 to help educate tenants about their rights and sources of rent relief.

○        More relief to renters - The Mayor called on the State to allow tenants to use their security deposit to pay rent--a solution that gives renters access to capital to pay rent and owners the necessary funds to maintain buildings.

○        Rent deferrals and eviction moratorium - The Mayor urged the State to allow rent deferral and repayment plans for the next 12 months if they offer documentation they’ve lost their job. The Mayor is also pushing to extend the moratorium to 60 days after this crisis in order to ensure a grace period to prevent a wave of evictions once the crisis is over.

●        Alternate Side Parking: Alternate Side Parking Regulations will be suspended through Tuesday, April 28, 2020. Parking meters and all other parking rules remain in effect throughout the City. The City may extend the suspension based on street cleanliness and workforce availability.

●        Public Health Milestones: DOHMH's website now includes a Public Health Milestones dashboard to show trends in the spread of COVID-19 related to hospital admissions, critical care capacity, and positive test rates. If an indicator reaches a certain predetermined level, or milestone, it will show that the spread of COVID-19 may be slowing. Once all of these indicators reach their milestones, the City will likely begin to lift restrictions gradually.

●        Expanding Populations Served by REC Centers: The Regional Enrichment Centers are now available for children of restaurant, food, takeout and delivery workers, and residential and commercial building staff.

●        New York State on PAUSE is extended through 4/29: Non-essential workforce is directed to continue to work from home until at least 4/29.

●        SBA Grant & Loan Update: The application for the Federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is now open for businesses and nonprofits under 500 people. It’s first-come, first-served, so please let your constituents know. More information here. These are forgivable loans for: payroll up to $100,000/employee, interest on mortgages, rent, and utility payments. We encourage businesses to visit the SBA’s website to learn more about grants and loans available. Our NYC Business Solutions Center experts are available to help you identify additional financing available, including local philanthropic financing if you are a nonprofit.

●        Grab and Go Meals for All New Yorkers: In this time of historic high unemployment, we understand more New Yorkers are experiencing food insecurity for the first time. To this end, grab and go meals are available for all New Yorkers. No one is turned away, and participants are able to pick up three meals. We appreciate all of you who shared this information with you constituents. To find a location, text “NYCFOOD” or “COMIDA” to 877-877 DOE website here.

●        Face Covering Guidance: We’re advising New Yorkers to wear face coverings when outside and near people to prevent spreading COVID to others. However, we ask people to not use N95 or surgical masks, and save them for medical and other frontline people who need them. Instead, we encourage people to use a scarf or bandanna or a piece of clothing, or make their own -- and to continue to adhere to maintaining a social distance of 6 feet from other people. For more information you can visit here.

●        NYPD monitoring: In the last 22 days, officers have visited a total of 303,330 locations as part of the Department’s efforts to help flatten the curve by educating people about social distancing and ensuring adherence to the State PAUSE. Yesterday, officers visited 2,202 supermarkets, 6,724 bars and restaurants (5,469 closed), 1,123 public places, and 3,154 personal care facilities (3,135 closed). Please let us know if you have any problematic areas in your district!

 

●        As of 1pm today, the number of positive cases in NYC is 107,263. We have lost 6,589 New Yorkers. Below is the borough breakdown of positive cases. DOHMH has added more data available if you click in this link.

○        Total Hospitalized: 29,511

○        Queens: 33,616

○        Brooklyn: 28,183

○        Bronx:  23,426

○        Manhattan: 13,740

○        Staten Island: 8,236

●        More Data: We know you have asked for more data about COVID cases. DOHMH has added different breakdowns of the available data to their website in an effort to be as transparent as possible. Please note, the numbers are constantly changing, and there is sometimes a lag:

○        Data by race

○        Big City Emergency Managers Data Tracker

○        Case counts (including age, gender and borough breakdown)

○        Deaths (including age, gender and borough breakdown along with pre-existing conditions)

○        Hospitalizations (including age, gender, and borough breakdown)

○        Emergency Department Surveillance (date by age group)

○        Percent of patients testing positive by zip code

Vulnerable New Yorkers who have symptoms or questions about COVID-19 can call 1-844-NYC-4NYC to connect with a medical provider from Health and Hospitals.

 

Federal Student Loan Forbearance Read More

As part of the $2 Trillion Federal CARES Act that was passed by Congress, federal student loans will get an automatic forbearance until the end of September. And during that time interest will not accrue. 

Beginning March 13, 2020 until September 30, 2020 federal student loans will not acrue interest and will be suspended until the end of September. Payments can be made but are not required during this moratorium.

End of day update 4-15-20 Read More

What the Mayor announced today:
 
Speaking from City Hall today, the Mayor discussed important efforts to ensure no New Yorker goes hungry during this crisis. New York City has a plan to invest $170 million in this food security effort. Before COVID, 1.2 million New Yorkers were food insecure, including 1 in 5 children, and this crisis only adds to this number by the day, especially as more people lose their jobs. Here is what we are doing:
 
Meeting Immediate Food Needs:

●        Since March 16th – 4.5 Million meals served, and we’re scaling up fast
●        DOE, DFTA, GETFOOD – serving 10M meals in April alone

○        Hiring 11K TLC-licenses drivers to deliver meals
○        Three weeks ago we launched “Emergency Deliveries”
○        Delivering to: Immuno-compromised, seniors, NYCHA
○        Total: Over 1 million deliveries
○        100,000 meals daily

●        Securing the supply:

○        Building an NYC Food Emergency Reserve
○        NYC food supply currently stable
○        City is securing funds to ramp up food supply for food-insecure New Yorkers in the future
○        $50 million investment
○        Can fund 18 million shelf-stable meals in reserve if needed
○        Protect New Yorkers from temporary disruption
○        Preventing Store Closures
○        SBS helping businesses hire new workers to maintain staffing through workforce1 Virtual centers

●        Protecting Grocery Stores and workers

○        Finding vendors for non-medical PPE to help stores place orders
○        New Store Guidance: Stores should require customers to wear face coverings

 

Feeding More New Yorkers:

●        Keeping food pantries and soup kitchens open

○        City supporting 800+ food pantries and soup kitchens

●        Emergency Funding

○        $25 million secured in partnership with City Council to support emergency food providers

●        Boosting Donations and Staff

○        DonateNYC App: link small and large in-kind donors to pantries, now 20,000 lbs of food donated daily
○        City staff deployed to 14 pantries short on volunteers
○        Recruiting volunteers through NYC Service

●        Grow Emergency Home Deliveries

○        Register entire buildings of seniors run by NYCHA, HPD and non-profits
○        Case workers for other social services to directly enroll New Yorkers in free meal deliveries

●        Keep Regional Deliveries Rolling

○        90% of food arrives in NYC by truck
○        City has opened 2 new truck rest areas near our largest distribution and transportation centers for federally-mandated breaks

 
Tracking Progress: 
Our 3 indicators:

●        Daily number of people admitted to hospitals for suspected COVID-19

○        April 13: 370, up from April 12: 326

●        Daily number of people in ICUs across H&H for suspected COVID-19

○        April 13: 868, up from April 12: 850

●        Percent of people tested who are positive for COVID-19

○        Citywide: April 13: 53%, down from April 12: 60%

 
Thank Yous:

●        New Donations from Apple:

○        100,000 N95 masks
○        127,000 face shields

●        Bloomberg Philanthropies:

o   $6M donation to World Central Kitchen to provide meals in our Health and Hospitals

 
Please help us spread the word with your constituents on the following items:
 

●        Mayor’s Press Conference: The Mayor will have a media availability tomorrow morning around 9:30 am, please tune in here: https://www1.nyc.gov/ or follow on twitter @NYCMayor or on the Mayor’s Facebook Page.
●        DOE Graphics Library: A collection of graphics on the DOE's recent announcements that can be shared with families and educators, in all 9 DOE languages available at the DOE InfoHub.
●        Remote Learning: You can request to have an internet-enabled device delivered to your home if you don’t have access to internet or a device:

○        Fill out a Remote Learning Device Request form or call 311 for support
○        For more information about remote learning, activities for students, and technical support go to schools.nyc.gov/LearnAtHome

●        Essential Construction: In light of the recent state changes to what is and is not deemed essential construction, DOB has posted a new FAQ for the public and industry.  
●        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!
●        Financial Empowerment Guidance: New York City Financial Empowerment Center counselors are available to support those experiencing financial challenges. Book an appointment here.
●        One Week of Free Groceries: The Department of Probation, Neighborhood Opportunity Network (NeON) Nutrition Kitchens, in partnership with the Food Bank of NYC and the NYC Young Men’s Initiative (YMI) have opened five kitchens – one in each borough – to distribute free food, available to any New Yorker who needs it visit here. 
●        Blood Donations: New York Blood Center is seeking donations of plasma from those who have recovered from COVID-19. Visit New York Blood Center for more information.
●        Report Social Distancing: This is a critical way you can help. It’s today’s “if you see something, say something.” Call 311 or visit nyc.gov/Coronavirus. By the middle of this week you’ll have the option to just submit a photo on the 311 app or 311 website.
●        Census Text-a-Thons: It's not too late to RSVP to host a Census Text-a-Thon in your district on April 20th. Participating in a Text-a-Thon from home is an easy and safe way for New Yorkers to do something positive for our City.  NYC Census 2020 will provide access to the peer-to-peer texting tool, Hustle, and will provide all the technical support necessary for people to volunteer to text. RSVP to host a Text-a-Thon in your district on April 20th by emailing Katya Murphy at kmurphy@census.nyc.gov or Jason Reischel at jreischel@census.nyc.gov.
●        COVID-19 Resource Guide for Immigrants: We’ve put out a resource guide specifically for immigrant communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please visit here. Please help by passing it along. Also, FYI, this week is Immigrant Heritage Week!
●        For DACA Recipients: For help renewing your application call ActionNYC at 1-800-354-0365 (we may even be able to help you out with the renewal fee). Please share with your constituents the information on this tweet from Commissioner Mostofi: https://twitter.com/NYCImmigrants/status/1247633689657454593 
●        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
●        NYC COVID-19 Engagement Portal: DOITT has developed a portal, to help guide the City’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The portal is available in 11 languages and allows New Yorkers to self-report COVID-19 information and will help New York City both better communicate with affected people and identify areas that may need enhanced response. Inputs are confidential. People without internet access or who need help, can call 311. Please share this with your constituents!
●        Supplies:

○        Please visit our website for information on ways New Yorkers can get and offer help with all issues related to COVID-19: Help Now NYC.
○     Individuals, Organizations or Companies offering to DONATE PPE.
○     Companies with stock on hand offering to DONATE or SELL medical supplies and equipment, or Local manufacturers looking to begin producing supplies (e.g. gowns, masks, ventilators, face shields). Those offers will be vetted and we will follow up if there is interest.
○     Food and other non-medical donations should go through donateNYC Note: We are not accepting food donations directly to the City but this site provides a platform to connect with organizations in need of food.
○     You can also refer anyone who wants to donate to call: 1-833-NYC-0040.
○        Information about space: We are still identifying and standing up new hospital capacity. We are particularly interested in private spaces that may not be yet on our radar. For those you know who have space they want to offer, please have them fill out this space survey here: Share Your Space Survey. 

●        Mental Health Resources: This is a stressful time for New Yorkers.  Resources are available for New Yorkers by contacting 1-888-NYC-WELL or Texting “WELL” to 65173.  For more information visit NYC Well.
●        Friendly Visiting Program: We’re also connecting older New Yorkers who are feeling isolated with friendly volunteers to talk with over the phone. Tell your constituents they can call 212-AGING-NYC (212-244-6469).
●        Health Insurance: If you have constituents who are uninsured, the NY State of Health Department recently announced a Special Enrollment Period in response to Coronavirus through 4/15. Visit their website or call 1-855-355-5777 to check eligibility.
●        Family Justice Centers: While the centers are physically closed, anyone can call any of our borough centers for help with safety planning, mental health and planning, legal help, or help in connecting to law enforcement agencies. For more information please visit the website here or call our 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-621-4673.
●        #AskMyMayor: The Mayor has a new Daily Message available on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube every morning. If your constituents have questions, comments or concerns, they want him to respond to, they can send them using the hashtag #AskMyMayor.

 
Other things happening now:

●        Protecting Homeless New Yorkers: We are moving a third of single homeless New Yorkers out of congregate settings by Monday, April 20th, and moving 2,500 more vulnerable people into hotels
●        Reaching out to Hardest Hit Communities: Communities of color have been disproportionately affected by the virus, we are moving quickly to address these disparities. The Mayor announced a four-part plan to address last week. Here are more details on some of those plans:

○        Launched an $8.5M ad campaign in Mid-March that included TV, radio, digital ads in 15 languages and subway ads in English, Spanish, and Chinese. That included $1.5M in ads placed in Community & Ethnic Media Paid Media Campaign.
○        This week we’re launching a $10M campaign that targets 88 high-impact zip codes and will include TV, radio, digital in 15 languages. It will also include direct mail pieces to target homes and grassroots outreach.
○        Expanding Testing - The Mayor announced an expansion of testing across the City in communities of greater need: East New York in Brooklyn, Morrisania in the Bronx, Harlem in Manhattan, Jamaica in Queens, Clifton in Staten Island.

●        Helping Tenants:

○        Calling for a Rent Freeze - Given the current economic crisis, the Mayor is calling on the Rent Guidelines Board to issue a rent freeze for rent-regulated tenants.
○        311 hotline for NYC tenants - For those tenants struggling to pay rent during coronavirus, we are launching a five-borough hotline through 311 to help educate tenants about their rights and sources of rent relief.
○        More relief to renters - The Mayor called on the State to allow tenants to use their security deposit to pay rent--a solution that gives renters access to capital to pay rent and owners the necessary funds to maintain buildings.
○        Rent deferrals and eviction moratorium - The Mayor urged the State to allow rent deferral and repayment plans for the next 12 months if they offer documentation they’ve lost their job. The Mayor is also pushing to extend the moratorium to 60 days after this crisis in order to ensure a grace period to prevent a wave of evictions once the crisis is over.

●        Alternate Side Parking: Alternate Side Parking Regulations will be suspended through Tuesday, April 28, 2020. Parking meters and all other parking rules remain in effect throughout the City. The City may extend the suspension based on street cleanliness and workforce availability.
●        Public Health Milestones: DOHMH's website now includes a Public Health Milestones dashboard to show trends in the spread of COVID-19 related to hospital admissions, critical care capacity, and positive test rates. If an indicator reaches a certain predetermined level, or milestone, it will show that the spread of COVID-19 may be slowing. Once all of these indicators reach their milestones, the City will likely begin to lift restrictions gradually.
●        Expanding Populations Served by REC Centers: The Regional Enrichment Centers are now available for children of restaurant, food, takeout and delivery workers, and residential and commercial building staff.
●        New York State on PAUSE is extended through 4/29. Non-essential workforce is directed to continue to work from home until at least 4/29.
●        SBA Grant & Loan Update: The application for the Federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is now open for businesses and nonprofits under 500 people. It’s first-come, first-served, so please let your constituents know. More information here. These are forgivable loans for: payroll up to $100,000/employee, interest on mortgages, rent, and utility payments. We encourage businesses to visit the SBA’s website to learn more about grants and loans available. Our NYC Business Solutions Center experts are available to help you identify additional financing available, including local philanthropic financing if you are a nonprofit.
●        Grab and Go Meals for All New Yorkers: In this time of historic high unemployment, we understand more New Yorkers are experiencing food insecurity for the first time. To this end, grab and go meals are available for all New Yorkers. No one is turned away, and participants are able to pick up three meals. We appreciate all of you who shared this information with you constituents. To find a location, text “NYCFOOD” or “COMIDA” to 877-877 DOE website here.
●        NYPD monitoring: Yesterday, officers visited 2,540 supermarkets, 6,397 bars and restaurants (5,298 closed), 1,215 public places, and 2,720 personal care facilities (2,712 closed). Please let us know if you have any problematic areas in your district!
●        As of 2pm today, the number of positive cases in NYC is 111,424. We have lost 6,840 New Yorkers due to covid-19, with another 4,059 probable deaths due to the disease. Below is the borough breakdown of positive cases. DOHMH has added more data available if you click in this link.

○        Total Hospitalized: 29,741
○        Queens: 34,831
○        Brooklyn: 29,250
○        Bronx:  24,587
○        Manhattan: 14,188
○        Staten Island: 8,504

●        More Data: We know you have asked for more data about COVID cases. DOHMH has added different breakdowns of the available data to their website in an effort to be as transparent as possible. Please note, the numbers are constantly changing, and there is sometimes a lag:

○        Data by race 
○        Big City Emergency Managers Data Tracker 
○        Case counts (including age, gender and borough breakdown)
○        Deaths (including age, gender and borough breakdown along with pre-existing conditions)
○        Hospitalizations (including age, gender, and borough breakdown)
○        Emergency Department Surveillance (date by age group)
○        Percent of patients testing positive by zip code

●        Vulnerable New Yorkers who have symptoms or questions about COVID-19 can call 1-844-NYC-4NYC to connect with a medical provider from Health and Hospitals.

Supplemental Security Income Recipients Will Receive Automatic COVID-19 Economic Impact Payments Read More

Supplemental Security Income Recipients Will Receive Automatic COVID-19 Economic Impact Payments
 
SSI Recipients with Dependent Children Should Still Go To IRS.gov to Provide Their Information
 
The Social Security Administration announced today that Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients will receive automatic Economic Impact Payments directly from the Treasury Department.  Treasury anticipates these automatic payments no later than early May.
 
SSI recipients with no qualifying children do not need to take any action in order to receive their $1,200 economic impact payment.  The payments will be automatic.
 
SSI recipients who have qualifying children under age 17, however, should not wait for their automatic $1,200 individual payment.  They should now go to the IRS’s webpage at www.irs.gov/coronavirus/non-filers-enter-payment-info-here and visit the Non-Filers: Enter Your Payment Info section to provide their information.  By taking proactive steps to enter information on the IRS website about them and their qualifying children, they will also receive the $500 per dependent child payment in addition to their $1,200 individual payment.  If SSI beneficiaries in this group do not provide their information to the IRS soon, they will have to wait until later to receive their $500 per qualifying child.
 
“This is great news for SSI recipients, and I want to remind recipients with qualifying children to go to IRS.gov soon so that you will receive the full amount of the Economic Impact Payments you and your family are eligible for,” said Andrew Saul, Commissioner of Social Security.  “I also want to thank the dedicated employees of the Treasury Department, the Social Security Administration, and the Internal Revenue Service for making this happen and working non-stop on this issue.”
 
Social Security retirement, survivors, and disability insurance beneficiaries (who don’t normally file taxes) will also qualify for automatic payments of $1,200 from Treasury.   These payments are anticipated to start arriving around the end of April.
 
The Treasury Department, not the Social Security Administration, will make these automatic payments to beneficiaries.  Recipients will generally receive the automatic payments by direct deposit, Direct Express debit card, or by paper check, just as they would normally receive their SSI or Social Security benefits.
 
For those SSI and Social Security retirement, survivors, and disability insurance beneficiaries, with dependent children, who use Direct Express debit cards, additional information will be available soon regarding the steps to take on the IRS website when claiming children under 17.
 
Please note that the agency will not consider Economic Impact Payments as income for SSI recipients, and the payments are excluded from resources for 12 months.
 
For more information about Social Security retirement, survivors, and disability insurance beneficiaries, please see the agency’s April 10th press release:  New Guidance about COVID-19 Economic Impact Payments for Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Beneficiaries from Social Security Commissioner Andrew Saul
 
The eligibility requirements and other information about the Economic Impact Payments can be found here: www.irs.gov/coronavirus/economic-impact-payment-information-center.  In addition, please continue to visit the IRS at www.irs.gov/coronavirus for the latest information.
 
The agency will continue to update Social Security’s COVID-19 web page at www.socialsecurity.gov/coronavirus/ as further details become available.
 

 

Additional Guidance regarding delivery orders for non-essential businesses Read More

New York State issued additional guidance on Friday that allows non-essential retail establishments (as defined by the Empire State Development Corporation) to fulfill delivery orders placed remotely via phone or online. Please note that only one employee may be physically present at the business location to fulfill orders.  
 
The City is working hard to keep New Yorkers safe by enforcing social distancing guidelines. We encourage you to let your neighbors and enforcement officials know that you’re operating under these guidelines by posting a sign on the door or front window.

End of Day Update 4-16-20 Read More

What the Mayor announced today:
 
The mayor spoke from City Hall today and discussed our four main priorities for the FY21 Executive Budget: keeping New Yorkers healthy, keeping New Yorkers safe, keeping food on New Yorkers’ tables, and keeping a roof over New Yorkers’ heads. And he reminded us that if the federal government fails us, these four things get harder and harder to do.
 
This Year’s Budget:

●        $89.3 billion Executive Budget for FY21, which we balanced amid immense fiscal hardship.
●        Our priorities now are making sure people are healthy, safe, fed, and under a roof.
●        We’re losing $7.4B in revenue over the next two fiscal years.
●        We took $820M in cost-shifts from the State -- and they have the ability to come back three more times this year.
●        And we have new costs ($3B projected by end of calendar year):

○        Medical personnel and supplies to save lives
○        Getting millions of people food

●        In this fiscal climate, will need to make tough choices to cover life-saving costs and revenue gap: $2B PEG program
●        See a more detailed summary here

 
What we need from the next federal interim stimulus:

●        Strong bipartisan support for Schumer/Pelosi Proposal
●        At least $150 billion for states and localities, based on need

○        Direct aid to localities for lost revenue
○        Available for existing expenses including police, fire, emergency response

●        $100 billion more for hospitals and healthcare workers

○        Targeted to hardest hit areas

●        $250 billion for small businesses and paycheck protection

 
Protecting Hard Hit Communities: In order to fight the spread of COVID-19 within households that are in particularly high-risk communities, we are offering 11,000 free hotel rooms for people who need to quarantine. Hotel rooms will be offered based on referrals from H+H and community health providers, beginning next Wednesday, April 22.  These will be targeted in particular to:

●        People in overcrowded homes, especially multigenerational households
●        Health care workers regardless of symptoms  
●        New Yorkers experiencing homelessness

 
Reducing Jail Population to Save Lives: Thanks to recent releases based on public health and public safety, we have now reached the lowest jail population in 74 years (since 1946), with fewer than 4,000 people now in the system, down from 5,447 in March and 11,089 in 2014.
 
Tracking Progress: Our 3 indicators

●        Daily number of people admitted to hospitals for suspected COVID-19

○        April 14: 386 up from 370 as of April 13

●        People currently in Health and Hospital ICUs for suspected COVID-19

○        April 14th 887 up from 868 as of April 13th

●        Percentage of people tested who are positive for COVID-19

○        Citywide: 55% up from 53% as of April 13

 
Immigrant Emergency Relief program: Today, Mayor de Blasio also announced a partnership with Open Society Foundations to establish the New York City COVID-19 Immigrant Emergency Relief program, reaffirming the City’s commitment to ensure all New Yorkers, regardless of immigration status, are included in citywide COVID-19 response and relief efforts. This $20 million fund will reach 20,000 immigrant workers and their families with direct, one-time emergency relief. The citywide network of community based organizations and worker centers will disseminate one-time emergency relief payments to eligible New Yorkers in the following amounts:

●        $400/individual
●        $800 for couple or single parent with children
●        $1,000 for family with multiple adults and children
●        And/or where identified increased additional supports.

 
Please help us spread the word with your constituents on the following items:
 

●        NYC Healthcare Heroes: The Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City is partnering with the Debra and Leon Black Family, Robin Hood, Aramark, and the American Red Cross to launch “NYC Healthcare Heroes,” a city-wide philanthropic program to support the efforts of more than 100,000 New York City healthcare professionals on the front lines by providing at least 300,000 and up to 500,000 packages of food, household cleaning and personal care products, and more to staff at hospitals across the City.
●        Essential Construction: In light of the recent state changes to what is and is not deemed essential construction, DOB has posted a new FAQ for the public and industry.  
●        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!
●        Financial Empowerment Guidance: New York City Financial Empowerment Center counselors are available to support those experiencing financial challenges. Book an appointment here.
●        One Week of Free Groceries: The Department of Probation, Neighborhood Opportunity Network (NeON) Nutrition Kitchens, in partnership with the Food Bank of NYC and the NYC Young Men’s Initiative (YMI) have opened five kitchens – one in each borough – to distribute free food, available to any New Yorker who needs it visit here. 
●        Blood Donations: New York Blood Center is seeking donations of plasma from those who have recovered from COVID-19. Visit New York Blood Center for more information.
●        Report Social Distancing: This is a critical way you can help. It’s today’s “if you see something, say something.” Call 311 or visit nyc.gov/Coronavirus. By the middle of this week you’ll have the option to just submit a photo on the 311 app or 311 website.
●        COVID-19 Resource Guide for Immigrants: We’ve put out a resource guide specifically for immigrant communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please visit here. Please help by passing it along. Also, FYI, this week is Immigrant Heritage Week!
●        For DACA Recipients: For help renewing your application call ActionNYC at 1-800-354-0365 (we may even be able to help you out with the renewal fee). Please share with your constituents the information on this tweet from Commissioner Mostofi: https://twitter.com/NYCImmigrants/status/1247633689657454593 
●        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
●        NYC COVID-19 Engagement Portal: DOITT has developed a portal, to help guide the City’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The portal is available in 11 languages and allows New Yorkers to self-report COVID-19 information and will help New York City both better communicate with affected people and identify areas that may need enhanced response. Inputs are confidential. People without internet access or who need help, can call 311. Please share this with your constituents!
●        Supplies:

○        Please visit our website for information on ways New Yorkers can get and offer help with all issues related to COVID-19: Help Now NYC.
○     Individuals, Organizations or Companies offering to DONATE PPE.
○     Companies with stock on hand offering to DONATE or SELL medical supplies and equipment, or Local manufacturers looking to begin producing supplies (e.g. gowns, masks, ventilators, face shields). Those offers will be vetted and we will follow up if there is interest.
○     Food and other non-medical donations should go through donateNYC Note: We are not accepting food donations directly to the City but this site provides a platform to connect with organizations in need of food.
○     You can also refer anyone who wants to donate to call: 1-833-NYC-0040.
○        Information about space: We are still identifying and standing up new hospital capacity. We are particularly interested in private spaces that may not be yet on our radar. For those you know who have space they want to offer, please have them fill out this space survey here: Share Your Space Survey. 

●        Mental Health Resources: This is a stressful time for New Yorkers.  Resources are available for New Yorkers by contacting 1-888-NYC-WELL or Texting “WELL” to 65173.  For more information visit NYC Well.
●        Friendly Visiting Program: We’re also connecting older New Yorkers who are feeling isolated with friendly volunteers to talk with over the phone. Tell your constituents they can call 212-AGING-NYC (212-244-6469).
●        Health Insurance: If you have constituents who are uninsured, the NY State of Health Department recently announced a Special Enrollment Period in response to Coronavirus through 4/15. Visit their website or call 1-855-355-5777 to check eligibility.
●        Family Justice Centers: While the centers are physically closed, anyone can call any of our borough centers for help with safety planning, mental health and planning, legal help, or help in connecting to law enforcement agencies. For more information please visit the website here or call our 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-621-4673.
●        #AskMyMayor: The Mayor has a new Daily Message available on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube every morning. If your constituents have questions, comments or concerns, they want him to respond to, they can send them using the hashtag #AskMyMayor.

 
Other things happening now:
 

●        New York State on PAUSE is extended through 5/15: Non-essential workforce is directed to continue to work from home until at least 5/15.
●        Protecting Homeless New Yorkers: We are moving a third of single homeless New Yorkers out of congregate settings by next Monday, April 20th, and moving 2,500 more vulnerable people into hotels
●        Alternate Side Parking: Alternate Side Parking Regulations will be suspended through Tuesday, April 28, 2020. Parking meters and all other parking rules remain in effect throughout the City. The City may extend the suspension based on street cleanliness and workforce availability.
●        Public Health Milestones: DOHMH's website now includes a Public Health Milestones dashboard to show trends in the spread of COVID-19 related to hospital admissions, critical care capacity, and positive test rates. If an indicator reaches a certain predetermined level, or milestone, it will show that the spread of COVID-19 may be slowing. Once all of these indicators reach their milestones, the City will likely begin to lift restrictions gradually.
●        Expanding Populations Served by REC Centers: The Regional Enrichment Centers are now available for children of restaurant, food, takeout and delivery workers, and residential and commercial building staff.
●        Grab and Go Meals for All New Yorkers: In this time of historic high unemployment, we understand more New Yorkers are experiencing food insecurity for the first time. To this end, grab and go meals are available for all New Yorkers. No one is turned away, and participants are able to pick up three meals. We appreciate all of you who shared this information with you constituents. To find a location, text “NYCFOOD” or “COMIDA” to 877-877 DOE website here.
●        NYPD monitoring: Yesterday, officers visited 2,495 supermarkets, 6,558 bars and restaurants (5,081 closed), 1,205 public places, and 2,967 personal care facilities (2,966 closed). Please let us know if you have any problematic areas in your district!
●        As of 2:30pm today, the number of positive cases in NYC is 117,565. We have lost 7,563 New Yorkers due to covid-19, with another 3,914 probable deaths due to the disease. Below is the borough breakdown of positive cases. DOHMH has added more data available if you click in this link.

○        Total Hospitalized: 30,903
○        Queens: 36,220
○        Brooklyn: 31,279
○        Bronx: 25,638
○        Manhattan: 15,539
○        Staten Island: 8,822

●        More Data: We know you have asked for more data about COVID cases. DOHMH has added different breakdowns of the available data to their website in an effort to be as transparent as possible. Please note, the numbers are constantly changing, and there is sometimes a lag:

○        Data by race  
○        Big City Emergency Managers Data Tracker 
○        Case counts (including age, gender and borough breakdown)
○        Deaths (including age, gender and borough breakdown along with pre-existing conditions)
○        Hospitalizations (including age, gender, and borough breakdown)
○        Emergency Department Surveillance (date by age group)
○        Percent of patients testing positive (by zip code)

●        Vulnerable New Yorkers who have symptoms or questions about COVID-19 can call 1-844-NYC-4NYC to connect with a medical provider from Health and Hospitals.

Interim Guidance on Mandatory Face covering in Public Read More

Executive Order 202.17, issued on April 15, 2020, provides the following directive: Effective at 8 p.m. on Friday, April 17, 2020 any individual who is over age two and able to medically tolerate a face-covering shall be required to cover their nose and mouth with a mask or cloth face-covering when in a public place and unable to maintain, or when not maintaining, social distance.

Executive Order 202.18, issued on April 16, 2020, provides the following directive: Any person utilizing public or private transportation carriers or other for-hire vehicles, who is over age two and able to medically tolerate a face covering, shall wear a mask or face covering over the nose and mouth during any such trip; any person who is operating such public or private transport, shall likewise wear a face covering or mask which covers the nose and mouth while there are any passengers in such vehicle. This directive shall take effect in the same manner as Executive Order 202.17, at 8 p.m. on Friday, April 17, 2020.

NYC DOT ANNOUNCES NEW EFFORT TO ENCOURAGE CONTACTLESS PAYMENTS FOR CITY PARKING METERS Read More

With COVID-19 concerns, drivers will have a new pay-as-you go option via ParkMobile smartphone app 

Today, the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) announced a new effort to discourage cash payments at the City’s parking meters and encourage contactless parking payment by smartphone. The Pay-By-Cell option protects the safety of both DOT’s workforce and the public by reducing physical interactions with the City’s 14,000 meters.  

Two different apps are now available for download to pay for parking at 80,000 metered spots across New York City:

ParkNYC: Launched in December 2016 and available for free download in the Apple Store or Google Play, ParkNYC allows account holders to pay for parking at any metered parking space on a new pay-as-you-go basis with no additional fees after loading an initial $25 wallet balance. The popular app was used for more than 22 million parking transactions last year.

ParkMobile: To enhance the Pay-by-Cell program and encourage contactless transactions, DOT is now temporarily offering the option to use the nationwide ParkMobile app for single transactions, for a 15-cent per transaction fee. While meters will continue to accept coins and credit cards, we encourage all customers to consider their own safety and the safety of our workers — and opt for mobile payments. The app accepts Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover.

“DOT is asking all New Yorkers who can to switch to Pay-By-Cell, which will reduce the need for physical cash transactions at our 14,000 parking meters.  Contactless Pay-By-Cell reduces exposure risk for the public and our workforce,” said DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg. “Please help us reduce the need to physically service parking meters and collect, sanitize and securely store cash during this crisis.”

New York City’s parking meters remain in effect to encourage curb turnover, which supports deliveries and essential businesses such as grocery stores, pharmacies and medical providers.  The availability of parking meters also discourages double parking, which enhances safety.  Zone numbers on Muni-Meter decals and under parking signage will work in both apps. DOT encourages all New Yorkers who do not need to travel to stay home to help stop the spread of COVID-19, and expresses its greatest thanks to its own employees — and all other essential workers — for their continued work keeping the city running safely. 

About ParkMobile:
ParkMobile, LLC is the leading provider of smart parking and mobility solutions in North America, helping millions of people easily find, reserve, and pay for parking from their mobile devices. The company's technology is used in thousands of locations across the country, including 7 of the top 10 cities as well as college campuses, airports, and stadiums. People can use ParkMobile solutions to quickly pay for on-street and off-street parking without having to use a meter or kiosk.

End of Day Update 4-19-20 Read More

What the Mayor announced today:
 
The Mayor spoke from City Hall today and discussed the latest on staffing, encouraged recovered New Yorkers to donate blood, gave updates on social distancing efforts, and provided the latest on the three indicators for tracking progress.
 
MEDICAL STAFF SUPPORT
 
Independent Hospitals
The City has connected over 1,400 volunteers to over 40 hospitals and over 40 nursing homes across to date. The next push will be to send Medical Personnel to Independent Hospitals. Along with public hospitals, independent hospitals are on front lines caring for hardest-hit communities. We estimate that these hospitals need at least 600 medical personnel across 11 independent facilities. We prioritized placement of Medical Reserve Corps volunteers, now the City will deploy contracted healthcare personnel to fill any remaining need
 
Military Medical Support for Our Frontline Workers
Thanks to support from the federal government, we have sent 535 military nurses, respiratory therapists, physicians assistants, nurse practitioners, pharmacists to different H+H facilities.
 
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.

 

SOCIAL DISTANCING ENFORCEMENT
 
Citywide Social Distancing Enforcement Blitz
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

 

TRACKING PROGRESS
 
3 INDICATORS (Data from Friday April 17. Published at nyc.gov/coronavirus)

●        People admitted to hospitals for suspected COVID-19

○        317 down (261 as of April 16)

●        People currently in H+H ICUs for suspected COVID-19

○        849 down(880 as of April 16)

●        Percentage of people tested who are positive for COVID-19

○        Citywide: 38% down(42% as of April 16)

 
Please help us spread the word with your constituents on the following items:
 

●        311 Call Volume: As we mentioned above, 311 is experiencing high call volume. We want to make sure the highest priority calls are answered as quickly as possible. We urge you to tell your constituents who are not calling to be connected to a COVID-19 related resource, or with an urgent request, to please submit a service request online by visiting NYC.gov/311 or by using the 311 app. Or, if they cannot submit a request online, to consider calling after 7PM or during weekend hours.
●        Essential Construction: In light of the recent state changes to what is and is not deemed essential construction, DOB has posted a new FAQ for the public and industry.  
●        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!
●        Financial Empowerment Guidance: New York City Financial Empowerment Center counselors are available to support those experiencing financial challenges. Book an appointment here.
●        One Week of Free Groceries: The Department of Probation, Neighborhood Opportunity Network (NeON) Nutrition Kitchens, in partnership with the Food Bank of NYC and the NYC Young Men’s Initiative (YMI) have opened five kitchens – one in each borough – to distribute free food, available to any New Yorker who needs it visit here. 
●        COVID-19 Resource Guide for Immigrants: We’ve put out a resource guide specifically for immigrant communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please visit here. Please help by passing it along. Also, FYI, this week is Immigrant Heritage Week!
●        For DACA Recipients: For help renewing your application call ActionNYC at 1-800-354-0365 (we may even be able to help you out with the renewal fee). Please share with your constituents the information on this tweet from Commissioner Mostofi: https://twitter.com/NYCImmigrants/status/1247633689657454593 
●        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
●        NYC COVID-19 Engagement Portal: DOITT has developed a portal, to help guide the City’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The portal is available in 11 languages and allows New Yorkers to self-report COVID-19 information and will help New York City both better communicate with affected people and identify areas that may need enhanced response. Inputs are confidential. People without internet access or who need help, can call 311. Please share this with your constituents!
●        Supplies:

○        Please visit our website for information on ways New Yorkers can get and offer help with all issues related to COVID-19: Help Now NYC.
○     Individuals, Organizations or Companies offering to DONATE PPE.
○     Companies with stock on hand offering to DONATE or SELL medical supplies and equipment, or Local manufacturers looking to begin producing supplies (e.g. gowns, masks, ventilators, face shields). Those offers will be vetted and we will follow up if there is interest.
○     Food and other non-medical donations should go through donateNYC Note: We are not accepting food donations directly to the City but this site provides a platform to connect with organizations in need of food.
○     You can also refer anyone who wants to donate to call: 1-833-NYC-0040.
○        Information about space: We are still identifying and standing up new hospital capacity. We are particularly interested in private spaces that may not be yet on our radar. For those you know who have space they want to offer, please have them fill out this space survey here: Share Your Space Survey. 

●        Mental Health Resources: This is a stressful time for New Yorkers.  Resources are available for New Yorkers by contacting 1-888-NYC-WELL or Texting “WELL” to 65173.  For more information visit NYC Well.
●        Friendly Visiting Program: We’re also connecting older New Yorkers who are feeling isolated with friendly volunteers to talk with over the phone. Tell your constituents they can call 212-AGING-NYC (212-244-6469).
●        Family Justice Centers: While the centers are physically closed, anyone can call any of our borough centers for help with safety planning, mental health and planning, legal help, or help in connecting to law enforcement agencies. For more information please visit the website here or call our 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-621-4673.
●        #AskMyMayor: The Mayor has a new Daily Message available on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube every morning. If your constituents have questions, comments or concerns, they want him to respond to, they can send them using the hashtag #AskMyMayor.

 
Other things happening now:
 

●        Hotel Rooms: In order to fight the spread of COVID-19 within households that are in particularly high-risk communities, we are offering 11,000 free hotel rooms for people who need to quarantine. Hotel rooms will be offered based on referrals from H+H and community health providers, beginning next Wednesday, April 22.  These will be targeted in particular to people in overcrowded homes, health care workers regardless of symptoms, and New Yorkers experiencing homelessness.
●        Online ACCESS HRA Training: In an effort to facilitate greater access to benefits using our online tools, DSS is now offering ACCESS HRA training webinars.  These trainings are open to CBOs and elected officials’ offices and will provide information on use of ACCESS HRA for SNAP and Cash applications as well as the ACCESS HRA Provider Portal. The ACCESS HRA Cash Assistance Webinar will simulate a Cash Assistance (CA) application via ACCESS HRA. This webinar is held on Mondays from 3-4pm.  You can sign up for an upcoming session by clicking HERE. The ACCESS HRA SNAP Webinar will simulate a SNAP application via ACCESS HRA. This webinar is held on Wednesdays from 3-4pm. You can sign up for an upcoming session by clicking HERE. You can sign up for an ACCESS HRA General Overview Webinar HERE.
●        New York State on PAUSE is extended through 5/15: Non-essential workforce is directed to continue to work from home until at least 5/15.
●        Protecting Homeless New Yorkers: We are moving a third of single homeless New Yorkers out of congregate settings starting tomorrow, and moving 2,500 more vulnerable people into hotels.
●        Public Health Milestones: DOHMH's website now includes a Public Health Milestones dashboard to show trends in the spread of COVID-19 related to hospital admissions, critical care capacity, and positive test rates. If an indicator reaches a certain predetermined level, or milestone, it will show that the spread of COVID-19 may be slowing. Once all of these indicators reach their milestones, the City will likely begin to lift restrictions gradually.
●        Grab and Go Meals for All New Yorkers: In this time of historic high unemployment, we understand more New Yorkers are experiencing food insecurity for the first time. To this end, grab and go meals are available for all New Yorkers. No one is turned away, and participants are able to pick up three meals. We appreciate all of you who shared this information with you constituents. To find a location, text “NYCFOOD” or “COMIDA” to 877-877 DOE website here.
●        More Data: DOHMH has added different breakdowns of the available data to their website in an effort to be as transparent as possible. Please note, the numbers are constantly changing, and there is sometimes a lag:

○        Data by race 
○        Big City Emergency Managers Data Tracker 
○        Case counts (including age, gender and borough breakdown)
○        Deaths (including age, gender and borough breakdown along with pre-existing conditions)
○        Hospitalizations (including age, gender, and borough breakdown)
○        Emergency Department Surveillance (date by age group)
○        Percent of patients testing positive by zip code

●        As of 1:30pm today, the number of positive cases in NYC is 129,788. We have lost 8,811 New Yorkers due to covid-19, with another 4,429 probable deaths due to the disease. Below is the borough breakdown of positive cases. DOHMH has added more data available if you click in this link.

○        Total Hospitalized: 34,602
○        Queens: 39,856
○        Brooklyn: 34,476
○        Bronx: 28,875
○        Manhattan: 16,754
○        Staten Island: 9,755

●        Vulnerable New Yorkers who have symptoms or questions about COVID-19 can call 1-844-NYC-4NYC to connect with a medical provider from Health and Hospitals.

Get Help / Give Help: Mutual Aid in Community District 2 Read More

Mutual Aid Groups In Brooklyn 

Mutual aid networks played a central role in recovery efforts after both 9/11 and Hurricane Sandy. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic these local groups of neighbors have once again sprung into action, this time supported by the tools of the digital era.

Neighbors Helping Neighbors: Get Help or Give Help Within Walking Distance

Mutual aid networks are self-organized groups of neighbors that serve two functions:

  •  A central resource for neighbors needing help
  • An organizing hub for neighbors who are able to contribute time, labor, funding, or resources

 

The CB2 district office has heard from Brooklyn Mutual Aid—serving Boerum Hill, Brooklyn Heights and other nearby neighborhoods—and Clinton Hill Fort Greene Mutual Aid. These and other networks can be found using the tools below.

To get or give help in Brooklyn: 
Find and contact your local group at Mutual Aid NYC

Department of Education Update 4-17-20 Read More

Extension of Remote Learning in New York City Schools
 
Last weekend, Mayor de Blasio and Chancellor Carranza announced that New York City schools will be continuing academic instruction through Remote Learning through the remainder of the 2019-20 Academic Year. In the joint announcement, DOE committed to reopen schools stronger than ever in September, ensuring the safety of our buildings and the resources in place to combat any learning loss and provide emotional support to our students, families, and educators as needed to resume learning and reconnect our communities.
 
Remote Learning Survey
 
DOE will be issuing a survey to find out from caregivers and students how remote learning has been working. We are asking all parents/guardians of DOE students in any grade and all students in grades six through twelve to take a short survey to help us collect feedback about their experience with remote learning. The survey is:
 
Available in all DOE languages (Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, English, French, Haitian Creole, Korean, Russian, Spanish, and Urdu)
 
Anonymous for all respondents
The same for all boroughs (survey is divided by borough to make it easier for you to identify your school name)
 
The results of the survey will help schools to continue to support families and students in the current learning environment and should be completed by May 1, 2020.
 
Please complete the Remote Learning Survey here and share the link with your families.
 
iPad Distribution and Support to Students
We’re so proud to say that we have been able to distribute more than 117,000 iPads to students in need, and we’re not finished! If families still need a device, please encourage them to fill out the Remote Learning Device Request Form. All Parent Coordinators and FLCs have access to the list that tracks iPad delivery for students in your schools – so please refer to it and follow-up with your families on the list.  Families have many questions about using the iPads and remote learning. We want to support YOU to support FAMILIES. We can do that in a few ways:
 
#1 - WEBINARS
There are two recorded webinars from our IT department that review the iPad features and the google classroom. The links for these webinars are below. We are hosting an open Q&A to answer any remaining questions on Thursday, April 30 10-11am. RSVP here - please note: to RSVP for the Q&A session participants must have viewed the recorded webinars.
Webinar 1: Helping Families with the iPad 
Webinar 2: Helping Families with Google Classroom 
 
#2 - KEY QUESTIONS ANSWERED 
 
What if iPads were delivered but one or more student(s) did not receive one? 
The first wave of delivery was for public school students on the Department of Homeless Services (DHS) data feed only.  
 

Students who are not on the DHS data feed but registered for a device should be getting their devices this week.  
Students in public school and on the DHS data feed, please complete the Wrong Address / Missing iPads form to escalate delivery issues for each student.  

The iPad is not connecting to the internet. What do we do? 

All DOE iPads should come internet ready. If, however, for some reason the iPad is not connecting to the internet, help the student do the following:

  • Go to Settings.  
  • Select Cellular.  
  • Turn on Cellular Data.  
  • Tap Cellular Data Options.  
  • Verify that LTE and data roaming are turned on.

Still having issues? Call AppleCare Support for the NYCDOE at 1-800-919-2775. When prompted, enter the PIN: 692363 (NYCDOE) and then follow their instructions.  

The iPad is asking for a passcode. Where can we find this? 

You might get that wording “Device Policy Alert: Your org requires you to set a passcode on this device to access this account.  Please set a passcode and try again” when trying to open up an app.  

If you get this message, try the following steps  

  • Go into settings on your iPad
  • Turn on passcode
  • Create a six digit passcode
  • Give it a few minutes
  • Go to the app and sign in. It may or may not ask you for the six digit code  

For more answers, visit Google Support guide, DOE Support guide) or contact your Google Amin.  If you don’t know who your Google Admin is, call the DOE Service Desk at 718-935-5100. They can provide you with this information.

Here are helpful resources regarding iPad distribution and set-up:

  • DOE iPad Distribution
  • Getting Started With Your iPad
  • DOE Learn from Home
  • DOE Technical Support and Resources

 
 
Budget
 
During this unprecedented crisis, the City is facing incredible fiscal hardship, and must make difficult choices. As you may have heard, this week Mayor De Blasio announced the city’s executive budget. The Chancellor has shared with us that the executive has committed to providing more than $380 million in funds in FY 2021 to the DOE to mitigate the impact of school aid lost from the State budget. Without that, our budget would have been cut even further. That said, DOE will see approximately $150 million cut this fiscal year (which ends on June 30, 2020) and $470 million in FY 2021 (July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021). The FY 2020 savings are effective immediately.  
 
Below is a summary of what we know about the executive budget impact. We will share more detailed information as it becomes available in the coming days and weeks.  
 
Impact on Hiring and Purchasing  
 
Due to the economic impact of COVID-19 and significant financial uncertainty at the State and City level, there is currently a citywide freeze that affects DOE central and school-based purchases, per session, and hires that are not directly related to the COVID-19 emergency response or legally mandated services. This includes all non-essential, non-mandated DOE activities, including training, overtime, and materials at schools, central and field offices.  
 
Impact on FY 2021  
 
In the coming Fiscal Year, DOE Central budgets will be additionally reduced by more than $250 million as previously announced, including:  

  •  Fair student funding reduction prioritizing schools that already have over 100% (DOE) - $100M in FY21
  • Operational savings in training, overtime, and materials at schools, central and field due to school building closures (DOE) - $100M in FY20
  • Professional Development reduction (DOE) - $67M in FY21 and outyears
  • Cuts to Summer in the City, Single Shepherd, College Access for All (DOE) - $49M in FY21 and outyears
  • Delay in 3K Expansion to districts in 1, 12, 14, and 29 (DOE) - $43M in FY21
  • Reducing the ATR pool by implementing a non-ATR hiring freeze (DOE) - $40M in FY21 and outyears
  • Temporary reduction of School Allocation Memoranda, which provides schools with funding to implement programming (DOE) - $40M in FY21
  • Contract and supply reductions associated with arts programming in middle and high schools (DOE) - $15.5M in FY21 and outyears 
  • Savings from delayed installation of air conditioners (DOE) - $10M in FY21
  • Eliminate District/Charter Partnerships program - $4.4M in FY21 and outyears
  • Eliminate supplies and materials used in Civics for All curriculum and programming (DOE) - $3.8M in FY21 and outyears
  • Adjustments to SONYC Afterschool budget (DOE) - $5M in FY21 and outyears
  • Scaling down contracts, technology curriculum and health education certification programming for teachers (DOE) - $1.8M in FY21 and outyears

 
Regional Enrichment Centers (RECs)
 
Our Regional Enrichment Centers (RECs) provide care for the children of our first responders, transit workers, healthcare workers, and other essential employees (i.e. DOHMH, DEP, NYCHA, Parks, Probation, Grocery, Pharmacies). We are serving approximately 8,000 students daily, over half of whom are the children of medical workers. We just added new eligibility for restaurant/food/takeout and delivery workers and residential and commercial building staff.
 
Meal Hubs
 
As of Monday, April 6th, free meals have been available for students and adults. Any New Yorker who wants one can get three free meals a day at more than 400 Meal Hubs throughout the city. Meals can be picked up between 7:30 –11:30 am (for children and caregivers) and 11:30 – 1:30 pm (for adults). No registration or documentation necessary. For more information, check the DOE’s website here.  
 
We have been serving close to 300,000 meals a day, over a million meals weekly.
 
Special Education
 
This week, parents of students with disabilities should have received a letter regarding remote instruction and services. Schools should have partnered with parents of our students with IEPs a "Special Education Remote Learning Plan" based on their Individualized Education Program (IEP). If you are contacted by a parent for whom this has not happened, or you yourself have not received this, please contact the child’s teacher or related service provider if the only service the child receives is a related service. If you are not successful, e-mail specialeducation@schools.nyc.gov or call 311.
 
More details on Special Education Remote Learning Plans can be found here  .
 
PA/PTA Meetings
 
We know that many PA/PTAs want to know how the pandemic will affect their meetings, elections and financial transactions. We’re very grateful to the members of the Chancellor’s Parent Advisory Council (CPAC) for recent recommendations around these topics. We have shared those recommendations with our legal team and should be able to move forward on making recommendations to the Chancellor very shortly.
 
 
Mental Health and Wellness Supports for Families
 
We know how challenging and stressful this time is for everyone. Families and students are anxious, many of us are grieving the loss of loved ones and we may feel isolated and unsupported. We are working with our colleagues in the Division of School Climate and Wellness to launch family support trainings and resources for our family facing DOE personnel so that they can support you and your families. We will have more information on those opportunities in the next few days. We also highly recommend that families visit the  Harmony at Home site, which provides social-emotional learning resources and materials.
 

NYS DEPARTMENT OF LABOR LAUNCHES NEW STREAMLINED APPLICATION FOR NEW YORKERS TO APPLY FOR PANDEMIC UNEMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE WITHOUT HAVING TO FIRST APPLY FOR UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE Read More

NYS DEPARTMENT OF LABOR LAUNCHES NEW STREAMLINED APPLICATION FOR NEW YORKERS TO APPLY FOR PANDEMIC UNEMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE WITHOUT HAVING TO FIRST APPLY FOR UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE

Cumbersome federal policy that slowed New York from distributing benefits lifted

 
In conjunction with this morning's rollout of improved application, over 3,100 DOL representatives solely dedicated to answering unemployment benefit needs in improved process
 
Since the COVID-19 crisis began, DOL has paid $2.2 billion in Unemployment benefits to 1.1 million New Yorkers
 
Application call backlog prior to 4/8 reduced to 4,305 from 275,000

 

The New York State Department of Labor today announced the launch of a new application for New Yorkers to apply for traditional Unemployment Insurance or the new COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. This one-stop-shop for unemployment benefits will connect New Yorkers with the benefits they deserve faster, without requiring them to call the Department of Labor.
 
Prior to today, due to cumbersome federal guidelines, New Yorkers were required to apply for regular Unemployment Insurance and be rejected before applying for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. With this new application, which aligns with updated federal policy, New Yorkers will be able to simply fill out one form to get the correct benefits.
 
In conjunction with this morning's rollout of the improved application, DOL has been deploying over 3,100 representatives solely dedicated to answering unemployment benefit needs seven days a week. This is up from 400 who previously manned the DOL call center prior to the pandemic.
 
Since the COVID-19 crisis began, DOL has paid approximately $2.2 billion in Unemployment Insurance benefits to 1.1 million New Yorkers. The application call backlog prior to April 8 has been reduced to 4,305 from 275,000.
 
"I have been unemployed before myself, and I understand the pain, fear and anxiety New Yorkers are facing. The DOL's mission is to help our neighbors through some of their toughest days, and in the last week we have made great strides in updating our systems," NYS Department of Labor Commissioner Roberta Reardon said. "While it appears the coronavirus pandemic is beginning to stabilize — at least from the public health perspective — we know that many New Yorkers are still facing an uncertain economic future, and the Department of Labor will continue to dedicate every resource available to helping New Yorkers weather this storm."
 
The updated unemployment benefits application system, available here, will determine which unemployment program — unemployment insurance or Pandemic Unemployment Assistance — New Yorkers should apply for and then prompt them to answer a specific set of questions. The application builds on the new online system the department rolled out on Friday, April 10th, in partnership with the State Office of Information Technology Services and Google Cloud, to help manage the exponential and unprecedented increase in new claims resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.
 
The Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program, which was included in the Federal CARES Act, provides unemployment benefits for individuals who are ineligible for traditional unemployment insurance. Examples of those covered by PUA include:
 

  • Self-employed New Yorkers;
  • Independent contractors;
  • New Yorkers who worked for an app-based company (i.e. "gig workers")

Farmers;

  • Those diagnosed with COVID-19 or who have COVD-19 symptoms and are seeking a diagnosis;
  • Those living with a household member who has been diagnosed with COVID-19;
  • Those providing care for a family or household member diagnosed with COVID-19;
  • A primary caregiver for a child unable to attend school or another facility due to COVID-19;
  • Those unable to reach their place of employment due to an imposed quarantine or because they have been advised by a medical provider to self-quarantine due to COVID-19;
  • Those scheduled to commence new employment that cannot reach their workplace as a direct result of COVID-19;
  • Those who became a major breadwinner because the head of their household died from COVID-19;
  • Those who quit their job as a direct result of COVID-19;
  • Those whose place of employment closed as a direct result of COVID-19;
  • Those with insufficient work history and affected by COVID-19; and
  • New Yorkers otherwise not qualified for regular or extended UI benefits and affected by COVID-19

 
In addition, New Yorkers concerned about food insecurity are reminded that resources are available across the state. Anyone looking for assistance can find a local food bank, including those supported by New York State, by visiting Feeding America's website here.
 
The New York State Department of Labor is dedicated to ensuring that every New Yorker who is entitled to unemployment insurance benefits will receive all benefits due. New Yorkers seeking to file an unemployment insurance claim should visit labor.ny.gov or call the Telephone Claim Center at (888) 209-8124. Below are some resources that will assist New Yorkers in filing their claims:
 

DOE opens Kosher meal sites Read More

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 this week, 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

 
 

Continued Temporary Social Security Service Changes in New York and New Jersey Read More

To ensure the continued health and safety of all visitors and staff, SSA offices in New York and New Jersey still are open to authorized personnel only at this time.

During this time, we continue to assist with critical cases or dire need situations.  You or your staff may contact our Regional Public Affairs Office by phone at (212) 264-2500 or fax at 1 (833) 914-1786 if you are aware of an individual in dire need of SSA service.

Please visit our COVID-19 web page at www.socialsecurity.gov/coronavirus/ to find out what services we are continuing and which ones we are suspending, how to contact us, and important information about deadlines we are extending to ease the burden on the public and medical providers during this pandemic.

Most SSA services are available online at www.socialsecurity.gov.  A list of available online services is at www.socialsecurity.gov/onlineservices/. 

While SSA offices in New York and New Jersey are temporarily open to authorized personnel only, SSA staff from those local offices will continue to be accessible by phone.  SSA local office phone numbers are available on the Social Security Office Locator.  To find your local SSA office phone number, go to www.socialsecurity.gov, select Contact Us under Items of Interest, and then Office

Locator under Ways to Contact Us.  SSA local office staff are accessible by phone Monday to Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.  Some critical services also are available by calling SSA’s national toll-free line at 1 (800) 772-1213 or 1 (800) 325-0778 TTY.  National toll-free line staff are available Monday to Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. We offer many automated telephone services so callers do not have to wait to speak with a telephone agent.

 

Free meals available at the Mark Morris Dance Center Read More

Free meals available at the Mark Morris Dance Center

As part of its continued commitment to the community, the Mark Morris Dance Group has partnered with Dance/NYC and a coalition of cultural organizations to temporarily use the Mark Morris Dance Center as a meal distribution site for residents, artists and healthcare workers in Brooklyn affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Starting Monday, April 20, volunteer staff will provide free, pre-packaged meals prepared by World Central Kitchen, the non-profit organization founded by internationally renowned chef José Andrés, on a first-come, first-served basis.

Where:

Mark Morris Dance Center

3 Lafayette Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11217

 

When:

Monday - Friday

12:30 - 2:30 p.m. (or until meals last; there is a chance meals may run out before 2:30pm)

For more information visit: https://markmorrisdancegroup.org/covid-19-update/

 

Message from OATH Commissioner & Chief Administrative Law Judge Joni Kletter Read More

·        OATH offices are currently closed and OATH will not be holding in-person hearings until the state's "stay-at-home" order has been lifted. OATH is still holding remote hearings, trials, conferences and Help Center sessions.

 

·        For Respondents Who Have Upcoming OATH Hearings:

o   OATH is accommodating all requests to reschedule hearings. OATH is not penalizing Respondents for not responding to their summons during this time. If a Respondent does not respond to a summons during this time, they will have their case automatically rescheduled.

·         If a Respondent would like to respond to their summons, they can do so by mail or online, or by requesting a Hearing by Phone. For Hearings by Phone, OATH offers free, over-the-phone language interpretation. To schedule a Hearing by Phone, Respondents should email the OATH office in the borough listed on their summons:

 

o   BRONX: RemoteBronx@oath.nyc.gov

o   BROOKLYN: RemoteBKLYN@oath.nyc.gov

o   MANHATTAN: RemoteManhattan@oath.nyc.gov

o   QUEENS: RemoteLIC@oath.nyc.gov

o   STATEN ISLAND: RemoteSI@oath.nyc.gov

 

·        For Respondents Who Want to Appeal a Hearing Decision:

o   The time for a Respondent to file an appeal of an OATH hearing decision issued on or after February 19, 2020, has been temporarily increased to 60 days from the date of the hearing decision, or 65 days if the hearing decision was mailed.

 

o   The time for a Respondent to respond to an appeal served by an enforcement agency after February 19, 2020, has also been temporarily increased to 60 days from the date the appeal was served on the Respondent, or 65 days if the appeal was served by mail.

 

·        Help for Respondents Who Do Not Have a Lawyer or a Paid, Professional, Registered Representative:

o   The OATH Help Center provides Respondents with the opportunity to speak with an OATH Procedural Justice Coordinator who can provide information about the hearing process, describe the options available to them, and answer Respondents’ questions. OATH Procedural Justice Coordinators do not provide legal advice or represent Respondents at their hearings.

·        To request assistance, Respondents can email the Help Center in the borough listed on their summons:

o   BRONX: BXhelpcenter@oath.nyc.gov

o   BROOKLYN: BKhelpcenter@oath.nyc.gov

o   MANHATTAN: Manhelpcenter@oath.nyc.gov

o   QUEENS: LIChelpcenter@oath.nyc.gov

o   STATEN ISLAND: SIhelpcenter@oath.nyc.gov

·        OATH offers free, over-the-phone language interpretation. All appointments with the OATH Help Center must be conducted prior to the day of the hearing.

For more information and updates visit OATH online at nyc.gov/oath

 

Alzheimer's Foundation of America's Toll-Free Helpline Remains Open During this Time As We Deal with the Coronavirus Pandemic Read More

Toll-free Helpline remains open to help families impacted by Alzheimer’s disease and related dementia illnesses during this time as we are faced with the Coronavirus pandemic.
 
With many care facilities, adult day care centers and other services closed for the time being, we are one of the only sources of information, support and guidance available.  This is especially important because the outbreak is causing many people, particularly higher risk individuals such as senior citizens, to break from their normal routines and isolate.
 
Our Toll-Free Helpline (866-232-8484) is open seven days a week and staffed entirely by licensed social workers who are trained in dementia care.

We are able assist callers with topics/questions about combating isolation, keeping engaged, washing tips, caregiver stress, whether family members should visit during this time, items to have in the home, etc.

Families can connect with the AFA Helpline in any of the following ways:

  • Via phone by calling 866-232-8484
  • Web chat by visiting www.alzfdn.org and clicking on the blue and white chat icon on the lower right hand corner of the page
  • Sending a text message to 646-586-5283

The web and text chat features are available in more than 90 languages.

Cumberland Informs CB2 of by-Appointment COVID-19 Testing Read More

Gotham Health Cumberland, formerly known as the Cumberland Diagnostic + Treatment Center, has informed Community Board 2 (CB2) that it is now offering COVID-19 testing, Monday-Saturday, from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm. An appointment is necessary.
Gotham Health Cumberland is located at 100 North Portland Avenue, between Park and Myrtle avenues. The B62 bus, which travels between Downtown Brooklyn and Long Island City via Vinegar Hill, runs in both directions on Park Avenue. The B57 and B69 buses travel via Flushing Avenue, one block north of Cumberland. The DeKalb Av and Jay St-Metrotech subway stations are both approximately three-quarters of a mile from Gotham Health Cumberland.

PLEASE REMEMBER, all New Yorkers must wear face coverings when social distancing is not possible, including on public transportation.

End of Day update 4-21-20 Read More

What the Mayor announced today:
 
The Mayor spoke from City Hall today and discussed the latest on ventilator supply, jail population, the strategic reserve program, community testing, and tracking our three progress indicators.
 
Jail Population Update: Today, the City jail population dropped below 4,000 for the first time since 1946. The City’s jail population has fallen by more than 1,500 as we continue to work with the State and DAs to release vulnerable populations from City jails.
 
Made in NY Ventilators: The Mayor announced a City-convened effort to produce a new line of bridge ventilators to support local hospitals and health care workers. Local manufacturers will produce at least 3,000 of these devices, which will be deployed to hospitals. These are FDA approved, and we have had workers producing them around-the-clock for the past 3 weeks. Currently, our daily ventilator usage is in a much better situation than before, and we have sufficient ventilators for the coming; we’re hopeful the trend will continue. Here’s a quick look at how our daily ventilator use has changed in the last couple weeks:

-          Start of April: ~220 more needed each day
-          April 10: ~75 more needed each day
-          Today: ~5 fewer needed each day

 
Creating a NYC Reserve:
The ventilators produced by local manufacturers will also help the City shore up a New York City Strategic Reserve, a stockpile of medical devices for future crises.
 
New Community-Based Testing Sites: As of yesterday, we had five community-based test sites open, which will perform 3,600 tests this week in:

●        Gotham Health Center, East New York - Brooklyn
●        Gotham Health Center, Morissania - Bronx
●        Vanderbilt Health Center - Staten Island
●        Sydenham Family Health Center - Manhattan
●        Queens Hospital - Queens

Next week, we’ll be adding five more sites in hard hit areas, and we will get that total up to over 7,000 tests per week. We’re going to keep growing from there. At this point, the only constraint on our expansion is our ability to procure test-kits, PPEs, and personnel.
 
Tracking Progress: 3 Indicators

●        People admitted to hospitals for suspected COVID-19

○         204  DOWN   (212 as of April 18)

●        People currently in H+H ICUs for suspected COVID-19

○         857  UP   (853 as of April 18)

●        Percentage of people tested who are positive for COVID-19

○         Citywide: 35%  UP (34% as of April 18)

When this is over… We are going to celebrate with a parade for our healthcare heroes -- and all of you!
Other things happening now:
 

●        Remote Learning Device Distribution: We have distributed over 172K devices to families. We are asking families to complete the Remote Learning Device Request Form by 5:00 PM on Thursday, April 23 to ensure students receive a device by Thursday, April 30. Families can also call 718-935-5100 and choose option 5. Device distribution will continue in May for families who complete the survey after Thursday. A Remote Learning Survey is available in nine languages. Please help us ensure families respond - we want feedback!
●        Kosher Meals: The DOE started serving kosher meals at 10 select Brooklyn and Queens locations, expanding its new program providing free meals to all New Yorkers during the coronavirus pandemic.
●        Out of State Heroes: We now have 350 more ambulances, 790 EMTs and paramedics who have come to us from 19 states. Please thank all of our frontline workers for all they are doing.
●        Hotel Rooms: In order to fight the spread of COVID-19 within households that are in particularly high-risk communities, we are offering 11,000 free hotel rooms for people who need to quarantine. Hotel rooms will be offered based on referrals from H+H and community health providers, beginning on Wednesday.  These will be targeted in particular to people in overcrowded homes, health care workers regardless of symptoms, and New Yorkers experiencing homelessness.
●        Online ACCESS HRA Training: In an effort to facilitate greater access to benefits using our online tools, DSS is now offering ACCESS HRA training webinars.  These trainings are open to CBOs and elected officials’ offices and will provide information on use of ACCESS HRA for SNAP and Cash Assistance applications as well as the General Overview ACCESS HRA Provider Portal.

○        The ACCESS HRA Cash Assistance Webinar will simulate a Cash Assistance (CA) application via ACCESS HRA. This webinar is held on Mondays from 3-4pm.You can sign up for an upcoming session by clicking here.
○        The ACCESS HRA SNAP Webinar will simulate a SNAP application via ACCESS HRA. This webinar is held on Wednesdays from 3-4pm. You can sign up for an upcoming session by clicking here.
○        You can sign up for an ACCESS HRA General Overview Webinar here.

●        New York State on PAUSE is extended through 5/15: Non-essential workforce is directed to continue to work from home until at least 5/15.
●        Event Cancellations: Unfortunately, given the current state of the ongoing public health crisis, all non-essential events in June (parades, concerts, rallies, etc.) are cancelled. We have been coordinating with organizers of the Pride March, Puerto Rican Day Parade, and Celebrate Israel parades.
●        Protecting Homeless New Yorkers: We are moving a third of single homeless New Yorkers out of congregate settings, and moving 2,500 more vulnerable people into hotels.
●        Public Health Milestones: DOHMH's website now includes a Public Health Milestones dashboard to show trends in the spread of COVID-19 related to hospital admissions, critical care capacity, and positive test rates. If an indicator reaches a certain predetermined level, or milestone, it will show that the spread of COVID-19 may be slowing. Once all of these indicators reach their milestones, the City will likely begin to lift restrictions gradually.
●        Grab and Go Meals for All New Yorkers: In this time of historic high unemployment, we understand more New Yorkers are experiencing food insecurity for the first time. To this end, grab and go meals are available for all New Yorkers. No one is turned away, and participants are able to pick up three meals. We appreciate all of you who shared this information with you constituents. To find a location, text “NYCFOOD” or “COMIDA” to 877-877 or visit the DOE website here.
●        NYPD monitoring: Yesterday, officers visited 2,974 supermarkets and pharmacies, 6,785 bars and restaurants (5,652 closed), 1,341 public places, and 3,040 personal care facilities (3,033 closed). Please let us know if you have any problematic areas in your district!
●        More Data: DOHMH has added different breakdowns of the available data to their website in an effort to be as transparent as possible. Please note, the numbers are constantly changing, and there is sometimes a lag:

○        Data by race
○        Big City Emergency Managers Data Tracker 
○        Case counts (including age, gender and borough breakdown)
○        Deaths (including age, gender and borough breakdown along with pre-existing conditions)
○        Hospitalizations (including age, gender, and borough breakdown)
○        Emergency Department Surveillance (date by age group)
○        Percent of patients testing positive (by zip code)

●        As of 1pm today, the number of positive cases in NYC is 134,874 We have lost 9,562 New Yorkers due to covid-19, with another 4,865 probable deaths due to the disease. Below is the borough breakdown of positive cases. DOHMH has added more data available if you click in this link.

○        Total Hospitalized: 35,746
○        Queens: 41,520
○        Brooklyn: 35,775
○        Bronx: 30,142
○        Manhattan: 17,200
○        Staten Island: 10,166

 
Please help us spread the word with your constituents on the following items:
 

●        City Harvest and Food Bank: We are distributing fresh food and household products at NYCHA developments throughout the city. Please click here for more information on times and locations. Here are sites scheduled for this week:

○        4/22: Melrose
○        4/25: Dyckman, Queensbridge
○        4/28: St. Mary’s

●        Donate Plasma: 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.
●        Social Distancing Enforcement: We are doing a citywide social distancing enforcement blitz. As the 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 Call Volume: As we mentioned on Friday, 311 is experiencing high call volume. We want to make sure the highest priority calls are answered as quickly as possible. We urge you to tell your constituents who are not calling to be connected to a COVID-19 related resource, or with an urgent request, to please submit a service request online by visiting NYC.gov/311 or by using the 311 app. Or, if they cannot submit a request online, to consider calling after 7PM or during weekend hours.
●        Essential Construction: In light of the recent state changes to what is and is not deemed essential construction, DOB has posted an FAQ for the public and industry.  
●        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!
●        Financial Empowerment Guidance: New York City Financial Empowerment Center counselors are available to support those experiencing financial challenges. Book an appointment at http://nyc.gov/TalkMoney
●        COVID-19 Resource Guide for Immigrants: We’ve put out a resource guide specifically for immigrant communities during the COVID-19 pandemic: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/immigrants/help/city-services/resources-for-im... help by passing it along. In case you missed it, we also announced emergency relief along with the Open Society Foundation to get relief to those immigrants ineligible for stimulus relief.
●        For DACA Recipients: For help renewing your application call ActionNYC at 1-800-354-0365 (we may even be able to help you out with the renewal fee). Please share with your constituents the information on this tweet from Commissioner Mostofi: https://twitter.com/NYCImmigrants/status/1247633689657454593.
●        Job Opportunities:

○        NYC Health and Hospitals needs workers to help transport patients, clerical staff and cleaning staff. You can apply today at http://nyc.gov/getwork.   Spread the word: https://twitter.com/NYCMayor/status/1249371220811952136
○        The City of New York is hiring licensed TLC drivers to deliver food to New Yorkers in need during the COVID-19 crisis. Find more information at https://cv19engagementportal.cityofnewyork.us/#/display/5e7634997ad67502...

●        NYC COVID-19 Engagement Portal: DOITT has developed a portal, to help guide the City’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The portal is available in 11 languages and allows New Yorkers to self-report COVID-19 information and will help New York City both better communicate with affected people and identify areas that may need enhanced response. Inputs are confidential. People without internet access or who need help, can call 311. Please share this with your constituents!
●        Ways New Yorkers Can Help: Please visit our new website for all the ways New Yorkers can get and offer help with all issues related to COVID-19: www.nyc.gov/helpnownyc.
●        Mental Health Resources: This is a stressful time for New Yorkers.  Resources are available for New Yorkers by contacting 1-888-NYC-WELL or Texting “WELL” to 65173.  For more information visit: https://nycwell.cityofnewyork.us. 

○        For other mental health resources, including for veterans and caregivers, visit: https://thrivenyc.cityofnewyork.us/mental_health_support_while_home.

●        Friendly Visiting Program: We’re also connecting older New Yorkers who are feeling isolated with friendly volunteers to talk with over the phone. Tell your constituents they can call 212-AGING-NYC (212-244-6469).
●        Family Justice Centers: While the centers are physically closed, anyone can call any of our borough centers for help with safety planning, mental health and planning, legal help, or help in connecting to law enforcement agencies. For more information please visit the website here or call our 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-621-4673.
●        #AskMyMayor: The Mayor has a new Daily Message available on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube every morning. If your constituents have questions, comments or concerns, they want him to respond to, they can send them using the hashtag #AskMyMayor.

●        Vulnerable New Yorkers who have symptoms or questions about COVID-19 can call 1-844-NYC-4NYC to connect with a medical provider from Health and Hospitals.

 

MAYOR DE BLASIO ANNOUNCES NEW PLAN TO COMBAT COVID-19 AT NYCHA Read More

MAYOR DE BLASIO ANNOUNCES NEW PLAN TO COMBAT COVID-19 AT NYCHA

Deepening City’s current efforts to ensure residents are safe and supported during crisis
 

 NEW YORK—Mayor de Blasio today announced a plan to deepen the City’s response to COVID-19 at NYCHA. This pandemic is exacerbating the challenges that working people face, especially for NYCHA’s 400,000 residents. This new plan will ensure that these hardworking New Yorkers are safe and supported during this crisis.  
 
“NYCHA residents are the backbone of New York City, but for decades they have not received the support they deserved from all levels of government,” said Mayor de Blasio. “We refuse to continue this pattern, and this new plan will provide residents with the support they need to protect themselves and their families during this crisis. My promise to the New Yorkers who call NYCHA home: we will have your back, no matter what.”
 

The new plan will provide the following services to residents:
 

Access to Free Testing: 

The City is increasing access to free testing for NYCHA residents by opening 6 additional sites at or near NYCHA developments. All six sites will be run by NYC Health + Hospitals, and will offer free walk-in COVID-19 testing. NYCHA residents will be prioritized for testing at these sites. While Cumberland Health Center, Belvis Health Center and Gouvernor Health Center are opening this Friday, the sites at Jonathan Williams, Woodside and St. Nicholas will open next week.
 

Personal Protective Equipment: 

To help residents protect themselves and their families during this crisis, the City will be distributing face coverings and gloves to all residents. The City will also distribute hand sanitizer to NYCHA senior buildings. These deliveries will start next week. The City has already provided NYCHA staff with 60,000 masks and 10,000 pair of gloves.
 

Food for Seniors: 

To fulfill the pledge to provide food to all New Yorkers in need, the City is enrolling all NYCHA senior buildings in the food delivery program over the coming weeks. This will make it easier for residents to get food delivered directly to their door. The City has already delivered 288,000 meals to 24,000 NYCHA households over the past month.
 

Wellness Checks: 

The City is expanding NYCHA’s wellness call program to all seniors and vulnerable residents. These live, telephone calls are made to check on resident’s health and well-being, and ensure they have all their basic necessities such as medicine and groceries.  Since the start of the outbreak, NYCHA has made 40,000 wellness calls.
 

Free Tablets and Internet Service for Seniors: 

The City is investing $5 million to provide free tablets and internet service for 10,000 senior residents to help them remain connected with their loved ones. In partnership with T-Mobile, the City will start rolling out this service next week for seniors in Brownsville followed by developments in Central Brooklyn, South Bronx, Eastern Queens and Upper Manhattan. The City will also provide training for seniors on how to use these devices.
 

Cleaning Schedule: 

NYCHA’s third party vendor is sanitizing common areas three-times a week at family developments and five-times a week at senior developments. These aggressive cleaning schedules will be posted on NYCHA website this week.
 

End of Day update 4-22-20 Read More

What the Mayor announced today:
 
The Mayor spoke from City Hall today and announced a NYCHA plan to ensure that we are protecting some of our most vulnerable population. The Mayor also discussed the latest on expanding testing and tracing citywide.
 
NYCHA: We know the pandemic has hit communities of color and low-income communities particularly hard. So we’re starting there first. Here’s the Mayor’s 5-point plan to help NYCHA residents.

Testing: In addition to the five community-based testing sites we already have up and running, we’ll be adding six more sites over the next few days, and we will give NYCHA residents the priority for testing at these new sites. Three of the sites will be located at NYCHA locations:

H+H community testing sites opening Friday

●        Cumberland Health Center - Crown Heights, Brooklyn
●        Belvis Health Center - Mott Haven, Bronx
●        Gouverneur Health Center - Lower East Side, Manhattan

NYCHA testing sites opening next week 

●        Jonathan Williams Houses - Williamsburg, Brooklyn
●        Woodside Houses - Woodside, Queens
●        St. Nicholas Houses - Harlem, Manhattan

Supplies: We’re also going to provide face coverings and gloves to all NYCHA residents, and we’ll provide hand sanitizer to NYCHA seniors.
Food: As part of our larger GetFood program, we’re going to enroll all NYCHA senior buildings in our food delivery program.
Wellness: We’re going to make live calls to every NYCHA senior and vulnerable resident to check on their health and see if they need anything, including food, toiletries, and supplies.
Combating Isolation: In partnership with T-Mobile, we’re going to give free tablets with internet to 10,000 NYCHA senior citizens to help combat isolation, starting in Brownsville, East New York, Mott Haven, Red Hook, Bushwick, and Coney Island.

 
Expanding Testing & Tracing: We are working on expanding testing throughout the City, with the goal of widely-available testing in every community. As we enter the next phase of managing this disease, we want to be able to test, provide care, help isolate, and trace any contacts a person may have had. For every positive case, we will make sure we are addressing housing, transportation, food, laundry, and medicine needs. We’re also developing “tele-medicine” for remote check-ins and evaluations. But to get to this point, we first need to reach a lower level of community spread and secure a higher number of tests.
 
Food for Heroes: Announced a program to provide two meals per day for one month to 1,250 healthcare workers at Elmhurst Hospital. The Mayor's Fund is fundraising to bring the program to additional sites where healthcare workers and essential staff are working or self-isolating. Grammy-winning artist and former New York City resident Jason Mraz's new song 'Look For The Good' will also serve as the soundtrack to the campaign to generate additional support.
 
Hospital Gowns: The Mayor also announced a partnership with the White House, the New York City Economic Development Corporation, and Owens-Minor, a healthcare logistics company, that will provide one million square yards of American-made medical gown fabric. This supply will allow New York City manufacturers to produce up to 400,000 hospital gowns for frontline health care workers.
 
Tracking Progress: 3 Indicators

●        People admitted to hospitals for suspected COVID-19

○         252 (4/20) UP from 204 (4/19)

●        People currently in H+H ICUs for suspected COVID-19

○         821 (4/20) DOWN from 857 (4/19)

●        Percentage of people tested who are positive for COVID-19

○         Citywide: 33% (4/20) DOWN from 35% (4/19)

Other things happening now:

●        Carbon Neutrality Innovation Challenge: This Earth Day the DOB announced the launch of the Carbon Neutrality Innovation Challenge, the agency’s first-ever competition to solicit ideas to increase energy efficiency among NYC’s buildings. As part of Mayor de Blasio’s historic Green New Deal, NYC plans to be carbon neutral by 2050. Innovative companies from the New York City Economic Development Corporation’s Urban Tech Initiative will work directly with DOB to propose ideas to achieve this goal.
●        Expanded Hotel Isolation Program: Last week, we announced a new hotel isolation program Today, community healthcare providers began referring clients in need of a place to isolate to the new hotel isolation program. Clients must be COVID positive or COVID-symptomatic and unable to isolate where they live. These are individuals who do not require medical care and can self-isolate with basic services, including: onsite medical and social services, meals, laundry, phone, internet, daily check-in calls by medical staff, and transportation to and from the hotel as needed. So far, the following providers. The following providers joined the program today:

○        Morris Heights Health Center – physical locations in Melrose, Mott Haven, Highbridge, Morris Heights, Longwood, North Baychester, Co-op City, and Jerome Park
○        Hudson River Health Care– serves the Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn, and Staten Island
○        Damian Family Health Center – serves the Bronx and Queens

And we’re looking to add more. To learn more about the program, visit nyc.gov/covid19hotel
●        Remote Learning Device Distribution: We have distributed over 193K devices to families. We are asking families to complete the Remote Learning Device Request Form by 5:00 PM on Thursday, April 23 to ensure students receive a device by Thursday, April 30. Families can also call 718-935-5100 and choose option 5. Device distribution will continue in May for families who complete the survey after Thursday. A Remote Learning Survey is available in nine languages. Please help us ensure families respond - we want feedback!
●        New Community-Based Testing Sites: We have five community-based test sites open:

●        Gotham Health Center, East New York - Brooklyn
●        Gotham Health Center, Morissania - Bronx
●        Vanderbilt Health Center - Staten Island
●        Sydenham Family Health Center - Manhattan
●        Queens Hospital - Queens

Next week, we’ll be adding five more sites in hard hit areas, and we’re going to keep growing from there. At this point, the only constraint on our expansion is our ability to procure test-kits, PPEs, and personnel.
●        Kosher Meals: The DOE started serving kosher meals at 10 locations in Brooklyn and Queens, expanding its program providing free meals to all New Yorkers during the coronavirus pandemic.
●        Grab and Go Meals for All New Yorkers: In this time of historic high unemployment, we understand more New Yorkers are experiencing food insecurity for the first time. To this end, grab and go meals are available for all New Yorkers. No one is turned away, and participants are able to pick up three meals. We appreciate all of you who shared this information with you constituents. To find a location, text “NYCFOOD” or “COMIDA” to 877-877 or visit the DOE website here.
●        Jail Population Update: The City jail population dropped below 4,000 for the first time since 1946. The City’s jail population has fallen by more than 1,500 as we continue to work with the State and DAs to release vulnerable populations from City jails.
●        Hotel Rooms: In order to fight the spread of COVID-19 within households that are in particularly high-risk communities, we are offering 11,000 free hotel rooms for people who need to quarantine. Hotel rooms will be offered based on referrals from H+H and community health providers, beginning on Wednesday.  These will be targeted in particular to people in overcrowded homes, health care workers regardless of symptoms, and New Yorkers experiencing homelessness.
●        Online ACCESS HRA Training: In an effort to facilitate greater access to benefits using our online tools, DSS is now offering ACCESS HRA training webinars.  These trainings are open to CBOs and elected officials’ offices and will provide information on use of ACCESS HRA for SNAP and Cash Assistance applications as well as the General Overview ACCESS HRA Provider Portal.

○        The ACCESS HRA Cash Assistance Webinar will simulate a Cash Assistance (CA) application via ACCESS HRA. This webinar is held on Mondays from 3-4pm.You can sign up for an upcoming session by clicking here.
○        The ACCESS HRA SNAP Webinar will simulate a SNAP application via ACCESS HRA. This webinar is held on Wednesdays from 3-4pm. You can sign up for an upcoming session by clicking here.
○        You can sign up for an ACCESS HRA General Overview Webinar here.

●        New York State on PAUSE is extended through 5/15: Non-essential workforce is directed to continue to work from home until at least 5/15.
●        Event Cancellations: Unfortunately, given the current state of the ongoing public health crisis, all non-essential events in June (parades, concerts, rallies, etc.) are cancelled. We have been coordinating with organizers of the Pride March, Puerto Rican Day Parade, and Celebrate Israel parades.
●        Fourth of July: In addition to the announcements to cancel May and June events, we are thinking ahead to how we can handle the Fourth of July festivities. More to come on this front, but we are trying to find a way to make this holiday both safe and memorable.
●        Protecting Homeless New Yorkers: We are moving a third of single homeless New Yorkers out of congregate settings, and moving 2,500 more vulnerable people into hotels.
●        Public Health Milestones: DOHMH's website now includes a Public Health Milestones dashboard to show trends in the spread of COVID-19 related to hospital admissions, critical care capacity, and positive test rates. If an indicator reaches a certain predetermined level, or milestone, it will show that the spread of COVID-19 may be slowing. Once all of these indicators reach their milestones, the City will likely begin to lift restrictions gradually.
●        More Data: DOHMH has added different breakdowns of the available data to their website in an effort to be as transparent as possible. Please note, the numbers are constantly changing, and there is sometimes a lag:

○        Data by race
○        Big City Emergency Managers Data Tracker 
○        Case counts (including age, gender and borough breakdown)
○        Deaths (including age, gender and borough breakdown along with pre-existing conditions)
○        Hospitalizations (including age, gender, and borough breakdown)
○        Emergency Department Surveillance (date by age group)
○        Percent of patients testing positive (by zip code)

●        As of 2:30pm today, the number of positive cases in NYC is 138,435 We have lost 9,944 New Yorkers due to COVID-19, with another 5,052 probable deaths due to the disease. Below is the borough breakdown of positive cases. DOHMH has added more data available if you click in this link.

○        Total Hospitalized: 35,746
○        Queens: 42,637
○        Brooklyn: 36,699
○        Bronx: 31,130
○        Manhattan: 17,495
○        Staten Island: 10,405

 
Please help us spread the word with your constituents on the following items:

●        NYCHA FAQ: NYCHA has put together an updated FAQ for residents. Please share with your constituents!
●        City Harvest and Food Bank: We are distributing fresh food and household products at NYCHA developments throughout the city. Please click here for more information on times and locations. Here are sites scheduled for this week:

○        4/25: Dyckman, Queensbridge
○        4/28: St. Mary’s

●        Donate Plasma: 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.
●        NYPD monitoring: Yesterday, officers visited 2,987 supermarkets and pharmacies, 7,461 bars and restaurants (5,966 closed), 1,313 public places, and 3,006 personal care facilities (2,966 closed). Please let us know if you have any problematic areas in your district!
●        Social Distancing Enforcement: We are doing a citywide social distancing enforcement blitz. As the 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 Call Volume: As we mentioned on Friday, 311 is experiencing high call volume. We want to make sure the highest priority calls are answered as quickly as possible. We urge you to tell your constituents who are not calling to be connected to a COVID-19 related resource, or with an urgent request, to please submit a service request online by visiting NYC.gov/311 or by using the 311 app. Or, if they cannot submit a request online, to consider calling after 7PM or during weekend hours.
●        Essential Construction: In light of the recent state changes to what is and is not deemed essential construction, DOB has posted an FAQ for the public and industry.  
●        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. April 22 is the last day to Apply!
●        Financial Empowerment Guidance: New York City Financial Empowerment Center counselors are available to support those experiencing financial challenges. Book an appointment at http://nyc.gov/TalkMoney.
●        COVID-19 Resource Guide for Immigrants: We’ve put out a resource guide specifically for immigrant communities during the COVID-19 pandemic: here. Please help by passing it along. In case you missed it, we also announced emergency relief along with the Open Society Foundation to get relief to those immigrants ineligible for stimulus relief.
●        For DACA Recipients: For help renewing your application call ActionNYC at 1-800-354-0365 (we may even be able to help you out with the renewal fee). Please share this tweet from Commissioner Mostofi with more information: https://twitter.com/NYCImmigrants/status/1247633689657454593.
●        Job Opportunities:

○        NYC Health and Hospitals is hiring for several positions - patient transportation, clerical and cleaning staff. You can apply today at http://nyc.gov/getwork.   Spread the word: https://twitter.com/NYCMayor/status/1249371220811952136.
○        The City of New York is hiring licensed TLC drivers to deliver food to New Yorkers in need during the COVID-19 crisis. Find more information at NYC Food Delivery Driver Portal.

●        NYC COVID-19 Engagement Portal: DOITT has developed a portal, to help guide the City’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The portal is available in 11 languages and allows New Yorkers to self-report COVID-19 information and will help New York City both better communicate with affected people and identify areas that may need enhanced response. Inputs are confidential. People without internet access or who need help, can call 311. Please share this with your constituents!
●        Ways New Yorkers Can Help: Please visit our new website for all the ways NYers can get and offer help with all issues related to COVID-19: www.nyc.gov/helpnownyc.
●        Mental Health Resources: This is a stressful time for New Yorkers.  Resources are available for New Yorkers by contacting 1-888-NYC-WELL or Texting “WELL” to 65173.  For more information visit: https://nycwell.cityofnewyork.us.

○        For other mental health resources, including for veterans and caregivers, visit: Mental Health Support New Yorkers Can Access While Staying Home.

●        Friendly Visiting Program: We’re also connecting older New Yorkers who are feeling isolated with friendly volunteers to talk with over the phone. Tell your constituents they can call 212-AGING-NYC (212-244-6469).
●        Family Justice Centers: While the centers are physically closed, anyone can call any of our borough centers for help with safety planning, mental health and planning, legal help, or help in connecting to law enforcement agencies. For more information please visit the website here or call our 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-621-4673.
●        #AskMyMayor: The Mayor has a new Daily Message available on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube every morning. As a reminder, vulnerable New Yorkers who have symptoms or questions about COVID-19 can call 1-844-NYC-4NYC to connect with a medical provider from Health and Hospitals.

 

Free Face Covering Giveaway in City parks Read More

New York City will continue distributing face coverings in parks across the city free of charge through Tuesday, May 12th. Use the map below to find the closest Parks distribution location, date, and time.

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.

COVID-19 Facts

  • People that have no symptoms can still spread COVID-19.
  • A face covering can help prevent COVID-19 from spreading.
  • A state order requires everyone to wear a face covering outside.
  • Still practice physical distancing. Maintain 6 feet of distance from others.

What Is a Face Covering?

  • A well-secured paper or cloth that covers your nose and mouth.
  • Examples include: a bandana or scarf.

Care Instructions

  • Cloth Face Covering: Wash once a day by hand or machine using detergent. Wear only when dry.
  • Paper Face Covering: Reusable so long as not wet/soiled.

Locations

Antibody Survey Read More

Monday, NYC will begin offering free antibody tests to 70K New Yorkers, this initiative is a partnership w/BioReference Labs. This first survey will run through late May and we’ll repeat for an additional 70K in June. Priority given to local communities, and results will be provided – in 24-48 hours.

Our initial capacity will be 1,000 tests a day at each of these first five antibody testing sites:

· Brooklyn: 127 Pennsylvania Avenue

· Bronx: 4006 Third Avenue, Bathgate

· Manhattan: 21 Old Broadway

· Queens: 34-09 Queens Boulevard

· Staten Island: St. John’s Villa

Important to note that these are not walk up sites. For additional information, or to schedule an appointment for a test, please visit: http://nyc.bioreference.com/antibodysurvey or call 888-279-0967.

NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) Updates: Virtual Tax Prep and Assisted Self-Prep to file taxes for FREE Read More

NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection Updates:

NYC Free Tax Prep: The tax filing deadline is July 15th. While all NYC free tax prep providers have suspended in-person services, we are now providing virtual and assisted self-prep free tax prep services.

New Yorkers who earned $64,000 or less in 2019 are eligible for Virtual Free Tax Preparation with a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA)/Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) certified preparer.
New Yorkers who earned $69,000 or less in 2019 are eligible for free Assisted Self-Preparation. Filers will need access to a computer, tablet, or smartphone; a stable internet connection.

We currently offer services in English, Spanish, French, Haitian Creole, Russian, Arabic, with others to come. Please visit www.nyc.gov/taxprep for latest updates and the list of providers.

NYC Financial Empowerment Centers: For the health and safety of our providers and clients, all Financial Counseling sessions will be conducted over the phone. Our 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

Have a Student Loan?: Important information about payments and resources can be found at nyc.gov/studentloans

Expecting an Economic Impact Payment from the IRS?: Check out everything you need to know here: https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/dca/downloads/pdf/consumers/What-You-Need-to...

Get Food NYC Programs Read More

P-EBT: USDA has approved Pandemic-EBT (P-EBT) for New York, which will provide nutritional resources to families who have lost access to free or reduced-price school meals due to school closures.

NYC DOE Grab & Go Sites: We are now distributing around 500,000 meals daily at over 500 DOE Grab & Go sites across the city.

Kosher & Halal Meal Updates: Since 4/21, DOE OFNS has expanded to 16 Kosher Grab & Go sites, including one that opened on Wednesday in Forest Hills, and an additional two sites in Riverdale and Williamsburg will be open on Monday, for a total of 18 sites. The GetFoodNYC program has delivered around 300,000 kosher meals across all 5 boroughs to date, plus another 200,000 via the new DOE Grab & Go sites. To meet the needs of halal-observant NYers over the month of Ramadan, we partnered with CBOs to serve 150,000 halal meals, and surged hundreds of thousands of meals at key DOE Grab & Go locations.

Emergency Food Delivery Authorized Enroller Program (AEP): So far, 421 senior center staff members, representing 224 senior centers across the City have been trained. Key CBOs will begin training in the coming weeks For technical assistance related to the Authorized Enroller Program (AEP), entities can contact: seniorfood@dsny.nyc.gov

PPE: We are now distributing 400,000 masks for food pantry workers and volunteers as well as grocery store workers who may have difficulty acquiring masks themselves.

Food Supply Chain: A new analysis shows that meat supply constraints may persist for another 3-4 weeks before stabilizing. You might notice limited beef and pork availability and increased prices through Memorial Day

Resources:

Emergency Food Delivery Program Feedback: Anyone can change or cancel delivery, or submit a comment or complaint about EFD by calling 311 and saying “GetFood” or submitting feedback online at: on.nyc.gov/seniorfoodresources.

Opportunities for CBOs and Businesses:

For-Profit Entities: Companies can be considered for a vendor contract with the GetFoodNYC program by responding to the solicitation: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/m32atjknrckd2ew/AABDWtoM9yogMnPLKCi0MJT4a?dl=0

Non-Profit Entities (RFI): Our food delivery program is seeking nonprofits to increase capacity including provider staff to manage distribution sites and commercial kitchen capacity to prepare and package meals. Please encourage nonprofits to visit NYC.gov/nonprofits for more information.

NYC Civic Impact Funding NYC Service is providing one-time funding of up to $10,000 to support nonprofits engaging volunteers to deliver essential services, particularly meals and food, to residents throughout the COVID-19 crisis. Visit NYC Service online to view all eligibility and funding details: https://www.nycservice.org/pages/pages/218 Applications are due May 11th at 5pm.

End of Day Update 5-08-20 Read More

What the Mayor announced this morning:
Today at City Hall, the Mayor announced details about the launch of our Test and Trace Corps, an update on our plan to protect homeless New Yorkers, and social distancing enforcement in our parks. The Mayor also discussed our three key indicators, all of which are fortunately showing a downward trend.

Launching the Test and Trace Corps
The Test and Trace Corps is being formed to suppress the spread of COVID-19 as NYC prepares to enter the “low-level transmission” phase. The Corps will focus on preventing infection even as social distancing measures are adjusted. Today, the Mayor announced our Test and Trace Leadership Team, which combines the health expertise of DOHMH with the operational expertise of other H+H and City Hall senior officials:

● Dr. Ted Long, Executive Director
● Jackie Bray, Deputy Executive Director
● Dr. Andrew Wallach, Chief Medical Officer
● Dr. Jay Varma, Senior Advisor for Public Health
● Dr. Demetre Daskalakis, DOHMH Deputy Commissioner of Disease Control

Mission
The Test and Trace Corps’ mission is to implement NYC’s fight to suppress COVID-19 by testing New Yorkers for infection, tracing all cases and contacts, and providing support and care. By May, the unit will house and deploy 1,000 public health foot soldiers to do this work, with 2,500 by June. Nearly 7,000 applications have already been received.

NYC will utilize the Johns Hopkins University COVID-19/Contact Tracing Training, sponsored by Bloomberg Philanthropies, for all applicants being considered. We will also be partnering with Salesforce to deploy a fully integrated call center, customer relationship and case management system designed to support citywide test and trace efforts. The Corps will deploy Salesforce on June 1st.

Isolation and Care
The Corps will provide hotel rooms for any New Yorkers requiring isolation and monitoring. By June, 1,200 hotel rooms with monitoring and supervision will be online. Appropriate social service, wrap around service, and clinical services will be provided onsite.

Protecting Homeless New Yorkers
The MTA is closing stations nightly from 1:00 AM to 5:00 AM for deep cleaning, and DHS outreach teams are engaging homeless individuals as they leave the trains. Last night, DHS engaged 269 people, and 163 accepted services. This included 148 people who went to shelters, and 15 who were brought to the hospital. This means in the last three nights, we’ve been able to get 520 New Yorkers who are homeless to come in to safe havens and shelters or go to medical facilities.

Social Distancing in Our Parks
In order to best protect New Yorkers from the spread of COVID, the City will increase social distancing in parks that have been experiencing large crowds in tight spaces: we will limit capacity at Hudson River Park Piers 45 and 46 and increase NYPD presence and monitoring of Domino Park in Williamsburg.

Tracking Progress on Three Key Indicators: DOHMH Public Health Milestones dashboard shows trends in the spread of COVID-19:

● People admitted to hospitals for suspected COVID-19

○ 102 UP (79 as of May 5)
○ Trend: DOWN 855 As of 4/9

● People currently in H+H ICUs for suspected COVID-19

○ 568 UP (567 as of May 5)
○ Trend: DOWN 887 as of April 14

● Percentage of people tested who are positive for COVID-19

○ Citywide: 14% DOWN (16% as of May 5)
○ Trend: DOWN (71% at the end of March)

Other Recent Announcements:

● VetCheck Mental Health for Veterans: Today, the NYC Department of Veterans’ Services and the Mayor’s Office of ThriveNYC launched Mission: VetCheck. Members of the veteran community will call other veterans to check in and provide information about vital public services, including meals, COVID-19 test sites, and mental health resources. Mission: VetCheck.
● Antibody Testing for Health Care Workers and First Responders: We are launching a program next week to test 140,000 healthcare workers and first responders in hospitals, firehouses, police stations and correction facilities.
● Antibody Testing for New Yorkers: Also launching two phase antibody testing for another 140,000 New Yorkers next week, in partnership with BioReference Labs. The first survey of 70,000 will start Monday and run through late May. We’ll repeat the survey for another 140,000 in June. Antibody testing will be by appointment only, with priority for local communities. Complete this survey to schedule an appointment: Antibody Testing Appointment Survey or call 888- 279-0967. Please encourage folks to use the website, in order to keep the hotline free for those without internet access.
Our initial capacity will be 1,000 tests a day at each antibody testing sites:

○ Brooklyn: 127 Pennsylvania Avenue
○ Bronx: 4006 Third Avenue, Bathgate
○ Manhattan: 21 Old Broadway
○ Queens: 34-09 Queens Boulevard
○ Staten Island: St. John’s Villa, 57 Cleveland Place

● Extension of Eviction Moratorium: The State announced an extension of the eviction moratorium for residential and commercial tenants facing COVID-related hardship for an additional 60 days through August 20. Banned late payment fees for missed payments during moratorium and will allow renters facing hardship due to COVID-19 to use their security deposit to pay rent.
● Additional Face Covering Distribution: We are distributing 7.5 million free face coverings. Five million 3-ply non-medical masks and 2.5 million cloth face coverings will be given out at a variety of locations, including NYCHA, DOE Grab & Go sites, Parks, Mitchell-Lama buildings, grocery stores, and as part of social distancing enforcement. The map with distribution sites is available online: Face Coverings.
● NYC Open Streets: If you know of streets in your community that could be safely closed with the staffing of community partners, please submit suggestions 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.
● GetFood: Our goal is to grow our capacity to deliver 1 million meals a day to seniors. We are seeking nonprofits to increase capacity, with a focus on culturally sensitive meals. We need support in Melrose, Washington Heights, Morris Park, Flushing, Sunset Park, and more. Please share the Request for Information here, and encourage nonprofits to visit NYC.gov/nonprofits for information.
● Community Testing Sites: All 11 H+H Hospitals will open for community testing this week, with 30 more sites opening the week of May 18th.
● Remote Learning Device Distribution: Please encourage families to complete the Remote Learning Device Request. Families can also call 718-935-5100 and choose option 5. DOE has identified approximately 35,000 students with disabilities in religious and independent non-public schools who are eligible to request a device. We want feedback. We have a Remote Learning Survey available in nine languages.
● Alternate Side Parking: Alternate Side Parking Regulations will be suspended through Tuesday, May 12. Parking meters and all other parking rules remain in effect. The City may extend the suspension based on street cleanliness and workforce availability.
● NYCHA: Details about the Mayor’s 5-point plan are available here: Mayor de Blasio Announces New Plan to Combat COVID-19 at NYCHA. NYCHA has installed hand sanitizer dispensers in all 69 senior developments, and we have mailed every NYCHA household masks and gloves for every household member.
● Grab & Go Meals for All New Yorkers: No one is turned away, and participants are able to pick up three meals. To find a location, text “NYCFOOD” or “COMIDA” to 877-877 or here: Free Meal Sites.

○ Kosher Meals: Available at 16 sites, with 2 more opening 5/11.
○ Halal Meals: Available at all 400+ grab-and-go sites. We are adding 25% capacity at 32 DOE sites during the month of Ramadan.

● New York State on PAUSE through 5/15: Non-essential workforce is directed to continue to work from home until at least 5/15.
● As of 1pm today, the number of positive cases in NYC is 176,086. We have lost 14,389 New Yorkers due to COVID-19, with another 5,313 deaths likely due to the disease. DOHMH continues to provide additional breakdowns of the available data. Please note, there is sometimes a lag. Here is the total hospitalization rate and borough breakdown of positive cases:

○ Total Hospitalized: 43,913
○ Queens: 54,558
○ Brooklyn: 46,977
○ Bronx: 40,148
○ Manhattan: 21,862
○ Staten Island: 12,452

Important Information to Share with Your Constituents:

● Paid Sick Leave: Direct constituents to the City’s Call Center at 855-491-2667 or 311 to facilitate claiming paid sick leave. Visit DOHMH FAQs: Frequently Asked Questions for information on how to obtain the necessary medical documentation.
● Health Insurance Special Enrollment: Extended through 6/15, health insurance enrollment is open for uninsured New Yorkers as part of a Special Enrollment Period: Get Covered
● Job Opportunities:

○ NYC Health and Hospitals is hiring for several positions - patient transportation, clerical and cleaning staff. You can apply today at http://nyc.gov/getwork. Spread the word: https://twitter.com/NYCMayor/status/1249371220811952136.
○ We are hiring 1,000 people with experience in the healthcare field to be Contact Tracers. Please encourage candidates to apply here https://www.nychealthandhospitals.org/careers/.
○ The City of New York is hiring licensed TLC drivers to deliver food to New Yorkers in need during the COVID-19 crisis. Find more information at NYC Food Delivery Driver Portal.

● Mental Health Resources: Available by calling 1-888-NYC-WELL or texting “WELL” to 65173. Visit: NYC Well – Talk. Text. Chat. 24/7. Additional resources: Mental Health Support New Yorkers Can Access While Staying Home.
● Friendly Visiting Program: We’re connecting older New Yorkers who are feeling isolated with volunteers to talk with over the phone by calling 212-AGING-NYC.
● Family Justice Centers: All borough centers are available by phone. More online: Family Justice Centers or call 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-621-4673.
● #AskMyMayor: The Mayor has a Daily Message available on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. If your constituents have questions, comments or concerns they want the Mayor to respond to, send them using the hashtag #AskMyMayor.

As a reminder, vulnerable New Yorkers who have symptoms or questions about COVID-19 can call 1-844-NYC-4NYC to connect with a medical provider from Health and Hospitals.

End of Day Update 5-12-20 Read More

What the Mayor announced this morning:
Today at City Hall, the Mayor shared details about testing expansion, and the rollout of the Test and Trace Corps, and provided updates on the recent surge in cases of pediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome. The Mayor also gave the latest on our homeless outreach measures and updated our three key indicators.

Expanding Testing:
The Mayor announced that by next week, two new sites with daily testing capacity of 6,300 will open in Washington Heights and Midwood, and 10 new sites with total daily testing capacity of 10,700 will open at the following locations:

● Staten Island: Prince’s Bay, Concord, Port Richmond
● Queens: Woodside
● Manhattan: East Harlem
● Brooklyn: Sunset Park, Bay Ridge, Canarsie
● Bronx: Fordham Manor, Melrose

Test and Trace Corps:
The Mayor named Dr. Neil Vora as Director of Tracing and Dr. Amanda Johnson as Director of Isolation to lead test and trace efforts. Citywide case tracing is ramping up through May. We’ve already received 7,000 applications and 535 Contact Tracers are already undergoing training. Our goal is to have 2,500 Contact Tracers by June. The job descriptions are posted here: Careers.

Pediatric Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome:
The Mayor provided updates on the new uptick in cases. We have 52 cases of multisystem inflammatory syndrome detected, with 25 who tested positive for COVID-19, 22 who tested positive for antibodies, and 10 cases pending test results. Sadly, we had one fatality. If your child has symptoms including persistent fever, rash, abdominal pain, vomiting call your doctor immediately!

Leadership on Racial Equity Task Force:
The Mayor announced that Grace Bonilla will serve as Executive Director of the Racial Equity and Inclusion Task Force. She has served as Administrator of the Human Resources Administration since 2017, and we appreciate her service.

Protecting Homeless New Yorkers:
The MTA is closing stations nightly from 1:00 AM to 5:00 AM for deep cleaning, and DHS outreach teams are engaging homeless individuals as they leave the trains. Last night, DHS engaged 362 people, and 211 accepted services. This included 178 people who went to shelters, and 33 who were brought to the hospital.

Tracking Progress on Three Key Indicators: DOHMH Public Health Milestones dashboard shows trends in the spread of COVID-19:

● People admitted to hospitals for suspected COVID-19

○ 51 DOWN (55 as of May 9)

● People currently in H+H ICUs for suspected COVID-19

○ 550 UP (537 as of May 9)

● Percentage of people tested who are positive for COVID-19

○ 14% UP (13% as of May 9)

Other Recent Announcements:

● Antibody Testing for Health Care Workers and First Responders: 140,000 healthcare workers and first responders will be offered antibody testing in hospitals, firehouses, police stations and correction facilities.
● Antibody Testing for New Yorkers: Phase one of our antibody testing survey for 70,000 New Yorkers, in partnership with BioReference Labs, is underway and will run through late May. We’ll repeat the survey for another 70,000 in June. Antibody testing is by appointment only, with priority for local communities. Complete this survey to schedule an appointment: Antibody Testing Appointment Survey or call 888- 279-0967. Please encourage folks to use the website, in order to keep the hotline free for those without internet access. Our initial capacity will be 1,000 tests a day at each site:

○ Brooklyn: 127 Pennsylvania Avenue
○ Bronx: 4006 Third Avenue, Bathgate
○ Manhattan: 21 Old Broadway
○ Queens: 34-09 Queens Boulevard
○ Staten Island: St. John’s Villa, 57 Cleveland Place

● Additional Face Covering Distribution: We are distributing 7.5 million free face coverings. Five million 3-ply non-medical masks and 2.5 million cloth face coverings will be given out at a variety of locations, including NYCHA, DOE Grab & Go sites, Parks, Mitchell-Lama buildings, grocery stores, and as part of social distancing enforcement. The map with distribution sites is available online: Face Coverings.
● NYC Open Streets: If you know of streets in your community that could be safely closed with the staffing of community partners, please submit suggestions 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.
● GetFood: Our goal is to grow our capacity to deliver 1 million meals a day to seniors. We are seeking nonprofits to increase capacity, with a focus on culturally sensitive meals. We need support in Melrose, Washington Heights, Morris Park, Flushing, Sunset Park, and more. Please share the Request for Information here, and encourage nonprofits to visit NYC.gov/nonprofits for information. Submissions due by 05/29.
● Community Testing Sites: All 11 H+H Hospitals now have community testing, with 30 more community testing sites opening the week of May 18th.
● As of 1:15PM today the number of positive cases in NYC is 184,319. We have lost 15,101 New Yorkers due to COVID-19, with another 5,136 deaths likely due to the disease. DOHMH continues to provide additional breakdowns of the available data. Please note, there is sometimes a lag. Here is the total hospitalization rate and borough breakdown of positive cases:

○ Total Hospitalized: 48,939
○ Queens: 56,899
○ Brooklyn: 50,079
○ Bronx: 41,746
○ Manhattan: 22,771
○ Staten Island: 12,733

Important Information to Share with Your Constituents:

● TLC Driver Resource Center: The TLC launched its Driver Resource Center today, offering a wide range of services to all TLC-licensed drivers and medallion owner-drivers. Among the services available to licensees are legal services, financial counseling, health and mental health referrals, and public benefits application support.
● Direct Deposit Stimulus Checks: Please remind your constituents that they must enter direct deposit information by tomorrow at 12PM to avoid a paper stimulus check: Get My Payment
● Remote Learning Device Distribution: Please encourage families to complete the Remote Learning Device Request. Families can also call 718-935-5100 and choose option 5. DOE has identified approximately 35,000 students with disabilities in religious and independent non-public schools who are eligible to request a device. We want feedback. We have a Remote Learning Survey available in nine languages.
● Alternate Side Parking (ASP): Suspended through 5/17. The City will resume ASP for the week of May 18 - 24 for a citywide “clean sweep”. ASP will be suspended again for the next two weeks from May 25 - June 7, during which DSNY will reassess cleanliness.
● Grab & Go Meals for All New Yorkers: No one is turned away, and participants are able to pick up three meals. To find a location, text “NYCFOOD” or “COMIDA” to 877-877 or here: Free Meal Sites.

○ Kosher Meals: Available at 18 sites.
○ Halal Meals: Available at all 400+ sites. We are adding capacity at 32 DOE sites during the month of Ramadan.

● NYC BOE Absentee Ballot: Registered NYC voters can request an absentee ballot for the June 23 elections: NYC Absentee. Encourage registered voters to request by June 16.
● Webinars for Small Businesses Impacted by COVID-19: SBS is hosting webinars on resources for small businesses impacted by COVID-19 focused on financial assistance from the U.S. Small Business Administration and other private organizations; tax, debt, and utilities relief; marketing and employee support; and regulatory changes. Full list of webinars here.
● Paid Sick Leave: Direct constituents to the City’s Call Center at 855-491-2667 or 311 to facilitate claiming paid sick leave. Visit DOHMH FAQs: Frequently Asked Questions for information on how to obtain the necessary medical documentation.
● Health Insurance Special Enrollment: Extended through 6/15, health insurance enrollment is open for uninsured New Yorkers as part of a Special Enrollment Period: Get Covered
● Extension of Eviction Moratorium: The State announced an extension of the eviction moratorium for residential and commercial tenants facing COVID-related hardship for an additional 60 days through August 20. Banned late payment fees for missed payments during moratorium and will allow renters facing hardship due to COVID-19 to use their security deposit to pay rent.
● Job Opportunities:

○ NYC Health and Hospitals is hiring for several positions - patient transportation, clerical and cleaning staff. You can apply today at http://nyc.gov/getwork. Spread the word: https://twitter.com/NYCMayor/status/1249371220811952136.
○ We are hiring 2,500 people with experience in the healthcare field to be Contact Tracers. Please encourage candidates to apply here: Careers.
○ The City of New York is hiring licensed TLC drivers to deliver food to New Yorkers in need during the COVID-19 crisis. Find more information at NYC Food Delivery Driver Portal.

● Mental Health Resources: Available by calling 1-888-NYC-WELL or texting “WELL” to 65173. Visit: NYC Well – Talk. Text. Chat. 24/7. Additional resources: Mental Health Support New Yorkers Can Access While Staying Home. Members of the veteran community will call other veterans as part of Mission: VetCheck.
● Friendly Visiting Program: We’re connecting older New Yorkers who are feeling isolated with volunteers to talk with over the phone by calling 212-AGING-NYC.
● Family Justice Centers: All borough centers are available by phone. More online: Family Justice Centers or call 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-621-4673.
● #AskMyMayor: The Mayor has a Daily Message available on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. If your constituents have questions, comments or concerns they want the Mayor to respond to, send them using the hashtag #AskMyMayor.

As a reminder, vulnerable New Yorkers who have symptoms or questions about COVID-19 can call 1-844-NYC-4NYC to connect with a medical provider from Health and Hospitals.

End of Day Update 5-17-20 Read More

As always, the Mayor will begin the day tomorrow with a media availability around 9:30 AM, please tune in here: https://www1.nyc.gov/ or follow on twitter @NYCMayor or the Mayor’s Facebook Page.

Today at City Hall, the Mayor announced a new partnership with CityMD for more testing, gave updates on our Test & Trace program, shared information about antibody testing, announced our plans for the beach this summer, and asked New Yorkers to donate blood. He also gave updates about pediatric multisystem inflammatory syndrome (PMIS) and the City’s three key progress indicators.

More Testing
We have a new partnership with CityMD with the capacity for 6,000 PCR tests daily, 7 days per week. Walk-ins are welcome and there is no cost for the uninsured. These tests are available at all locations: Find a location. With this partnership, our daily citywide testing capacity has reached 20,000.

Find a testing site near you: Get Tested in Your Community. Two additional NYC Health + Hospital sites open tomorrow:

● 1223 Coney Island Avenue, Flatlands, Brooklyn
● 2310 Amsterdam Avenue, Washington Heights, Manhattan

Test & Trace
The City is on track to reach 1,000 Tracers by the end of May. The first class of 500 prospective tracers have completed the required training from Johns Hopkins. Another 1,000 tracers are in the pipeline. The first field training will take place the week of May 24. Training on more than 100 potential case types. We will also have 100 Tracers start next week.

Resource Navigators for Home Isolation
The Test & Trace Corps will deploy Resource Navigators in every community by June 1.
Contact Tracers will make a hand-off to Resource Navigators to connect anyone isolating at home with: Food, medication, phone, toiletries, and mental health resources. We will have 200-300 people hired as Resource Navigators by June 1. They will be overseen by local organizations in each borough.

Antibody Testing
The City now has 140,000 antibody tests available for New Yorkers free of charge. To make an appointment, please visit nyc.gov/antibodysurvey or call 888-279-0967. Hours of operation are Monday-Friday, noon to 8pm. Saturday & Sunday: 8am to noon. These are the locations:

● Brooklyn: 127 Pennsylvania Avenue
● Bronx: 4006 Third Avenue, Bathgate
● Manhattan: 21 Old Broadway
● Queens: 34-09 Queens Boulevard
● Staten Island: St. John’s Villa, 57 Cleveland Place

Urgent: Blood Donations Needed
New York Blood Center is down to a 2-day supply. Cancellations of blood drives have hurt collection. Please consider donating blood. Make an appointment by visiting nybc.org or by calling 800-933-2566.

NYC Beaches
NYC beaches will NOT open for Memorial Day for swimming or recreational use. Only walking or jogging on the beach is permitted. The City will add fencing to limit entry points, along with general social distancing enforcement. If swimming or crowding proves an issue, access will be further restricted. Opening later in the summer is contingent on further reduction of COVID-19 and resumption of non-essential activity and travel. But in case we are able to reopen beaches safely later in the summer, the Parks Department will begin training lifeguards.

Pediatric Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome
The Mayor provided updates on the new uptick in cases. We have detected 137 cases of PMIS and 66 tested positive for COVID-19 or for antibodies. We’ve had one fatality. If your child has symptoms including persistent fever, rash, abdominal pain, vomiting call your doctor immediately!

Tracking Progress on Three Key Indicators: DOHMH Public Health Milestones dashboard shows trends in the spread of COVID-19:

● People admitted to hospitals for suspected COVID-19

○ 77 SAME (77 as of May 14)

● People currently in H+H ICUs for suspected COVID-19

○ 469 DOWN (506 as of May 14)

● Percentage of people tested who are positive for COVID-19

○ 11% DOWN (13% as of May 14)

Other Recent Announcements:

● COVID-19 Heatwave Plan: We are investing $55M to purchase over 74,000 A/Cs for vulnerable New Yorkers. HRA will be reaching out to eligible New Yorkers. More details to come soon.
● New York State on PAUSE through 5/28: Non-essential workforce is directed to continue to work from home until at least 5/28.
● Face Covering Distribution: We are distributing 7.5 million free face coverings as part of social distancing enforcement and at a variety of locations, including NYCHA, Grab & Go sites, Parks, Mitchell-Lama buildings, grocery stores. More information about Face Coverings.
● NYC Open Streets: 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.
● GetFood: We are seeking nonprofits with a focus on culturally sensitive meals to reach our goal to deliver one million meals a day to seniors. We need support in Melrose, Washington Heights, Morris Park, Flushing, Sunset Park, and more. Please share the Request for Information here, and encourage nonprofits to visit NYC.gov/nonprofits for information. Submissions due by 05/29.
● As of 1 PM today the number of positive cases in NYC is 190,408. We have lost 15,888 New Yorkers due to COVID-19, with another 4,832 deaths likely due to the disease. DOHMH continues to provide additional breakdowns of the available data. Please note, there is sometimes a lag. Here is the total hospitalization rate and borough breakdown of positive cases:

○ Total Hospitalized: 50,120
○ Queens: 58,574
○ Brooklyn: 51,931
○ Bronx: 43,252
○ Manhattan: 23,620
○ Staten Island: 12,937

Important Information to Share with Your Constituents:

● Alternate Side Parking (ASP) Suspension: The City will resume ASP for the week of May 18 - 24 for a citywide clean sweep. ASP will then be suspended for two weeks from May 25 – June 7, during which DSNY will reassess cleanliness.
● Get Tested in Your Community: Find Community testing sites operated by NYC Health + Hospitals near you: Get Tested in Your Community.
● Activity Book for Kids: City Planning has put out an activity book you can use to teach kids about social distancing and the public realm. Check it out and share with your constituents (and kids!): Animals of NYC - Physical Distancing Activity Book.
● TLC Driver Resource Center: The TLC Driver Resource Center offers services including legal services, financial counseling, health and mental health referrals, and public benefits application support.
● Remote Learning: Encourage families to complete the Remote Learning Device Request, or call 718-935-5100 and choose option 5. We also have a Remote Learning Survey available in nine languages.
● Grab & Go Meals for All New Yorkers: No one is turned away, and participants are able to pick up three meals. Find a location: Free Meal Sites, or text “NYCFOOD” or “COMIDA” to 877-877.

○ Kosher Meals: Available at 18 sites.
○ Halal Meals: Available at all 500+ sites. We are adding capacity at 32 DOE sites during the month of Ramadan.

● NYC BOE Absentee Ballot: Registered NYC voters can request an absentee ballot for the June 23 elections: NYC Absentee. Be sure to submit your request by 6/16.
● Paid Sick Leave: Visit DOHMH Frequently Asked Questions for information on how to obtain the necessary medical documentation. The City has a call center to facilitate claiming paid sick leave: 855-491-2667 or 311.
● Health Insurance Special Enrollment Period: Extended through 6/15, health insurance enrollment is open for uninsured New Yorkers: Get Covered.
● Eviction Moratorium: The State announced an extension of the eviction moratorium for residential and commercial tenants facing COVID-related hardship through 8/20. Banned late payment fees for missed payments during moratorium. Will allow renters facing hardship due to COVID-19 to use their security deposit to pay rent.
● Job Opportunities:

○ H+H is hiring for several positions. Apply here: http://nyc.gov/getwork.
○ We are hiring 2,500 Contact Tracers. Apply here: Careers.
○ We are hiring licensed TLC drivers to deliver food to New Yorkers in need: NYC Food Delivery Driver Portal.

● Mental Health Resources: Available by calling 1-888-NYC-WELL or texting “WELL” to 65173. Visit: NYC Well – Talk. Text. Chat. 24/7. Additional resources: Mental Health Support New Yorkers Can Access While Staying Home. Members of the veteran community will call other veterans as part of Mission: VetCheck.
● Friendly Visiting Program: We’re connecting older New Yorkers who are feeling isolated with volunteers to talk with over the phone by calling 212-AGING-NYC.
● Family Justice Centers: All borough centers are available by phone. More online: Family Justice Centers or call 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-621-4673.
● #AskMyMayor: The Mayor has a Daily Message available on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. If your constituents have questions, comments or concerns they want the Mayor to respond to, send them using the hashtag #AskMyMayor.

As a reminder, vulnerable New Yorkers who have symptoms or questions about COVID-19 can call 1-844-NYC-4NYC to connect with a medical provider from Health and Hospitals.

NYC's Response to COVID-19 : Resources and Information on Important Laws Read More

NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection:

Price Gouging: Please be advised that effective March 16th, DCWP has issued an emergency rule regarding price gouging of products that are used to treat, prevent, or limit the spread of COVID-19. Learn more: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/dca/media/Face-Masks-in-Short-Supply-Due-to-CO...

Workplace Guidance: NYC Workplace laws are still in effect. Learn more about employee rights and employer responsibilities here: https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/dca/downloads/pdf/workers/Complying-with-NYC...

NYC Free Tax Prep: The tax filing deadline is July 15th. While all NYC free tax prep providers have suspended in-person services, we are now providing virtual and assisted self-prep free tax prep services.

New Yorkers who earned $64,000 or less in 2019 are eligible for Virtual Free Tax Preparation with a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA)/Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) certified preparer. New Yorkers who earned $69,000 or less in 2019 are eligible for free Assisted Self-Preparation.

Filers will need access to a computer, tablet, or smartphone and a stable internet connection. Learn more: www.nyc.gov/taxprep

NYC Financial Empowerment Centers: For the health and safety of our providers and clients, all Financial Counseling sessions will be conducted over the phone. Our 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

Have a Student Loan?: Important information about payments and resources can be found at www.nyc.gov/studentloans

Expecting an Economic Impact Payment from the IRS?: Check out everything you need to know here: https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/dca/downloads/pdf/consumers/What-You-Need-to...

Debt Collection: DCWP has created a joint letter template that you can fill out and mail (required by federal law) so debt collectors can’t contact you until the State of Emergency in New York City has ended. More information found at https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/dca/downloads/pdf/consumers/DCA-Template-Cea...

Questions about Funeral Planning During COVID-19? : Important Information for New Yorkers who have lost loved ones can be found here: https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/dca/downloads/pdf/consumers/Funeral-Planning...

NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene:

Recent Guidelines and Tools: All the latest guidance from face masks to how to properly document your eligibility for NYS Emergency Paid Sick Leave can be found here: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/covid/covid-19-main.page

GetCoveredNYC: Through May 15th, health insurance enrollment is open for uninsured New Yorkers as part of a Special Enrollment Period call 311 for free enrollment assistance.

NYC Human Resources Administration:

Cash Assistance: You may be eligible for an emergency cash grant if it will meet certain special needs. For more information call HRA’s Infoline at 718-557-1399.

Funeral and Burial Guidance and Assistance: HRA will provide financial assistance to individuals in need of assistance to meet qualifying funeral expenses. For more information e-mail burialservices@hra.nyc.gov

NYC Department of Education:

Regional Enrichment Centers: Regional Enrichment Centers (RECs) are places where the children of first responders, health care providers, transit workers and other key personnel can be safely cared for while their parents continue to serve NYC in this time of need. 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 online at https://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/5518161/REC-Enrollment-Form

Taxi and Limousine Commission:

TLC Food Delivery Program : TLC drivers can sign-up to deliver meals to elderly and high-risk people around the City. As of, Sunday, April 26, drivers will receive $53 per route, on all routes citywide, including $40 per route in base pay and $13 per route to cover gas and mileage. TLC drivers can also use non-TLC vehicles. https://www1.nyc.gov/site/tlc/drivers/tlc-driver-food-delivery.page

TLC licensees can take advantage of the Driver Resource Center, which provides financial counseling and legal services and other useful free City resources such as health care insurance, mental health resources and more. https://portal.driverresourcecenter.tlc.nyc.gov/

Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs:

Public Charge: In New York City, healthcare is a human right. Use of health services related to COVID-19 will not be considered under the public charge rule and will not impact your ability to apply for a green card or citizenship. For more information visit: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/immigrants/help/legal-services/public-charge.page

Resources for Immigrant Communities during COVID-19 Pandemic: https://www1.nyc.gov/site/immigrants/help/city-services/resources-for-im...

NYC Commission on Human Rights:

NYC Human Rights Law: Harassment and discrimination based on race, national origin, age, and disability (including having COVID-19 or another serious illness) is illegal. If you have faced harassment or discrimination in housing, at work, or in any public place, contact the Commission by filling out our online form or by calling 311 and asking for "human rights." Please visit: www.nyc.gov/cchr

CITY OPENS TESTING TO ALL NEW YORKERS AS TEST & TRACE CORPS OFFICIALLY LAUNCHES Read More

CITY OPENS TESTING TO ALL NEW YORKERS AS TEST & TRACE CORPS OFFICIALLY LAUNCHES 

Largest contact tracing effort of its kind anywhere in the country will help New York City re-open

 

NEW YORK—As the City launches its Test & Trace Corps initiative, Mayor de Blasio today announced universal COVID-19 testing for all New Yorkers. The Test & Trace Corps initiative, launched yesterday, will allow the City to safely separate and care for those who test positive for the virus, and then rapidly track, assess, and quarantine anyone they came into contact with and may have infected. 

“Widespread testing holds the key to re-opening our city safely” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “After months of fighting, we are finally able to say that every New Yorker who needs a test will get one. Now with Test & Trace now up and running, we will be able to care for those who test positive and give them the support they need to protect themselves and their loved ones.”

“A key step in stopping the spread of COVID-19 is quickly identifying new cases and anyone they’ve been in close contact with across the diversity of our populations—and that’s exactly what Test &Trace Corps intends to do,” said Executive Director of Test & Trace Corps Dr. Ted Long. “We are bringing together the best minds in public health, academia, and the private industry to design a program that will lower the risk for COVID-19 transmission in all of our hardest hit communities, and keep us on the path to prevent the spread of this virus.”

Test & Trace

Any New Yorker can now get tested at one of the over 150 testing sites citywide.  New Yorkers can visit nyc.gov/CovidTest or call 3-1-1 to find the sites nearest them. 

As of June 1st, 1,700 contact tracers have been deployed from neighborhoods across the city, with particular emphasis on those hardest hit by the virus, to manage, track, and recall contacts of confirmed COVID-positive cases. Community Engagement Specialists will spend time "in the field" to speak with those contacts who might have been exposed to the virus.  Case Investigators will support their efforts, and work remotely and focus their time on conducting calls to New Yorkers with a positive COVID test result.

Additionally, to ensure the Corps can meet the diverse needs of New Yorkers from all backgrounds, 40 distinct languages are spoken by tracers across the Corps.

Take Care

To help all New Yorkers safely separate at home or at a hotel, and monitor their health status, the Test & Trace Corps tracers will check-in with daily calls and conduct in-person visits as necessary. These calls and texts will allow the monitors to gauge the progress of patients, ensure proper compliance with separation protocol, and connect patients to more supportive services as necessary.

As a part of Take Care, Resource Navigators from 15 community-based organizations across the city will help New Yorkers overcome logistical issues they may encounter while safely separating in their homes or hotel, such as access to basic services like food, medical refills, and laundry. As of June 1st, 200 Resource Navigators started working in communities across the city, with the intention to expand the program and hire additional navigators in the following weeks.

For any person who is unable to safely separate in their own home, the City will offer "Take Care Hotels" free of charge. Any doctor, nurse, or physician's assistants across the city can email CommCareCP@nychhc.org to refer a patient to a room. If you don't have a doctor, any symptomatic New Yorker can call 844-692-4692, the City's COVID-19 hotline and ask for the COVID Hotel Program. Currently, 1,200 rooms are available, with the goal to expand the number of rooms to 3,000 by late summer.

 

New York State Liquor Authority Guidance on Outdoor Expansion of Licensed Premises in Response to COVID-19 Outbreak Read More

New York State Liquor Authority Guidance on Outdoor Expansion of Licensed Premises in Response to COVID-19 Outbreak

Effective Thursday, June 4, 2020

 

Pursuant to the Governor’s order, effective Thursday, June 4, 2020, all licensees in regions that have entered phase 2 of reopening and which have on-premises service privileges under the Alcoholic Beverage Control Law (ABC Law) may, subject to the guidance below, resume outdoor, on-premises service of alcoholic beverages and/or food.  

To aid in prevention of the spread of the coronavirus and assist businesses impacted by the current state of emergency, the Governor has ordered the Chairman of the State Liquor Authority (SLA) to promulgate guidance on a streamlined process for expansion of licensed premises for service of alcoholic beverages. This SLA Guidance shall continue until July 3, 2020 but may be extended or reduced depending upon the circumstances. 

 

The State Liquor Authority offers the following Guidance:

Outdoor Consumption in Phase 2:

  • Any consumption of food and/or beverage must happen in outdoor, open-air areas, without a fixed roof (besides a temporary or seasonal awning or cover).
  • Food and/or beverages can only be consumed while seated at a table, bar, counter, or similar contrivance.
  • All tables must be 6 feet apart; any seat at a bar, counter, or similar contrivance must be 6 feet apart.
  • All staff of the licensed business must wear face masks at all times.
  • All customers must wear face masks at any time they are not seated.
  • Any consumption shall be subject to all other relevant executive orders, guidance promulgated by the Department of Health, and/or any other relevant agency guidance.
  • It shall be part of the Licensee’s supervisory responsibilities under the Alcoholic Beverage Control Laws and Rules of the Authority to comply with this SLA Guidance and the Department of Health’s Interim Guidance for Outdoor Service; if unable to comply, it is the licensee’s obligation to discontinue outdoor service. 

Outdoor Expansion of Premises in Phase 2:

Section 99-d of the ABC Law, under normal conditions, governs the process for substantial alterations of a licensed premises.  Pursuant to this Guidance, however, a licensee may, for the duration that this Guidance remains in effect, use any contiguous outdoor, open-air part of its existing premises for which it has control by deed, lease, management agreement, or other agreement of control (e.g., a municipal sidewalk cafe permit).  Provided however that if a licensee’s existing license operates with stipulations restricting the use of outdoor areas, through a municipality or other entity, such licensee must submit a letter from such stipulating counter-party  approving such additional outdoor use of premises. 

Any licensee that expands its premises pursuant to the immediately foregoing paragraph shall, within 5 business days of doing, so submit an updated diagram to the SLA at temporaryalterations@sla.ny.gov - please include your license serial number in the subject line.  Failure to do so shall subject a licensee to disciplinary charges for illegal extension of premises. 

Licensees are permitted to move any currently licensed point of sale as long as they note such movement on the diagram they submit pursuant to this Guidance; adding an extra point of sale (more than currently licensed) is not permitted without having an approved application to the SLA for an additional bar license.

Should any municipality elect to make available to licensees any municipally owned lands (e.g. sidewalks, streets, etc.) which are beside, but not immediately adjacent to, the licensed premises for service of food and/or beverages (a “Municipal Extension”), and should such municipality want or expect the SLA to have jurisdiction over a licensee’s operations over such Municipal Extension, such municipality must submit to the SLA a plan for municipal outdoor dining areas on the following form and deliver to the SLA the written acceptance of responsibility for such Municipal Extension from each implicated licensee by also including the following form.  Service that occurs in a municipal dining area for which a municipality has not submitted a form and licensee written acceptance shall be outside the jurisdiction of the SLA. 

Licensees are not permitted to move points of sale onto municipal property, even with an approved Municipal Extension, under any circumstances.   

A reminder:  outside of this Guidance, the restrictions put in place by Executive Order 202.3 (as continued by subsequent executive orders) remain in effect; any licensed business found to be operating in violation of the Governor’s orders restricting on-premises service of alcoholic beverages, including the SLA Guidance with respect to take out and delivery service, shall face a monetary penalty (retail maximum of $10,000/manufacturer maximum of $100,000), and/or suspension, cancellation, or revocation of its license.

For additional detailed information, please visit the New York State Department of Health’s Interim Guidance for Outdoor Service

 

Q & A Regarding Outdoor Dining

OUTDOOR SERVICE BY LICENSEES

Q: I understand that food and/or drink cannot be consumed under a fixed roof, and that I can only serve in open-air areas or under an awning or other temporary structure. What constitutes a fixed roof for this purpose?

A: A fixed roof for these purposes is any overhead structure covering an outdoor seating area that would not reasonably be viewed as temporary.

Q: Can food and/drink be consumed while standing?

A: No, all consumption must be while seated at tables, bars, counters, or similar contrivances.

Q: Are these outdoor guidelines limited to restaurants? 

A: No, all licensed on-premises establishments (e.g. restaurants, bars, taverns, clubs, cafes, manufacturers with on-premises privileges, etc.) in Phase 2 regions may, subject to the guidance above, resume outdoor, on-premises service of alcoholic beverages and/or food.

Q: Can food and/or drink be consumed on a golf course?

A: Only as provided in the Guidance, e.g., outdoors, by patrons seated at tables, 6 feet apart, etc.

Q: Can a patron consume an alcoholic beverage on premises under this guidance without purchasing food?

A: Yes, as your on-premises service privileges require that you make food available, but do not require that food be purchased. 

Q: Can I conduct tastings?

A: A tasting is an on-premises service that must comply with all the rules in this Guidance and any other relevant guidance on food/drink service.

Q: Can I have live entertainment in my outdoor dining area?

A: No, concerts and other similar forms of live entertainment are not yet permitted.  Recorded music may be used in accordance with your SLA license conditions and any municipal ordinance.  Where in conflict, the municipal ordinance shall govern. 

Q: Where can I find DOH and other additional guidelines on reopening?

The DOH guidance on outdoor dining can be found here. Other relevant documents can be found, among other places, on the Governor’s New York Forward page here, and Empire State Development’s COVID resource page found here. 

LICENSEE EXPANSION OF PREMISES

Q: Should I file an alteration if I plan to use an expanded area permitted under this Guidance on more than a temporary basis?

A: Yes, you should file an alteration.  You may still use that area in accordance with this guideline while the alteration application is pending by sending a diagram of the expanded area within 5 days.

Q: If I am expanding with authorization of the municipality onto municipal property that is immediately adjacent to my premises (a sidewalk cafe), do I need to do anything?

A: Yes, you must within 5 days of beginning use of such area submit a diagram to the SLA incorporating this area into your licensed premises.

Q: If I am expanding on to municipal property that is beside, but not immediately adjacent to my premises, do I need to do anything?

A: Yes, you must contact your municipality regarding its filing of a Municipal Extension form before any expansion is permitted by the SLA.  You should also provide your municipality with the completed certification form required for municipal applications.

MUNICIPAL EXTENSIONS

Q: As a municipality, what must we submit to the SLA to create outdoor dining areas (Municipal Extensions) for alcoholic beverage consumption on municipal property (e.g., streets and sidewalks) which are beside, but not immediately adjacent to, an SLA licensed establishment?

A: The SLA wants this to be as streamlined as possible for businesses, municipalities, and the SLA.  We want businesses to be able to extend their footprint for food and beverage service quickly and safely and we want to work cooperatively with municipalities to address any related health and safety issues.  To that end, we’ve created a simple application process to create a partnership with municipalities creating outdoor dining areas on municipal property which requires only three items: (1) a supervision and control plan from the municipality, (2) a simple block plot diagram, and (3) a certification from the licensed businesses intending to operate on municipal property.   Review of Municipal Expansion forms will be prioritized and reviewed expeditiously. 

Q: As a municipality, can you tell us what you are looking for in the supervision and control plan we will be submitting to you?

A: Some best practices include: a description of how patron safety will be ensured and noise will be controlled (for example, through regular directed patrols by police and/or other municipal agencies and the erection of barriers between dining areas and vehicular traffic); proper delineation of areas provided for each licensee; consideration of hours permitted for outdoor operation; consideration of how and whether outdoor music will be permitted, etc.

Q: As a municipality, can we under our municipal extension plan make public lands available to a licensed on-premises business for alcoholic beverage service that are not in front of the licensed premises?

A: No, any area of expansion for alcoholic beverage service must be in front, behind, or to the side of the licensed premises and within its property boundaries as extended straight out and perpendicular to the street or sidewalk fronting the building.  A municipality may provide authorization to a licensee to use the public land immediately adjacent to the licensed premises (e.g. through a sidewalk cafe permit) without need to include such land in a municipal extension plan. However, any public land that a municipality authorizes a licensee to use that is not immediately adjacent (i.e., separated by a pedestrian thoroughfare), shall only be permitted by the SLA pursuant to a municipal extension plan.  Please note the only area which may intervene between the public space being made available and the property line of the licensed premises is a pedestrian thoroughfare. 

Q: As a municipality, what should the diagrams for our Municipal Extension area(s) look like?

A: A simple block plot diagram identifying the licensed establishments and the area(s) to which alcoholic beverage service would be extended for each licensed establishment will suffice.

Q: As a municipality, if we want to add more licensed businesses to our approved or pending Municipal Extension plan, what should we do?

A: You only need to submit the additional certification forms for those businesses, referencing the date the Municipal Extension plan was first submitted.

Q: My municipality has granted me a sidewalk/street permit in an area which is beside but not immediately adjacent to my licensed premises, do I need to do anything else if I want to serve alcoholic beverages in this area?

A: Your municipality must submit a Municipal Extension form for approval to the SLA, which should include the space it has provided to you (and any other licensee) along with your completed certification form. 

 

NYC HEALTH + HOSPITALS EASES RESTRICTIONS ON VISITORS AT ALL 11 HOSPITALS FOR FIRST TIME SINCE COVID-19 PEAK Read More

NYC HEALTH + HOSPITALS EASES RESTRICTIONS ON VISITORS 
AT ALL 11 HOSPITALS FOR FIRST TIME SINCE COVID-19 PEAK

 

Eased restrictions on visitors will begin on Wednesday, June 24, 2020

 

Visits at each of the hospitals will be limited to just 
one visitor at a time per patient for four hours a day

 

New York, NY (June 23, 2020) – NYC Health + Hospitals today announced that it will ease restrictions on visitations in all of its 11 hospitals for the first time since the COVID-19 peak, beginning on Wednesday, June 24, 2020. Visits at each of the hospitals will be limited to just one visitor at a time per patient for four hours a day. Patients in all departments of the hospitals will be allowed visitors. Visitors will be advised to perform meticulous hand hygiene, be required to wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), and undergo symptom and temperature checks upon entering the hospital. Restrictions on visitation were implemented during the COVID-19 surge across the State to reduce the transmission of the virus.

“Being able to safely ease visitation restrictions across our system is an exciting milestone during this unprecedented global public health crisis,” said NYC Health + Hospitals President and CEO Mitchell Katz, MD. “Limiting visitors at all during the surge was a difficult but necessary decision we all had to make to ensure the safety of our staff, patients, and their loved ones. We’re all looking forward to safely welcoming people back and providing patients the love and support they need to heal.”

“The no visitor restrictions during the COVID-19 surge was one of the most heartbreaking aspects of this pandemic,” said NYC Health + Hospitals Senior Vice President and Chief Quality Officer Eric Wei, MD, MBA. “We understand how the support of a loved one can help ease some of the anxieties common within hospitals. We’re looking forward to easing the restrictions on visitors and getting back to some normalcy in our hospitals.”

While visitation policies will vary slightly at each of the 11 hospitals a part of the City’s public health system, the following requirements will be consistent throughout in compliance with New York State requirements:

  • Visits are limited to no more than four hours per day per patient, unless otherwise dependent on the patient’s status and condition
  • Visitors are limited to one person at a time, unless otherwise authorized by the hospital, depending on the patient’s status and condition
  • Each facility will determine appropriate visiting hours
  • Total time for all visitors cannot exceed the four-hour maximum, unless otherwise authorized by the hospitals
  • Visitors will be required to wear face coverings at all times while inside the hospital
  • Visitors will be advised how to perform meticulous hand hygiene and must adhere to this procedure 
  • Visitors will undergo a COVID-19 symptom and temperature check upon arrival
  • Patients undergoing same-day procedures may be accompanied to the facility by a companion and that companion may remain with the patient through the initial intake process, and may rejoin the patient for the discharge process 
  • Visitors may not be present during procedures and in the recovery room except for pediatrics, childbirth, and patients with an intellectual, developmental, or other cognitive disability
  • Health care providers should thoroughly discuss the potential risks and benefits of the visitor’s presence with the visitor and, depending upon the patient’s condition, the patient
  • All visitors must be greater than 18 years of age except in rare exceptions as determined by the hospital

 

Separate from the new visitation policies, NYC Health + Hospitals facilities will continue to allow limited visitation to the following, maintaining compliance with previous State guidance:

  • Patients in labor, delivery, and the remainder of the patients’ admission
  • Pediatric patients
  • Patients for whom a support person has been determined to be essential to the care of the patient (medically necessary), including patients with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities and patients with cognitive impairments including dementia
  • Patients in immediate end-of-life situations

 

“While the health and safety of patients during this unprecedented pandemic is the highest importance, COVID-19 restrictions have been extremely difficult for families and loved ones,” said Council Member Adrienne Adams. “I am pleased that NYC Health + Hospitals has eased visitation restrictions as the curve flattens allowing patients to have the support and comfort of those closest to them during a hospital visit at their most vulnerable times. This milestone will resume the positive benefits visitation can have on a patient’s recovery.”

“As we begin to ease restrictions City-wide, today’s announcement of all 11 hospitals easing limitations on visitations is not only encouraging, but also critical to the emotional well-being of the patient as well has their loved ones,” said Council Member Diana Ayala. “During these difficult times, having direct comfort and love is crucial to the healing processes.  This indeed is wonderful and welcoming news.” 

“As a pastor and a mental health professional, I know full well the heartbreak of being unable to visit, comfort, and care for a loved one who is hospitalized for COVID-19,” said Council Member Fernando Cabrera.  “The restrictions in our hospitals were absolutely necessary to stop the community spread of the virus, and the work of our frontline hospital workers has been heroic. These efforts have saved lives and paved the way to move forward with necessary precautions.  This is a major breakthrough and will ease the sadness and anxiety of those hospitalized, their loved ones, and hospital workers who daily put their hearts into their work.”

“Safely opening visitation, in a way that protects patients, visitors, and staff, is precisely the conscientious approach we need,” said Council Member Robert E. Cornegy, Jr. This thoughtful easing of restrictions on visitation will come as a welcome relief to patients and their loved ones.”

 

“COVID-19 has robbed New York City families of too many heartfelt moments with loved ones,” said Council Member Ben Kallos. “I am filled with hope that we will eradicate this virus as we see that we have made enough progress to allow for visitors at our City hospitals. Not only will this improve morale in this City, but it might even save some lives as patients are cheered up by visitors. Thank you to NYC Health + Hospitals President and CEO Mitchell Katz, MD for doing the work to make this possible at this stage of the fight against Covid-19.”

“As the number of COVID-19 cases are greatly decreasing, I am happy to hear that NYC Health + Hospitals will begin the process of allowing visitation,” said Council Member Andy King. “It was a devastating time in NYC as COVID-19 took the lives of so many who were unable to be with their loved ones, but these precautions were necessary to keep NYC safe. As New York City reopens and hospital visitation begins, we must continue to respect the rules and regulations put in place to keep patients, hospital staff, and visitors safe, as well as keeping COVID-19 numbers low.” 

In May, NYC Health + Hospitals/Jacobi, North Central Bronx and Coney Island were among 20 hospitals across New York that participated in the NYS Department of Health’s COVID-19 Pilot Hospital Visitation Program, intended to reduce the stress and anxiety caused by the separation of patients and their loved ones during a hospitalization. The two-week pilot was designed to prevent the spread of Covid-19 and ensure a safe environment for patients, families, visitors and health care workers, while permitting expanded, but still limited, visitation.

Virtual tools helped NYC Health + Hospitals mitigate the emotional toll of being isolated in the hospital during the COVID-19 pandemic. Using over 1,000 donated tablets, patients who were unable to receive visitors due to strict but necessary restrictions, were able to connect with their loved ones through a newly implemented patient-family community program. NYC Health + Hospitals helped facilitate over 500 video calls a day to connect patients and their loved ones.

NYC Health + Hospitals has re-engineered patient care areas across its systemto provide safe care to everyone after the COVID-19 surge, and has recently increased in-person care visits. The system is urging all New Yorkers to seek the care they need and deserve without delaying it.

To make an appointment or find a doctor, please call 844-NYC-4NYC. For more information on how NYC Health + Hospitals is ensuring patient safety during care appointments, visit this site.