Hudson Valley and Catskills, NY…Senator Jen Metzger (SD-42) will host a COVID-19 online series featuring local experts knowledgeable on selected topics important to Hudson Valley and Catskill communities. Half-hour-long digital episodes will be livestreamed on Senator Metzger’s Facebook page twice-weekly on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 5:00 PM for the next four consecutive weeks, and will include a Q&A with participating viewers facilitated by the Senator. The series kicks off on Tuesday, April 28, with guest Kenneth Steier, Executive Dean of Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine.
“A wide range of important topics and issues have come up in my conversations with constituents during this public health crisis that really merit a deeper dive,” said Senator Metzger. “This online conversation series is a great opportunity for our residents to hear from experts in our region and get useful guidance during this challenging time."
The first digital episode in Metzger’s “Community Conversations” series, featuring Kenneth Steier, Executive Dean of Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine, will address the most urgent medical questions in the region, including fact-based information about COVID-19’s spread and local medical experts’ projected timeline of antibody testing and a vaccine reaching communities in the Hudson Valley and Catskills. The Facebook livestream will take place on Tuesday, April 28, from 5:00 PM to 5:30 PM.
A full list of topics and guests for the first four weeks of the series are as follows:
- Tuesday, April 28: Regional Medical Overview
- Guest: Kenneth Steier, Executive Dean of Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine
- Thursday, April 30: Food Insecurity and How to Help
- Guests: Michele McKeon, Regional Economic Community Action Program (RECAP) and Shelly Bartow, Delaware Opportunities, Inc.
- Tuesday, May 5: Domestic Violence during COVID-19
- Guests: Kellyann Kostyal-Larrier, Fearless! Hudson Valley, Inc.
- Thursday, May 7: Education Resources for Students, Teachers, and Families
- Guests: A high school teacher and elementary special education teacher from Sullivan County
- Tuesday, May 12: COVID-19 Mental Health Awareness
- Guests: Amy Nitza and Karla Vermeule, The Institute for Disaster Mental Health at SUNY New Paltz
- Thursday, May 14: Paying Your Bills and Preventing Shut-Offs
- Guests: Laurie Wheelock, Esq., the Public Utility Law Project
- Tuesday, May 19: Preventing Senior Scams and Sharing Legal Resources
- Guests: Jaime Samarel and Jenny Turpin, Legal Services of the Hudson Valley
- Thursday, May 21: The Food Supply Chain and NY Agriculture
- Guest: Maire Ullrich, Cornell University Cooperative Extension Orange County
WEEK FIVE (now featuring one episode per week)
- Thursday, May 28: Best Practice for Reopening Your Business
WEEK SIX (now featuring one episode per week)
- Thursday, June 4: Mitigating Opioid and Substance Use During COVID-19
- Guests: John Ewanciw, City of Middletown Police Chief, Juan Figueroa, Ulster County Sheriff, and Dean Scher, CEO of Catholic Charities of Orange, Sullivan, and Ulster.
WEEK SEVEN (now featuring one episode per week)
- Thursday, June 11: Tackling Food Insecurity through Community Innovation
WEEK EIGHT (now featuring one episode per week)
- Thursday, June 18: Our Local EMS System Amid COVID-19
WEEK NINE: (now featuring one episode per week)
- Thursday, June 25: Veterans Resources During COVID and Beyond
After week nine, additional topical events in the series will be announced as New York State continues to grapple with the novel coronavirus global pandemic.