More than 50 Participants Join Harckham for Virtual “Coffee and Conversation” Gathering

State Sen. Pete Harckham

South Salem, NY – New York State Senator Pete Harckham hosted another virtual “Coffee and Conversation” gathering today on a video conferencing website, which provided the more than 50 participants an opportunity to ask questions and share ideas and opinions on a wide range of subjects.

Harckham held his first virtual “Coffee and Conversation” event on April 25, 2020.

“I appreciate the range of topics and concerns that people bring up during our ‘Coffee and Conversation’ gatherings,” said Harckham. “The events are also important opportunities to impart helpful information and just keep lines of communications open. With ‘stay in place’ ordered to stop the spread of the coronavirus, having a chance to share what others are thinking is another good way to maintain a sense of community.”

Harckham has been hosting his monthly “Coffee and Conversation” gatherings since taking office in January 2019. As usual, he began the virtual event, which took place on Zoom, with an update on work in the State Senate. He also reported on making sure residents’ unemployment insurance claims were processed properly; updated everyone on the upcoming Indian Point closing and making sure impacted communities and workers were protected; and spoke on his support for more funding of behavioral health and Substance Use Disorder treatment programs.

The topics brought up by the “Coffee and Conversation” participants included re-opening the state for business; parks usage and public library access; special education needs while buildings are still locked down; and staff testing at nursing homes. A volunteer firefighter asked how the state is preparing for a second possible wave of Covid-19; and health care official wondered how elderly residents were faring with telehealth technology.

New York State Assembly members Sandy Galef and Thomas J. Abinanti joined the participants in the event and spoke about their work as well.

A full video of the “Coffee and Conversation” gathering can be found on Harckham’ Facebook page ( or at