While New York on Pause has been extended to May 28, we remain committed to providing information, resources and guidance to ensure that all New Yorkers, regardless of immigration status and especially those living in heavily impacted areas, have access to quality care including testing for COVID-19 and critical city services.
Included in this summary are:
- Important Messages from Mayor de Blasio and Commissioner Bitta Mostofi
- Updates from the NYC Department of Education
- Recap of Recent Community and Ethnic Media Roundtables
- Virtual Events this Week
- Additional Resources and Multilingual Materials
Important Messages from Mayor de Blasio and Commissioner Bitta Mostofi
Pediatric Multi-System Inflammatory Syndrome (PMIS) Update
- NYC families: if your child has a persistent fever, rash, abdominal pain, vomiting or other symptoms, call your doctor immediately. If you don’t have a doctor, call 311.
- 137 cases of multi-system inflammatory syndrome have been detected in children in NYC hospitals.
o 66 tested positive for COVID-19 or antibodies
o 1 fatality reported
Antibody Testing Update
- 140,000 free antibody tests are now available for New Yorkers by appointment.
- Five sites have been selected to perform these tests:
o Bronx: Morrisania - 4006 Third Avenue
o Brooklyn: East NY - NYPD Community Center, 127 Pennsylvania Avenue
o Manhattan: Upper Manhattan - Manhattanville Health Center, 21 Old Broadway
o Staten Island: Concord - St. John’s Villa Academy, 57 Cleveland Place
o Queens: Long Island City - 34-09 Queens Boulevard
- Hours of operation: Monday to Friday, 12 to 8 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday: 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.
- You can make an appointment through nyc.gov/antibodysurvey or by calling 888-279-0967.
Expanded COVID-19 Testing
- New Yorkers will now be eligible to receive a COVID-19 test if they have:
o COVID-19 symptoms, regardless of age, chronic conditions or occupation
o Come in close contact with a confirmed COVID-19 patient, regardless of symptoms
o Work in a congregate residential setting (nursing home, shelter, or adult care facility), regardless of symptoms
o Visit nyc.gov/covidtest to find a community testing site near you.
- The City will double its testing capacity at NYC Health + Hospitals and will open 12 new testing sites by May 25. Read the press release.
o Beginning the week of May 18, 2 new COVID-19 testing sites will be open:
§ Manhattan: Washington Heights
§ Brooklyn: Midwood
o Beginning the week of May 25, 10 new COVID-19 testing sites will be also be open:
§ Manhattan: East Harlem
§ Brooklyn: Sunset Park, Bay Ridge, Canarsie
§ Bronx: Fordham Manor, Melrose
§ Staten Island: Prince’s Bay, Concord, Port Richmond
§ Queens: Woodside
- All CityMD sites will offer tests 7 days a week.
o 123 sites across all 5 boroughs
o Walk-ins welcome
o No cost for the uninsured
o Find locations at citymd.com
Urgent: Blood Donations Needed
- New Yorkers can help others during the COVID-19 crisis by donating blood.
- There is a shortage of blood and blood donations are desperately needed.
- Make an appointment with New York Blood Center to donate your blood at nybc.org/donate-blood or call 800-933-2566.
Job Opportunity: NYC Health + Hospitals is Hiring Contact Tracers
- NYC Health + Hospitals is quickly hiring thousands of contact tracers to: conduct telephone calls with people diagnosed with COVID-19 to complete case interviews, elicit and trace contacts exposed to COVID-19, and connect people to resources to help them recover and effectively isolate, whether that is at home or in a hotel.
- It is crucial that these positions are filled by people who represent the communities most affected by COVID-19.
- Job information can be viewed at nychealthandhospitals.org/careers.
- The first class of prospective tracers are already being trained and 100 tracers will start the week of May 24.
Resource Navigators to be Deployed in Communities
- The Test & Trace Corps is deploying 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, phones, toiletries, and mental health resources.
- Local organizations in every borough are overseeing the hiring of 200 to 300 Resource Navigators in communities.
Update on NYC COVID-19 Hotel Program
- Free hotel stays are available for all eligible New Yorkers, regardless of immigration status, who cannot isolate where they live and frontline workers in the healthcare industry who wish to reduce the risk of transmission at home.
- Healthcare providers enrolled by the New York City Health Department can book eligible patients for a hotel stay so that their patients can recover from COVID-19 while isolating from members of their household.
- View the list of enrolled health providers at nyc.gov/covid19hotels
Health Insurance for Public Servants’ Families
- At the request of the Municipal Labor Committee, the City is extending health insurance for surviving family members of municipal employees for 45 days.
o At least 260 public servants have lost their lives fighting COVID-19.
o The City is also fighting for benefits for the families in the next stimulus bill.
NYC Beaches will NOT Open for Memorial Day
- NYC beaches will remain closed to swimming over Memorial Day weekend.
o Walking on beaches will be permitted.
o Parks staff and NYPD will be increasing patrols.
- City will add fencing on beaches to control entry points.
o Access will be further restricted if social distancing or no-swim rules are not observed.
- A decision about opening NYC beaches later in the summer will rely on further reduction of COVID-19 and resumption of non-essential activity and travel.
o Parks staff are training lifeguards to ensure staffing if and when beaches reopen safely.
New Heat Wave Plan
- The City seeks to keep vulnerable New Yorkers cool and safe at home.
o $55M to purchase over 74,000 air conditioners, including all low-income seniors and NYCHA residents.
o Air conditioner installations will start next week.
o The program received $20M from NYSERDA.
o The City is petitioning the Public Service Commission to double the regular subsidies provided to cover summer utility bills, and requesting that New York State allocate its share of national energy assistance from the federal CARES Act for summer relief.
- The City will create safer summer cooling options.
o The City is creating cooling centers in high-risk and heavily impacted communities and creating non-traditional cooling centers in sites like sports venues and auditoriums.
o Parks will have misting “oases” in seating areas and spray showers for children in low-income neighborhoods.
o The NYC Department of Environmental Protection will also create scheduled hydrant openings.
o GetFood will deliver hydrating beverages.
Expanding Social Distancing Education
- The City has deployed 2,260 civilian Social Distancing Ambassadors and Supervisors.
- The City is working to increase face covering distribution in consultation with local officials and community partners with increased education and outreach.
- The City will continue distributing face coverings in parks, Department of Education Grab & Go meal sites, NYCHA buildings, some Mitchell-Lama buildings, and grocery stores during social distancing enforcement.
- All front line staff, including NYPD, will continue to wear face coverings when in contact with public
- NYPD will enforce the ban on non-essential gatherings, prioritizing dispersing groups of over six adults.
- NYPD will not take enforcement action against those who fail to wear a face covering, unless the situation creates serious danger to the public.
Update on Open Streets
- The City will open 12 more miles of streets and an additional 9 new miles of temporary protected bike lanes to pedestrians and cyclists.
- The new Open Streets and bike lanes bring the City's total to 30 miles of streets since the program was announced on April 27.
- Nearly 8 miles of the new open streets will be placed in neighborhoods in every borough and managed by local precincts; 1.35 miles, in three boroughs, will be managed by Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) and community organizations; and another 2.83 miles will be adjacent to parks.
- The 9 new miles of bike corridors will be phased in over several weeks using barrels, signage, and other barriers, with a goal of creating critical connectors from already-established protected lanes.
- Read the press release.
Alternate Side Parking Remains Suspended
- Alternate Side Parking will remain suspended until May 17. It will resume from May 18 to 24, and then it will be suspended for two weeks until June 7.
Food for Heroes Expansion
- The Food For Heroes program will be expanded to bring daily meals to an additional 2,000 healthcare workers and essential staff in New York City.
- The expansion will bring at least 166,200 meals to healthcare professionals and other essential workers across the city. The Mayor’s Fund is continuing its campaign to secure funding for additional meals sites.
- To learn more or donate, visit nyc.gov/fund.
- Read the press release.
Updates from the NYC Department of Education (DOE)
Pre-K Offers Mailed This Week
- Pre-K offers are being mailed this week. Seats are still available. To apply, go to: www.myschools.nyc or call 718-935-2009.
New Family Welcome Centers
- Family Welcome Centers are prepared to assist remotely with enrollment and placement of new admissions, questions around admissions, information about offers, and waitlists.
- Reach out via email to connect with someone in your borough who can assist you remotely:
o Bronx: email@example.com
o Brooklyn: firstname.lastname@example.org
o Manhattan: email@example.com
o Queens: firstname.lastname@example.org
o Staten Island: StatenIsland@schools.nyc.gov
Recap of Recent Community and Ethnic Media Virtual Roundtables
Funeral Rites and Burial Assistance
- On May 14, Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs Commissioner Bitta Mostofi, Department of Social Services Commissioner Steve Banks, Community Affairs Unit Commissioner Marco Carrión, and Office of the Chief Medical Examiner Executive Deputy Commissioner Dina Manioti held a Community and Ethnic Media virtual roundtable on funeral rites and burial assistance.
- Key Takeaways
o All New Yorkers, regardless of immigration status, deserve to celebrate, honor, and memorialize their loved ones.
o In order to ensure that those we’ve lost are treated with the dignity and respect they deserve, the City signed an emergency rule to expand the number of low-income people who can receive burial assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic. The assistance is available to everyone, regardless of immigration status, with proof of low-income status. For more information, visit the Help Now NYC website, call 929-252-7731, or email BurialServices@hra.nyc.gov for application assistance.
o Funeral directors and/or religious leaders can provide recommendations on how to safely honor a loved one. If washing or dressing the body are important religious or cultural practices, you should work with your community, cultural and religious leaders, and funeral home staff to reduce any potential risk of infection. This includes wearing protective equipment, such as gloves, and social distancing, staying six feet away from others.
o Funeral directors have received guidance from their associations and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) on transporting remains of a COVID-positive individual to their home countries. Each country has their own requirements and funeral directors should contact the specific consulates for further guidance.
o The NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) has published important information for New Yorkers who have lost loved ones. Download DCWP’s Funeral Planning During COVID-19 Tips.
Emergency Food Assistance
- On May 11, Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs Commissioner Bitta Mostofi, COVID-19 Food Czar Commissioner Kathryn Garcia, and Human Resources Administration First Deputy Commissioner Gary Jenkins held a Community and Ethnic Media virtual roundtable on emergency food assistance.
- Key Takeaways
o All New Yorkers can access the food they need by picking up grab-and-go meals at NYC Schools, by visiting a food pantry, or by signing up for food delivery assistance. Go to nyc.gov/getfood to sign up or to find an emergency food location near you.
o Visiting a food pantry, picking up a grab-and-go meal, or receiving food delivery assistance will not impact your ability to apply for a green card. If you have questions about how accessing certain public benefits may affect immigration status, call the free, confidential ActionNYC hotline at 1-800-354-0365 for information and connections to legal help.
o Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, or food stamps, help people with limited income buy food. Online application and renewal for SNAP benefits can be done via ACCESS HRA at nyc.gov/accesshra.
o The GetFood Delivery Assistance Program is seeking nonprofit providers for meal preparation with a focus on culturally sensitive meals and ethnic foods, to staff and serve as distribution sites, and to facilitate home meal delivery. Go to nyc.gov/nonprofits for more information.
Virtual Events This Week
- United We Stand: Monday, May 18 from 4-5:30 p.m.
o Mayor de Blasio will join Rep. Grace Meng and a list of celebrities for the anti-bullying organization Act to Change’s 2nd Annual Asian American and Pacific Islander Day Against Bullying + Hate.
o The virtual event aims to combat racism targeting Asian Americans with reports of a rise in violence and discrimination against Asian Americans during the COVID-19 crisis.
o Register to join the #DayAgainstBullying at acttochange.org/dayagainstbullying.
- Make the Road New York’s Virtual Town Hall for Latino Communities: Tuesday, May 19 from 6-7:30 p.m.
o Commissioner Bitta Mostofi will join Make the Road New York, the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Commission on Human Rights, and Department of Consumer and Worker Protection to discuss protections for workers during the COVID-19 crisis.
o The virtual event will be livestreamed on Facebook in Spanish: facebook.com/MaketheRoadNY.
Additional Resources and Multilingual Materials
New Multilingual Poster from the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
New COVID-19 Resources by Neighborhood
- The NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene has created a comprehensive resource guide.
o Includes resources currently available in specific communities, listed by zip code.
o Some resources are available for in-person services, while others offer remote and delivery options.
NYC LGBTQ+ COVID-19 Guide
- On May 12, the NYC Unity Project in the NYC Mayor’s Office, in partnership with representatives from 15 city agencies and over 200 LGBTQ+ community partners across NYC, launched the NYC LGBTQ+ COVID-19 Guide: nyc.gov/lgbtqcovid
- LGBTQ+ affirming programs and services—both city and private/non-profit resources— still available during the COVID-19 pandemic include: mental health, physical health and wellness, and sexual health services; peer and community support; food assistance; legal services; housing and shelter; and financial/funding opportunities.
- Share about the resource guide on social media.
TLC Resource Center
- On May 12, the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) launched its Driver Resource Center: portal.driverresourcecenter.tlc.nyc.gov
- All TLC-licensed drivers and medallion owner-drivers can access legal services, financial counseling, health and mental health referrals, driver protection services, and public benefits application support.
o Medallion owner-drivers can work with a legal professional to review loan agreements, renegotiate relevant financing agreements, challenge debt collections or judgments and much more.
o Drivers can schedule a free, one-on-one appointment over the phone with a financial counselor to manage money and create a spending plan, develop a strategy to minimize debt, draft letters to creditors to lower payments or temporarily suspend payments due to hardship, keep personal and business finances separate, and access local, state and federal emergency resources, an.
o Licensees can receive assistance signing up for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Cash Assistance, and Medicaid renewal applications.
o The Center will provide referrals to mental health programming and help licensees sign up for health insurance.
Resources for Businesses and Nonprofits
NYC Pet Hotline for Animals of People Affected by COVID-19
- NYC residents who need support for their pets during the COVID-19 pandemic, can call 877-204-8821, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.
- The Pet Hotline, launched by the New York City Emergency Management Department and the Mayor’s Office of Animal Welfare, serves as an information, planning, referral and service coordination hub for NYC residents who need support for their pets during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- View the press release for more information.
Free Tax Support
- Eligible New Yorkers can use NYC Free Tax Prep services available at nyc.gov/taxprep.
- The tax filing deadline for 2019 tax returns is July 15, 2020.
DACA Renewal Assistance
- If the Supreme Court ends DACA, it would put approximately 29,000 healthcare practitioners nationwide—who are also DACA recipients—at risk of deportation, when hospital systems need them most.
- If you’re a DACA recipient, financial cost, especially at this time, should not stand in the way of your ability to secure your right to work and stay right where you belong.
- Need help renewing your DACA status in NYC? Call ActionNYC at 1-800-354-0365. Support may also be available for the application fee.
- Share the resource on social media.
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