Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates May 13th



The State is now investigating 102 reported cases in New York where children, of a range of ages, are experiencing a serious illness that is possibly due to COVID-19. More details, including the symptoms to watch out for, are here.

Small Business Leadership: The Mayor announced that Greg Bishop has been named Senior Advisor for Small Business on the COVID-19 Recovery Task Force and Jonnel Doris has been appointed as the new Commissioner of Small Business Services.

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.

To see the Regional Monitoring Dashboard, click here.

To review New York Forward, A Guide to Re-Opening New York & Building Back Better, click here.

In addition to testing sites around the City, there are also walk-in urgent care centers providing testing for those willing to pay a copay. A location search tool from Northwell Health can be found here, and one from CityMD can be found here.

The Supreme Court is currently hearing oral arguments virtually, and allowing people to listen live-- a new experience for them, and us. Perhaps that’s why their website doesn’t have a “listen live” link. But has a live feed(and broadcasts it on cable when Congress is not in session) as well as a link to a liveblog. May 13 starting at 10 am, the cases to be heard center on whether members of the Electoral College can be fined or otherwise penalized for voting for any candidate other than that chosen by their state.

An update on the GetFoodNYC program. Seniors can now request meal delivery via their local senior centers (find the nearest one by calling 311) or by emailing Borough President Gale Brewer’s office at [email protected]. Borough President Brewer is  working with LiveOn New York to help enroll seniors directly in the meal delivery program. Seniors are receiving nine meals with each delivery, every three days. The GetFood team is now working with nutritionists to ensure vendors making the meals limit salt, sugar and meet guidelines for proteins, grains, vegetables and fruit (and Kosher and Halal meals are still options). Thank you to the GetFood team for continuing to work to get it right.

Community Board 8 does not want anyone to go hungry or suffer from food insecurity. To read A Neighborhood Guide to Food & Assistance, offering  information (including Food for Kids, Senior Meals and how to apply for SNAP) and  resources, including soup kitchens and food pantries, click here.

Community Board wants to be sure that everyone in our area has enough food during this crisis. If you know of food shortages in the CB8 area, from 59-96 Street, from Fifth Avenue to the East River and Roosevelt Island, please contact [email protected] with an email titled "Food Shortage".

Community Board wants to be sure that food banks in our community have enough food to distribute and a means of distribution. If you know of food banks in the CB8 area, from 59-96 Street, from Fifth Avenue to the East River and Roosevelt Island, please contact [email protected] with an email titled "UES Food Bank".

Our Town reports that a network of trauma therapists is now offering their services pro bono to help health care workers and first responders who have been deeply impacted through their work in the fight against COVID-19. The New York City Trauma Recovery Network will be conducting EMDR therapy — widely recognized as an effective and efficient treatment for trauma and PTSD — via telehealth for medical staff and first responders.  Those who are interested will receive six to ten psychotherapy sessions and can sign up by clicking here. Sessions can also be conducted in Spanish, German and other languages.

The New York City Taxi Limousine Commission (TLC) launched its online Driver Resource Center today, offering a wide range of services, including financial, legal and health and mental health, to TLC-licensed drivers and medallion owners to offer support during the coronavirus crisis.

The 9/11 Memorial & Museum has released online resources for schools, including lesson plans and their “Dear Hero” campaign to thank those on the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis.

The New York Times reports that the Broadway League has officially cancelled performances through Labor Day, and it is unsure when they might reopen.

For budding filmmakers, and anyone creative, Friday May 15 is the deadline to submit a video for the State Department of Health’s “Wear a Mask PSA Contest”participants should post videos that are under 30 seconds long, show a mask worn properly over the mouth and nose, and demonstrate to New Yorkers why it’s so important to wear a mask in public. To enter, post your video with the hashtag #NewYorkTough and tag @nygovcuomo on Twitter and Instagram, or @GovernorAndrewCuomo on Facebook. The winning video will actually air as a public service announcement.

The New York Times published an op-ed piece on how to reimagine urban public spaces as a result of this crisis.

Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio have named many advisory bodies composed of stakeholders and experts working to determine best practices as we adapt to a “new normal.” There are, literally, hundreds of names, so Manhatan Borough President Gale Brewer made an all-in-one blog post listing the composition of every advisory body she's heard of on her office website here.

Tomorrow (5/14) at 7 pm, the Theater for the New City presents a live reading of Alberto Ferreras’s “Hamlet in Harlem.” Stream live on the Theater’s YouTube and their website.

Tomorrow (5/14) at 7 pm, Cabrini Immigrant Services of NYC and Los Herederos are hosting a virtual dance party to raise funds for immigrant families affected by COVID-19. Learn more and register here.

The Queens Public Library is documenting stories of New York City residents during Coronavirus. Through the Queens Memory COVID-19 Project, the library aims to create a historical record of how New Yorkers are experiencing this pandemic.


THE CITY is asking folks who know any New York City residents who have died of COVID-19 to fill out a simple form to tell them about the lives of those we’ve lost. Their goal is to put as many names, faces and details to the numbers as possible. You’ll find more here — including the form.

The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health launched a free online course to train contact tracers. This course is part of New York's large-scale effort to build an army of contact tracers. The course will be required for anyone wanted to become a contact tracer. If you are interested in becoming part of New York's contract tracing efforts, learn more here.

New York City Service is looking for volunteers to help those affected by COVID-19, click here.

New York State has provided a form for the donation of goods, services, or space. To access the form, click here.

The dedicated staff at the Stanley Isaacs Center, 415 E. 93 St., needs help supporting their older adult clients through meals and case management services. Interested in volunteering? Contact [email protected]

Donate blood. Blood is urgently needed. Please go to to make an appointment (walk-ins) are no longer allowed and for more information.

Donate to the First Responders Fund. The fund will assist COVID-19 healthcare workers and first responders with expenses and costs, including child care. Donations can be made electronically at or by check, mailed to "Health Research, Inc., 150 Broadway, Suite 560, Menands, NY 12204." (For checks, the donor should specify the donation is for "COVID-19 NYS Emergency Response.")

Complete your Census form.  Census responses can't be used for any purpose other than tallying up population-- it's the law. And no enumerators will be knocking on doors today. So, please, if you haven't yet done so, take the time to fill in your form at  New York City’s response rate is 10% behind the overall U.S. rate. We need every dollar and every Congressional seat. These depend on the census count. Please complete your form.


US Department of the Treasury released new guidance and FAQs for the SBA's Paycheck Protection Program. This information is important for those who have already applied and received a PPP loan, as well as those currently applying. The CARES Act legislation continues to be interpreted by the federal agencies, and more guidance is expected soon. To download the new FAQs, please click here.

FedEx is providing grants of $1,000,000 to small businesses. Each grant recipient will receive $5000 plus a $500 credit from FedEx that could be used for printing banners, custom boxes, or other uses. Applications may be submitted beginning May 25, For more information, click here.

Some stores have issued protocols for re-opening. For examples, see Tory Burch’s Let’s Come Together SafelyTom Ford’s, and Nordstrom’s.

FedEx has created templates for in-store signage using templates provided by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) (click here to view).

COVID-19 Small Business Remote Legal Clinic: Through its Neighborhood Entrepreneur Law Project (NELP), the City Bar Justice Center (CBJC)'s COVID-19 Small Business Remote Legal Clinic (the CV-19 Clinic) will offer pro bono legal consultations to help entrepreneurs in New York City determine the best path forward for their small businesses in these particularly challenging times. New York City's entrepreneurs and small businesses who have been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis can receive free, limited-scope legal advice. Topics include: loans & grants, contracts & force majeure clauses, employment law matters, real estate and commercial leasing issues, and insurance matters. You can request an appointment by clicking here.

Both the City and State are hiring employees and supervisors for contact tracing: reaching out to the contacts of those diagnosed with COVID-19 to track the spread. Learn more here for the City (three types of contract tracer jobs along with many non-tracing jobs listed), and here for the State (contact tracersteam supervisors, and community support specialists).

DSS/HRA has issued an emergency rule increasing the burial allowance from $900 to $1,700, and also extended the timeframe for when you can apply to 120 days from the date of the individual‘s death.

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

Jobs: Temporary opportunities are available by clicking here.

250 of the jobs for NYCHA residents listed on have yet to be filled. These positions are for temporary per diem workers to assist with general maintenance at NYCHA properties. Per diem income will not have an impact on your rent. Apply here.

The New York State Department of Labor (DOL) has launched a new, streamlined application for New Yorkers to apply for COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Assistance without first needing to apply for Unemployment Insurance. Prior to today, New Yorkers were required to apply for regular Unemployment Insurance and be rejected before applying for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. This new application, which aligns with updated federal policy, allows New Yorkers to simply fill out one form to get the correct benefits without requiring applicants to call the DOL. The agency has installed more than 3,100 representatives solely dedicated to answering unemployment benefit needs seven days a week. The DOL previously had 400 representatives in the call center. The DOL has paid out $2.2 billion in unemployment benefits to 1.1 million New Yorkers so far. The new form is available here.

The City is hiring 1,000 Contact Tracers. People with experience in the healthcare field are preferred. Contact tracers will interview people who are positive, identify others who may have been exposed, and follow-up with those people in turn to be tested. Hiring will be done through the Fund for Public Health. If you're interested, please visit for more information, or email [email protected].

NYC Health and Hospitals is hiring for several positions - patient transportation, clerical and cleaning staff. You can apply today at


Senator Liz Krueger is holding a Virtual Town Hall on Thursday, May 14th from 7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m., join Senator Krueger and Dr. Charles Platkin, Executive Director, Hunter College NYC Food Policy Center and Editor of for a Virtual Town Hall discussion. Dr. Platkin will present on Food Safety and Security during the COVID-19 pandemic. He will provide information about how to handle the food you buy at the supermarket and the meals you order for delivery. He will also discuss healthy eating and examine broader systemic issues about food supply in New York and across the country. To register and submit questions in advance, please follow this link:

Coronavirus (COVID-19) FAQs & Resources

To get regular updates on the latest developments with coronavirus in New York City text COVID to 692-692. You will receive regular SMS texts with the latest news and developments. Please check for the latest updates

If you are experiencing stress or feel anxious, contact NYC Well at 888-NYC-WELL (888-692- 9355) or text WELL to 65173. NYC Well is a confidential help line that is staffed 24/7 by trained counselors who can provide brief supportive therapy, crisis counseling, and connections to behavioral health treatment, in more than 200 languages.

Additional resources:


U.S. Census Bureau has made some necessary changes to help keep residents safe while still working to ensure a complete census count. This includes extending the national deadline for the count from July 31 to August 14 and postponing all door-to-door outreach campaigns until May. With the majority of our businesses and libraries closed across the state, this gives local communities more time to adjust their outreach plans and helps prevent our state from being put at an unfair disadvantage.

Fill out your Census at OR by phone in these languages: