Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates June 17th



At his press conference earlier today, the Governor announced that, barring any changes in the public health metrics of the region, Phase 2 in New York City is is on track to begin this coming Monday, June 22.

Noted the Governor: "New York City will have been Phase 1 for 14 days. Look at all the numbers, all the numbers are good. Look at the number of tests, the positive tests, you look at it from the point of reopening, the numbers are good. Hospitalizations since reopening, the numbers are good, so New York City is on track to enter Phase 2 on Monday."

"Employers, storeowners, employees, individuals, local governments have to be responsible and do their job."

To read more about the Governor's announcement, please click here and here.

As a caveat, as reported in The New York Times (click here for link), "both [Governor Cuomo] and Mayor de Blasio also left open the possibility that the city would delay reopening if test results in the coming days showed a new spike in cases.

For New York State Guidance/Rules for Phase 2 reopening, including for retail, barber shops & salons, offices, outdoors & takeout/delivery food service, please click here.

Governor Cuomo has signed an Executive Order recognizing Juneteenth as a holiday for State employees, and pledged to advance legislation to make it an official state holiday next year. Juneteenth commemorates June 19, 1865 and observes the end of slavery in the United States. It marks the day when people in Galveston, Texas- one of the deepest and most remote parts of the Confederacy- got news that all enslaved people had been freed. It's important to note that the Emancipation Proclamation had become official almost two and a half years earlier on January 1, 1863.

The state is extending the special enrollment period for an additional 30 days through July 15, 2020. New Yorkers without health insurance can apply for a health plan through the NY State of Health Marketplace.

Hospitals and group homes will be allowed to accept visitors at their discretion. Any facility that chooses to allow visitors must follow state guidelines, including time-limited visits and requiring visitors to wear PPE and be subject to symptom and temperature checks. Details here.

From Borough President Gale Brewer’s office. Next week, eviction proceedings will again be permitted -- but only against tenants who are not in arrears because of COVID-19 factors. But since Housing Court will operate with just 20% of non-judicial staff, and buildings will be subject to severe occupancy restrictions, parties should expect things to move very, very slowly. No trials or defaults will be taken until further notice.

Tenants should “answer” cases by phone; those who show up in person will be encouraged to return home and do so. The court will put stickers with the numbers to call on the postcards sent by the court clerks to tenants with eviction actions. Once answered, court dates will be set for after Phase II reopening. These are called “adjournments” and will be set longer than usual to allow tenants time to obtain all the legal advice possible before their court hearing.

 Experienced clerks will be available just inside court buildings to review documents and direct tenants appropriately. Tenants who must come into the building will be provided with masks if necessary. Social distancing will be enforced, with a maximum of two people per elevator.

 The Office of Civil Justice emergency hotline (staffed by attorneys and tenant advocates) will continue to operate as usual, weekdays from 9 am  - 5 pm and can be accessed by calling 311 and requesting the Tenant Helpline.

The City’s Dept. of Housing Preservation and Development has opened a new Housing Connect Portal for affordable housing lottery applications. An important note: account profiles from the prior Housing Connect site WILL NOT carry over; you must visit the site to make a new account. Learn more.

The State conducted antibody tests on 12,000 individuals across the state over a six-week period. The results show 13.4 percent of the population have COVID-19 antibodies, compared to the 12.3 percent that tested positive for COVID-19 antibodies during a statewide antibody testing study from May 1st.

The City’s Commission on Gender Equity has shared a short survey for New York City residents ages 18 and older to help inform an equitable recovery from COVID-19 in NYC.

On June 18, Borough President Gale Brewer will  host the regular monthly meeting of the Manhattan Borough Board (a formal body composed of all Council Members and Community Board chairs in the borough). Register to attend at this link and you’ll receive an email with instructions on how to be in the online audience.

The nonprofit group Citizens Committee for New York City has shared an “NYC Summer Well Being” survey to determine their next steps around youth engagement and police-community relations.

The U.S. Open will be held in Queens this August — one of the first major sporting events to return. No fans will attend and the U.S. Tennis Association will take extraordinary precautions to protect players and staff.

The 2020 Special Olympics New York was set to celebrate 50 years this month, but unfortunately the Summer Games were canceled due to COVID-19. To keep athletes engaged and celebrate the milestone, the organization hosted a virtual Season at Home, where athletes could compete safely from their homes and go up against other competitors from around the state.

The Partnership for the Homeless has received a grant to provide financial assistance, tenant/landlord mediation and legal referrals, among other services, to those who cannot pay rent or are facing homelessness. Learn more and apply.

The New York Academy of Medicine addressed the LGBTQ+ Community and COVID-19. It highlighted relevant news as well as COVID-19 resources created for the LGBTQ+ community. Visit this page for more, including information and resources for key populations. It asks that you submit any suggestions of additional research or resources to [email protected] or via this form. The Academy’s website links many articles and other resources. For a virtual visit to its extraordinary library, see

June 18,  at 2 pm, the City’s Dept. for the Aging (DFTA) is hosting An Overview of NYC’s Services for Older Adults: What You Need to Know,” a webinar with DFTA Commissioner Lorraine Cortés-Vásquez on the resources and programs every New Yorker over 50 should be aware of. Register here.

When New York City gets to phase 3 of the re-opening, gatherings of up to 25 people will be allowed up from a limit of 10.

Governor Cuomo signed landmark legislation to improve transparency in police disciplinary records and ban police chokeholds, among other reforms that will help restore trust and improve the relationship between police and the communities they serve.

The Mayor announced the Restaurant Revitalization Program, a $3 million project to assist restaurants with “wage replacement” to retain current employees (or rehire those laid off) due to COVID-19. The program will prioritize neighborhoods hit hardest, including Washington Heights, Inwood, Hamilton Heights, Central Harlem, Morningside Heights, East Harlem, the Lower East Side, and Chinatown. The first round of applications are due June 19. Learn more (PDF).

All city and state judges, chamber staff, and other “designated court personnel” are back to working from their chambers. However, per Phase One reopening guidance, court proceedings citywide will remain online.

Following a spike in domestic violence cases, Secretary to the Governor Melissa DeRosa issued a report outlining the COVID-19 Domestic Violence Task Force's initial recommendations to reimagine New York's approach to services for domestic violence survivors. The recommendations, which I have accepted, call for overhauling and reimagining a 40-year-old system to meet survivors where they are and to empower them to have the maximum control of their future. Read the full report by the task force here.

Muslim Volunteers for New York (MV4NY) invites families and neighbors to join them for a Fun Day at the Park! MV4NY presents Going Green: A Virtual Day at Ruppert Park'. MV4NY has a great "virtual" park day planned for you and your children, complete with a craft activity, a read aloud, music and an inspiring & fun talk with a teen guest speaker, Naila Ismail, on ’How To Go Green’ for the complete experience! Naila Ismail has won the 2020 Girl Scout Gold Award for her Environmental Sustainability Project. The Girl Scout Gold Award represents the highest achievement in girl scouting and is their most prestigious award. This event has something for kids of all ages, so join us with your entire family including your elementary, middle AND high schoolers for lots of fun!! The zoom meeting link and password will be sent to all registered participants by Thursday, June 18th, 2020. This event is on a first come first served basis, so sign up soon!

When: Friday, June 19, 2020

Time:  6:00 - 6:45 p.m.

Where: Zoom meeting

How: To register for this event, please sign up with this link. Lets Go Green: Virtual Ruppert Park Event


Mayor de Blasio and Dept. of Education (DOE) Chancellor Carranza announced an expansion of the College Bridge high school-to-college mentorship program to reach all 57,000 graduating seniors this summer, with the support of Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Milton Petri Foundation. (Job alert: CUNY students who have completed one year of study can apply for a paid position as a College Bridge coach.)

The DOE has also released a Return to School 2020 Survey for parents and guardians of NYC public school students to determine priorities in planning the fall semester.

The Harlem School of the Arts has opened registration for their Harlem Summer Arts Experience virtual summer camp for kids ages 5-18. The camp’s varied programming will have kids sing, dance, act, and design as they learn about the Harlem Renaissance. Learn more.


If you and your kids are looking forward to some sports this summer, once we’re in phase 3, they’ll be able to play low-risk sports. Sports to resume include baseball, softball, gymnastics, field hockey, cross country and crew with up to two spectators allowed per child.

For the schedule of the Met Opera’s nightly streams from June 16-21, click here

For the Guggenheim’s schedule of online programming, including art classes, click here

Governor Cuomo marked the opening of the 3.6-mile bicycle and pedestrian path on the Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge. The path provides a new connection for families, runners, cyclists, walkers and commuters to travel across the Hudson River. The path is officially open to the public as of today with safety protocols in place. Learn more here.

For obscure yet interesting stories, see the Atlas Obscura.

Virtual events at the Met, including sketching for the 13-18 year olds, click here.


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.

Donate blood. The New York Blood Center says that levels of blood are dangerously low. The center is hosting a blood drive at MetLife Stadium on Thursday, May 28 from 12 to 8 p.m. To make an appointment to donate, visit or call 1.800.933.2566. Appointments are strongly recommended.

If you have recovered from COVID-19, you may be able to save lives by contacting the state to donate blood. People who have recovered from the virus may have convalescent plasma in their blood, which has antibodies against the virus and could help with the development of a treatment. More information about how to donate is available here.

Support local businesses by buying gift cards. We have posted links to sites selling gift cards. Another site selling gift cards to restaurants, barber shops, and events like ghost hunts, and museums, see SupportLocal at

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.


The Department of Consumer and Worker Protection also has instituted a number of programs.NYC DCWP Worker Hotline launching today, Monday, June 8th. To reach this hotline, please call 311 and ask for "Worker protection hotline"

For information for workers, see One Pager for Workers:

Last week, the Mayor expanded the Small Business Emergency Grant program for small businesses with damaged storefronts to all five boroughs. This expansion, funded by Signature Bank, will provide grants of up to $10,000 for repairs. Complete the interest form here, and local partner organizations will reach out to eligible applicants.

Business guidance for Phase 3 of the state's reopening plan is available here.

Reopening businesses must submit affirmations to confirm compliance with relevant reopening guidelines.

SBS Reopening Webinars

PPE for Small Businesses: NYC SBS coordinating with 70+ BIDs and Chambers of Commerce to provide 2 million pieces of PPE to small businesses citywide. Find a distribution partner near you at: Free Face Coverings for Small Businesses & Their Employees

If a store owner would like social distancing floor decals for inside the business (not on the sidewalks), please contact CB8 and we will send you some.

The City’s Dept. of Small Business Services has opened a hotline for reopening advice and resources: (888) SBS-4NYC (727-4692), and released an industry guide to Reopening NYC Businesses.

The City’s Department of Small Business Services has shared their new “Find a Job” page, which lists open employment listings from across NYC. Learn more and search the listings.

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).

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.

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.

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

The Madison Avenue BID put together the official New York State reopening documents into an easily accessible primer, so please see below.


Senator Krueger's Virtual Town Hall Series

New York City Reopens, Part 2: Test, Trace and Take Care (T3) - Tracking Down  the Virus: On Wednesday, June 17th from 7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m., Demetre Daskalakis, MD, MPH, Deputy Commissioner, Division of Disease Control, New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, and Ted Long, MD, MHS, Senior Vice President, Ambulatory Care, and Executive Director Test and Trace Corps, will join Senator Krueger for the second of three virtual Town Halls about Reopening New York City. 

Part 2 of the series will provide information on the stages of pandemics, and where we are now from an epidemiological perspective, as well as on New York City’s Test, Trace and Take Care Program (T3), designed to track and manage new COVID-19 infections, address virus spikes and hotspots, and allow us to reopen safely.

Dr. Daskalakis oversees all infection related public health programming at the NYC Department of Health, including the Bureaus of Communicable Diseases, and Immunization.  Dr. Long is a practicing primary care physician who did his undergraduate work, residency training, and post-graduate Master’s work in health services research at Yale University.  Dr. Long is currently a faculty member in the Yale School of Medicine and the Harvard Medical School Center for Primary Care, where he teaches about health policy and administration.  Topics of discussion will include the stages of pandemics, which stage we are currently in, an overview of the three components of the Test, Trace and Take Care program, how the program will be operationalized throughout the city, and the integral role of the T3 Program in containing the COVID-19 infection and hospitalization rates.

The event will feature a question and answer session with Drs. Long and Daskalakis. If you have questions related to the stages of pandemics and how the Test, Trace and Take Care (T3) Program will function, want to know if all New Yorkers are required to participate and how the initiative will help us safely reopen, register at the link below. Attendees will be able to submit questions through Facebook during the event but are strongly encouraged to submit them in advance. Please let them know you plan to attend Part 2 on June 17th by registering at

Reforming The Criminal Justice Agenda: On Thursday, June 18th from 5:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. join Senator Krueger for a *Special* Town Hall on Reforming the Criminal Justice Agenda, with NYS Senator Jamaal Bailey, key architect of New York State’s policing reform legislative agenda, NYS Senator Zellnor Myrie, criminal justice reform advocate, and Insha Rahman, the Director of Strategy and New Initiatives at the Vera Institute of Justice.

The event will feature a question and answer session with Senators Bailey and Myrie, and Insha Rahman. If you have questions related to criminal justice reform, the details of recent legislation passed in Albany, and the need for further advocacy to create a fairer and more just City, register at the link below. Attendees will be able to submit questions through Facebook during the event but are strongly encouraged to submit them in advance. Please let them know you plan to attend on June 18th by registering at

Coronavirus (COVID-19) FAQs & Resources

The State's Coronavirus Hotline is open 24 hours if you have any questions or concerns: 1-888-364-3065. **If you need help getting medical care, you can also call 311. New York City will provide care regardless of immigration status or ability to pay.

The NYP COVID Hotline 646-697-4000 can answer questions about COVID-19. This hotline is a public service to provide information only and not to diagnose, treat, or render a medical opinion. Their Coronavirus Frequently Asked Questions document is available on the NYP Coronavirus website.

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: