Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates June 8th



Today is the first day of Phase One reopening, 100 days after the shutdown. 

The State has released a New York Forward Business Reopening Web Toolwhich helps small businesses determine if they have met the criteria for reopening.

Employers must read their relevant industry guidance, complete this affirmation form to indicate compliance with guidelines, and develop a safety plan to be posted where employees can see it at the place of business.

Employers looking for more information on reopening compliance can call the City's hotline at (888) SBS-4NYC (727-4692). Workers concerned with a lack of necessary protections can call 311 and ask for the Worker Protection Hotline. Worker rights and guidance is also available online here.

Quick reminder: as long as we are in Phase One reopening, buses will be boarded from the back door, and will remain free to ride -- including Select Buses.

New York City is now eligible to resume elective surgeries and ambulatory care. It was previously announced that the state will allow elective outpatient treatments to resume in counties and hospitals without significant risk of COVID-19 surge in the near term.

NY is launching the "It's Up To Us, New York" campaign to remind New Yorkers to keep doing their part to fight Coronavirus. The campaign will appear across social media, on MTA buses and trains and on billboards across the state. I want to remind New Yorkers that masks are mandatory when riding public transportation systems and to follow all guidelines and protocols when riding, including maintaining social distancing to the extent possible, using hand sanitizer and observing decal guidance.

The MTA is taking unprecedented steps to keep riders and workers safe, including cleaning and disinfecting trains and buses daily. Since May 6th, the MTA has cleaned and disinfected 30,000 stations and cleaned and disinfected 500,000 subway cars. The MTA is also piloting the use of proven UV light technology to clean subway cars and crew facilities. The state is deploying over one million masks, and 25,000 gallons and 500,000 2-oz. bottles of sanitizer for the MTA for reopening.

Learn more about the reopening process in NYC. A detailed guide of which businesses will reopen in New York City as part of Phase 1 and Phase 2 is available here. Read how the MTA is preparing for Phase 1 here. Finally, you can monitor for yourself the data for the city on testing/tracing targets, hospital capacity, new infections and more at this link.

All New Yorkers who have participated in recent protests to get tested for COVID-19. There are now more than 240 testing sites in New York City, and the state is prioritizing 15 testing sites across the city for individuals who have participated in recent protests. More information on where and how to get tested is available at Getting a test is easy and it's the responsible thing to do.  Additional Protest Guidance from DOHMH:

Governor Cuomo signed legislation banning price gouging of personal protective equipment through the remainder of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Outdoor, socially distanced graduations of up to 150 people will be allowed beginning June 26th, subject to any outbreaks or significant changes in the metrics.

Places of worship will be permitted to reopen with 25 percent occupancy with all social distancing protocols in place during phase two of reopening.

The Governor announced he will issue an Executive Order allowing commercial buildings to conduct temperature checks for anyone entering the building as office workers begin to return to the workplace.

Advice about mass transit as New York City starts to re-open. To keep the system safe, the MTA is ramping up service on subways and busses (100% and 75% of total capacity, respectively). They’ll be cleaning subway cars, buses, Access-A-Ride vehicles, and all 472 subway stations at least once a day. And they’re taking innovative steps with new cleaning technology including UV light sterilization; cleaning robots; expanding OMNI touch-free turnstiles; replacing air filters on subway cars; installing sanitizer dispensers in stations and cars as well as distributing bottles of it; and handing out 2 million masks in the first week.

If you are returning to work, and you must return to transit, be sure to wear a mask and avoid speaking around others. Keeping six feet of distancing space will of course be harder. But cities like Seoul and Taipei have found transmission can remain low as long as riders wear masks, avoid speaking, and keep from touching your face or other passengers. Lastly, make sure to wash your hands with soap and water for at least twenty seconds at the beginning and end of your trip.

If you are not returning to work, it will help to avoid subways and buses during rush hours to leave that space for those who must ride.

The New York City Department of Buildings today released new COVID-19 safety guidelines for property owners and contractors as 33,556 non-essential construction sites get back to work as part of New York City’s entrance into Phase One of New York State’s reopening plan, currently scheduled for Monday, June 8th, 2020. These new required safety measures for construction sites were developed in partnership with the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) and are being implemented to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus to workers and the public during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Read the guidelines.

Also, you do not have to file or pay your 2019 federal income taxes or tax returns until July 15, 2020. For more information, please click here.

The NYC Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene has released a short survey to help clarify messaging needs for different NYC communities about COVID-19 and contact tracing.

Medical schools statewide will be allowed to reopen on June 22nd.

New York City is lifting all the criteria previously required to get tested for COVID-19 and is making tests available to all New Yorkers. The effort is a part of the city’s Test & Trace Corps initiative, which will allow the city to safely separate and care for those who test positive for the virus, and then track, assess and quarantine anyone who came in contact with the infected person. Any New Yorker can now get tested at one of the over 150 testing sites citywide. To find the site closest to you, visit or call 3-1-1.  New York City has officially conducted over one million COVID-19 tests, but we are still below our testing capacity. The Testing Project, a public health advocacy group, has created a list of all the free testing sites in Manhattan (Google Doc). The City and State refer people to this map tool from Castlight Health.

For veterans, VA medical facilities are expanding services to Veterans in phases, while continuing safety measures such as screenings, face coverings, and distancing. In VA's Moving Forward Together plan, full services may not be immediately available, but Veterans' clinical needs will be taken into account. Virtual care options are also available for your convenience. For more information, click here.

VA's new National Surveillance Tool aggregates data from dozens of databases for a comprehensive, national view of all patients tested or treated at VA facilities for known or probable COVID-19. For more information, click here.

Naloxone: Starting this week, DOHMH has partnered with select CVS and Walgreens pharmacies to make FREE naloxone kits available to any individual who requests one. Please see the attached list of participating pharmacies. Please note:

  • When requesting a kit, ask the pharmacist for a FREE “Emergency Overdose Rescue Kit"

  • Anyone can get a kit

  • No ID or insurance is required

Additionally, on the DOHMH websitethere are links to the following resources:

New Yorkers can also email [email protected] if they need any assistance getting a kit or encounter difficulties getting kits from the above sources.

This week (6/8 - 6/12), the State is setting up two more pop-up testing sites (which will replace last  week’s sites in Upper Manhattan):

  • St. Cecilia’s Parish, 125 East 105 Street. Monday – Friday, 11 am – 7 pm. To make an appointment, call (833) 422-7369.

  • Little Sisters of the Assumption Family Health Service, 475 East 115th Street. Monday – Friday, 11 am – 7 pm. To make an appointment, call (833) 422-7369.

The mayor announced the creation of three “COVID-19 Centers of Excellence” that will support communities of color that have been hit the hardest by the coronavirus pandemic. The centers, located in Bushwick, Jackson Heights and Tretmont, will provide comprehensive outpatient services for patients recovering from the virus.The sites are expected to open in the fall, and will also house retail pharmacies. Patients can be referred to the one of the centers after a hospital visit or through their primary care provider. Positive COVID-19 test results, antibody or not, are not required

On absentee voting:

Here are the options for voting during the COVID19 pandemic: 

  • All New Yorkers have the option to vote by mail in the June 23, 2020 election, per an Executive Order from Governor Cuomo, by requesting an absentee ballot. The Board of Elections is in the process of mailing an absentee ballot application to every eligible voter, with return postage paid.

  • After making your votes on the ballot, fold the ballot and put it in the small ballot envelope. Sign and date the back of the envelope. Seal the envelope and put it in the larger envelope that is postage paid and addressed to the Board of Elections. Mail or deliver your ballot to your borough Board of Elections office.

  • An absentee ballot must be postmarked by the day before Election Day and must reach the Board of Elections no more than 7 days after the election to be counted.

  • All registered voters can participate in early voting June 13 - 21. Benefits include shorter wait times and less crowding at the polls. Find your early voting location here:

Keep in mind the following dates and deadlines: 

  • June 13- Early voting begins
  • June 16- Last date to postmark absentee ballot application
  • June 21- Last day for early voting
  • June 22- Last day to apply (in person) for an absentee ballot
  • Last date to postmark absentee ballot (must be received by city BOE by June 30)
  • June 23- Special Elections/Presidential Primary Day / Last day to deliver absentee ballot (in person) to the city BOE

Governor Cuomo announced reforms following the death of George Floyd. He will work with the State legislature next week to pass  the "Say Their Name" reform agenda following the murder of George Floyd and an ongoing pattern of police brutality against black communities. The four cornerstones of the agenda are: Transparency of prior disciplinary records of law enforcement officers; Banning chokeholds by law enforcement officers; Prohibiting false race-based 9-1-1 reports and making them a crime; and Designating the Attorney General as an independent prosecutor for matters relating to the deaths of unarmed civilians caused by law enforcement.

To watch the video of Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright’s June 2 Town Hall on Pet Care and Animal Welfare, click here.


Gov. Cuomo issued an Executive Order allowing necessary in-person special education instruction this summer. Any school district providing these services must follow all state and federal guidance.

The Children's Museum of Manhattan (CMOM) invites children, parents and caregivers to use CMOM at Home, featuring daily themes that explore world culture, science, movement, storytelling and more.

Practice Makes Perfect has announced a free online student enrichment program which will serve 5,000 NYC public school students between grades 3 – 8. Learn more, and fill out the interest forms in English or Spanish.

Childhood vaccination rates are down 63%. The City is offering free vaccines at more than 1,000 NYC facilities and at all Health + Hospitals community health clinics. I encourage you to make an appointment by calling your child’s healthcare provider or 844-NYC-4NYC. The last thing we need is for preventable diseases to put a further strain on our health care system.


Tomorrow (6/9) from 9 am to 9 pm, eight iconic New York City museums present the Virtual Museum Mile Festival, a day of live and prerecorded programs, virtual exhibition tours, live musical performances, and family activities. Visit their sites below to learn what each institution has in store:

To see  the Metropolitan Opera’s nightly streaming schedule from June 6-June 21, click here. June 12 and June 13 are an encore presentation of the Met Gala.

To see the winners of the International Photography Awards, 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.

NYC Emergency Management is looking to expand its inventory of cooling centers for vulnerable New Yorkers to visit during heat emergencies with proper social distancing. Eligible centers must:

  • Be free and open to the general public
  • Have air conditioning
  • Have enough space for visitors to sit while maintaining social distance
  • Have restrooms and water
  • Accessible
  • Staffed
  • Cleaned and disinfected regularly

If you or someone you know can offer a facility that meets these criteria, to be used as a Cooling Center this summer, please complete this survey.

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 State Department of Financial Services will issue an emergency regulation to help businesses and consumers who suffered damage from looting and vandalism. DFS is directing insurers to expedite claims, provide free mediation of disputes and accept photos as reasonable proof of loss so businesses don't have to wait for police reports. More information is available at

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.

On June 9 at 1 pm, Borough President Gale Brewer will join the Harlem Covid Working Group for a Virtual Contact Tracing Job Fair to learn more about the City’s plan to hire 5,000 contact tracers by August 1 and get information on how to apply. Register here.

The State Labor department reports that 823,000 private sector jobs in New York City evaporated in a month between March and April - 500,000 of those were in restaurants, hotels, entertainment and hospitality.

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.

In related news, the federal government is now issuing debit cards loaded with $1200 coronavirus stimulus payments to some recipients, in an effort to get the money out faster. Problem is, those cards come in envelopes that don’t look like government documents and it’s easy to assume it’s junk mail. DON’T THROW IT OUT! Here’s more from New York Magazine: Everything We Know About the Coronavirus Stimulus Debit Cards.

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.

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.

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.


On Thursday, June 11th from 7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m., join Senator Krueger and renowned epidemiologist Dr. Julia Marcus for the first of three Virtual Town Halls about Reopening New York City. Although we have managed to flatten the curve, as New York City reopens and we spend more time outside of our homes, we will still have to contend with COVID-19 – at the very least until a vaccine has been developed. Part I will offer a model to help reorient our thinking about social interactions and minimize the risk of virus transmission. Dr. Marcus observes that total isolation is not sustainable. How then can we remain safe and still interact with our families, friends and coworkers? Part II will provide information about New York City’s Test, Trace and Take Care (T3) program, which will take place on Wednesday, June 17th from 7:00 p.m. -8:00 p.m.  Part III – TBA.

Julia Marcus, PhD, MPH is an infectious disease epidemiologist and assistant professor at Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute. Her science communication during COVID-19 has focused on the importance of a harm reduction approach to the mitigation of coronavirus transmission, with lessons learned from the HIV epidemic. Topics of discussion will include identifying ways to engage in social activities while minimizing risk, based on a spectrum of risk of different social interactions and behaviors. For example, meeting with a friend in your apartment vs. taking a walk together outside. To view the event, go to

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: