Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates December 7th

December 7th, 2020

DECEMBER 7th RESOURCES AND UPDATES:

 

Amid a rapid increase in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, the City advised older adults and at-risk New Yorkers to limit non-essential activities. Older adults and people with underlying health conditions who are at an increased risk of severe COVID-related illness should limit activities outside of the home to essential tasks such as commuting to work or school, medical care, groceries, and pharmacy necessities.

The advisory also applies to household members and caregivers of these individuals. Underlying health conditions that increase your risk for severe illness from COVID-19 include cancer, heart conditions (such as heart failure, coronary artery disease or cardiomyopathies) chronic kidney disease, type 2 diabetes, pregnancy, sickle cell disease, obesity, immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from solid organ transplant, smoking, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. A full list of conditions that may increase the risk of severe illness can be found on the CDC website.

Those covered by this advisory should also wear a face covering at all times indoors and outdoors — including when around members of their own household who have known exposure to COVID-19, are experiencing symptoms of the virus, or frequently interact with the public. More information on the advisory is available here.

Governor Cuomo will sign an Executive Order expanding eligibility for New York State's COVID Rent Relief Program and reopening the application window. This Executive Order will expand the program's eligibility so more rent relief can be provided to New Yorkers and additional details will be available in the coming days.

The State is launching 150 new rapid testing sites in partnership with Prescryptive Health. The partnership will help expand testing capacity in areas across the State where testing access is limited. Residents can find participating sites, schedule a test, receive results and follow-up with licenses clinicians directly from their mobile device. All testing sites will be searchable on the State's COVID test website and appointments for these sites will also be available at www.prescryptive.com.

New York will be getting its first 170,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in the coming weeks. If all safety and efficacy approvals are granted, we expect to receive these vaccines doses—from the New York pharmaceutical company Pfizer—on December 15. The State expects additional doses of both the Pfizer-developed vaccine and the Moderna-developed vaccine this month.

Following FDA approval, the NY COVID-19 Clinical Advisory Task Force will look at the data and provide an additional level of review to the vaccine. This review will not delay distribution of the vaccine and will simply be another safety measure that ensures we can all trust in the vaccine. The COVID-19 Clinical Advisory Task Force is made up of health experts and medical professionals and is co-chaired by Dr. Charles Rice, the winner of the 2020 Nobel Prize in Medicine.

Starting THIS week, Governor Cuomo will resume holding scheduled COVID briefings. Instead of daily briefings, this time the briefings will be held on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Briefings are always streamed online at ny.gov, and are additionally broadcast on Twitter and Facebook Live.

New York's latest contact tracing data shows that 70 percent of new COVID-19 cases originate from households and small gatherings. The State released a new PSA highlighting the dangers of COVID spread in these smaller, indoor settings. Watch the PSA here.

Officials at the CDC warned Americans not to travel over the holidays saying that with cases rising, “the safest thing to do is to postpone travel and stay home,” and that even a small percentage of infected travelers could “translate into hundreds of thousands of additional infections.” Dr. Cindy Friedman, chief of the travelers health branch at the CDC, said, “Travel is a door-to-door experience that can spread the virus during the journey and into communities where travelers visit or live.” The summer helped reduce statistics in the spring. We’re not having the summer or vaccines for a long time.

Monitor COVID testing wait times at NYC Health + Hospitals locations by refreshing this dashboard or checking Health + Hospitals’ Twitter.

From Borough President Gale Brewer, several useful articles in understanding where we are: “How much did Thanksgiving contribute to Covid-19 spread? It’s wait and see for now” from StatNews.com on Sunday (11/29) and “The Virus Chart that forecasts the future” from NY Times’ “The Morning” newsletter on Monday (11/30) (sign up here). Finally, “The New York City Department of Health has conducted a large-scale study of New Yorkers that shows household contact and gatherings of 10 or more people as the two main drivers of coronavirus infections.

Community Board applications are available. Apply now to join your Community Board, the most grassroots form of local government. The Boards are pivotal in shaping their communities and work to enhance and preserve the character of the city’s many unique neighborhoods. Applications close Monday, 2/1/2021.

The 2021 alternate side parking calendar is now available.

“The State of Black New York” report from the New York Urban League is now available.

Music group MasterVoices has recorded a choral “Tribute of Gratitude to New York.” Watch here.

For Diabetes Awareness Month, SUNY College of Optometry released the article “What You Need to Know About Diabetes and Vision Health.”

Monday (12/7) and Wednesday (12/9) at 5:30 pm are MTA public hearings about proposed fare and toll changesInformation about joining the hearings, future hearing dates and submitting comments is available here.

Every Saturday before Christmas from 3-6 pm, get your holiday treats, trees, and wreaths to go from the East Harlem “Walk Up or Drive By Pop-up Holiday Market” under the tracks at 116th St, hosted by Uptown Grand Central and The Best of Harlem.

Tuesday (12/8) at 12:3o pm, “Faith and the Biden-Harris Administration” convenes faith communities and the Biden-Harris transition team over Zoom, hosted by Union Theological Seminary and Faith 2020. Click the title to register.

Tuesday (12/8) at 12:30 pm, “State Human Rights Laws As Laboratories of Democracy” celebrates the NYS Dept. of Human Rights’ 75th anniversary. Click the title to register for the Zoom.

Tuesday (12/8) at 4 pm, virtual forum “Vision for Life discusses the impact of COVID-19 on the lives of people who are visually impaired and how Lighthouse Guild has responded.

Tuesday (12/8) at 6:30 pm, comment on the Dept. of City Planning’s draft scope of work for the SoHo/NoHo Neighborhood Plan at the virtual land use committee public hearing for Community Board 2 (covering Greenwich Village, Little Italy, SoHo, NoHo, Hudson Square, Chinatown and the Gansevoort Market). Wednesday (12/9) at 6:30 pm, CB 2 will discuss its response to the draft scope of work.

Wednesday (12/9) at 5:30 pm, give your feedback on voting absentee, early in person and on Election Day during the NYC Campaign Finance Board’s Voter Assistance Advisory Committee virtual hearing. Register here.

Wednesday (12/9) at 7 pm, the City of New York, NYPD, Urban League, Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies and Robin Hood Foundation will host another virtual Reform and Reinvention Collaborative listening session (offered in 10 languages). Register here.

Next Thursday (12/10) at 5 pm, “Celebrating Women’s Activism is an online table talk focusing on the work of archival project WomensActivism.NYC’s goal to collect 20,000 stories about exceptional women by the end of 2020, hosted by WomensActivism.NYC and Women Creating Change. Register here.

This month, sharpen your Zoom knowledge with free classes about the virtual platform from the Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan.

New York State will opt in to a federal program to vaccinate nursing home residents and staff. The state expects to have enough vaccines for one-third of high-risk health care workers, assuming the federal approval process happens on schedule.

The CDC recommended the "universal use of face masks" to fight COVID, further backing up New York's mask policies. The agency stressed the need for people to wear masks in all non-household indoor settings. As a reminder, New York State law requires everyone over age 2 who can medically tolerate a face covering to wear one when in public if unable to maintain at least six feet of distance from others. Governor Cuomo recommends that you wear a mask iin private settings outside of your own household.

On December 4, New York reached a testing milestone with 20 million COVID tests conducted to date. For context, there are about 19 million New Yorkers. If you are experiencing COVID symptoms or believe you may have been exposed to someone positive for COVID, get tested. Find a testing site near you. You can also call 1-888-364-3065 to make a free appointment at a New York State-run testing location.

New York State has partnered with Google to create a new program that can help New Yorkers impacted by COVID-19 access state benefits and assistance. To learn more, visit findservices.ny.gov. More info available here.

New York State will begin implementing a "surge and flex" protocol. As part of this strategy, all hospitals must begin expanding their bed capacity by 25 percent. Hospital systems must also balance patient loads within their system to make sure no one hospital is overstressed.

New York is calling on all retired doctors and nurses to return to service if they are able to do so. Hospitals were previously asked to identify retired staff as part of New York's COVID Winter Plan in order to help avoid or mitigate any potential staffing shortage. The State will automatically renew registrations at no cost to help streamline the process.

Regions that reach "critical hospital capacity" will be designated as a Red Zone under New York's micro-cluster strategy. Critical hospital capacity is defined as 90 percent of hospital capacity (in other words, 90 percent full). Following the implementation of the State's "surge and flex" protocol, if a region's 7-day average hospitalization growth rate shows that the region will reach 90 percent hospital capacity within the next three weeks, the region will become a Red Zone.

Additional restrictions will be applied to indoor dining if hospitalization rates don't stabilize in the next five days. If the hospitalization rate does not stabilize in New York City in the next five days, indoor dining will be suspended; if the rate does not stabilize in regions outside New York City, capacity restrictions will be reduced to 25 percent.

Education/Parenting

Parents can now access free courses, events and activities through the NYC Dept. of Education’s new Parent University.

Nominate your favorite teacher or counselor for the NYC Dept. of Education Big Apple Award, which recognizes inspirational educators. Nominations close Sunday, 1/10.

Saturdays through 12/19 at 9:30 and 11:15 am, 3-K through 12th grade students can take free virtual enrichment classes, sponsored by the United Federation of Teachers. Register here.

Wednesday (12/9) at 3 pm, attend a virtual information session about free ESL classes through SUNY Manhattan Educational Opportunity Center.

Entertainment/Distractions

The tree at Rockefeller Center will be available for viewing in five-minute increments by timed admission at entrances at 49th and 50th Sts. at both 5th and 6th Aves. (The Rink at Rockefeller Center will be accessible on 49th St., between 5th and 6th Aves.).​ Virtual queuing will be activated to manage lines. Guests can scan a QR code near Rockefeller Center to see wait time and receive a text to return to the line. The tree will be lit from 6 a.m. to midnight every day. Masks are mandated at all times, and six-feet social distancing will be enforced. Guests will be directed to delineated “pods,” spaced six feet apart, with no more than four people in one pod (groups of more than four people will be separated into multiple pods).​ The tree will also be available to view in its 50,000-multi-colored LED glory at Rockefeller Center’s website.

For a special Nutcracker Suite package offered by the New York City Ballet, click here.

The Smithsonian Museum of American Art offers American art from home.

Remember the tiny owl found in the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree? It inspired a bobble-head doll to benefit the Ravensbird Wildlife Center in Saugerties that cared for the owl before it was released back into the wild. For more information, including how to buy the owl, click here.

For what’s on at the Whitney, including virtual talks by artists, click here.

For daydreaming, or bidding, there’s an auction of memorable experiences at the Louvre, click here.

The High Line has changed its opening hours. Visitors are welcome on weekdays 7 am - 7 pm without reservations and weekends 10 am - 6 pm with reservations. Enter at Gansevoort St., 23rd St. or 30th St.

“East Village Public Art and Monuments” is Village Preservation’s newest virtual bike tour.

Celebrity Chef David Chang, owner of the Momofuku restaurant group, became the first celebrity to win $1 million on "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?". The prize money will be donated to the Southern Smoke Foundation, an emergency relief fund for restaurant industry workers impacted by the pandemic.

The stuff of dreams. For 21 places to go (or dream about going to) in 2021, including an entry on New York City, click here.

For the Met Opera’s livestream concert and virtual opera schedule, click here.

Grand Central Terminal’s Holiday Fair is virtual. Click here to check it out.

For a look at WPA Post Office murals, see Atlas Obscura’s article here. The website has plenty of captivating stories.

FINANCIAL AND LOCAL BUSINESSES UPDATES

The Section 8 waiting list is now open for Lakeview Apartments at 4 E. 107th St. Download an application, due Wednesday, 12/16.

All in NYC: Bookstores promotes shopping at independent booksellers. Rediscover your favorite bookstore and find special offers through the All in NYC: Neighborhood Getaways program at nyc.gov/NYCBookstoresThe website is a good source of information and offers.

Eligible storefront businesses can apply for an interest-free NYC LMI Storefront Loan of up to $100,000, from the NYC Dept. of Small Business Services and Pursuit.

The Interest Rate Reduction Grant reduces the interest expense owed on an existing business loan with select Community Development Financial Institutions. Click here to find participating CDFIs and more information.

The 400 Foundation is offering free 40-hour OSHA site and safety training for those interested in working construction. Contact Japheth Parrish-Wright for more information.

Jumpstart a career in home health care, nursing, accounting/bookkeeping, solar technology or security training through free courses from vocational training school Alliance Computing Solutions, funded by New York State. Register here.

Non-tenured religion scholars of color can apply for a $40,000 First Book Grant from the Louisville Institute, to assist with completing a major research project on an issue in North American Christianity. Apply by Friday, 1/15.

Artists are invited to apply for the Experimental Projects Residency Program from Alfred University’s Institute for Electronic Arts. Apply here.

Tuesday (12/8) at noon, Black college sophomores are invited to a virtual information session about JP Morgan Chase’s Advancing Black Pathways Fellowship Program, a paid, six-week internship. Apply to the fellowship by Sunday, 12/20.

Wednesday (12/9) at 6 pm, attend a virtual “Tenant Resource Fair for information about rent, discrimination protections and housing lottery processes, hosted by Council Speaker Corey Johnson, Stonewall Community Development Corporation and the NYC Dept. of Housing Preservation and Development. Register here.

The Program, which was created by the state legislature when it passed the Emergency Rent Relief Act of 2020, appropriated up to $100 million from the federal CARES Act to provide subsidies for tenants who lost income due to the pandemic. Based on the legislature's parameters, as much as $40 million is expected to be paid to eligible applicants approximately 15,000 New York households. An executive order will expand the program's eligibility so more rent relief can be provided to New Yorkers. Additional details will be available in the coming days.

Applications for HEAP can be accessed by calling 212-331-3126 or visiting the ACCESS HRA website for instructions hereHEAP applications are available for download here. Please note, the HEAP application cannot be submitted through ACCESS HRA at this time. All HEAP applications need to be completed, signed by the applicant or their authorized representative and returned by mail or dropped off at a designated HEAP assistance location (HEAP assistance locations can be found on our COVID 19 Community Updates page). There is no need to come in to a Center. The completed application can be mailed back to HRA at:

NYC DSS/HRA/HEAP
PO Box 1401
Church Street Station
New York, NY 10008

To assist New Yorkers who lost their jobs or saw their hours reduced due to COVID-19, the state Department of Labor (DOL) has partnered with Coursera to provide access to 4,000 educational programs that can help you learn new skills. To learn more or set up an account, visit www.labor.ny.gov/careerservices/coursera/coursera.shtm.

The DSNY has issued the below information about restaurant outdoor dining and snow. For more information, click here.

The City’s new Open Storefronts program will now allow storefront businesses to operate directly outside their store from Friday, 10/30 through Wednesday, 12/31. Read the FAQ for eligibility and operating guidelines, and apply here.

Open Restaurants that use outdoor heating must follow newly released guidance from the Dept. of Buildings and the FDNY for electricnatural gas and propane heaters.

Open Restaurants are subject to new regulations pertaining to roadway barriers, snow and dining enclosures, per the Dept. of Transportation.

If you are a New York City renter at risk of eviction, you may be eligible for free legal assistance. For more information, please contact the Mayor’s Office to Protect Tenants or the City Tenant Helpline by calling 311, or visit the New York City Tenant Resource Portal by clicking here. You may also seek help through the Legal Aid Society by calling (212) 577-3300 or by clicking here for more information.

NYC Department of Social Services/Human Resources Administration (DSS/HRA): For updated information on COVID-19 and changes to social services benefits, including SNAP food assistance, cash assistance, and burial assistance, please refer to DSS/HRA’s Important information about COVID-19 and your HRA benefits.

Attend one of two virtual information sessions to learn about grants available from my office for schools and nonprofits and get your questions answered by my budget staff. These projects enrich the community and city as a whole.

If you have questions before the session, visit the capital funding page of Borough President Gale Brewer’s  website or contact Director of Budget and Capital Projects Vanessa Díaz-López at [email protected]gov.

Funding Opportunity for Small Businesses: DreamxAmerica and global social impact non-profit Kiva U.S. have partnered to distribute $1 million of funding to 100 small businesses in the form of 0% interest, $0 fee, highly accessible loans $1,000 to $15,000 in size, depending on need. All U.S. small businesses are eligible, including those in need of COVID-19 relief; immigrant, refugee, and first-generation entrepreneurs are especially encouraged to apply. Apply here and a member of the DreamxAmerica team will reach out personally to support you.

Apply now to earn up to $22.50 an hour removing snow and ice as a snow laborer with the Dept. of Sanitation. You must be 18 or older and eligible to work in the U.S.

Learn new job skills and earn certificates to advance your career through 4,000 free online courses offered by the state Dept. of Labor and Coursera, such as “How to Manage a Remote Team” and “Entrepreneurship.” View the course catalog.

Small business owners can check if they are eligible for New York State support programs or incentives. There are a number of business incentives that small business owners may be able to take advantage of. To get started, simply answer questions about your business and New York's Business Express Incentive Wizard will provide a list of New York State programs and services that could help your business get off the ground.

Free financial counseling is available by phone through the NYC Dept. of Consumer and Worker Protection. Book an appointment online or by calling 311.

Robin Hood’s COVID-19 Relief Fund is now accepting grant applications for nonprofits that provide frontline support to vulnerable populations.

The Dept. of Small Business Services has launched Career Discovery NYC, a free career search and skills training tool.

Restaurant & Bar Reopening Toolkit – Find all the guidelines and resources you need in one place, including checklists, Open Restaurant siting criteria, and posters. Download it here, and find additional guidance and resources for restaurants on SBS’ restaurant reopening guide here.

Find Outdoor Dining Fixtures & Equipment – Please click here for the City's directory of equipment rental fixtures & equipment for safe outdoor dining.

The Department of Small Business Services (SBS) will work to ensure that the most up-to-date guidance and materials needed by small business owners for a safe phased-in reopening are readily available. The information will be housed on a centralized resource page with guidance and best practices for the restaurant industry across all five boroughs. SBS will also launch a reopening supplies marketplace for easy access to wholesalers selling PPE, gloves, sneeze guards and other equipment. Business owners can call a hotline at 1-888-SBS-4NYC to ask questions about this process.

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

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.

WAYS YOU CAN HELP

New York's annual holiday toy, coat and school supply drive has begunThis year has been difficult for more families than any time in recent memory. The holiday donation drive will benefit families in need across the state and runs through December 16th. Drop-off locations are set up around the State and COVID-19 protocols will be in place to ensure the safety of those dropping off donations. Participating in the drive will help make someone else's holiday brighter.

Borough President Gale Brewer is partnering with The Sled, an organization begun last year by moms who collected toys for students at P.S. 188 on the Lower East Side and P.S. 76 in Harlem after reading a NY Times article about the lives of students who attended these schools, many of whom live in temporary housing.

This year, The Sled has expanded their operation to also include P.S. 111 in Hell’s Kitchen, P.S. 145 in Manhattan Valley, P.S. 676 in Brooklyn and six family homeless shelters. 1,300 children at these schools and shelters have chosen the specific gift they want, and you can purchase one or more-- or gift cards for the older kids-- online at this link. The selection deadline for the gifts to be delivered in time is 12/15. Staff from Borough President Brewer’s  office (the “Brew Crew”) will volunteer to assist the moms in wrapping and distribution.

The Alliance for Positive Change’s Holiday Gift Drive” is accepting donations of children’s toys, warm clothes, toiletries and food to support low-income people living with chronic illnesses. Donations can be dropped off or shipped to Alliance Midtown Central, 64 W. 35th St.

WARM’s holiday toy drive runs through Friday, 12/18. Drop off toys at WeWork Harlem (8 W. 126th St., 3rd floor) Monday - Friday, 9 am - 5 pm.

Find a coat drive drop-off location through this New York Cares map.

Borrow free equipment for community clean-ups from the Dept. of Sanitation by calling 311, emailing [email protected] or submitting this form.

Next Thursday (12/10) throughout the day, volunteer to distribute masks on subways and buses with the MTA Mask Force. Sign up here.

Donate holiday gifts to clients of Services for the Underserved. Learn more here or by emailing Minjung Park, volunteer and community relations manager.

If you get a call from NYS Contact Tracing, pick up. Contact tracers are working around the clock to trace clusters and inform people who have been in contact with someone who tested positive for COVID. How can you help? Simply by picking up the phone. If your caller ID says "NYS Contact Tracing," pick up and help New York stop the spread. (Tracers will never ask for your Social Security Number or financial information; if someone does, they are not an official tracer and you should hang up.)

Religious facilities can share their space with dancers looking for rehearsal space, a project of Partners for Sacred Places. NYC Dance in Sacred Places can be a mutually beneficial opportunity for artists struggling to find affordable studios and sacred places seeking to share space with the community.

Get a flu shot. Find pharmacies and clinics offering flu shots through the NYC Health Map. You can sort for free shots and for locations covered by Medicare and Medicaid.

Give your friends a call. Check in with your family. Ask them how everything is going and how they are feeling. Let's show each other some love because mental health is just as important as physical health. New Yorkers can also call the State's mental health hotline at 1-844-863-9314 for free emotional support, consultations & referrals to a provider.

If you order for delivery, order directly from the restaurants, and not through third-party apps that charge restaurants high fees, making it even tougher for them.

The pandemic has caused declines in organ donations. With so many people awaiting lifesaving organ transplants, Governor Cuomo urges New Yorkers to become organ donors and join the NYS Donate Life Registry.

Apply to become a member of the NYC Community Emergency Response Teamwhich assists first responders with community preparedness and disaster support. Apply here.

Donate Plasma: Recovered COVID-19 patients are needed to donate plasma, which is used to treat critically ill patients across the country. Donate at a NY Blood Center location. Eligible donors can give convalescent plasma up to eight times in a three-month period.

Nominate an individual or organization doing outstanding urban public health work for the Joan H. Tisch Community Health Prize. Nominations will be accepted until December 31.

Wear a mask: The New York Times found that those ignoring the mask rule are nearly twice as likely to be men as women. Watch a New York 5-year-old explain why everyone should wear a mask

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. To make an appointment to donate, visit nybc.org or call 1.800.933.2566. Appointments are strongly recommended.

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 https://supportlocal.usatoday.com/cities/

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]org

LOCAL ELECTED OFFICIALS' TELE-TOWN HALLS & COMMUNITY EVENTS

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 nyc.gov/health/coronavirus 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:

New York State developed a contact tracing app to help stop the spread of COVID-19. The app uses Bluetooth technology — not location data — to quickly alert users if they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. Once alerted, users can quickly protect themselves and others by self-quarantining, contacting their physician and getting tested.

Governor Cuomo assures us that the app does not violate privacy. The app does not compromise privacy or collect your personal information. Use of the app is completely voluntary and anonymous. The app will never track your location. Privacy is protected because your data is kept anonymous and is not identifiable to any individual. Any data you voluntarily choose to share is anonymous and can be deleted at any time. Learn more about the app's expert-vetted security and privacy here.

As you go about your day, the app uses Bluetooth to sense when another person with the same app comes within 6 feet of you. Your phone exchanges a secure random code with the other phone to record your proximity.

 If the app notes that you've been within 6 feet of someone for more than 10 minutes, the app adds their phone's random code to a list of close contacts. When a fellow app user tests positive for COVID-19, a Case Investigator from the county health department will ask if the person is willing to share the app's list of "close contact" codes to help protect other people. Sharing your list is secure and private. The app never reveals who you are to anyone.

Each day, the list of codes for "confirmed cases" is sent to every phone that has the app. The app compares its own list of close contact codes to the list of confirmed cases. If there's a match, the app displays a COVID Alert. Using these lists of anonymous codes, the alert is kept private. No one ever knows who generated the COVID Alert. Neighboring states including New Jersey and Pennsylvania have launched Exposure Notification Apps that work in concert with New York's.

Alerts can only come from other people who use the app, so we need as many New Yorkers as possible to download the app.

 Download the app on your iPhone here.  Download the app on your Android device here.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Past Updates from CB8