Brooklyn Lawmakers on the Move April 2, 2020

News Site Brooklyn

Colton Outraged at Di Napoli to Delay Paychecks

Assembly Member William Colton

Assemblyman William Colton (Gravesend, Bensonhurst, Bath Beach, Dyker Heights) is outraged with the decision of the NYS Comptroller Di Napoli to leave over 120,000 state employees without a paycheck during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis that our country is facing.

“The Governor has issued a statement that the Comptroller has the legal authority to issue these checks. The NYS Comptroller DiNapoli has ignored the Governor’s announcement and decided that April 1, 2020 paychecks of all state employees will be delayed until a state budget is passed. How dare you decide to put a stop on receiving paychecks for all the state employees during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. Did you ever stop to think about the hardship people and their families are going through now because of the effects of COVID-19.  Half of the country is suffering from being laid off from their jobs, the only thing they rely on is other family members who still have a job and are receiving a paycheck. Do you understand what it means to people to not receive any income during a crisis like our country is facing right now? People’s lives are put on hold and you are depriving them of receiving their hard-earned money,” said Colton.

“The NYS Comptroller must undertake whatever work is necessary to get these checks released immediately. There is no justification for his bureaucratic technicalities, that causing unnecessary suffering to families, especially during this health emergency crisis. This is not the time to play politics and make nearly 120,000 people go through this, his action is unspeakable,” he added.

Deutsch Updates on Current Workings and COVID-19

City Councilman Chaim Deutsch

Councilman Chaim Deutsch (Sheepshead Bay, Manhattan Beach, Brighton Beach, Homecrest) sent out a community message wherein he states the issues he’s currently working on and some COVID-19 updates.

Some issues that Deutsch is currently working on include leading the effort with colleagues in the City Council to appeal to Governor Cuomo to waive a Department of Labor verification an unemployed person might have to get, asking the governor to allow Spring break to continue as it was originally scheduled, and asking the governor and the mayor to work with relevant pension boards to ensure that first responders and other essential employees who die as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) be guaranteed contractual line-of-duty death benefit and payments.

An Update for Seniors Participating in JASA programs:

  • Most JASA programs are operating remotely, with staff reaching out to clients telephonically, sustaining service delivery and responding to new service inquiries. JASA meals on wheels staff are continuing to deliver meals and Adult Protective Services and Community Guardian Program staff are continuing to conduct community visits. JASA Care homecare workers are providing necessary homecare to clients, using extra precautions.  JASA senior centers have been open for distribution of ‘grab and go’ meals. In line with New York City policy, this week JASA centers will shift to DFTA’s centralized home delivery procedure. Staff will continue reaching out to senior center members to check on their well being and help maintain social connection.

  • To sign up for home delivery food services, call 212-AGING-NYC (244-6469).

Other updates on COVID-19 are:

  • The City has developed a portal, as a new tool to help guide the City’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The portal is available in 11 languages and allows New Yorkers to self-report COVID-19 information and will help New York City both better communicate with affected people and identify areas that may need an enhanced response. Inputs are confidential. People without internet access or who need help can call 311.

  • Please look at the mail you received from the Census Bureau and use your 12 DIGIT CODE to respond online at OR 1-844-330-2020, toll-free. It only takes 7 minutes.

Ampry-Samuel Reminds about Census 

Alicka Ampry-Samuel
City Council Member Alicka Ampry-Samuel

City Councilmember Alicka Ampry-Samuel (D-Brownsville, East Flatbush, Crown Heights, Bedford Stuyvesant) wants to remind everyone in the Brooklyn area that it is important to take the time to fill out the Census and that Brooklyn’s only expedited COVID-19 testing was pioneered right in Brownsville.

“Brooklyn’s response rates are currently very far BELOW the national average. It is important for the federal government to know that we are here because this 2020 census will speak for us for the next 10 years! This count will determine our representation, resources and rights – such as schools, hospitals and the benefits allotted in the COVID-19 Stimulus Package,” wrote Ampry-Samuel.

“My office continues to be here to support our residents, and people across the entire city, with available information and resources. We have received an overwhelming amount of communication regarding the inability to reach live people when filing claims for unemployment, breach of labor laws in relation to COVID-19 and related time off. Please keep trying. Phone lines are very busy during these intense times – but this is not permanent. The city and state are still open for business. Things are moving slow but they are moving.

“On a brighter note, I had the pleasure of attending a very small briefing at Brookdale University Hospital this past Sunday morning. I am proud to announce that Brooklyn’s only expedited COVID-19 testing was pioneered right in Brownsville. Thanks to Abbott Global and the hard-working staff at Brookdale, the people of our community can get answers and treatment much faster,” wrote Ampry-Samuel.

Eichenstein Calls for Hospital Communication with Affected Families 

Assembly Member Simcha Eichenstein
Assembly Member Simcha Eichenstein

Assemblyman Simcha Eichenstein (D-Borough Park, Midwood) is calling on Governor Andrew Cuomo to issue an executive order requiring all hospitals to communicate and provide medical updates to families on a regular basis.

“It is heart-breaking to get call after call from crying family members who are unaware of the medical status of their loved ones in the hospital,” said Eichenstein. “Governor Cuomo needs to issue an executive order directing hospitals to ensure a minimal level of communication between hospitals and families.”

Due to the current COVID-19 outbreak, hospitals have implemented no-visitors policies. This has led to a lack of communication between medical providers and patient’s families due to the families not being allowed in the hospitals.