COVID-19 Update 04/16/2020

Mayor announces all public pools in NYC will remain closed for the summer

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced all public pools in the city will remain closed this summer because of COVID-19, or the novel coronavirus, and the beaches could soon follow.

“The notion of having lifeguards — and people coming to the beach like normal — we don’t have that in our sights yet,” he said.

The pools will be closed during their normal usage season of June until Labor Day, which will save the city $12 million, according to a budget proposed by the mayor.

He said that it is unlikely that he will allow the beaches to open this summer as well.

“Lower expectations, just for everyone’s sanity,” de Blasio said.

Read more about this in this article: The New York Daily News

Brooklyn group raises money to donate meals to hospital workers

Credit: Jim Henderson, Wikimedia Commons

Operation Feed Brooklyn, a local advocacy group, are helping donate food to hospital workers whose medical centers may have closed their cafeterias.

The organization, led by consultant Michelle Zassenhaus, has been collecting monetary donations that it then uses to pay restaurants for meal orders.

After the food is prepared and the coffee is poured, the organization donates it to Maimonides Hospital for the staff, who are on the frontlines of the pandemic, to get a free healthy meal.

Zassenhaus has collected $50,000 so far for Feed Brooklyn and the group has provided medical workers with 3,500 meals and even more cups of coffee.

Not only is this a way to thank and aid the health care workers who are dealing firsthand with the coronavirus everyday, but it also breaths some life back into the shuttered restaurants of Industry City, such as Avocaderia who is participating.

Restaurants like this one are able to bring back a few staff members and actually pay them thanks to the fact that Operation Feed Brooklyn is asking for donations to pay them, instead of simply asking the restaurants to donate food.

Read more about this in this article: Eyewitness News

CUNY opens up an Emergency Relief Fund for students in financial need

CUNY Chancellor Feliz Matos Rodriguez

The CUNY university system has rolled out a new Emergency Relief Fund to help students in financial need as many people are facing unemployment due to the coronavirus.

CUNY Chancellor Feliz Matos Rodriguez made the announcement that the university will provide students who need aid with $500 grants.

CUNY, the nation’s largest urban public university, serves 275,000 degree-seeking students whose median household income is about $40,000 a year, with nearly 40 percent from families earning less than $20,000,” he wrote in a public statement. “Almost half of our students work while in school, and many now find their jobs and incomes eliminated, drastically reduced or otherwise imperiled — exacerbating financial pressures and challenges including food and housing insecurity and lack of access to health care.”

The fund was kickstarted by $1 million gifts from each the James and Judith K. Dimon Foundation and the Carroll and Milton Petrie Foundation. Other philanthropic and corporate donors provided for the fund as well.

Matos Rodriguez is also asking for small-dollar donations from individuals — whether they have a connection to CUNY or not — and a page on the official CUNY website has been designated for donations.

As the fund receives more donations, more students will be able to receive a grant, as it is $500 per student.

“Your donation — any amount matters — will go directly to students,” the chancellor’s message on the web page reads. “As the fund grows, we’ll provide more students with grants.”

Read more about this in this article: CUNY Emergency Relief Fund

Cuomo extends New York on Pause until May 15

Gov. Andrew Cuomo

New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo has extended his New York on Pause executive order until May 15.

The shutdown mandate, which was most recently extended until April 29, has been stretched yet again in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

“What happens after then? I don’t know,” Cuomo said. “We will see depending on what the data shows.”

Cuomo explained that this decision was made in coordination with other nearby states and that the numbers would have to show significant improvement before the shutdown can be lifted.

Read more about this in this article: The New York Times

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