Volume VII | June • 04 • 2020
Friends,

As we move toward the Phase 1 reopening of New York City on Monday, June 8th , we will keep you up to date with our emails on Thursdays as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to greatly impact our communities.

Please remember that a face mask must be worn when in public if social distancing is not possible. If you do not have access to a mask, watch and share our video on how to make one yourself.

Remember, as we go into this weekend and continue to offer virtual programming, resources, and support to our communities, I ask that you be safe, be united, be peaceful, and continue to protect yourself from COVID-19.

-Eric
NYC PHASE 1 REOPENING
BREAKING BREAD, BUILDING BONDS
MASK DISTRIBUTION
Mask distribution will continue throughout the week into the weekend.
Click on the images above for more information, including dates and locations.

UPDATES AND IMPORTANT INFORMATION
 
  • As of 1:45 PM on Thursday, June 4th, there are 202,319 confirmed COVID-19 cases in New York City and 55,889 confirmed cases in Brooklyn. As of 1:45 PM on Thursday, June 4th, there were 16,992 confirmed deaths citywide, with an additional 4,760 probable deaths, including 5,160 confirmed deaths, and an 1,634 additional probable deaths in Brooklyn.
 
EDUCATION
  • Mayor de Blasio and Chancellor Carranza announced that New York City public schools are remote learning and are closed until September 2020. The DOE will provide computers and internet access to every student who needs it. Call (718) 935-5100 (press 5). Parents and guardians of students with disabilities can send questions to specialeducation@schools.nyc.gov. As per Mayor de Blasio, non-public school New York City students with disabilities are eligible for free iPads.
  • "Let's Learn NYC!", the new educational public television program produced by the WNET Group in partnership with the New York City Department of Education (DOE), features lessons for children in 3K through second grade that will supplement remote learning. More information can be found here.
  • Women.NYC, which is powered by the New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC), released a downloadable guide for free and low-cost tech courses in New York City.
  • NYN Media has a series of upcoming free webinars for those in the non-profit community.
  • Generation Citizen has provided free online resources to stay educated during the pandemic.
  • Mayor de Blasio and School Chancellor Carranza announced a summer learning plan in which schools will begin to notify families in June if their student(s) need or are recommended to participate.
 
HEALTH
  • As per Mayor de Blasio, COVID-19 testing will be made available to all New Yorkers. COVID-19 testing sites are available in your area with new ones being added on an ongoing basis. To find the one nearest you, visit the state website [New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) website], the City's website [New York City's COVID-19 Information Portal], or type "COVID testing near me" in Google Maps.
  • You can also sign up for a COVID-19 antibody survey appointment. Visit nyc.bioreference.com/antibodysurveyor or call 1 (888) 279-0967.
  • Crisis Text Line has support resources and counselors available for free 24/7 for frontline and essential workers. Text NYFRONTLINE to 741-741 to be connected, or visit www.crisistextline.org.
  • New York City is now offering free, on-site diagnostic coronavirus tests to all 169 nursing homes across the five boroughs.
  • The NYC Department of Health (NYCDOHMH) has provided a website with data on COVID-19, updated on an ongoing basis.
  • Mayor de Blasio announced an emergency financial relief program for survivors of domestic and gender-based violence to provide funding for immediate safety, economic, and housing needs currently exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Helpful resources that are currently available include the agency website, the "NYC HOPE" resource directory, and the Resources for Survivors During COVID-19 page.
  • The City has announced that anyone with a fever, cough, shortness of breath, and symptoms such as loss of smell and taste can get tested for COVID-19. Anyone who has been in close contact with a confirmed COVID-19 patient is also eligible for testing. Workers in nursing homes, homeless shelters, and adult care facilities are eligible as well, regardless of whether they have symptoms. The City is opening a dozen new testing sites, in addition to their existing publicly run sites.
  • If you need mental health support, the New York Emotional Support Hotline is (844) 863-9314.
  • There are church sites available for COVID-19 testing; the list can be found here. To schedule an appointment, call the New York State Department of Health Coronavirus Hotline at 1 (888) 364-3065.
  • The New York Peace Institute has online resources to mitigate stress with tools such as meditation.
  • As per Governor Cuomo, hospitals will be prioritizing COVID-19 testing for children showing symptoms of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C).
  • If you are feeling sick, please wait three to four days before contacting a doctor. Use telemedicine services BEFORE going to the doctor's office, urgent care, or the ER. Thanks to our advocacy and Governor Cuomo's leadership, co-pays for telemedicine consultations have been eliminated due to COVID-19. Call (800) 633-4227 or your doctor for more information if you are on Medicaid. Whether you utilize Medicaid, private insurance, or are a self-payer, options are offered across many specialty areas. Urgent care telemedicine is available with New York-PresbyterianMount Sinai, or NYU Langone. Mental health telemedicine is available with Columbia Doctors. Diabetes telemedicine help is available with NYC Health + Hospitals. If you know other services, email askeric@brooklynbp.nyc.gov.
  • The City has created a new, online portal that will allow New Yorkers to self-report COVID-19 data, helping the City to communicate with affected members of the public and assist in the identification of areas that may require an enhanced response. By going online or calling 311, New Yorkers can quickly input information about themselves and legal guardians can add information for children or adults in their care. New Yorkers can update their status at any time through the portal or by calling 311. The portal is available in 11 languages: Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, English, French, Haitian Creole, Korean, Polish, Russian, Spanish, and Urdu. It is not intended as a mechanism for providing medical advice or treatment and should not be relied upon as a method to obtain medical care or emergency service. Personal information will be stored securely and only accessible to City employees protecting public health. It will not be accessible by ICE or used for law enforcement or any other purpose.
  • New York Road Runners has released an online portal to keep you "Active at Home." Additionally, their new online resource, NYRR Striders at Home, offers exercises and activities for our senior community.
  • New York City Health and Hospitals (H+H) will hire 1,000 an additional people with an immediate start date. Contact tracers should have public health backgrounds and an understanding of racism and its impact on underrepresented communities. Details on the scope of work, job requirements, salary, benefits, and how to apply are available here.

FINANCIAL SUPPORT
  • The NYC Department of Small Business Services (SBS) Commissioner Jonnel Doris announced the launch of the Home Health Aide (HHA) Program to support the City’s long-term care sector during the COVID-19 crisis. Interested candidates should visit nyc.gov/healthcaretraining for more information.
  • The New York Forward Loan Fund is open for pre-application, making $100 million available to small businesses, with a focus on MWBEs and those with 20 or fewer employees that didn't receive Federal PPP loans. Small businesses and non-profits that are in industries and regions that have not yet reopened can begin preparing a pre-application here.
  • Unemployed New Yorkers can access support at the New York State Bar Association (NYSBA)'s new website, NYSBA.org/legalhelp, which was set up to provide resources for filing an unemployment claim. If needed, NYSBA will match people with a pro bono attorney.
  • The Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce has launched the Bring Back Brooklyn Fund to support small businesses that have been shut out of other COVID-19-related loan programs, with 65 percent earmarked for minority and/or women-owned business enterprises (MWBE). The Bring Back Brooklyn Fund will offer no-interest recovery loans between $500 and $30,000. You can contribute to the effort here.
  • The New York Legal Assistance Group (NYLAG) launched the NY COVID-19 Legal Resource Hotline to help New York City residents impacted by COVID-19 get answers to their legal questions on issues including unemployment benefits, employee rights, housing, public benefits, consumer debt, advance planning, stimulus payments, and special education issues. Call (929) 356-9582 Monday-Friday 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM to leave a message with your name and contact information or visit nylag.org/hotline for more information.
  • Tax Day has been pushed back to Wednesday, July 15th. The New York City Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) is now providing virtual and assisted self-prep free tax prep services. New Yorkers who earned $64,000 or less in 2019 are eligible for Virtual Free Tax Preparation with a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA)/Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) certified preparer. New Yorkers who earned $69,000 or less in 2019 are eligible for free Assisted Self-Preparation; filers will need access to a computer, tablet, or smartphone; a stable internet connection. Services are currently offered in English, Spanish, French, Haitian Creole, Russian, and Arabic, with others to come. 
  • DCWP's Office of Financial Empowerment has transitioned all financial counseling and coaching programs to offer services remotely. Book an appointment here.
 
FOOD PANTRY/FOOD ASSISTANCE
  • All students who would have received a free or reduced-price meal at school are now eligible for additional food assistance through Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT). This includes undocumented students, students whose private schools participate in the National School Lunch Program, and students in districts that implement the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP). New York City families will receive an additional $5.70 for every day school has been closed to purchase foods available through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
  • School sites are open for grab-and-go meals this week, from 7:30 AM to 1:30 PM, outside of main entrances of every school building. The program is now open to anyone who wants food, no questions asked. Go to schools.nyc.gov, or text "FOOD" or "COMIDA" to 877-877 for lists of where meals are being served.
  • New Yorkers can use their SNAP benefits to order online.
  • The City has streamlined the home delivery of meals to seniors and is working to support our food pantries, which are critical partners in these efforts. In the interim, you can find a list of key resources at nyc.gov/GetFood or by calling 311 and saying "Get Food."
  • Hunter College New York City Food Policy Center has partnered with Share Meals, Hunger Free America, BetaNYC, and Plentiful to compile a listing and guide on food resources available to New Yorkers.
 
GENERAL
  • Governor Cuomo announced the city is on track to opening on Monday, June 8th. 
  • New York City COVID-19 Response Maps are available online.
  • As part of the NYC Open Streets, you can see which streets are open street locations here.
  • Governor Cuomo announced that religious services with 10 or fewer people will be permitted in New York State.
  • You can do your part to secure respect, money, and resources by filling out the 2020 Census. Please fill out the Census online and #MakeBrooklynCount.
  • Visit MutualAid.NYC for information on groups and individuals working on mutual aid in their communities, as well as if you need help or can help. 
  • The New York City Office of Emergency Management and the Mayor's Office of Animal Welfare announced the launch of the NYC COVID-19 Pet Hotline. Pet Hotline operators can be reached directly at (877) 204-8821, from 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM daily.
  • As per Governor Cuomo, all registered voters may apply for an Absentee Ballot to vote in the upcoming June 23rd elections.
  • All publicly permitted events that were scheduled in the month of May and June have been cancelled.
  • Per Mayor de Blasio, the New York Police Department (NYPD) will focus its social distancing enforcement on large gatherings moving forward. Civilian ambassadors, houses of worship, and community groups will help educate people and hand out face coverings; this follows guidance shared from Borough President Adams.
  • If you or your house of worship would like to sign up to participate in our rolling 24-hour prayer initiative, go to brooklyn-usa.org/24hrs-of-prayer to share and commit to the day you are planning to hold your vigil.
  • Free and low-cost childcare options during the COVID-19 crisis are available through Workers Need Childcare, for parents and caregivers in New York City's essential workforce.
  • Worried about having to self-isolate in a dangerous home situation? Co-quarantined with an abuser? Please reach out and contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline. Call 1 (800) 799-7233, TTY 1 (800) 787-3224, or chat online at thehotline.org.
  • For veterans and their families, the NYC Veterans Alliance has a list of resources on their website.
  • While all Brooklyn Public Library branches are closed until further notice, services and programming are still available online at their website.
  • If you see price gouging, report it to 1 (800) 697-1220, fill out the complaint form on the New York State Attorney General's website, or email askeric@brooklynbp.nyc.gov.
 
HOUSING
  • The Rent Guidelines Board has resources regarding its upcoming meetings, hearings, and testimony registration online here
  • A statewide eviction moratorium is currently in effect, including residential and commercial properties as well as foreclosures, according to the Office of Court Administration. The eviction moratorium has been extended to Thursday, August 20th, and Governor Cuomo has also announced the State is banning late payments or fees for missed rent payments during the eviction moratorium, as well as allowing renters facing financial hardship due to COVID-19 to use their security deposit as payment and repay their security deposit over time.
  • Utilities have been ordered to not shut off service for gas, water, or electricity. Internet services will not be cut off during this time.
  • For New Yorkers requiring quarantine or isolation, NYC Health + Hospitals is offering free hotel rooms for up to 14 days if there is a need for a place to isolate. Call (844) NYC-4NYC (844-692-4692) and press "0".
  • NYCHA's journal has information about how they are responding to COVID-19. Information is available here about hardship reductions for NYCHA residents struggling to pay rent.
  • As per Mayor de Blasio, all tax lien sales will be postponed until late June. 
  • National Grid customers should be aware of a phone scam demanding immediate bill payment and threatening service disconnection. Learn ways to protect yourself and your family here.
 
TRANSPORTATION
  • Mayor de Blasio announced that the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT)'s Staten Island Ferry will return to 30-minute service frequency during the morning (5:00 AM to 9:00 AM) and evening (3:30 PM to 7:30 PM) rush hours.
  • The Driver Resource Center launched by the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) offers a wide range of services to all TLC-licensed drivers and medallion owner-drivers.
  • Alternate Side Parking (ASP) is suspended until Sunday, June 7th. Parking meters are still in effect. 
  • There is currently no subway service from 1:00 AM to 5:00 AM to allow for cleaning and disinfecting of trains and stations. The "MTA Overnight" page provides details on the service changes.

For City alerts in English, text COVID to 692-692.
For City alerts in Spanish, text COVIDESP to 692-692.
Looking For More COVID-19 Resources?
COVID-19 Updates have been moved to a Thursday email schedule.
In case you missed the previous COVID-19 email update, click the above image.

Follow us on social media: