On Sunday, Mayor Bill de Blasio doubled down on his remarks to close citywide public schools through the remainder of the academic year.
He cited the high level of support distance learning has. Additionally, Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza said 175,000 remote learning devices have been distributed thus far.
Addressing his spat with Governor Cuomo over closing schools Saturday, the mayor said “this is not about legal jurisdiction, it’s a moral question and closing schools is the right thing to do.”
The mayor went on to say:
As of 5 P.M. Saturday, New York City's death toll from the virus is 5,742, according to city officials. There have been 98,715 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the city, and an estimated 27,457 hospitalizations, according to officials.
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“My message to all New Yorkers is to keep the faith,” the mayor said, indicating the number of intubations were down this past week, while the need for PPE supplies has leveled.
One week ago, 200 to 300 people were going into hospitals required intubation. That number is now down to 70 people per day, de Blasio said.
As of now, frontline emergency workers have the personal protective equipment, or PPE, that they need including masks, gloves and gowns. However, surgical gowns and face guards will need to be resupplied by next week, de Blasio said.
By the end of next week, the mayor said extended testing will be readily available in five locations in the city.
- East New York, Brooklyn
- Morrisania, The Bronx
- Harlem, Manhattan
- Jamaica, Queens
- Clifton, Staten Island
Currently, testing is widely available to hospitalized patients, health care workers and first responders.
The mayor said these are targeted communities where there is a “clear disparity” that needs to be addressed.
De Blasio was also critical of the federal government, saying it needs to step. He’s asking for 110,000 individualized testing kits. 25,000 of those would focus on health and hospitals, he added. “They have not been doing what we needed,” the mayor said.
Effective Monday, the mayor said all essential city workers must wear face coverings when interacting with the public while on duty. 1.4 million face coverings have already been provided to city workers.
On the topic of employment, de Blasio said health and hospitals is hiring 500 non-clinical staff, including patient transport, clerical and cleaning staff. He called these jobs 90-day assignments that could serve as a “real lifeline” for families. He is encouraging anyone to apply through their website.
The mayor went on to assure the undocumented that the city of New York will protect “regardless of status.”