Coronavirus Blog

Cuomo Said He’ll Decide If Schools Reopen. Now He Says It’s Up to Parents, Teachers.

BY Jillian Jorgensen

Days after New York City and other school districts had to submit their plans for reopening, Gov. Andrew Cuomo promptly cast doubt on them.

"I don't care what any bureaucrat says — I trust the parents more than anyone. And I don't care if a school district says reopen; if they don't have a plan for reopening, no kids are going to come and no teachers are going to come, then you have no reopening,” Cuomo said at a coronavirus briefing Monday.

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De Blasio Denies His 32-Page School Reopening Plan Is Thin on Details

BY Shanel Dawson

Mayor Bill de Blasio denies his school reopening plan, coming in at a few dozen pages, is thin on details, calling it “a very elaborate structure.”

His comments come after the Cuomo administration criticized New York City’s school reopening plan over the weekend. On Sunday, senior Cuomo official Jim Malatras said the de Blasio administration’s 32-page reopening plan was comparable to an “outline” and not as extensive as other school districts, like Yonkers, which submitted an 80-page report.

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NYC Restaurants Were Already Struggling Due to the Pandemic. Now, There's Isaias.

BY Angi Gonzalez

More than ever before, restaurant owners are at the mercy of Mother Nature.

Restricted to outdoor dining because of coronavirus concerns, a storm is more than just an inconvenience. The heavy rain and strong winds forecast for Tuesday will come at a cost for the owner and founder of the coffee shop chain Cocoa Grinder.

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Update: Columbia University Maintenance Workers Reach Deal to Avoid Strike

BY Michael Herzenberg

NEW YORK - It looks like there won't be a strike by maintenance workers and security guards at Columbia University. The union representing more than 600 cleaners, electricians, plumbers, painters, and security officers at four Columbia campuses says the two sides have agreed in principle to a two-year contract.

The big sticking point for TWU Local 241 was a hike in health care costs.

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Fighting Domestic Violence and Hunger in Harlem

BY Roger Clark

NEW YORK - At an NYPD Stop the Violence event in Harlem, Stephanie McGraw and her staff and volunteers handed out meals, something they have been doing since late April.

McGraw and her 10-year old non-profit called "We All Really Matter" or W.A.R.M. have added food distribution six days a week to their original mission of supporting victims of domestic abuse in Harlem. With help from World Central Kitchen, they have distributed more than 22,000 meals.

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Will Live Music Concerts Survive the Pandemic?

BY Lydia Hu

NEW YORK - The live music industry was one of the first to feel the effects of the pandemic when travel slowed and large gatherings were banned. Now some industry veterans who normally work behind the scenes are stepping forward, raising concerns about the industry’s ability to bounce back as the public health crisis wears on.

“At the very best, it’s this time next year when we’re going back to work, and that’s the very best,” said Rich Nesin, a veteran of the music industry. He’s a concert tour manager with more than four decades in the business.

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Coronavirus Brings New Reasons to Get Your Flu Shot

BY Lydia Hu
UPDATED 10:32 AM ET Aug. 01, 2020

It’s time for New Yorkers to plan when and where they will get their vaccine — not the coronavirus vaccine, which is still being developed — the flu vaccine.

City officials expect the first shipment of this year's flu vaccine to arrive in mid- to late-August.

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Happy Customers Get Inked Again at Daredevil Tattoo on the Lower East Side

BY Stephanie Simon
UPDATED 6:29 AM ET Jul. 31, 2020

NEW YORK - Daredevill Tattoo been a downtown fixture for more than 20 years. Located in the heart of New York City's tattoo history and culture, it closed during the shutdown because of the coronavirus pandemic. It has reopened and hopes customers can adjust to a new normal.

One very happy customer is Danny Burton, who's been coming for 20 years. While he got a Statue of Liberty tattoo and he expressed no worries about the safety of being at the shop.

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Positive Coronavirus Cases Will Trigger 14-Day Classroom or School Closures, City Says

BY Jillian Jorgensen
UPDATED 8:33 AM ET Jul. 31, 2020

NEW YORK - The city will shut down classrooms or even entire schools for fourteen days if students or staff test positive for the coronavirus in the upcoming school year, Mayor de Blasio and Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza announced Thursday.

The procedures are part of the city’s testing and tracing protocols for schools, which are set to partially re-open for what’s called “blended learning” -- students attend in-person some days and learning remotely on others -- this September.

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State Cracks Down on NYC Bars While Revelers Party in the Hamptons

BY Zack Fink
UPDATED 11:03 AM ET Jul. 30, 2020

NEW YORK - Over the weekend images came to light of a concert given in the tony town of Southampton on Long Island by the Chainsmokers.

The party, which featured a DJ set from the CEO of Goldman Sachs, seemed to clearly violate social distancing protocols. And Governor Andrew Cuomo said he was appalled.

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President Trump's Call to Delay Election is 'Act of a Tyrant,' Mayor Says

BY Kathleen Culliton

NEW YORK — Donald Trump’s suggestion to delay the 2020 presidential election is “the act of a tyrant,” Mayor Bill de Blasio told reporters Thursday.

"He knows he's going to lose the election so he's calling for it to be postponed,” de Blasio said. "That's an assault on democracy and it will not stand."

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How to Help New Yorkers Who Can’t Pay Rent

BY Errol Louis

With hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers out of work and federal unemployment assistance scheduled to run out this week, the city’s housing crisis is expected to only grow worse. Advocates have been working on extending the state’s moratorium on evictions, but, as NY1 has reported, hundreds have already been filed in the city. Errol Louis spoke with Matthew Murphy of the Furman Center at New York University about what will happen without further government action.

Main story image: Seth Wenig/AP.

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Judge Temporarily Blocks ‘Public Charge’ Rule During Coronavirus Pandemic

BY Spectrum News Staff and Associated Press

A federal judge on Wednesday blocked the “public charge” rule — which allows the government to deny legal permanent residency to many immigrants who have received public benefits — during the coronavirus pandemic and while a legal challenge makes its way through lower courts.

#BREAKING: We secured an injunction to block the Public Charge rule from taking effect during the #COVID19 pandemic and while our legal challenge is pending. This is a major victory to protect the health of our communities across New York and the entire nation.

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Cuomo Says Raising Taxes on Billionaires is Not the Answer to State Budget Woes

BY Zack Fink

Although Gov. Andrew Cuomo has demanded that the next federal stimulus package contain billions of dollars in aid for states, including New York, Republicans who control the U.S. Senate have made clear that won’t be part of it.

In a conference call with reporters on Tuesday, Cuomo wanted to lay out what that will mean for the average New Yorker.

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Bronx Businesses Looking to Capitalize on the Yankees' Return

BY Alyssa Paolicelli
UPDATED 7:47 AM ET Jul. 30, 2020

With no fans allowed in the stands because of the coronavirus, businesses in the shadow of Yankee Stadium along River Avenue are striking out.

The bars, restaurants, and sports memorabilia shops on the avenue depend on fans attending games for as much as 90 percent of their revenue.

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2021 Race for Mayor is Heating Up, But No Clear Progressive Candidate Has Emerged

BY Gloria Pazmino

The mayor's race of 2021 is being defined by the pandemic summer of 2020.

Whoever occupies City Hall next will have more than the usual full plate: The city is in an economic tailspin and likely won’t be out of it by 2022. One million people and counting are out of work. Coronavirus ravaged the five boroughs in ways New Yorkers are still struggling to comprehend, and now a slow reopening effort is a daily reminder the New York City of the not-so-distant past may not return for a while.

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Giants Lineman Opts Out of 2020 NFL Season Due to Coronavirus Concerns

BY Spectrum News Staff
UPDATED 4:58 PM ET Jul. 29, 2020

New York Giants' offensive tackle Nate Solder on Wednesday became the team's first player to opt out of the 2020 NFL season due to coronavirus concerns.

Solder released a statement explaining that his young son is battling cancer and that he's putting their health before football. Solder is also a cancer survivor himself.

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Challenging the Media, de Blasio Defends His View of New York

BY Kathleen Culliton
UPDATED 1:36 PM ET Jul. 29, 2020

NEW YORK CITY — Reporters are granted two questions during daily novel coronavirus press briefings with the New York City mayor and, on Wednesday, one journalist used both of hers to quiz Bill de Blasio about his grasp of reality.

“More and more at these briefings you’ve challenged the premise of questions posed to you by some of the biggest new outlets in this city,” New York Post reporter Julia Marsh said. “Insisting there’s a fallacy in the very question rather than answering directly."

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These Federal Pandemic Protections Are Coming to an End

BY Lydia Hu

NEW YORK - Millions of Americans who lost a job because of the pandemic will now lose federal aid this weekend. The weekly $600 provided by the federal pandemic unemployment compensation program is ending.

Congressional leaders indicated another stimulus bill is unlikely to pass until August. While the White House and senate Republicans suggest possible short term relief, Democrats insist on a long term solution. In any case, how much aid that could be delivered, and for how long, remains unclear Saturday. Also, the federal moratorium on evictions ended Friday, which means millions of Americans could soon face an eviction action, too. As states around the country are rolling back eviction moratoriums, tenants in New York continue to have protection. The Tenant Safe Habor Act co-sponsored by Senator Brad Hoylman and signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo in late June protects financially burdened residential tenants from eviction over any unpaid rent due during the COVID-19 crisis. “We needed to make sure we are not throwing tenants out on the street and that’s why it is so crucial that we passed these eviction protections,” said Hoylman. But the act does not forgive missed rent payments, which could still end up being a money judgment tenants would have to pay. “Tenants may not able to pay that money any time soon. It’s not like you snap your fingers and you’re back at work and you can pay rent. That’s not the case for most New Yorkers,” said Hoylman. That could be a problem for New Yorkers who relied on the disappearing federal aid to help pay rent. That’s why senator Hoylman and other lawmakers continue their calls on Washington to extend the federal unemployment relief.

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Acclaimed Actors Raise Money for Struggling Colleagues

BY Roma Torre
UPDATED 4:24 PM ET Jul. 28, 2020

A new podcast is bringing a star-studded cast together to perform short comedy plays, all to raise money for Feeding America and the Actors Fund.

NY1's Roma Torre spoke with Andrea Martin, one of the many big names featured on the podcast. She's an award-winning actor known for her roles in films such as My Big Fat Greek Wedding and Broadway, where she won her second Tony co-starring as the trapeze swinging grandma in the hit musical revival of Pippin.

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Strange Dreams? It Might be the Pandemic.

BY Elina Tarkazikis

People have been reporting more vivid or unusual dreams, in addition to trouble sleeping, during the pandemic.

Trauma, stress, and changes in routines and schedules can all impact the sleep cycle, according to sleep experts.

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Republican Stimulus Plan Will Mean Mass NYC Layoffs, Mayor Says

BY Kathleen Culliton

NEW YORK CITY — Thousands of New York City workers would lose their jobs under the novel coronavirus stimulus package unveiled by the Republican Senate, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Tuesday.

“We won’t be able to save the jobs, we won’t be able to restart the economy,” de Blasio said. “The Republican Senate plan just doesn’t work.”

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How Is the City’s Economy? We’re Putting a Number On It

BY Spectrum News Staff
UPDATED 6:20 AM ET Jul. 28, 2020

NEW YORK - If 100 marks the state of the city economy pre-pandemic, today the New York economy would be rated 23, at least according to our new recovery index.

Data has been key in the fight against the spread of coronavirus. Both Mayor Bill de Blasio and Governor Andrew Cuomo release daily medical statistics showing death rates, hospitalizations and virus test results. By now every New Yorker knows what it means to “flatten the curve,” and we’re all familiar with the governor’s bar charts that he eventually turned into the “COVID Mountain.”

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Public Advocate Jumaane Williams Calls for Delaying Start of School

BY Jillian Jorgensen
UPDATED 6:47 PM ET Jul. 27, 2020

Public Advocate Jumaane Williams is calling on the city to delay the start of the school year until at least October.

"We want to make sure that there's some more time. We think that opening up in September is just way too early,” Williams said.

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Camp for Developmentally Disabled Students Finally Able to Open Monday

BY Amanda Farinacci
UPDATED 5:40 PM ET Jul. 27, 2020

Every in the summer, the sounds of children echo across the Harold Kaufmann Campgrounds, where two camps from the nearby Jewish Community Center operate.

For ten summers, Nataly Hernandez has been among them at Marvin's Camp, an oasis designed for those with developmental disabilities. But a state agency would not permit Marvin's Camp to open earlier this summer — even as it allowed traditional day camps, including one operated here by the JCC — to open.

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Stimulus Checks Stolen By Abusive Spouses

BY Kathleen Culliton

NEW YORK CITY — Pria Sibal listened over the telephone as her client — an out-of-work mother of three who years ago escaped an abusive partner — wept tears of rage at what her husband had done.

He’d taken her stimulus check.

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Botched Renovation Means Brooklyn Building Goes Month Without Mail, Tenants Say

BY Kathleen Culliton
UPDATED 8:01 AM ET Jul. 29, 2020

NEW YORK — After five long years of jumping bureaucratic hurdles, all one Cobble Hill mom needed to begin her dream job as a therapist was a piece of paper certifying her social work credentials.

But botched renovations in the lobby of her deluxe Warren Street apartment complex have put that dream on hold and left dozens of her neighbors in limbo waiting for a service protected under New York City’s Housing Maintenance Code: the right to receive mail.

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Violent NYC Weekend Puts Mayor On The Defensive

BY Kathleen Culliton

NEW YORK CITY — A violent weekend that left a 16-year-old dead forced Mayor Bill de Blasio to defend once again his administration’s handling of an uptick in crime and mounting tensions between police and the communities they serve.

“We’re dealing with an extraordinarily high bar here in terms of the hand we have been dealt.” de Blasio said. “All the combined crisis and challenges together have created an aberrant situation.”

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All Aboard the Sludge Boat, the City's Most Surprising Tool in the Fight Against Coronavirus

BY Roger Clark
UPDATED 8:06 AM ET Jul. 27, 2020

You have probably heard of the Circle Line and the Staten Island Ferry, but what about the sludge boat? Yes, it's an actual vessel that cruises the waterways of New York City.

We took a ride on the Port Richmond, one of five tankers in the City Department of Environmental Protection's fleet. The 290-foot-long vessel is used by the DEP to transport sludge, the organic material removed during the wastewater treatment process, between some of its 14 wastewater resource recovery facilities. On board the boat we hitched a ride on, the liquid sludge was headed to a plant in the Bronx that turns it to solid sludge.

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Who Will Get a Coronavirus Vaccine First — And Who Decides?

BY Maddie Burakoff

MILWAUKEE (SPECTRUM NEWS) — Across the world, scientists are racing to craft an effective coronavirus vaccine, with more than 160 candidates in various stages of development. Researchers in the U.K. and the U.S. recently published promising results, and government officials have projected that a vaccine will be available by the end of the year.

But with demand for vaccine doses spanning the entire world, the distribution will mean more time will pass before many Americans actually get their shot. So, when the first limited doses arrive, who gets dibs?

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Stuck in Ghana with No Way Home, New Yorkers Plan to Sue US Government

BY Amy Yensi
UPDATED 7:55 PM ET Jul. 26, 2020

A line wrapped around the block outside the Ethiopian Airlines office in Ghana shortly after the U.S. Embassy announced the airline would operate a special flight to the United States on July 30. The line of people trying to get back home stretched as far as the eye can see.

Pamela Ama, a United States citizen, waited for hours, hoping to land one of the $1400 tickets.

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Florida Surpasses New York in Coronavirus Cases

BY Spectrum News Staff

Florida now has more confirmed coronavirus cases than New York State.

While New York was once the epicenter of the pandemic, Florida has now recorded more than 414,000 cases. It recorded nearly 77,000 cases in the last week.

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With Federal Unemployment Relief Ending, New Yorkers Glimpse an Uncertain Future

BY Lydia Hu
UPDATED 4:51 PM ET Jul. 25, 2020

Millions of Americans who lost a job because of the pandemic will now lose federal aid this weekend. The weekly $600 provided by the federal pandemic unemployment compensation program is ending.

Congressional leaders indicated another stimulus bill is unlikely to pass until August. While the White House and Senate Republicans suggest possible short-term relief, Democrats insist on a long-term solution. In any case, how much aid that could be delivered, and for how long, remains unclear Saturday.

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Mets Start Coronavirus-Shortened Season with a Win at Citi Field

BY Spectrum News Staff

Jacob deGrom pitched five shutout innings, Yoenis Céspedes homered, and the Mets scored a 1-0 win over the Atlanta Braves in their season opener Friday afternoon at Citi Field.

Cespedes hadn't played a regular-season MLB game in over two years due to injury before Friday, but the Mets' outfielder looked as if he hadn't missed a beat when he launched a solo home run of Atlanta reliever Chris Martin in the bottom of the seventh.

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Public Schools Will Offer Phys Ed, With Precautions, This Fall

BY Jillian Jorgensen
UPDATED 6:56 PM ET Jul. 24, 2020

Teaching elementary school students physical education during a pandemic required some creativity by teacher Ben Paquette. That included him doing jumping jacks in a t-rex costume.

"It was definitely a quick learning curve to figure out how to move something that’s so physical onto an online platform," Paquette said.

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Does the Coronavirus Pandemic Spell the End for Small Music Venues?

BY Roger Clark
UPDATED 7:43 AM ET Jul. 23, 2020

NEW YORK - There may not be a live audience, but singer/songwriter and Queens native Jesse Malin puts his all into his performances from Bowery Electric, the East Village club he co-owns. He has been producing weekly live streams that he calls "The Fine Art of Self-Distancing." It's an an effort that began in his apartment on an iPhone when the pandemic erupted.

"It's kind of a way to support what's happening, keep awareness going and try and entertain the troops during these times,” said Malin, who has been a fixture in the Downtown music scene since he was a teenager.

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Stranded in Ghana: Hundreds of Americans Say U.S. Failing to Bring Them Home Months into Pandemic

BY Amy Yensi
UPDATED 1:44 PM ET Jul. 23, 2020

NEW YORK - Nova Felder of Queens flew from New York to the west African nation of Ghana in March. It was supposed to be a 17-day trip, to the country where his parents were born.

On March 13, however, Ghana's president closed the borders indefinitely and halted all flights into and out of the country, an effort to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

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State Liquor Authority Says 'Substantial Food' Must Be Sold with Alcohol While Dining Out

BY Justine Re
UPDATED 3:27 PM ET Jul. 23, 2020

NEW YORK - Updated guidance from the State Liquor Authority has restaurants and bars scrambling with the latest guidance, which requires diners to order "substantial food" when ordering alcohol. That means chips and small bar snacks just won't be enough.

“Now we have to take time out to explain to people that they can’t just order a beer and a bag of chips and they have to order more,” said the owner of Lowery Bar & Kitchen, Anne Muldoon.

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How National Retail Chain Closures Are Impacting Locals

BY Jeanine Ramirez
UPDATED 8:51 PM ET Jul. 22, 2020

J.C. Penney gets top billing on signs at the Gateway Center. It's one of the anchor tenants at the expansive outdoor mall in East New York, Brooklyn, and has helped to make Gateway a shopping destination. But the J.C. Penney chain filed for bankruptcy in May, and is one of about half a dozen major retailers here that's having trouble staying afloat.

"These are businesses that I saw growing up so just to see them go out is disappointing,” one shopper said.

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This Food Pantry Provider Plans to Deliver 109 Million Pounds of Food in 2020 Due to COVID Food Crisis

BY Amanda Farinacci
UPDATED 8:05 PM ET Jul. 22, 2020

Workers at the City Harvest warehouse pack bags of food, filling them with produce, canned goods and pantry items like potatoes and rice. They are able to fill as many as 40 pallets a day with these packages, far more than what they did before the coronavirus pandemic.

Jim Dunne is the director of warehouse operations at City Harvest.

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Stop & Shop Workers Fight to Get Hazard Pay Reinstated

BY Justine Re

Wally Waugh lives in Rosedale, Queens and works as a front-line manager at a Stop & Shop in Nassau County.

“Emotionally it’s taxing. We’ve seen people get sick. And mentally, it’s taxing because we go in each and every day knowing we may bring something home,” Waugh said.

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Queens Teen Loses Both Parents to COVID-19 in One Month

BY Clodagh McGowan
UPDATED 12:59 PM ET Jul. 21, 2020

QUEENS, N.Y. - Seventeen year-old Roberto Tobias Jr. thinks a lot about his parents these days. His mom, Loida, was a nurse at Harlem Hospital.

“She was such a small woman, but she managed to accomplish so many trials and so many feats,” said Tobias.

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NYC Seeing Coronavirus Test Result Delays of as Long as 14 Days

BY Emily Ngo
UPDATED 8:28 PM ET Jul. 21, 2020

Julio Peña took a COVID test two weeks ago at the Brooklyn Army Terminal, a Health + Hospitals site.

“They said that the results were going to come back in six days, but it’s been well over six days," Peña said. "And I think we’re going on 14 — this is the 14th day that I haven’t gotten my results.”

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City to Amp Up Social Distancing Enforcement at Bars and Restaurants, Mayor Says

BY Juan Manuel Benitez , Angi Gonzalez and Kathleen Culliton
UPDATED 10:25 PM ET Jul. 20, 2020

NEW YORK — Restaurants and bars will see more social distancing enforcement after overcrowding at an Astoria bar spurred police to shut it down last weekend, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Monday.

“No one wants to shut down bars or restaurants,” de Blasio said. “If we have to shut down a few of those, it is a hell of a lot better than seeing coronavirus resurge.”

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Phase Four in NYC Has Arrived. Here's What You Need to Know.

BY Kathleen Culliton and Rocco Vertuccio
UPDATED 6:25 AM ET Jul. 20, 2020

NEW YORK - The city is entering Phase Four of its reopening plan Monday, but with a number of restrictions still in place.

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the details on Friday but said New Yorkers need to proceed with caution.

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MTA Says Crews Are Up to the Mask Task as Ridership Increases

BY Justine Re
UPDATED 5:48 PM ET Jul. 20, 2020

The MTA calls them the Mask Force: 300 volunteers in bright yellow t-shirts handing out free masks to subway and bus riders.

It's part of Operation Respect, an initiative to keep MTA workers safe by making sure passengers are wearing masks in the transit system.

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Orthodox Jewish Chicken-Killing Ritual Raises Coronavirus Concerns In NYC

BY Kathleen Culliton
UPDATED 2:31 PM ET Jul. 18, 2020

NEW YORK CITY — Anti-Kapporos crusaders are relaunching a legal attack against the Orthodox Jewish ritual — which involves slitting throats of tens of thousands of live chickens in the streets of New York City — arguing the novel coronavirus pandemic presents new evidence it’s harmful to human health.

“This is a real danger now that needs to be recognized,” attorney Nora Marino said. “It’s not about what could happen, it’s about what has happened.”

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Queens Restaurant Defies City's Orders to Temporarily Stop Outdoor Dining After Throwing Massive Parties

BY Amy Yensi
UPDATED 5:45 PM ET Jul. 19, 2020

Just hours after the city banned outdoor dining at BRIK Astoria, the restaurant and bar was serving mimosas to patrons.

On Saturday night, sheriff deputies served the packed restaurant with a commissioner’s order for noncompliance of social-distancing rules, barring them from serving outdoors for a week. Despite this ban, we spotted the brunch crowd and staff carrying on as if nothing happened.

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Senator Schumer to Fight for $25 Billion in Funds for US Postal Service in Upcoming Economic Recovery Bill

BY Spectrum News NY1
UPDATED 4:10 PM ET Jul. 19, 2020

Senator Charles Schumer announced his plan Sunday to fight for billions of dollars for the United State’s Postal service, which has been crippled by the pandemic.

The senator said he’s planing to head back to Washington to discuss a coronavirus economic recovery bill, which he said needs to address the dire problems surrounding the postal service.

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NYC Phase 4 Reopening Won't Include Indoor Dining Or Concerts, Mayor and Governor Say

BY Kathleen Culliton
UPDATED 2:08 PM ET Jul. 16, 2020

NEW YORK CITY — Spiking novel coronavirus cases across the U.S. will limit the scope of New York City’s next reopening step, the mayor and governor said Thursday.

Both Mayor Bill de Blasio and Gov. Andrew Cuomo warned New Yorkers not to expect indoor activities to return when the city enters into Phase Four Monday.

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No Alcohol for NYers Unless Served With Food, Cuomo Says

BY Zack Fink and Spectrum News Staff
UPDATED 12:46 PM ET Jul. 16, 2020

NEW YORK - In his conference call Thursday, Governor Cuomo announced new restrictions on bars and restaurants to enforce compliance with social distancing protocols.

Starting today, establishments are now only permitted to serve alcohol to people who are ordering food, Cuomo said.

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Why Schools Chancellor Says Split School Schedule is a No-Go for Fall

BY Elina Tarkazikis

While New York City awaits word from the state on whether schools can reopen in the fall, Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza says the city has been exploring all options for the upcoming school year.

But he says a split schedule, which would offer a morning and afternoon shift, is no longer on the table.

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Parents of Special Needs Students to Demand In-Person Instruction in Lawsuit

BY Spectrum News Staff

Mayor Bill de Blasio, Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza and school districts across the country are named as defendants in a class action Manhattan federal lawsuit slated to be filed Friday by the parents of special needs students.

In a press release posted on the website, the plaintiffs allege that the school districts across the country "violated the federal civil rights" of the students when they sent them home for remote learning - or, as the release alleges, "no services at all" - when the pandemic hit in March.

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Debate Continues on a New Stimulus Bill

BY Jeevan Vittal

Thursday morning, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi expressed cautious optimism at the prospect of passing a new coronavirus stimulus package.

“Nobody is being asked to vote for something they haven’t voted for before,” she said.

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City To Offer Childcare For 100K Students When Schools Partially Reopen

BY Jillian Jorgensen and Kathleen Culliton
UPDATED 7:40 PM ET Jul. 16, 2020

NEW YORK — New York City will provide childcare to 100,000 New York City kids this fall as the Department of Education, in an attempt to protect students from novel coronavirus, offers in-school learning just two or three days a week.

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Thursday a public childcare program that will see kids supervised in public and private locations across the five boroughs.

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The High Line is Back Open, But Access Will be Very Different

BY Spectrum News Staff and Roger Clark
UPDATED 11:16 AM ET Jul. 16, 2020

NEW YORK - Another sign of the city's recovery from the pandemic is being marked Thursday as the High Line reopens to the public.

Strict social distancing rules will be in place and visitors will have to reserve a free, timed-ticket in advance.

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Some Have Outside-the-Box — and Outside-the-Classroom — Ideas for Returning to School

BY Jillian Jorgensen
UPDATED 8:59 AM ET Jul. 16, 2020

Some of those unhappy with the city's school re-opening plans are urging the education department to think outside the box — and outside the classroom.

"We’re all in this moment where like our mental health is really suffering and there is really something to be said for the outdoors,” teacher Liat Olenick said.

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Some Members of the Theater Community Flee NYC Amid Shutdown

BY Frank DiLella
UPDATED 8:58 AM ET Jul. 16, 2020

NEW YORK - Steven Lyon is an accomplished musician who’s played dozens of shows on Broadway, Radio City Music Hall and more. The Hell's Kitchen resident is used to earning more than $2,000 a week, but now he’s scraping by just to make ends meet.

What You Need To Know:

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PPE it Forward: New York Sending Medical Gear Down to Georgia

BY Spectrum News Staff

ALBANY, N.Y. - With New York's coronavirus numbers remaining stable, the state will send some of its personal protective equipment and test kits to Atlanta.

Friday's delivery will include hundreds of test kits, gowns, gloves, N-95 Masks, face shields.

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Strict Coronavirus Rules Force Some Nursing Homes to Keep Doors Shut

BY Justine Re
UPDATED 9:59 PM ET Jul. 15, 2020

Dr. Gerry Baker and her twin sister Dr. Audrey Baker have not been in the same room as their 105-year-old mother, Grace Marie Baker, since March. That's when the state banned all visits to nursing homes to protect their residents from the coronavirus.

Their mom lives at the Crown Heights Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation.

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NYC Parents Worried About Sending Their Children into School Buildings Can Now Sign Up for Fully Online Classes

BY Alex Zimmerman
UPDATED 6:05 PM ET Jul. 15, 2020

This story is reported by Chalkbeat, a Spectrum News partner.

As school leaders across New York City scramble to begin reopening their doors this fall, parents will face a choice that would have been unthinkable just a few months ago: to send their children back into school buildings or keep them at home.

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Wrap Your Brain Around This: Telehealth Is Transforming Neurosurgery

BY Lydia Hu

An athlete, Katelyn Bloss, 20, had always been in good health. When she began suffering migraines as a teenager, she thought they were from concussions she had while playing soccer competitively.

Bloss was at college in Connecticut in March when she felt another migraine coming on. But this time, it was the start of a three minute seizure.

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Brooklyn Catholic School Community Fights to Keep Doors Open

BY Alyssa Paolicelli
UPDATED 6:08 PM ET Jul. 14, 2020

Parents and students from the Queen of the Rosary Catholic Academy in Williamsburg took to the streets to protest, hoping to reverse the decision by the Diocese of Brooklyn to permanently close the school.

"Its not fair because we didn't get a chance," said one student who spoke with NY1.

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Top Cancer Doctor Warns Missed Screenings, Treatments Could Be Deadly

BY Roma Torre
UPDATED 5:16 PM ET Jul. 14, 2020

After New Yorkers spent months under lockdown due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, cancer treatments and screenings have dropped dramatically as a result. Now, health experts are urging patients to make necessary appointments for either missed treatments, or prevention screenings. Doing so, they say, will save lives.

In an interview with NY1’s Roma Torre, Doctor Jeffrey Drebin, the chair of the surgery department at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK), warned of the long-term impact on cancer patients unable to receive the care they need.

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Five New Yorkers Die of Coronavirus as Positive Test Rate Clocks in at 1.5 Percent

BY Spectrum News Staff

Five people in New York state died from the new coronavirus Monday, officials announced Tuesday, as 1.5 percent of all tests returned positive results.

COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths remain low and relatively stable in New York. In the past 24 hours, 912 people tested positive for the virus the state, on 64,045 tests performed.

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Legislators Head into Session Next Week. Will They Take up Rent Relief?

BY Zack Fink
UPDATED 4:10 PM ET Jul. 14, 2020

With tens of thousands of New Yorkers out of work because of coronavirus, tenants are trying to figure out how to pay backdated rent they from April.

With the legislature going into session next week, housing advocates are hopeful the legislature will take action to help those in need.

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More States Added to Quarantine List for Travelers Visiting New York

BY Zack Fink
UPDATED 1:17 PM ET Jul. 14, 2020

NEW YORK - After imposing mandatory 14-day quarantines on visitors to New York from states suffering high infection rates for COVID19, Governor Andrew Cuomo is adding a new layer of enforcement.

Starting Tuesday, July 14, all travelers from designated states will be required to fill out a form when they arrive by plane, detailing where they are going and where they have been.

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Mayor Celebrates $54.5M Coronavirus Emergency Fund As Crime Spikes

BY Kathleen Culliton

NEW YORK — As New York City grapples with a global pandemic, mounting tensions over police policies, and an uptick in violent crime that claimed the life of a 1-year-old boy, Mayor Bill de Blasio took a victory lap for raising millions of dollars for novel coronavirus emergency relief.

“You can see a lot of people are coming together to help New York City,” de Blasio said. “You can say there's endless need, but there’s also endless desire to help.”

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Governors Island is Ferry Ready for Visitors Once Again

BY Roger Clark

NEW YORK - It's been awhile since the Governors Island ferry has carried people eager for a little escape from the city. But the eight minute voyage from Lower Manhattan to the former military base turned park returns on Wednesday.

The Trust for Governors Island President and CEO Clare Newman said passengers will be socially distanced on the boats, as dictated by signage and announcements.

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Tens of thousands of New Yorkers have fallen sick from the coronavirus and the death toll keeps rising. Jobs have been lost, storefronts shuttered, hospitals overwhelmed. And many New Yorkers have seen their own lives changed in deeply personal ways.

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Tell us what is going on in your family, your job, your neighborhood. What are your daily struggles and your daily joys, your quiet fears and your hopes for the future?

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The 2019 novel coronavirus may cause mild to severe respiratory symptoms like:

  • cough
  • fever
  • trouble breathing and
  • pneumonia

The CDC believes symptoms may appear in as few as 2 days or as long as 14 days after exposure to the virus.

(Source: NYS DOH)