May 20, 2020
From Governor Cuomo @ 7:07 PM on May 20:
Wearing a mask in public makes us all safer. It's not just me saying it; it's what all the evidence shows. To help get the message across, we launched a contest asking New Yorkers to create a video and share in their own words why New Yorkers should wear masks in public.
After receiving over 600 great submissions, five finalists have been selected. The winning video will be chosen by an online vote and will be used as a PSA. Watch the videos and vote for your favorite here.
1. The results of the state's antibody testing survey highlight the reality of the racial and economic disparities of Coronavirus. The results of the antibody surveys conducted in lower-income New York City communities and communities of color found that 27 percent of the people tested were positive for COVID-19 antibodies — significantly higher than the 19.9 percent of New York City's overall population who have those antibodies. The data was collected from approximately 8,000 individuals and shows high positive rates and continued high community spread in lower-income neighborhoods in the Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens.
2. New York is expanding testing and outreach to meet the greatest need. Through partnerships with SOMOS and Northwell Health, the state will establish 28 additional testing sites at churches and other sites in predominantly minority communities, for a total of 72 sites. The state will build on the work we have been doing with Ready Responders, and bring testing to 40 public housing developments across New York City. New York will also increase PPE availability, provide more hand sanitizer and increase outreach to raise awareness about how to protect yourself from the virus.
3. The number of total COVID hospitalizations continues to decline. Total hospitalizations fell to 5,570, from 5,818 the day before. The number of new COVID hospitalizations fell to 295, from 335 the day before. Tragically, we lost 112 New Yorkers to the virus yesterday.
4. Starting tomorrow, May 21st, religious gatherings of no more than 10 people will be allowed statewide. Social distancing measures must be enforced and all participants must wear masks. Additionally, drive-in and parking lot services will be permitted. The state is convening an Interfaith Advisory Council to discuss proposals to safely bring back religious services.
5. Following a spike in domestic violence during the COVID pandemic, Secretary to the Governor Melissa DeRosa announced the creation of a new task force to find innovative solutions to this crisis. The task force will identify solutions to help domestic violence survivors, with the specific goal of looking beyond the traditional ways that services have been provided in the past. The group will make recommendations by Thursday, May 28th.