UPDATED: April 1, 2020
For Updates in Spanish, click here
We have been working closely with experts at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH), elected officials, clergy, and community leaders on the steps the City is taking to contain the spread of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).
Brooklyn Borough Hall continues to be dedicated to informing all Brooklynites of the state of the Borough during this time, and will continue sending out frequent updates, such as this one, to our communities.
If you have a home printer, I encourage you to print out a copy of our #StayStrongBrooklyn poster
and place it in your window, share on social media, or safely distribute as you see fit to promote a sense of Brooklyn solidarity amid a crisis impacting each and every one of us.
We’re Brooklyn Strong, and united, we can do a lot to keep one another informed, prepared, and safe.
Please continue to visit this page for information, resources, and tips.
For real-time COVID-19 updates on the Borough and the City, follow our social media.
#SpreadFactsNotFear. We can and will get through this.
Updates and Important Information
- There are 23 fewer Regional Enrichment Centers (REC) sites to maintain sufficient staff, supervision and attendance. If you are a New York City Department of Education staff member interested in volunteering at a REC site to care for the children of New York City’s first responders, health care workers, transit workers, and other key personnel, fill out the application here. The Regional Enrichment Centers include children of grocery, pharmacy workers, the Staten Island Ferry, NYC Water Ferry, water/sewer personnel, and other essential staff. To enroll a child in a REC site, fill out the application here.
- New York City needs your medical ventilators, old or new, not in use. Please let us know here if you have any. If you have face shields, gloves, gowns, or anything that might help to donate/volunteer, go to nyc.gov/donate.
- Numerous businesses have reached out about how they can provide support. The City launched this intake form and a designated hotline (833-NYC-0040) for local businesses that have resources to offer that can potentially support the COVID-19 emergency response effort.
- In line with New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene recommendations, NYC Health + Hospitals is no longer testing patients for COVID-19 who do not require hospitalization. If you are sick with fever, cough, shortness of breath, or sore throat, you must stay inside and isolate yourself from others. Isolate yourself for at least seven days from when your symptoms started. You must also be without fever during the last three days of your isolation. Please only go to the emergency room if you are severely ill.
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.
- Governor Cuomo announced “Matilda’s Law” to protect New York’s most vulnerable populations, including individuals age 70 and older, those with compromised immune systems, and those with underlying illnesses through specified requirements: Stay home and limit home visitation to immediate family members or close friends in need of emergency assistance. If visitors are necessary, they should be prescreened for high temperatures and flu-like symptoms.
- Per Governor Cuomo, 100 percent of a non-exempt essential service business’s workforce should stay home. Guidelines on what essential services must still be in person can be found here. A halt on all non-essential public gatherings is in effect.
After an initial warning, the NYPD will be enforcing the suspension of religious services and will impose fines and other penalties, including building closure, on those who are not adhering to the guidance.
Governor Cuomo announced the closure of all New York City playgrounds today, though parks will remain open for the time being.
- Banks will waive mortgage payments for 90 days and suspend foreclosures. Eligibility is based on financial hardship. Late payment fees and ATM overdraft fees are also suspended. All student loan interest has been suspended.
- The Employee Retention Grant for small businesses with four or fewer employees is now available and includes space for you to add March’s revenue. Information and eligibility can be found here. Additionally, loans are available for small businesses affected by COVID-19, the application can be accessed here. The Small Business Continuity Fund will offer financial assistance to small businesses with fewer than 100 employees who have seen sales decreases of 25% or more will be eligible for loans of up to $75,000, to help retain employees and ensure business continuity.
- The US Treasury has just released guidelines for the new Paycheck Protection Program that awards small businesses with less than 500 employees seeking COVID-19-related relief with forgivable loans toward job retention and certain other expenses.
- Per Governor Cuomo, the statewide school shutdown will be extended through at least Wednesday, April 15th. New York City public schools are remote learning. The NYC Department of Education 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 [email protected].
- 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. Go to schools.nyc.gov, or text “FOOD” or “COMIDA” to 877-877 for lists of where meals are being served.
- For veterans and their families, the NYC Veterans Alliance has a list of resources on their website.
- MTA buses and subways remain open, and the NYC Ferry system and Staten Island Ferry will continue to operate. MTA buses are rear-door boarding-only, with exceptions for disabled riders. On local buses, that means no more fare collection. Regular fare policy remains in effect wherever on-board payment boxes or SBS off-board ticket machines continue to be accessible.
- MTA NYC Transit has revised service in Brooklyn to maintain essential service and mitigate overcrowding: The X37/X38 express routes have a 30 minute headway, the X27/X28 will start an hour earlier beginning at 6:00 AM, and the B82 Select Bus Service (not operating on Sundays) will have reduced headway.
- Alternate Side Parking (ASP) is suspended through Tuesday, April 14th. Parking meters are still in effect. Rideshares and carpools have been banned by executive order. With the exception of families, there can only be one passenger per vehicle.
- The City is recruiting TLC-licensed drivers through DeliveryTLC to help with work related to COVID-19, such as delivering food to older adults. This work will be paid $15/hour plus reimbursement for gas and tolls. Drivers will be selected on a first-come, first-serve basis. The initial need for drivers will be small, but they expect it to increase as they expand the programs.
- The NYC Department of Buildings is fining and shutting down non-essential construction sites, which were ordered to close on Friday, March 27th unless the project is an emergency project necessary to protect the health and safety of the occupants, or if shutting down the site would create unsafe conditions. In addition, essential construction may continue and such construction includes roads, bridges, transit facilities, utilities, hospitals or health care facilities, affordable housing, and homeless shelters.
- All Brooklyn Public Library branches are closed until further notice, visit their website for virtual story-times and cultural programming.
- 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 City will work with the State to suspend the Rent Guidelines Board process for the coming year, which will maintain all regulated rents at their current level for 2.3 million tenants in nearly one million stabilized units across the city.
- 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 [email protected].
- 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-Presbyterian, Mount 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 [email protected].
For City alerts in English, text COVID to 692-692.
For City alerts in Spanish, text COVIDESP to 692-692.