With the rapidly spreading coronavirus (COVID-19) forcing all of us to make significant changes to the ways in which we work, live, and interact with one another, it can be difficult to know which information to trust and how to keep yourself and your family safe. That’s why my office has put together this webpage—so that you can find useful information and resources about COVID-19, learn more about how to protect yourself from the virus, and follow the work that we are doing at the city, state and federal level to combat the coronavirus pandemic and help people stay healthy, safe, and financially secure through this crisis.
As we confront this virus together, please follow the guidance of medical professionals and do not hesitate to reach out to us for help. My office is available via phone should you require any additional information or support. To reach my Manhattan office, please call: 212-367-7350. To reach my Brooklyn office, please call: 718-373-3198.
Also, New York City has a 24-hour coronavirus hotline that can be reached at 1-888-364-3065. If you have experienced price gouging in New York City, please call the City’s price gouging hotline at 800-697-1220.
What is it?
Coronavirus, or COVID-19, is a respiratory illness which was first identified in Wuhan, China in December 2019. COVID-19 is transmitted from person-to-person and is highly contagious. Older adults and people with chronic health conditions like heart disease, lung disease, and diabetes are at higher risk of getting seriously ill with COVID-19. As of March 18, 2020, there are over 7,000 COVID-19 cases in the United States and nearly 200,000 globally.
What are the symptoms?
While symptoms vary from person to person, confirmed COVID-19 patients have reported the following symptoms: fever, cough, and shortness of breath. If you experience any of the emergency warning signs of COVID-19—which include difficulty breathing, a persistent pain/pressure in the chest, bluish lips or face—seek medical attention immediately. It is also possible to be infected with COVID-19 and not show any symptoms—this is what the term ‘asymptomatic carrier’ means.
Is there a vaccine?
There is no vaccine for COVID-19 at this time, though scientists have been working tirelessly to develop treatments, immunizations and possible vaccines to the virus.
There are straightforward steps we can all take to limit the transmission of COVID-19. Every health care expert agrees that the best way to protect yourself and your family is to follow simple guidelines:
Practice social distancing as much as possible
Wash your hands regularly following CDC handwashing guidelines
Avoid touching your face
Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze
Avoid close contact with others who are sick
Clean frequently touched surfaces, including your phone, with disinfecting cleaning spray or wipe
Stay home. Limit trips outdoors to only what is necessary: grocery shopping, dog-walking, physical exercise
If you must leave your home, maintain a distance of 6 feet between yourself and others
If you are experiencing symptoms or have been to an area where coronavirus is spreading, contact your health care provider who will work with the Department of Health to determine if you need screening.
Those who have already filed partial claims under the old Unemployment Insurance system and were told to call the call center to finish their application should NOT call-a NYS DOL representative will call these individuals directly.
You may file your claim online any day of the week (Monday-Sunday) from 7:30 AM to 7:30 PM. If you must call the NYS DOL regarding your claim, call 1-888-209-8124. The NYS DOL telephone claims center is open Monday-Friday from 8 AM to 7:30PM, and Saturday-Sunday from 7:30AM to 8PM.
NYS Department of Labor Unemployment Insurance Benefits FAQ can be found here.
Information for Travelers from DHS & Department of State
Americans who are currently abroad are encouraged enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program and to contact the closest consulate or embassy in the country they are visiting; the list of consulates and embassies can be found here.
Department of State Bureau of Consular Affairs has set up a hotline for Overseas Citizens Services. Call 1-888-407-4747
The president announced HUD is providing immediate relief to renters and homeowners by suspending all foreclosures and evictions until the end of April. Updates and information from HUD can be found here.
The Department of Treasury and IRS have moved the U.S Tax Filing Day from April 15th to July 15th. You now have until July 15th to file your taxes and paid any owed monies. More information and resources about tax relief can be found here.
IRS People First Initiative announced tax relief measures due to COVID-19 including suspending payments for taxpayers under an existing Installment Agreement due between April 1 and July 15, 2020 and the IRS will not forward new delinquent accounts to private collection agencies during this period.
For IRS federal tax income return filing and payment relief guidance, click here
VA health care facilities are adding protocols to ensure the safety of its patients and visitors. If you’re a Veteran seeking medical care, call your VA health facility if you have symptoms of the virus. Updated information can be found here.
Con Edison and National Grid have both announced they will temporarily stop shutting off residential and business gas services due to lack of payment.
A number of large internet companies have agreed not to terminate residential or small business customers who can’t pay their bills: AT&T, Comcast, Cox, RCN, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon. A full list of companies can be found on the FCC website.
As of March 22nd @ 8 PM, New York State will be on PAUSE (standing for Policies Assure Uniform Safety for Everyone)
100 % of non-essential workers must stay home, and non-essential businesses must close. Any non-essential gatherings are prohibited. New Yorkers must remain 6-feet from one another when leaving the apartment for essentials like food and medicine. Sick New Yorkers should remain at home unless they need urgent medical attention. Matilda's Law is enacted for adults aged 70+.
All New Yorkers are now required to wear masks or face coverings in public, including when taking public or private transportation or riding in for-hire vehicles.
NYS is calling for companies to be creating to supply the crucial gear our healthcare workers need. NY will pay a premium and offer funding.
If companies need funding, call 212-803-3100
If companies have unused supplies, call 646-522-8477 or email COVID19supplies@esd.ny.gov
Department of Health
New York State has set up a COVID-19 Hotline to answer questions at 1-888-364-3065 or 311.
Information about testing for COVID-19 can be found here. Testing is free for all eligible New Yorkers as ordered by a health care provider.
NYS has opened special enrollment period for ACA coverage for uninsured individuals through June 15. Enroll here.
New Yorkers without Health Insurance can apply through NY State of Health within 60 days of losing coverage. Enroll here.
Seniors can receive guidance on health insurance programs through the HIICAP program. HIICAP works with Medicare beneficiaries to educate them about the Medicare Program, Medigap policies, Medicaid, Medicare Advantage Plans, Long-term Care Insurance, Low-Income Subsidy Programs, employer-sponsored insurance, and other health insurance programs that are available in NYS. Call 1-800-701-0501 or learn more about the HIICAP program here.
New York State will temporarily halt the collection of medical and student debt owed to the State of New York for collection for at least a 30-day period. More information on this and other guidance and resources from the AG’s office can be found here.
The office has created a new hate crime hotline to field reports of xenophobia and racism related to the global coronavirus pandemic. Incidents can be reported to email@example.com or 1-800-771-7755
The Health Care Bureau can help New Yorkers navigate the complex health care system, receive guidance on health insurance and understand their health care rights. Call their hotline at 1-800-428-9071 or click here to submit a complaint form online.
Department of Labor
NYS enacted emergency paid sick leave to guarantee workers job protection and provide financial compensation while they are on a mandatory or precautionary quarantine due to the Coronavirus. More information can be found here.
NYS is waiving the 7-Day waiting period for Unemployment Insurance benefits for people who are out of work due to Coronavirus (COVID-19) closures or quarantines. More up to date information can be found here.
You can report labor violations/ employers who are not abiding by NYS Executive Orders by calling 212-416-8700 or by emailing labor.bureau.ag.ny.gov.
Immediate hiring opportunities for job seekers can be found here.
File a complaint about employers’ noncompliance with NYS Executive Orders related to COVID-19 here.
NY Responds Hand Sanitizer
My office can help request NY Responds Hand Sanitizer for institutions and organizations within the 10th Congressional District. Please submit a request through our comment form here, including the amount requested and an explanation of the need.
Department of Financial Services
The Department of Financial Services has issued a new directive to New York State mortgage servicers to provide 90-day mortgage relief to mortgage borrowers impacted by the novel coronavirus. Updated information can be found here.
Economic Development Corporation (NYSEDC)
NYSEDC has created a guide to COVID-19 business related questions found here. Additional questions can be submitted here.
Department of Motor Vehicles
Department of Motor Vehicles offices are temporarily closed for in-office visits. Online transactions, including for license renewals, are still available. License and permit expirations will be extended.
Department of Taxation and Finance
New York State personal income tax and corporation tax returns originally due on April 15, 2020, have been extended to July 15, 2020. In addition, all related tax payments due on April 15 may be deferred to July 15 without penalties and interest, regardless of the amount owed. Updated information can be found here.
Board of Elections
Election Day is June 23, 2020 for State & Federal Primaries. The early voting period is June 13, 2020 – June 21, 2020. There is no Presidential Primary in NY this year.
Due to concerns regarding COVID-19, all registered voters can request an absentee ballot for the upcoming election. You can obtain an application by downloading it here or by calling 1-866-VOTE-NYC (1-866-868-3692). Return it by mail, postmarked no later than June 22. More information can be found here.
Department of Health
The most up to date information from the City’s health department can be found here.
Seeking or using medical treatment or preventive healthcare services related to COVID-19 will NOT be considered under the public charge rule, even if the services are Medicaid-funded.
The City is collecting information to better understand and communicate about the impacts of (COVID-19) from individuals who have experienced symptoms of, tested positive for, currently in quarantine or have come into contact with someone who may have had COVID-19. Complete the survey here.
Information about COVID-19 testing sites in NYC can be found here.
NYC schools are providing three free meals a day to all NYC children. Meals can be picked up Monday - Friday from 7:30 am-1:30 pm. Pick up locations can be found here.
Remote learning will begin on March 23rd. Laptops and internet access will be provided to all students who need. If you need to request a device for a student in your family, fill out this form and you will be contacted by DOE.
The latest information from the DOE can be found here.
Parents can access material for all grades, for students who need Specialized Instruction, and for multilingual learning students here.
Schools will be closed through the remainder of the 2019-2020 academic year.
Regional Enrichment Centers
Beginning March 23rd, the City will provide supervision to children who are New York City residents and whose parents/guardians work in the certain fields. As enrollment progresses, the RECs will assess capacity and demand and will work to expand eligibility to additional essential personnel and children most in need of this support. Enrollment information can be found here.
Senior centers are currently closed for congregate programming and meals are being provided through a centralized meal delivery system. Call your local senior center with questions about how to receive delivered meals. You can also call Aging Connect at 212-Aging-NYC (212-244-6469) or 311. Get updated information here.
NYCHA is halting residential evictions for as long as the City is under a state of emergency.
HPD Section 8 participants experiencing a rent hardship due to a decrease in income may contact HPD here. Resources regarding rent hardship for NYCHA residents can be found here.
NYC Tenants' Rights for Tenants with COVID-19 or Under Home Quarantine
Your landlord cannot discriminate against you, kick you out, or ask you to leave your apartment because of fears and stigma around COVID-19. If you are facing discrimination and harassment by your landlord, please visit the NYC Commission on Human Rights and fill out the form to report discrimination.
If you have COVID-19, are home-quarantined and/or working from home and have concerns about construction in your building, the Department of Buildings is monitoring this situation and providing updates and available guidance here.
To connect with the Department of Buildings and share your concerns and questions, email COVIDfirstname.lastname@example.org
HRA offices will remain open. However, if individuals unable or unwilling to go in person to an HRA office for scheduled appointments, no negative case actions will be taken. HRA Centers will assist clients no matter which center they report to, even if its not their assigned center. More information can be found here.
You can apply for SNAP benefits for the first time or submit recertification documents online at ACCESS HRA.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) will automatically issue an emergency supplemental SNAP benefit to households not already receiving the maximum benefit. More information can be found here.
Landmarks Planning Commission
Starting Tuesday, March 17th LPC will be temporarily accepting emailing of all permit applications at email@example.com. Electronic applications will be given priority during the City’s COVID-19 Response. Read on here.
Small Business Services
NYC will provide relief for small businesses across the City seeing a reduction in revenue because of COVID-19. Assistance resources and guidance for small businesses can be found here. Guidance from SBS for jobseekers can be found here.
NYC’s food pantries (providing groceries) and community kitchens (providing hot meals) are open and in operation. Find participating locations using either the FoodHelpNYC or FeedNYC directories.
The City has created a NYC Food Delivery Assistance program to deliver food and meals to vulnerable and food-insecure New Yorkers not currently served through existing food delivery programs.
The New York City Department of Education is making 3 free meals available daily for any New Yorker at more than 400 Meal Hubs across the city. Look up your meal hub here. Meals can be picked up Monday through Friday: children and families should pick up from 7:30am-11:30am, and adults from 11:30am-1:30pm. No one will be turned away and no registration or ID are required.
Kosher and Halal meals are now available at locations at ten sites in Brooklyn and Queens; information can be found here.
NYC has set up an Emergency Food Hotline for urgent food and hunger needs. Call 1-866-888-8777 or 311.
NYC parks will remain open but have closed their playgrounds to encourage social distancing. Updated information can be found here.
Mayor's Office of Animal Welfare
The Mayor’s Office of Animal Welfare has created an FAQ guide for pet owners that can be found here.
NYC has established a Hotline for pet owners who need assistance in caring for their pets. Call1-877-204-8821, open 7 days a week from 8 AM – 8 PM.
Mayor's Office for People with Disabilities
The Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities has compiled a list of resources for People with Disabilities which can be found here.
Price gouging on products that protect people from COVID-19 can be reported to multiple agencies:
NYS Division of Consumer Protection: Email a complaint here or call 800-697-1220
NYS Attorney General: Fill out a complaint form here.
NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection: Fill out a complaint form here or call 311 and say "overcharge".
Report COVID-19 scams to the Manhattan & Brooklyn District Attorneys:
Brooklyn DA: Call the DA Action Center at 718-250-2340
Report housing safety violations to NYC HPD by calling 311 or TTY (212) 504-4115
Report landlord harassment by calling 311 or the Right to Counsel hotline at (718) 557-1379
Report employer violations of existing labor laws, COVID-19 regulations or other recently issued executive orders to:
NYS Attorney General’s Office: (212) 416-8700
NYS Department of Labor: Fill out a complain form here
Report health care complaints (including health insurance costs related to COVID-19 tests or care) by calling the NYS OAG’s Health Care hotline: 1-800-428-9071
Report safety and health conditions in your workplace to OSHA: (800) 321-6742
NYS Division of Human Rights at (888) 392-3644
New York City Commission on Human Rights at (718) 722-3131
Mental Health and Crisis Prevention
Pandemics and other times of uncertainty may be acutely stressful for people. Fear and anxiety about a disease can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children.
An emotional support service hotline has been set up for frontline healthcare workers and is available 24/7. Text “NYFRONTLINE” to 741-741
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides 24/7, free, and confidential support to people in distress, offers prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones, and can share best practices for professionals. Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
If New Yorkers are feeling unsafe at home, you have numerous options. Call 911 for emergency assistance. Contact the NYS Domestic and Sexual Violence Hotline by calling 1-800-942-6906, texting 844-997-2121, or by visiting https://opdv.ny.gov/. You can also contact the 24-hour NYC Domestic and Sexual Violence Hotline by calling 1-800-621-HOPE (4673)
The CDC has released a guide for managing stress and coping.
New York State has set up a hotline to speak with mental health professionals who have volunteered to provide free services. Call 1-844-863-9314 to schedule an appointment.
NYC Well has free, confidential mental health support and substance use services. Speak to a counselor via phone, text, or chat in more than 200 languages, 24/7/365.
It's crucial that New Yorkers stay informed with facts about COVID-19 that they can trust. Make sure that you are signed up to receive updates from my office on the COVID-19 pandemic. Click here to sign-up. To see a list of the bills and letters I have supported since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, click here.
There are also numerous ways that New Yorkers can support efforts to fight COVID-19, both at the state and city levels.
NYS has created a form for those interested in making a donation donation of goods, services, and space, which can be found here.
NYC OEM has created a form for hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, EMS responders and other providers to request PPE and other supplies.
DonateNYC is coordinating monetary donations, goods donations, food business / rescue organizations and volunteers to help those affected by COVID-19.
HELP NYC is compiling a list of how New Yorkers can volunteer and help others.
New Yorkers who have recovered from COVID-19 are encouraged to help by donating lifesaving blood plasma. Plasma is desperately needed and will help sick patients recover while decreasing the strain on ICU beds and ventilators. Learn more information at the New York Blood Center.
specifically is where and under what circumstances the federal government can step in when local governments are engaging in or not stopping or controlling violence against racial minorities.”...Read More