Categories
Bill De Blasio New York City

Press conference with New York City Mayor, Bill De Blasio (4/1/20)

As I’ve said in a few of my recent posts, the whole process of watching these press conferences and taking accurate notes is a long, arduous, tedious process. If a press conference runs for an hour, it takes me about three hours to type up a recap here. If it runs for two hours, it takes me closer to five or six hours to get a post done. So, keeping all that in mind, I just want you to know that Mayor De Blasio went on for TWO HOURS today. TWO HOURS!

In true New York City spirit, I’m gonna keep it completely real with y’all. Two hours is too much De Blasio for me. He is easily the least impactful of the three political figures I usually cover here. Governor Cuomo is a straight shooter who gives us hard data and facts without a lot of sugar coating, and I respect that. Nearly everything Cuomo says is useful in some way. Donald Trump is a total idiot. But, unfortunately for all of us, he’s a really powerful idiot and so I have to cover him. De Blasio is neither useful, nor all that powerful. I think De Blasio has generally good intentions, but deadass… he’s honestly not giving us any information that Cuomo hasn’t already said.

So, with that in mind, I’m going to give you the super condensed version of what De Blasio says in just about every press conference. Are you ready?

BILL DE BLASIO

  • Thank you to everyone who has helped us so far.
  • We need a fuck ton more stuff.
  • Everything Cuomo said.
  • 30 minutes of platitudes about how strong New Yorkers are. (possibly it was a full hour today, Idk)
  • Something about the jails.
  • Something about alternate side parking.

And there you have it! That’s the whole press conference.

Why even make this post? I hear you asking, and you deserve answers. Don’t worry, I have a good one! I’m mostly making this post so I can share one of my good friend’s observations from one of De Blasio’s earlier press conferences.

My friend Christina Cruz of Brooklyn sent me these photos.

She asks “WHO IS DOING DE BLASIO’S NAILS?!?”

There’s no denying that the man takes care of his hands.

“He got a home tech or something? I THOUGHT WE WERE ON LOCKDOWN!” she adds, as she zooms in on the screen.

Are those french tips???

“They on point though.” she concedes.

Is she wrong, though? I ask you, where is the lie?

And with that, I close the post!

IF YOU ARE ENJOYING THIS WEBSITE

Please consider donating a few dollars to help keep it going. Transcribing and recapping these press conferences is extremely time consuming. I do it because I passionately believe that everyone should stay informed, but it is undeniably a lot of work. If you would like to help me continue what I’m doing with this website, or just help to make sure I can afford food during this pandemic, please consider sending me a donation. I accept any amount, no matter how much, through Venmo (@Amydetriotgirl), Cashapp (@$carbetarian) and PayPal (Carbetarian@gmail.com). Anything you can give will be appreciated!

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Bill De Blasio New York City

New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio announces a new field hospital on the grounds of the US OPEN (3/31/20)

Because of how time consuming it is to cover three press conferences a day, I will be skipping the questions on this one. Today New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio joins us live from the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Most people know this place as the annual site of the US Open. For many people in the event industry, working the US Open is a yearly tradition. So, I anticipate that, like the Javits Center before it, this one will be another painfully personal location for a lot of us.

If you want to know what my credential looked like in 2017 – 2019, I can tell you that it looked exactly the same. I’ve been reusing that picture for about five years now. haha
Fun with promo friends at one of the sponsor booths!
The US Open is A LOT of long days back to back. Sometimes you just need a nap!
Serena Williams takes the court in last year’s US Open
Tennis fans watch the match on the TV Screens outside of Arthur Ashe Stadium
Home, sweet home!

BILL DE BLASIO

  • Yesterday, the USNS Comfort added 1,000 hospital beds to our city’s fight. Today, we add another iconic location to our cause.
  • The USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center (better known as the site of The US Open), will be converted into a field hospital. It will have a 350 bed capacity.
  • He says that he knows it’s sad to see a location like this used for this purpose, but it will save lives. We all look forward to seeing tennis played here again, but for now this is an inspiring reminder of New Yorkers working together.
  • He knows we are all experiencing grief, but we cannot allow ourselves to be paralyzed by the pain. We have to keep fighting.
  • We have lost more public servants. We mourn them, and pray for their families.
  • He says this will go on for weeks, and it will be tough. But, we will survive.
  • Before the coronavirus, this city had about 20,000 hospital beds in total. In the next week or two, we aim to triple that number.
  • 60,000 hospital beds sounds daunting, but look at how fast we have been able to create these field hospitals. We are just going to keep on creating.
  • He says that he has not heard a single “no” this week. Every person they have asked to donate space has said yes.
  • This facility will specifically serve as the overflow for Elmhurst Hospital.
  • PERSONAL NOTE: Speaking as someone who has worked the US Open many, many times, this is another one of those surreal moments that you need some context to fully grasp. The US Open has traditionally been a playground for the rich. All of the celebrities come to see it. One cocktail costs $20. In many ways, it is an iconic symbol of privilege. Yes, you can get affordable tickets to the US Open if you love tennis. But, if you don’t have a sizable budget, you can forget about eating there, drinking there, or buying anything from the shops. New York City public hospitals, on the other hand, tend to be associated with the poor and the working class. They are constantly stressed and overcrowded because there are only 11 public hospitals in New York City vs 160+ private ones. Most people don’t choose to go to a public hospital if they can afford private care, even though our public hospitals are generally good hospitals. Now, in a strange sort of role reversal, all of those front row seats that were once reserved for the elite of our society to watch other millionaires play tennis will look out at our public hospital patients instead. A friend of mine who came down with the virus posted a status on facebook today that said in part “don’t take anything for granted. The world is shifting.” Watching this press conference, it seems an appropriate quote to leave here too.
  • Unlike the USNS Comfort and the Javits Center, this facility WILL be taking coronavirus patients.
  • It will take three week to fully build out this facility, but they will be able to take their first patients as early as next week.
  • We thank the USTA, FEMA, the army corps of engineers, and everyone at the city who helped make this happen.
  • A few days ago, we all heard the disturbing news that we have broken the record for the most calls to 911 basically everyday for the last week. The number he gave us last time was 7,000 calls a day. FEMA has thankfully sent us help to deal with that call volume.
  • FEMA has given us 250 additional ambulances to help our EMS providers.
  • 500 nurses were added to the public hospital system last week, this week an additional 1,500 are coming.
  • At the time of the press conference, New York City had a full quarter of all COVID-19 cases in the United States.
  • He says again that Sunday, April 5th is when we expect to see a huge increase in the number of cases.
  • He has asked the federal government to send more aid, and he is still waiting on an answer.
  • But, he says the federal government has been stepping up and doing more for us, and he hopes that they will honor our request.
  • Last week we received an additional 2,500 ventilators. We still need more, and we are waiting to hear from the federal government about this too.
  • Our total need for ventilators is still 15,000. We need them as soon as possible because our peak may be coming very soon.
  • If anyone in this city has a ventilator, we need every single one we have.
  • From this point forward, the state of new york will be pooling resources and distributing them to the hospitals.
  • As of yesterday 900 inmates have been released from our jail system. These are people who are at high risk from the virus, and were not considered a threat to society.
  • More inmates will be released, and updates will be given as they happen.
  • All non essential construction must stop immediately. If you are doing non essential construction, you will be fined and shut down.
  • If you had a tax lien on your property and your property was due to be sold by the state, that sale will be postponed until August.
  • Alternate side parking will be suspended for an additional two weeks, that means the suspension is currently extended through Tuesday, April 14th.
  • They have decided to shut down ten playgrounds that were not complying with the social distancing rules. Those ten playgrounds will be locked up starting tomorrow. If they see non compliance at other parks, those parks will be shut down too.
  • An employee at the Amazon warehouse in Staten Island claims that they were fired for bringing up health and safety concerns at work. The city takes this allegation very seriously and has ordered the human rights commission to investigate Amazon immediately. If this allegation is proven to be true, it would be a violation of human rights and the city will take action on it immediately. The Mayor has also ordered a police inspection of the facility to ensure that social distancing is being observed, and the inspections will continue to happen as needed.
  • PERSONAL NOTE: I know someone who worked in that warehouse before coronavirus, and their description of the working conditions was awful. They compared the treatment there to slavery, and when news of this human rights violation went public they told me they were not surprised. So, with that in mind, I tend to believe that the employee was telling the truth. JUST MY TWO CENTS.
  • Life has become strange and troubling, but we will continue to fight back. New Yorkers are not people who get defeated easily. He says he has faith in New Yorkers, and in New York City. Me too, Bill. Me too.
Mayor De Blasio holds court earlier today at USTA tennis center.
I look forward to the day when we can all hug again soon. ❤

IF YOU ARE ENJOYING THIS WEBSITE

Please consider donating a few dollars to help keep it going. Transcribing and recapping these press conferences is extremely time consuming. I do it because I passionately believe that everyone should stay informed, but it is undeniably a lot of work. If you would like to help me continue what I’m doing with this website, or just help to make sure I can afford food during this pandemic, please consider sending me a donation. I accept any amount, no matter how much, through Venmo (@Amydetriotgirl), Cashapp (@$carbetarian) and PayPal (Carbetarian@gmail.com). Anything you can give will be appreciated!

Categories
Bill De Blasio New York City

Mayor Bill De Blasio welcomes the USNS Comfort to New York City

Today New York City welcomed an iconic symbol of hope and perseverance into our harbor. Mayor Bill De Blasio went live from the dock to share this important moment with the people of our city in our most vulnerable time. We all thank the United States Navy for sharing their expertise and kindness with us, and pray that they will be successful in their most sacred mission here in our waters.

Photo of the USNS ship taken by my friend Cole Ippoliti from his apartment.
Cole is a fantastic professional photographer, and you can find more of his work on his instagram @colecoldwater.
You can also check him out at http://www.colecoldwater.com
Thank you for allowing me to share your pictures, Cole!

BILL DE BLASIO

  • The USNS Comfort arrived in New York harbor this morning, bringing with it medical supplies, personnel and a renewed spirit to the city in our hour of need.
  • This means the world to us here in New York City, and we thank the nation for sending us this aid.
  • In the past week, many New Yorkers have felt alone in this fight. But, the arrival of the USNS Comfort is a strong reminder that we are not alone. Our nation is helping us. We are not forgotten.
  • We may have differences during peacetime, but we are now at war. We need to act like it, and work together. So, with that in mind, we say thank you to Donald Trump, Mark Esper, FEMA, and of course, The United States Navy.
  • Thank you to Governor Cuomo, and everyone in our local government who helped to make this happen.
  • It was supposed to take two weeks to bring this ship here, but they did it 8 days. This incredible effort will save lives and make a real difference in our fight against the virus.
  • With this ship comes 1,200 medical staff, and 750 beds we can use immediately.
  • We need to triple our city’s hospital bed capacity by the end of May.
  • This ship is like adding an entire hospital in one day.
  • From this New Yorker, I would like all of you to know that I am grateful.
  • Thank you to all of the companies, and private citizens who have given us help. We appreciate you.
  • When the battle is done here, New York City will send help to the rest of our nation. We promise to look after the rest of our country, as you have looked after us today.
  • We’ve reached my favorite part now… A FEW WORDS IN SPANISH.
  • “No estamos solos!” ❤

REGIONAL HEAD OF FEMA, THOMAS VON ESSEN

  • Two weeks ago, they moved their team down to New Jersey on a naval base.
  • They have about 30 – 35 people working there now, working everyday to make sure that New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico and The Virgin Islands have what we need. (these are the areas covered by region 2 at FEMA)
  • QUOTE: “I was driving on east river drive, and I looked across by 14th street and I had a flashback to the morning I was driving in and they told me a small plane had crashed into the trade center. And life changed at that time. And I remember the Comfort come then, I don’t remember when, a couple of weeks later or whatever… and we didn’t need it for what we need it for today. We didn’t need it for people who needed hospital care. It wasn’t necessary, but we brought it in. We needed it for crisis counseling for a lot of fire chiefs and police officers who were really, really overcome with the grief, and the death that they faced with their friends and the people that they worked with. And we needed it to house federal workers, and give them food and everything. And then we got it out of here, and we started putting them in hotel rooms. But, I’ll never forget the feeling. I talked about it this morning, the names are perfect… The Comfort and The Mercy. I was told they were here in 1918 for the pandemic we had then. Not these particular ships, but their predecessors. The federal government has always been here; the army, the navy, the marines… they’ve always been here for us when we needed them, and they’re here again for you now. And for me… the flashbacks I get, knowing that the city is under such stress now, it’s real personal for me. The fire department, I spent 30 years in it. So, when September 11th happened, it was personal. It was friends. It was leaders, people I had worked with… everybody was affected by September 11th, and that’s what’s happening now. Everybody you know is affected by the coronavirus in one way or another. A friend, a relative, a loved one that you can’t go and see because they’re in quarantine, or you don’t want to… I mean, I stopped to see a hundred year old lady last week, and just, you know, talked to her from six feet away. And I know everybody’s doing that. But, it’s important. This is a big time visible sign of what our government is like when we put it into action. And the mayor said it, and I’m really proud to be part of it now.”
  • PERSONAL NOTE: I decided to transcribe his whole quote because nothing hits me right in the heart quite like 9/11 survival stories. I am always in awe of the strength of this city when I hear people speak about that day. I moved to New York City in 2004, so I do not have firsthand experience from that tragedy. But, so many people I care about did have firsthand experience. It is a shared trauma that I will always have the utmost respect and sympathy for. I have been a New Yorker for 16 years, my entire adult life, but I will never know the pain that some of my fellow New Yorkers went through that day. Now New York City stands ready to brace for another terrible event, and I just hope to be even a tenth as brave as the people I know who survived 9/11 and went on to rebuild their lives. As a survivor once told me over at the Oculus, “victory over terror is being able to come back to the place you were attacked and say FUCK YOU, I’M STILL HERE.”. Those are words to live by, said in the most New York way possible.
  • We need to be together, but six feet apart.

REAR ADMIRAL JOHN MUSTIN

  • Thank you to everyone who made this happen in record time.
  • Not all of our heroes wear military uniforms, many of them wear scrubs.
  • Like her sister ship The USNS Mercy, which is now docked in Los Angeles, the USNS Comfort will be here to support this city.
  • As a New Yorker, he is proud to be a part of this mission.

QUESTIONS

  • QUESTION: There has been a lot of concern about the budget up in Albany, do you have concerns about it?
  • DE BLASIO: Yes. We need money for healthcare. We cannot afford medicaid cuts during this dire moment, and he says the state must accept the medicaid funding that was in the third stimulus bill. So, basically, he totally disagrees with Cuomo’s take on this. He says that he is also in the middle of finding places to cut the budget for the city, but he absolutely will not cut funding to healthcare. He urges the state not to cut medicaid.
  • PERSONAL NOTE: As I mentioned in a previous post, I am a longtime patient at Bellevue. When I first moved to New York, I was 19 years old. I came here on a greyhound from Detroit, Michigan, with just a backpack and a duffel bag to my name. I didn’t know anyone here, and I didn’t have any help. I moved around a lot in the first year, and I remember being so poor that I sometimes couldn’t afford food. But, I made amazing friends along the way, and one of them gave me a piece of advice that I never forgot. She said “if you ever get really sick and you feel like you’re going to die, go to Bellevue. It’s a public hospital, and they will take care of you even if you can’t pay the bill.” Flash forward about a decade later, and I found myself with a viral infection that had swollen my throat to the point that I could not comfortably take in air. Rather than calling for an ambulance, I dragged myself over to Bellevue. When I got to the triage, I was in such bad shape that I fell over on the floor gasping for air. I will never forget that moment because, as I was being lifted onto the stretcher, I heard some man yell from the other side of the triage area “SHE DIDN’T EVEN WAIT IN THE LINE!”. I remember wanting to laugh before briefly passing out. I had a temperature of 104, and I ended up being in the ICU for a week. When all was said and done, I received a bill for $30,000. I came back to the hospital in tears because the illness had cost me so much time away from my job that there was no way I could pay it. They talked me down to just $150 for the entire stay. I could not be more grateful for this city and the care that we give our people.
  • QUESTION: What kind of services will this ship provide, and how will it be decided who goes here?
  • DE BLASIO: Intensive care units used to be a small part of our hospitals, now we are faced with a situation where every hospital bed in our city’s hospitals needs to be an ICU bed. After we’ve done that, what happens to everyone else who doesn’t need intensive care? We have to have hospitals for them too. This ship and the Javits Center will provide all of those other patients with a place to go.
  • REAR ADMIRAL MUSTIN: We’ve been working with the local hospitals to make sure we have a process in place, and the hospitals will determine who would be best to send here.
  • QUESTIONS: Will families be able to visit sick relatives on The Comfort?
  • DE BLASIO: We are still working that out.
  • QUESTION: Why are the playgrounds still open?
  • DE BLASIO: We are working on this issue with the state, and there is no uniform standard on this. He says that the police are now authorized to give fines to people who do not comply with social distancing, and that the police think most people are in fact complying. This is another thing he disagrees with Cuomo about. If people do not stop playing sports, he says they will remove the basketball rims and the tennis nets.
  • QUESTION: Do you have any predictions about the death toll in New York City?
  • DE BLASIO: We assume at least half of all New Yorkers will contract this virus. We know 80% of people who get it do fine without intervention. We will see a horrible increase in the number of deaths though, and he says he has been honest that this will continue to get worse all month.
  • QUESTION: What are our morituary logistics?
  • VON ESSEN: We have many refrigerated trucks, and we are asking for federal aid for more solutions to this problem.
  • QUESTION: How much more help does New York City need? How many more places like the Comfort would it take?
  • DE BLASIO: The Comfort could hold up to 1,000 beds. To get New York to what we are projected to need, we would need about 40 more locations of this size. We believe we can get there.
  • QUESTION: Are you distributing supplies to private hospitals as well?
  • DE BLASIO: Yes. We are all sharing.
  • QUESTION: How are you getting COVID patients to the Comfort?
  • ME: PAY ATTENTION! THE SHIP ISN’T FOR COVID PATIENTS! UGH! It’s like I’m back on a training call at work and everyone is asking stupid questions about things that were covered in the power point. Lol
  • QUESTION: Do you support allowing people to use their security deposit as a current month’s rent?
  • DE BLASIO: Yes, I support that. It will require state intervention though.
  • QUESTION: Where are we at with PPE?
  • DE BLASIO: This week, we are fine. That may change down the road. The thing we are worried about now is Ventilators. We are still very concerned about making it to April 5th.
  • QUESTION: You said you will need to cut 1.3 billion from the budget, has that changed?
  • DE BLASIO: Yes, that number will go up.
  • QUESTION: Will patients on The Comfort have to pay their medical bills as usual? Or will this be paid for by the federal government?
  • REAR ADMIRAL MUSTIN: We are not checking for insurance cards, nor were we instructed to send bills. Our mission here is to help patients.
  • QUESTION: Will patients start coming today?
  • REAR ADMIRAL MUSTIN: The ship is still being docked, and patients will start coming tomorrow.

IF YOU ARE ENJOYING THIS WEBSITE

Please consider donating a few dollars to help keep it going. Transcribing and recapping these press conferences is extremely time consuming. I do it because I passionately believe that everyone should stay informed, but it is undeniably a lot of work. If you would like to help me continue what I’m doing with this website, or just help to make sure I can afford food during this pandemic, please consider sending me a donation. I accept any amount, no matter how much, through Venmo (@Amydetriotgirl), Cashapp (@$carbetarian) and PayPal (Carbetarian@gmail.com). Anything you can give will be appreciated!

Categories
Bill De Blasio New York City

Press conference with New York City mayor, Bill De Blasio (3/27/20)

Today I will not be covering the questions at the end of this press conference, because Trump took up so much of my time this evening. Stay tuned for that post, because… WOW. This is also the first time I am putting my recap on this blog first, so hopefully this will help to streamline the formatting a bit better.

BILL DEBLASIO

  • We need more help and more medical personnel, particularly for our public hospitals.
  • He has spoken with Trump.
  • The most crucial day for us is Sunday, April 5th. He says that after this day, he is afraid that we will need more of everything. This is a make or break day that will determine whether or not we can carry on as a city. He says that right now “we are not there”.
  • QUOTE: “Look, I have tried to work with the president and his team. We have to be working in this moment and agree on a common cause. That doesn’t mean that we agree, TO SAY THE LEAST. But I will always say when the white house does something to help us I will be thankful, and I will give credit when due. And when I think they’re missing something, I’ll say that too.”
  • Y’all, please take a second to unpack the shade in that last quote. Lol
  • CONT. OF QUOTE: “But I do think the notion that any, ANY, message is being put forward that this will be over by Easter is just… unfair. It’s not true. It’s not accurate, and it’s gonna mislead people and raise false hope. I have been honest, as I know the facts to be… that April will be tougher than March, and May could even be tougher than April. And if that becomes less true, if things get better, I’ll be the first to say it. But, I don’t want people to think this is gonna be easy when it’s not gonna be. I think people need to be ready for battle, and the hard truth helps people.”
  • There are 25,573 positive cases in New York City.
  • 366 New York City residents have been lost. That is 366 of our neighbors.
  • We have lost a public school principal, a custodian who works at police headquarters, a member or our transportation team, and a member of our city corrections team.
  • He read a list of all the public servants and nurses we have lost, and I cried because this list will only get longer every day.
  • QUOTE: “The human toll is what matters, and for everyone who says it’s about the economy and getting the economy back up, that’s just wrong. It’s about saving lives first. That’s what we believe here in this city.”
  • QUOTE: “I want to remind everyone, you cannot have an economic recovery if our healthcare system isn’t working. You can’t have an economic recovery if hundreds or thousands of people are dying. You can’t have an economic recovery if city governments and state governments are going bankrupt. That’s the reality we’re facing right now.”
  • The stimulus bill was an important step towards recovery, but we “sure as hell need more” if we’re going to keep our state and city running. We are not where we need to be yet.
  • QUOTE: “If that support doesn’t come, then anyone who harbors the illusion that we can have an economic recovery is putting the cart before the horse, to say the least. Recovery only comes when our people are whole, our people are safe, our healthcare system has recovered, our city and state governments are working… when we’re a functioning nation, that’s when we go into recovery.”
  • Hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers are already unemployed, and they estimate it will be a half a million of us soon.
  • In the great depression, the unemployment levels in New York City hit 25%. We are well on the way to approaching that number here now.
  • If ever there was a time for a rent freeze, “it would be now”. He says we need a rent freeze for everyone who is rent stabilized, and have a conversation about freezing rent for everyone else as well. He says he will be having a conversation with the state about this immediately. (For those of you reading this who do not rent, he is speaking about freezing the mandatory rent increases on lease renewals. This means that if the state approves this measure, no one’s rent will go up in the next year. This does not mean we will not owe rent!)

MEDICAL NEEDS

  • Thank you to the federal government for sending us 2,500 ventilators.
  • HOWEVER, based on all available data, New York City will need 15,000 ventilators. So, folks… we ain’t there yet!
  • Last night, the talking anal wart he have in charge of our country (my words) said that he does not believe New York state will need 30,000 ventilators. Let’s be clear on this, De Blasio agrees with Cuomo. And, although Bill can’t say this in so many words, I can… Trump is wrong as wrong can be, and there is a special place for him in hell!
  • QUOTE: (this quote is prefaced by commentary about the situation in Elmhurst) “I do want to say that the president knows that area, his family coming from Queens, and he made very clear that he’s familiar with Elmhurst hospital and the area around it. I want to keep asking the president to keep Elmhurst hospital in mind, and realize that today it’s Elmhurst hospital in Queens, tomorrow it’s gonna be other hospitals in the city, and soon it’s gonna be hospitals in other parts of the country, and… since he can understand and relate to the borough of Queens, let that be the touchstone. Let that be the example that moves the federal government to maximum effort immediately.”
  • He thanks Trump for using the Defense Production Act to force GM to produce ventilators, and this begs the question… has Trump been lying about GM cooperating for the past few days? I would love it if someone from Detroit (my birth place) could weigh in on this!
  • There have been amazing efforts to make our own PPE at Brooklyn Navy Yard, but he needs more help from the federal government.
  • We have enough PPE to get to April 5th, but we need more PPE to get past that day.
  • As I type, 20 trucks are on the road delivering critical supplies to our hospitals.
  • All help is welcome, from anywhere in the world. If you have any PPE to donate, please call 1-833-NYC-0040. We need help immediately. If you have anything to give, please call.
  • 64 additional clinicians were sent to Elmhurst hospital today. Tomorrow 105 additional nurses will be sent to Elmhurst hospital.
  • The department of health website now has a map of all the hot spots around the city, but he says this information is only telling part of the story because of inconsistent testing procedures.
  • We know that some areas are showing up as hotspots because of their proximity to a hospital. He says that we know this is what’s happening with Elmhurst. People are going there because they know it’s a good hospital.

MOVING ON

  • We will continue to reduce our jail population.
  • By tonight, 450 inmates will have been released during this crisis.
  • He says that the majority of people have been respecting social distancing at our parks. But, the NYPD has been instructed to break up groups, gatherings, crowding and group sports.
  • They will be making a decision this weekend about whether or not they need to start fining people for not respecting the rules. The proposed fines would be up to $500 per incident. This means that if any member of the NYPD or the Parks Enforcement officers tells you to move along and you don’t do it, you will be fined.
  • After tomorrow night, they are going to make a decision about whether or not to keep playgrounds open.
  • Most churches have complied with social distancing. But, a small number of religious communities are still not complying. If you go to church this weekend in a large gathering, you will be broken up by the fire department or the NYPD.
  • Yesterday he was upset to learn that Spectre and THOSE GARBAGE BAGS AT ALTICE were preventing people from getting the internet they need to allow their children to learn at home. He has good news for us. He says he has stepped forward and stopped that practice. GOOD. Altice is THE WORST!
  • Thank you to the 750 clinicians working the phones at the health and hospitals hotline. In the last week, they have taken 23,000 calls. They are addressing people’s concerns about the virus and giving medical advice as to how people should handle their symptoms. In the event that someone needed to go to a hospital, they are also addressing where to go. (I don’t have this number, but I am sure you can get it from 311)
  • His spanish was extra cringe today. I’m white AF, and even I think his accent is hilarious.

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Categories
Bill De Blasio New York City

Press conference with New York City Mayor, Bill De Blasio (3/26/2020)

Next up, New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio did a pretty underwhelming press conference right before Trump. Here are the highlights.

  • The situation in NYC is changing by the minute
  • We have supplies for the week, but after that it’s uncertain. 
  • We need federal help
  • We need to be able to turn around supplies quickly.
  • My favorite sign language translator is back! Yasss!
  • New York City has the largest public hospital system in the nation.
  • Elmhurst in Queens is now the epicenter of the crisis in NYC.
  • Elmhurst has been resupplied with ventilators four times this week.
  • 56 additional staff members have been sent to Elmhurst.
  • We need more support for Elmhurst, but they are doing the best they can.
  • Before Coronavirus, we had 20,000 fully supplied hospital beds. This used to be considered a big number. Now, not so much. We are attempting to triple the beds by May.
  • De Blasio says he can’t promise we will reach that goal.
  • The surge plans that the state put forward will add at least 7,000 beds quickly.
  • Everyone loves talking about the Javits Center in these things.
  • With the Javits and all of the other new field locations, we will now have 34,000 beds. The ultimate goal is 60,000.
  • He says he would love to report good news, but that he can’t depend on maybes from the government.
  • 500 new ventilators have come in from the feds, and 2,000 from FEMA. Half of these ventilators are here in NYC already. That is a sixth of what we will need. The goal is 15,000.
  • Soon we will be talking about making ventilators here in the city.
  • He does not believe the government is utilizing the defense production act enough.
  • On Friday we will get 50,000 face shields from the brooklyn navy yard. By Tuesday, that number will be over 100,000.
  • He says the hard work done by the people of New York in no way excuses our federal government of their responsibility to us. AND I AGREE.
  • They are continuing to look at releasing inmates that are not a threat to society, and to protect high risk inmates from the virus.
  • As of last night, 200 inmates had been released since the beginning of this process.
  • The jail population in New York City continues to decline. There are less than 5,000 people in our jail system right now. That number has not been this low since 1949.
  • The population of New York City is 8.6 million people.
  • By tonight, the number of people released from prison will go up to 375.
  • New York city’s jail population is now 4,906 people.
  • He asks the super markets to please remember to practice social distancing and insist on social distancing from staff and customers alike. If need be, tell people to make a line outside.
  • If you are having trouble enforcing social distancing in your store, please call 311 and you will get help.
  • If you are able to, please start having a senior citizen hour in the morning. This is not mandatory, but would be greatly appreciated.
  • He then bumbles through a few words in Spanish, and the ASL translator really looks like he is trying not to laugh. SAME! Someone seriously needs to do a spanish battle between him and bloomberg. Haha

QUESTIONS

  • QUESTION: Let’s talk about unemployment.
  • DE BLASIO: It’s staggering. A lot of people haven’t even been able to apply yet. We estimate that half a million New Yorkers are now unemployed. We need more help from the feds.
  • QUESTION: What about juvenile detainees?
  • DE BLASIO: We will have more to say soon, but we are less focused on them because COVID-19 is less threatening to them.
  • VERY VALID QUESTION: How come Cuomo can give us numbers about where the ventilators are and you can’t?
  • DEBLASIO: The numbers are moving too much. Things are changing too much. It’s not productive to give numbers that may not be true minute to minute.
  • QUESTION: Recreation centers. What’s the plan if someone gets sick? (He means enrichment centers for the children of essential workers) Will it be like the schools?
  • DEBLASIO: We have to keep those centers running. If we have someone get sick, they will be immediately taken out of the situation. But the centers will have to remain open.
  • QUESTION: Staten island – they have 1900 beds. 1200 already in use. No public hospitals. What about them?
  • DE BLASIO: We will continue to build out the hospital system. If we can send people outside the borough, we will.
  • QUESTION: Do any guidelines allow for reuse of PPE in case of a pandemic?
  • DE BLASIO: This is uncharted territory, so we may need to change standards when needed. We are working collaboratively with the CDC to keep up with changing standards.
  • QUESTION: Out of the 4,000 hospitalizations, how many are in public hospitals? How long until they go broke?
  • DE BLASIO: The city will continue to fund the hospitals. That is a sacred duty. Do not have separate numbers. Bills will come for hospitalizations because we will need the money, but it’s not our first thought.
  • PERSONAL NOTE: I have been a patient in the New York City public hospital system for many years. I contracted a life threatening case of the mumps in my 20s, and was hospitalized at Bellevue for an entire week. They saved my life. I would not be here without them. When all was said and done, I was out of work for over a month. A bill came for $30K in the mail, but I took it to the hospital and told them my situation. They let me clear the entire bill for just $150 because I was uninsured and out of work. The people in the New York City public hospital system are ACTUAL ANGELS, and I will forever be grateful to them! Please keep them in your prayers, and if you are a New Yorker be grateful to live in a city that has these resources!
  • QUESTION: Are you going to tour possible field hospitals with Cuomo? The reporter adds that she thinks it’s negligent that we are not getting daily numbers on cases and deaths in the city.
  • DE BLASIO: Yes, he’ll also be touring locations. He also says that her personal opinion is not a question, nor is it appropriate to voice in this forum.
  • QUESTION: What is the death toll at Elmhurst today? How does it compare to other hospitals?
  • DE BLASIO: Today they had 4. The number tracks with the number of people on ventilators. It’s a normal percentage for the number of people on ventilators.
  • QUESTION: Are you doing this triage ethics plan or not?
  • DE BLASIO: We are trying to avoid ever having to make those choices. We are not giving up on the notion that we can save everyone.
  • QUESTION: How did you pick the streets to close today?
  • DE BLASIO: Through a committee of city people.
  • QUESTION: What is the latest guidance for people who feel sick? How long should they wait to go to a hospital? What about testing?
  • STATE DOCTOR: Stay home 3 – 4 days. If you do not get better, reach out to a healthcare provider. Or if you get worse, go. People who test should be over 50, have one of the five underlying conditions, or people who are sick. Do not go if you are not in that group.
  • QUESTION: What do we protect at all costs?
  • DE BLASIO: fighting COVID-19, the NYPD, water, and things we need to live. He goes on to say how truly ridiculous it is that we are getting the same funding as someplace with very few cases like Idaho. AND I AGREE.
  • QUESTION: What about methadone clinics?
  • DE BLASIO: We have not heard of any shortages on methadone.
  • QUESTION: What about the internet? What do families do if they can’t afford the internet? We have heard reports that some companies are refusing service to people who have past due bills.
  • DE BLASIO: He said this has not been brought to his attention previously, but that it “really pisses him off” that any of these companies would refuse service right now since so many kids will need the internet for classes. He says he would gladly take legal action to prevent that from happening to anyone.

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Please consider donating a few dollars to help keep it going. Transcribing and recapping these press conferences is extremely time consuming. I do it because I passionately believe that everyone should stay informed, but it is undeniably a lot of work. If you would like to help me continue what I’m doing with this website, or just help to make sure I can afford food during this pandemic, please consider sending me a donation. I accept any amount, no matter how much, through Venmo (@Amydetriotgirl), Cashapp (@$carbetarian) and PayPal (Carbetarian@gmail.com). Anything you can give will be appreciated!

Categories
Bill De Blasio New York City

Press conference with New York City Mayor, Bill De Blasio (3/24/20)

I took these notes before I had a blog format, so please forgive them for being a bit clunky!

• The city believes the worst of this crisis is still ahead for us. Mayor Deblasio says that he expects April to be worse than March, and fears that May could be even worse than April. He did not explicitly state a timeline for when things might return to normal, but I think those of us in NYC can safely assume the city will be on some level of lockdown for the next two months.


• Alternate side parking has been suspended until March 31st.


• The city has set up learning centers for the children of essential workers who can’t be home with their family. I do not have details as to how one gets your child into one of these centers.


• We are currently at 15,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in New York City. That number represents 85% of all cases in New York State, and a third of all cases in the country.


• The city estimates that we will need an additional 15,000 ventilators to avoid needless deaths from COVID-19. We were just sent 2,000 from the 4,000 our federal government sent to the state of New York. This still leaves us 13,000 short.


• The city has been in contact with Mike Roman of 3M, and he has committed to helping us get the masks we so desperately need for PPE. I did not catch the numbers needed/committed for this talking point.


• Our city is asking anyone who may have additional ventilators to donate their supplies, as New York City is now the epicenter of this crisis. Quite frankly, what I’m getting from the projections (me personally, not from Deblasio’s mouth) is that it’s starting to sound like New York City alone will eclipse the number of cases in Italy by next month.


• Deblasio wants to close two major streets in every borough in the hopes that the extra space will allow people room to go outside and get air while maintaining a 6ft separation from one another. He did not say which streets had been chosen. The pilot program is scheduled to begin on Thursday. There were many questions about this particular issue, and not that many answers. For one thing, if people don’t live near these major streets, how will they get there? Are we encouraging them to take public transportation? I personally don’t think that’s how a quarantine is supposed to work, but hey… I’m not the mayor. 🤷🏼‍♀️


• Our city budget is totally fucked. It will need to be balanced by June, and with that in mind the mayor has asked various departments to see where they might be able to cut costs. He says this will not mean layoffs, but it was unclear to me what budget cuts will be on the table.


• There is a concern that our hospital system will go broke in the coming months if we do not get federal aid. This is a constantly changing situation, and as of right now the city is doing everything they can to ensure our city’s healthcare is our number one priority. We are ensuring that both public and private hospitals get supplies during this crisis as if they are all the same.


• The past few days have had the lowest rate of reported crimes since our last blizzard. However, there had been a rise in the number of robberies being reported. The numbers going down have been things like sexual assault and domestic violence. The police commissioner says that he fears this is because people are simply not reporting these things. I would assume this is because some people may be sheltered in place with their abuser. If this applies to you, please call 311 and get help. I truly hope none of you are in that position!


• There are currently 211 members of the NYPD who have tested positive for the virus.


• If you are giving birth in a New York City public hospital during this crisis, your partner will be allowed in the room with you providing that they are not symptomatic and are wearing a mask.


• Citi Bike is offering a free 30 day membership to anyone who has been designated an essential worker during this crisis.


• We currently have 5,000 people in jail in New York City. In order to slow the spread of the disease to inmates, Deblasio would like to release anyone over 70, or who has the five most dangerous pre existing conditions, that has not been convicted of a violent crime. There were a ton of questions about this, but none of the answers I was looking for. How many people would be released and where do they go once they’re out? I’m sure there’ll be more to come on that subject in the future.


• Deblasio is refusing to release an emergency triage plan, explaining that we are not yet at the point of needing to prioritize anyone over anyone else.


• After speaking in English for 30 minutes, he said he would then say a few words in Spanish. And my… a few words, it truly was! He spoke in Spanish for less than one minute! Does anyone know if someone has made a Spanish parody account for him yet, like El Bloombito for Bloomberg? Lol, if not someone needs to get on it immediately!


• And lastly, my favorite part of the whole press conference was a reporter from Newsday calling Deblasio out for calling Italy “a hot mess” just a week and a half ago when they were at 15,000 cases. Oh, how the tables have turned! Deblasio said he was “misquoted” and did not apologize for his earlier remark.

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Please consider donating a few dollars to help keep it going. Transcribing and recapping these press conferences is extremely time consuming. I do it because I passionately believe that everyone should stay informed, but it is undeniably a lot of work. If you would like to help me continue what I’m doing with this website, or just help to make sure I can afford food during this pandemic, please consider sending me a donation. I accept any amount, no matter how much, through Venmo (@Amydetriotgirl), Cashapp (@$carbetarian) and PayPal (carbetarian@gmail.com). Anything you can give will be appreciated!