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COVID Newsletters

Weekly COVID newsletter (7/9)


It’s Thursday, July 9, 2020.

At press time,’s COVID-19 tracker shows Manhattan has 27,266 confirmed cases and 3,110 deaths; New York City as a whole has 214,952 cases and 23,247 deaths.

With the arrival of Phase 3, this newsletter is shifting from a daily to a weekly schedule. Since the pandemic began, it’s been an honor for my communications staff and I to provide Manhattanites with useful information about health, community events, and city policy.

We’ll keep doing that– watch your inbox every Wednesday or Thursday (we’ll work to include enough time for weekend events!). And, again, almost all our newsletter items are re-purposed by category on my website– look for the five blue boxes at the top of

If you have a minute to answer a survey about the newsletters, please click here and give us some feedback!

This morning, on the anniversary of the ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment, I helped unveil a street co-naming put in motion by Council Member Margaret Chin and I, which co-named a stretch of Centre Street “Black Lives Matter Boulevard”– the sign is now at the intersection of Centre and Chambers, in front of the David N. Dinkins Municipal Building.

Then I joined Tijani Mohammed, Sophia Dawson, and Patrice Payne, the three young Black artists who created designs within the lettering of “Black Lives Matter” on the asphalt of Centre Street along the length of Foley Square, for a tour of their designs. You should see it for yourself– come visit Centre Street, which is closed to traffic until July 17th.

Today (7/9) I sent a letter to Governor Cuomo insisting he act now to protect CUNY students from the new ICE rule change that would cruelly remove international students from the country if their schools switch to all-online learning this fall.

Tax Day is next Wednesday, July 15! Visit here for info on free NYC Tax Prep services.

Applications have resumed for the federal Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which dispenses loans that operate as grants if used for payroll, interest on mortgages, rent, or utilities (though at least 60% must be used for payrolls for loans to be forgiven).

You should know that Pace University’s Small Business Development Center can help business owners apply for these loans. Email to arrange a free virtual meeting to discuss this and other small business financial programs.

The City’s Dept. of Education has set up a Return to School 2020 page with the latest updates on reopening public schools and specifics on hybrid learning and the first day of school. Chancellor Carranza also released a letter for NYC school families.

Tomorrow’s (7/10) book distribution in partnership with the New York Public Library’s Summer Reading Program, scheduled to go to NYCHA’s Vladeck and Riis Houses, has been postponed due to a forecast of rain. See the full schedule here.

Tomorrow (7/10) at 10 am, businesses and nonprofits are asked to participate in the “Make New York City Count” campaign. It’s simple: at 10 am, employers set aside 10 designated minutes for their employees to complete the 2020 Census. A complete census count is important for everything in our city, from schools to food to transportation!

In Manhattan we’ve hit 54.7% census form completion! Thanks to everyone who’s completed their census form. Here’s an overview of response rates:

  • 57.5% for New York State,

  • 53.1% for New York City,

  • 50.3% for Brooklyn,

  • 58.3% for Staten Island,

  • 53.1% for Queens,

  • 54.5% for the Bronx,

  • and 54.7% for Manhattan!

On Tuesday (7/14) at 6:30 pm, I’ll be hosting a virtual town hall with Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health on “The Future of Childcare in NYC.” We’ll look at the new guidelines for opening child care centers, what we have learned these past few months, and what we will need to do moving forward. Register here.

Next Thursday (7/16) at 10 am, I am hosting the regular monthly online public session of the Manhattan Borough Board, a formal body composed of all Council Members and Community Board chairs in the borough. Register to attend at this link and you’ll receive an email with instructions on how to be in the online audience.

Also next Thursday (7/16) from 7 – 8 pm, I’ll join State Sen. Liz Krueger and Christian Klossner, Executive Director of the Office of Special Enforcement of the Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice, for an online town hall to discuss reopening New York City. Watch live on Facebook.

The City’s Test and Trace Corps will provide funding to community-based organizations to help with promoting testing and tracing for COVID-19, for use in outreach and education programs relating to testing, tracing, and safety measures like mask use and physical distancing. The request for proposals deadline is this Monday, July 13.

For those missing Shakespeare in the Park this summer, the planned production of Richard II will live on as a four-part radio drama on consecutive nights next week. Listen to “Shakespeare on the Radio,” at 8 pm each night, Monday to Thursday (7/13 – 7/16), on

The Guggenheim Museum’s Works and Process Virtual Commissions series has released “Solanum Dulcamara,” a dance piece by choreographer Donald Byrd that expresses what he calls the “Black Exhaustion” experienced by many as the movement for racial justice progresses.

Today’s FreshDirect delivery was made to Rangel Houses. From there the 500 10-lb food boxes were distributed to Polo Grounds, as well as Harlem River I & II Houses, with the help of my staff and the local Tenants’ Associations. And today, we’re also including free books and a reading guide from the NY Public Library (part of their Summer Reading series).

Please forward these newsletters to anyone you know who would find them useful, or have them subscribe to my enews here or follow me on Twitter, Facebook, and/or Instagram.

And please do call me with any urgent problems or concerns: (212) 669-8191.