Gotham Gazette

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coronavirus

coronavirus

  • Max & Murphy Podcast: A Devastating Economic Picture in New York & What To Do About It

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    New York City (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayoral Photo Office)


    July 22, 2020 - Max & Murphy Podcast: A Devastating Economic Picture in New York & What To Do About It

    Kathryn Wylde, president and CEO of the Partnership for New York City, joined the show to discuss the Partnership's new report on the New York City economy, what government and the private sector should both do -- at times together -- to rebuild the city economy, and more.

    Listen to the conversation and let us know what you think -- we're on

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  • Especially Hard-Hit by Coronavirus, City’s Bangladeshi Community Sees Failure of Government to Help Vulnerable New Yorkers

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    Bangladeshis at a past gathering (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    When Shippon Hoque, a Bangladeshi green cab driver from Astoria, Queens, started to feel unwell in early March, it quickly dawned on him that he might have COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.

    When he developed a high fever and dry cough, the 65-year-old made his way to Elmhurst Hospital. There he was tested for the coronavirus and told to self-quarantine. Given his struggles with diabetes and high blood pressure, his nephew Naiful Bahri thinks that the hospital

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  • How New York Must Respond to New Covid-Related Challenges as Communities of Color Face Deadly Summer Heat

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    A heat wave is here (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Heat kills. It is the deadliest form of weather. And it kills Black and brown people at a higher rate than whites.

    This should no longer be news. The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically exposed the many brutal inequities in our society, which have been overlooked and outright ignored by decision-makers for far too long. In the United States, generations of Black and brown people have had to

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  • The Pandemic Further Exposed Nursing Homes; New York Needs to Invest in Better Options for Senior and Disabled Populations

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    The coronavirus crisis put a spotlight on nursing homes (photo: Ed Reed/mayor's office)


    COVID-19 has forced us to face a long-known, but ignored, truth: nursing homes are not desirable places to age. And the racial disparities in quality of health care at these facilities was only exacerbated by the pandemic, as we saw higher COVID-19 death rates in facilities with more people of

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  • An Inclusive Recovery Starts With An Inclusive Process

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    Gather stakeholders around the table (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Major financial decisions in New York, such as city and state budgets and economic development deals, are typically made behind closed doors in processes that are opaque to the public and rushed through our legislatures. The recent budget deal between Mayor Bill de Blasio and the New York City Council was no different — addressing a $9 billion shortfall with contingencies and fuzzy math. It included an insufficient plan to restart our economy and will

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  • Max & Murphy Podcast: The Looming Eviction Disaster

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    The housing picture is tenuous (photo: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office)


    July 15, 2020 - Max & Murphy Podcast: The Looming Eviction Disaster

    Fitzroy Christian of CASA Bronx joined the show to discuss housing, rent, and the looming eviction disaster amid the coronavirus crisis that has devastated people and communities across New York on several fronts.

    Listen to the conversation and let us know what you think -- we're on Twitter @TweetBenMaxand ...

  • De Blasio Promised Another Charter Revision Commission; Electeds and Advocates are Ready with Suggestions

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    Mayor de Blasio (photo: Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office)


    When Mayor Bill de Blasio said in late April that he was creating a task force to lead a “fair recovery” from the COVID-19 pandemic, nestled in his announcement was a brief statement that he also intends to call another Charter Revision Commission. But the mayor hasn’t yet convened that commission, which would be the third to be created while he has been mayor, the second by him alone, and hasn’t explained his rationale for it. 

    There have already been two

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  • Black Business Owners Hang On Through Covid Crisis as Black Lives Matter Movement Surges

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    Mayor de Blasio & Chirlane McCray dine at Melba's in Harlem (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Miriam Milord, the Black owner of BCakeNY in Brooklyn, had to completely reimagine her custom dessert business when the coronavirus pandemic hit New York. She usually served events of around 75 to 100 people, but, with social distancing guidelines, customers cancelled those gatherings. All of her orders disappeared.

    “So that stopped, you know, from one day to the next pretty much,” said Milord. “So not only were we not selling cakes, we also were

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  • Prioritize Schools - New Yorkers Demand a Real Plan for Our Students and Our City

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    students and schools in focus (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    It can't be easy to be in charge of New York City schools right now, facing a triple threat of crises: health, financial, and educational. However, our city as a whole can't function without our schools open—until that happens, parents, guardians, and caregivers can't get back to work; businesses across our city can't rely on their employees; and many children can't get the educational, social-emotional, and nutritional support they need.

    We know there are increasing numbers of unknown

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  • ‘Real’ Unemployment in New York City is as High as 25%, with 1 Million Out of Labor Force Due to Pandemic

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    Construction workers (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)


    Labor statistics can be very confusing, especially for the general public.

    The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) just released its June 2020 report, and while it does show an uptick in employment across the nation, economic pain remains widespread. The numbers for New York City and New York State, while they lag behind the national report, show more severe difficulties. A New York Times ...

  • Voters Should Be Able to Track Their Absentee Ballots, Lawmakers Say

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    Voting has changed dramatically in New York (photo: Kevin P. Coughlin/Office of the Governor)


    As hundreds of thousands of absentee ballots are being counted more than two weeks after the June 23 primary elections, state lawmakers are pushing a bill that would allow absentee voters to track their ballots and would require election administrators to provide an individual explanation when a ballot is disqualified.

    The latest effort to pass the legislation, which was first introduced in 2013, comes amid an unprecedented increase in absentee voting due to

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  • Max & Murphy Podcast: Teachers Union President Michael Mulgrew on Reopening New York City Schools

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    UFT President Michael Mulgrew with Mayor de Blasio (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    July 8, 2020 - Max & Murphy Podcast: Teachers Union President Michael Mulgrew on Reopening New York City Schools

    Michael Mulgrew, president of the United Federation of Teachers (UFT), joined the show to discuss the planning for reopening New York City schools in September and the various educational, health, and other measures that will need to be in place. He reacted to how Mayor Bill de Blasio has handled schools amid the coronavirus pandemic and the

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  • Governor Cuomo: Stop Scapegoating Nursing Home Workers and Making Excuses for Your Deadly Decisions

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    Governor Cuomo outside a nursing home (photo: Mike Groll/Governor's Office)


    After Governor Cuomo forced nursing homes to admit COVID-positive patients, more than 6,300 aging New Yorkers died in those homes throughout the state. The state’s order required nursing home workers to care for patients in dangerous, inhumane, and sometimes deadly conditions, without adequate protections,

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  • Getting New York City's Events Industry Up and Running Again

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    When can event spaces come back in New York City? (photo: VERSA)


    The future is coming into focus. New York City is starting to reopen, and officials are releasing specific guidelines on how different industries can get back up and running, such as regulations for outdoor dining. Empty middle seats and temperature checks are clearly in the future for airlines. 

    But what about the events industry, which brings in $10 billion and employs approximately 500,000 in the State of New York? As CEO of the Backal Hospitality Group, I’ve seen first-hand how the events

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  • Cash Homebuyers Threaten Covid Recovery and Deepen Racial Wealth Gap

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    An astonishing 11.3% of New York mortgage borrowers are behind on their mortgage, a 121% increase over the same time last year. That figure only hints at the economic pain being felt in New York and across the country, and pain that is being temporarily moderated by stopgap measures like forbearance plans and unemployment insurance, but threatens to bubble over into a full-blown housing crisis.

    In just two months, the federal foreclosure

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  • De Blasio, City Council Agree on Contentious $88.2 Billion Crisis Budget with Focus on NYPD Shifts

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    City budget announcement from 2019 (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    The New York City Council approved an $88.2 billion budget for the 2021 fiscal year shortly after midnight in one of the most divided votes for the legislative body in recent history. The new budget, which takes effect immediately for the July 1 start of the new fiscal year, is a sharp decline in expected city spending given cratering revenue brought on by the coronavirus pandemic and includes significant cuts to and funding shifts from the NYPD in response to recent mass protests against

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  • Covid Laid Bare Systemic Disparities. Our City Must Make Bold Changes for an Equitable Recovery

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    BK BP Eric Adams, the author (photo: Benjamin Kanter/Mayor's Office)


    New Yorkers have spent most of 2020 enduring an unprecedented health crisis that threatens us physically and financially like never before. We are also experiencing historic social unrest. People of color are feeling all of that pain far worse than their white neighbors.

    There is, however, nothing unprecedented or unusual about that.

    Black and brown New Yorkers have suffered from deep health, financial, and criminal justice disparities throughout the history of our city. COVID-19

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  • City Budget Crisis Threatens Lifeline for Day Laborers and Immigrant Workers

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    NICE staff and volunteers deliver groceries to workers impacted by COVID-19


    “The rags were so filthy, and we had no soap and little water to clean them, so we felt like we were spreading the virus in the subway car by our cleaning…We started on Monday, but they did not give us masks ‘til Wednesday…The gloves they gave us were for making sandwiches, not for cleaning! They would break, and there were no more, so we brought our own…I worry: How many people will get sick because these cars were “cleaned” this way?”
    -Susanna, a New Immigrant Community

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  • A Pandemic and A Primary in the Most Impoverished Congressional District in the Country

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    Ritchie Torres looks at Ruben Díaz Sr. (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    This story, and the series it is a part of, has been supported by the Solutions Journalism Network, a nonprofit organization dedicated to rigorous and compelling reporting about responses to social problems.

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    New York City has had very limited success in the voter turnout department for congressional elections in recent years. For the 2018

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  • Ensuring the COVID-19 Response Prioritizes the Needs of Vulnerable New Yorkers

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    Front-line workers (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    The COVID-19 crisis has laid bare the fragility of our region. It has compromised our physical and mental health, caused unprecedented disruption to our economy, and created a deep uncertainty about our future.

    Across the state, the pandemic has revealed how inequitably our communities are prepared to cope with an emergency of this magnitude. The Department of Health in New York City released ...

  • Staving Off an Eviction Nightmare by Expanding New Yorkers' Right to Counsel

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    An eviction nightmare looms as housing court reopens (Benjamin Kanter/Mayoral Photo Office)


    A new threat is looming for the very Black and brown communities in New York City that have been hit the hardest by the dual pandemics of coronavirus and racism in policy: a massive wave of evictions. 

    That’s because phase 1 of New York “reopening” didn’t just apply to construction and curbside retail. It also applied to housing courts. This could have disastrous consequences for tenants. Housing court personnel have already started

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  • What's The [DATA] Point? 70 million, with Kathryn Garcia and Cas Holloway

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    What's The [Data] Point? Episode 92 -- 70  million, with Kathryn Garcia and Cas Holloway [You can download What's The [Data] Point? wherever you get your podcasts, including on iTunes]

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    70 million is the number of free meals distributed by New York City government since mid-March, when the COVID-19 pandemic took hold. We spoke to key individuals in the public and private

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  • Could Coronavirus Exodus from Manhattan Impact Competitive Tri-Borough Congressional Primary?

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    Suraj Patel campaigning (photo: Facebook)


    Wealthy Manhattanites, more than others, fled New York City when the coronavirus pandemic erupted here, according to New York Times data reporting. Now, it’s unclear how that exodus might affect voting behavior in party primary elections happening this month, like in New York’s 12th Congressional District, where much of incumbent Representative Carolyn Maloney’s support has historically been in parts of Manhattan home to many of

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  • Learning the Right Health-Care Lessons from the Covid Crisis

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    Health care lessons from the coronavirus crisis (photo: Kevin P. Coughlin/Governor's Office)


    The saying “a crisis is a terrible thing to waste” is cliché, but true. Out of the coronavirus pandemic can come positive change, but we must learn the right lessons. At the peak of the COVID-19 crisis in New York some hospitals were overwhelmed – short of personnel, ICU beds, ventilators and PPE. But that does not mean, as some have argued, that more permanent

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  • Life and Death at the Stroke of the Governor's Pen

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    Governor Cuomo signs criminal justice reforms (photo: Governor's Office)


    New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has been trying in his daily press briefings to position himself as the national voice of reason, truth, and compassion regarding the coronavirus. To that end, he has liberally signed an array of executive orders ranging from shutting down businesses and closing schools to limiting the size of social gatherings.

    When the evidence revealed that COVID-19 was especially ravaging communities of color, the governor then tried to assume the mantle of race

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