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Latest coronavirus updates in New York: Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Bill de Blasio
Virus Outbreak New York
Posted at 4:47 AM, Sep 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-15 12:03:49-04

NEW YORK — Below you will find the most up-to-date information on coronavirus news impacting New York. You can find additional resources and coverage on our coronavirus page.

10:15 a.m.
Mayor de Blasio held a coronavirus briefing. Watch in video below.

Flu shots

  • Protect yourself from getting the flu, especially during the COVID-19 crisis
  • Campaign launched to encourage New Yorkers to get vaccinated

Test and trace in NYC

  • Prevented up to 15,000 potential new COVID-19 cases. Read more.
  • Nearly 80% of all positive COVID-19 cases completing Test and Trace Corps’ intack
  • Surpassing initial benchmarks
  • The more people get tested, the more we can prevent the disease spread

New hyperlocal focus

  • Southeast Queens
    • Focus on Ozone Park, South Ozone Park, Richmond Hill
    • Start Friday, Sept. 18 at Ozone Park Library
  • Borough Park
    • 10,000 face masks distributed
    • focus on back to school and Rosh Hashanah

Q&A

  • How would you rate changes of averting 22,000 layoffs?
    • I try to stay out of the rating game, but I thank union reps for working hard. We’re not out of the woods at all, but work is being done to find other options
  • Flu — reports say it’s been crushed in the southern hemisphere. Will it be a factor here?
    • Mayor: We are heartened by the news from the southern hemisphere, but have an abundance of caution.
    • Dr. Chokshi: Abundance of caution focus on young children, elderly and those with other health conditions
  • UWS hotels: Contract expires October. What are you doing as the deadline approaches?
    • They’re going to look at the whole picture and decide the next steps.
  • Layoffs: There’s a 30-day window, can you still “pull the trigger” to issue slips
    • It’s still possible. Unions need to be notified 30 days out.
    • Mayor: I don’t want to see anyone suffer. We need a big, strong public workforce to keep the city going, but there’s a budget I need to balance.
  • Disagreement with people wanting to return to buildings. Do you want to wait to see how schools go?
    • It takes a couple of weeks to see impact and a little more after to see how secondary impact goes.
  • Bringing workforce back to offices
    • All businesses need to start looking into how they’re going to bring employees back.
    • “We want to make sure that this city comes back to life.”
  • Principal’s union said the 2,000 additional educators is only a fraction of the 10,000 they requested.
    • It’s not surprising they’ve put in a big request. We need to make sure there’s a balance.
  • BDB was asked whether or not certain schools will reopen Monday, but UFT and some teachers say some schools aren’t ready
    • Mayor: I understand unions will advocate and raise concerns. There’s one building (MLK building in Manhattan) that needs an alternate site.
    • There are a few buildings that haven’t met inspection deadlines yet, but they should be done today.
  • Accommodation requests among teachers
    • Dr. Varma — Requests are looked into and will inform teachers on whether or not they were approved.
  • Businesses bringing employees back
    • Goal is to keep coming back, but safely.

Happening today:
9 a.m. – The executive producer of the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade speaks to the PIX11 Morning News after news the parade will go virtual. Watch live here.

5 a.m.
At least 55 school staffers tested positive for COVID-19, raising more concerns as the start of in-person learning begins in less than a week. Watch video above.

The latest official numbers:
As of Monday afternoon, there were 444,948 confirmed cases of novel coronavirus and 25,394 deaths in New York, according to the Department of Health.

COVID-19 timeline: How novel coronavirus spread

Tips to protect yourself and others amid coronavirus outbreaks

The New York state coronavirus hotline is 1-888-364-3065; information is also being posted here