Brooklyn Boro

COVID-19 update: Social distancing app reveals number of people on MTA bus in real time

July 22, 2020 Editorial Staff
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On the front lines of the war on COVID-19, there are many civilian heroes going out of their way, as volunteers and contributors. Also, many who are elected to serve are going the extra mile. In this column the Eagle hopes to give our readers an ongoing update on those fighting in the front lines.

The MTA on Tuesday unveiled a brand-new capacity tracking feature on the MYmta app and MTA website that allows customers to track in real time the number of passengers on an arriving bus, empowering customers to maximize social distancing on public transit in the wake of  the COVID-19 pandemic. “With this MYmta pilot, bus customers can choose to space themselves out a bit more where capacity allows,” said Sarah Feinberg, interim president of New York City Transit. The app will also be available at the Google Play Store next month.

Mayor Bill de Blasio and Sanitation Commissioner and COVID-19 Food Czar Kathryn Garcia on Tuesday announced that New York City has distributed an astounding 100 million meals to New Yorkers in need since March. De Blasio also called on the federal government to increase funding. “No New Yorker should ever go a day without being able to put food on the table,” said de Blasio. Anyone in need of food can connect to services via 311 or at nyc.gov/getfood.

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Since launching the Brooklyn COVID-19 Response Fund on March 13, Brooklyn Community Foundation has raised nearly $3.7 million from over 1,600 donors to address disproportionate social, economic, and health impacts of the coronavirus pandemic, especially in the borough’s communities of color. The initiative is the single largest community-funded effort in the foundation’s 10-year history. “We are incredibly grateful to our generous partners who have helped power this racially just, boroughwide response to the COVID-19 pandemic in our communities,” said Brooklyn Community Foundation President and CEO Cecilia Clarke.

A broad coalition of environmental justice, labor, faith-based, and legal rights organizations has submitted joint comments to the New York Public Service Commission urging the commission to protect access to clean water during the COVID-19 pandemic and recovery. “Millions of New Yorkers are falling behind on bills, including water bills, due to the COVID-19 crisis,” said Rob Hayes, clean water associate at Environmental Advocates NY. “The PSC has the opportunity to prevent waves of water shut-offs from sweeping our state during the long recovery ahead.”

NYC Health + Hospitals on Monday announced that the NYC Test & Trace Corps, the city’s public health initiative to fight COVID-19 and help New York City reopen safely, will now offer new hotel services and amenities to make it even more convenient, safe and comfortable for New Yorkers who test positive for the virus and those who have been exposed to the virus to safely separate to protect their loved ones. In addition to free meals, transportation, health care services and more, starting early next week, hotels will also begin to offer telepsychiatry services and access to medications for all hotel guests regardless of insurance status. Beginning July 20th, hotels will also begin to offer COVID-19 testing on-site, NYC Health + Hospitals said.


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