De Blasio cancels permits for Puerto Rican Day, Pride, pro-Israel parades due to coronavirus

De Blasio cancels permits for Puerto Rican Day, Pride, pro-Israel parades due to coronavirus

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New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has canceled city event permits for the month of June, an extension of his order for May as the city grapples with the coronavirus outbreak.

De Blasio said this decision would pull permits for the New York City Pride Parade, Puerto Rican Day Parade, Salute to Israel Parade and other events.

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“A few days ago, I said city permits for events scheduled in May were canceled. I said we’d talk to organizers of events in June,” de Blasio said during a press briefing. “We have had those conversations and this will not surprise you: We will cancel city permits for June events as well.”

“This is not a happy announcement, but one we have to make,” de Blasio continued, adding that many of the events “will be postponed” to a date later this year and that the city will work with event organizers on rescheduling and finding “the right time and place.”

De Blasio added that 2020 is the “50th anniversary of the Pride Parade and it’s a very, very big deal.”

“That march is such an important part of life in this city, but this year in particular, was going to be something historic,” he said, while referencing the other events like the Puerto Rican Day Parade and Salute to Israel Parade. “We’re gonna miss all three of them in June, but they will be back and we’ll find the right way to do it.”

He added: “That joy and that pride that all of these events bring, that celebration will be back.”

“The fact that they’re postponing now will help us get back better,” he said. “The bottom line is to think about safety, saving lives, speeding us to that day where we get more normal, so this is the right thing to do.”

De Blasio’s announcement comes after the state of New York reported nearly a quarter-million positive cases of COVID-19. In New York City alone, there are more than 134,400 cases. The city has seen more than 10,000 deaths.

De Blasio, meanwhile, urged President Trump to give the city “the financial support to make us whole, balance our budget, pay our first responders and public servants.”

“I’ll address this to the president — we are saving lives here in New York City,” de Blasio said, noting the city is “spending hundreds of millions of dollars now — will be billions of dollars to save lives.”

“We’re not hesitating. We’re not doing anything besides what is right, by beating back this disease,” he said, adding that the federal government “is not stepping up.”

De Blasio went on to say, though, that FEMA has provided 350 ambulances and dozens of paramedic volunteers from states across the country to assist those on the frontlines in New York City.

As for personal protective equipment (PPE), de Blasio said the city is “in a better situation.”

“We have a sufficient supply for this week, which will get us through until Sunday,” de Blasio said. “N95 masks, surgical masks, face shields, gloves are constantly being delivered to hospitals and nursing homes, as well.”

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De Blasio did say, however, that the city is having a “growing problem” with regard to surgical gowns.

“These are crucial because they protect our health care workers,” he said. “We are manufacturing our own here…but we don’t have a secure supply.”

He added that “even with the fallbacks, we are not sure we’ll have enough to get to Sunday of this week.”

De Blasio added that he is “really concerned” about it and is “fighting to find more,” and appealing to the federal government for aid.

“We need more surgical gowns in New York City and we need them now,” he said, adding that the city is doing its best to “create our own.”

De Blasio noted that he asked White House economic adviser Peter Navarro for “the fabric” to make the gowns, and said “he did come through.” He said the city now has enough fabric to make “400,000 gowns.”

“That’s substantial, but nowhere near the need we have,” he said.

Meanwhile, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced last week that all non-essential businesses and workers must remain home during the coronavirus outbreak through at least May 15.

As of Monday, the U.S. reported more than 759,700 positive cases of COVID-19 and more than 40,600 deaths.

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