Gov Cuomo: Essential Workers Will Get Masks From Employers

April 12, 2020

From Governor Andrew Cuomo:

Amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced he will issue an Executive Order directing employers to provide essential workers with cloth or surgical masks free of charge to wear when directly interacting with the public.

Governor Cuomo also announced he will issue an Executive Order to expand eligibility of individuals to conduct antibody tests to help ensure as many New Yorkers as possible have access to antibody testing as the state continues to bring this critical testing to scale. The State previously provided labs with the flexibility to allow more workers to do testing for COVID-19; this executive order expands that authority so the same workers can perform antibody tests.

The Governor also joined National Governors Association Chair, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan in a bipartisan effort calling for $500 billion in aid to states. The federal CARES Act contained zero funding to offset drastic state revenue shortfalls. The Governor also reiterated his call for the Federal government to repeal SALT.

Earlier today, Governor Cuomo returned ventilators to the Pathways Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Center in Niskayuna. Pathways Nursing home made an unsolicited contribution of these lifesaving machines to New York State as part of the ongoing efforts against COVID-19. The Governor also delivered cookies for staff and nursing home residents baked by his daughters.

“The big question for everyone right now is when do we reopen the economy, but first we need to make sure we have a smart, safe and coordinated plan in place to do it without risking public health,” Governor Cuomo said. “The keys to reopening the economy are continuing to limit the spread of the virus and ramping up antibody testing. I am going to issue two executive orders – one directing employers to provide essential workers with a mask to wear when they are interacting with the public, and one to expand the number of people who are eligible to conduct the antibody test. These measures will be key to getting people back to work and making sure they are protected when they do go back.”

Finally, the Governor confirmed 8,236 additional cases of novel coronavirus, bringing the statewide total to 188,694 confirmed cases in New York State. Of the 188,694 total individuals who tested positive for the virus, the geographic breakdown is as follows: