Cuomo: Reopening this summer vital for New Yorkers' 'sanity'

1010 WINS Newsroom
April 26, 2020 - 4:56 pm
    Categories: 

    NEW YORK (AP) -- The reopening of New York state will be vital in the summer, particularly in crowded cities, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Sunday.

    “You can’t tell people in a dense urban environment all through the summer months: ‘We don’t have anything for you to do, stay in your apartment with the three kids,’” Cuomo said at his daily news conference.

    “You know, that doesn’t work. There’s a sanity equation here also that we have to take into consideration,” he said.

    He said people have reason to feel better, saying “the worst should be over” as long as social distancing and other policies remain in place.

    “People need to know that there’s an opening, there’s a future, there’s hope, that somebody’s doing something. And then you need a relief valve just on a day-to-day basis so people have some relief in their lives, some vent,” he said.

    Cuomo said trends indicate that the incidence of domestic violence, alcoholism and drug use and mental health issues were on the rise.

    “Do not underestimate the stress that this situation has created, the abnormal circumstances that it has created,” he said, adding that a toxic mix of bad circumstances was pushing some people to the edge.

    “People need to know that there’s an opening, there’s a future, there’s hope, that somebody’s doing something. And then you need a relief valve just on a day-to-day basis so people have some relief in their lives, some vent,” he said.

    Cuomo said construction and manufacturing jobs that represent low risks for workers will be among the first to resume once New York state begins reopening after the coronavirus shutdown.

    Retail jobs and workers in the hospitality and hotel industry may be among the last to return, Cuomo said.

    And sports such as baseball probably will have to figure out if the economics work without fans in the stands, he said.

    “Everybody has to think outside the box because there is no box,” he said.

    The governor said determinations of when reopening begins will follow federal guidance that says reopening should not begin until the state and regional hospitalization rate has declined for two weeks.

    He said which businesses reopen after the restart of construction and manufacturing will depend on how essential they are and how safe they can operate.

    Once those businesses reopen, a two-week period would follow before more businesses reopen.

    “I don’t want to just reopen. We learned a lot of lessons here, painfully,” he said. “How do we take the lessons we learned and say when we reopen, we’re going to be the better for it? It’s not about a return to yesterday. There is no return to yesterday in life.”

    He compared New York’s upstate communities to the Midwest, saying some areas might be ready to reopen sooner than other areas. But he said he had to consider the possibility that residents of areas that are still closed might flood toward any place that opens.

    Like 1010 WINS on Facebook and follow @1010WINS on Twitter to get breaking news, traffic, and weather for New York City.