by STAFF WRITER
December 17, 2021
NEW YORK, Dec 17,CMC – Caribbean American New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams has tested positive for the coronavirus (COVID-19) that has killed nearly one million Americans over the past year.
“I tested positive for COVID-19, along with thousands of other New Yorkers, as the next wave of the virus rises in our city and state,” said Williams, the son of Grenadian immigrants, in a statement. “I have mild symptoms and am quarantining at home away from my pregnant wife, who has tested negative.
“I know that isolation is a privilege not everyone has, and I’m grateful to be both vaccinated and boosted,” added Williams, a candidate for Governor of New York in next June’s Democratic Primary. He said the recent spike in COVID-19 cases across New York is “urgent and alarming, and this is a time to take precautions that can prevent both a deadly surge and the need for more restrictive measures.
“Government should take the lead by immediately transitioning to remote work whenever possible. As long lines form at testing sites, it’s vital that we restore expanded testing infrastructure and empower New Yorkers across the state to test themselves by providing home testing kits.”
Williams said he was “grateful” that New York City has taken this step, urging New York State to “replicate and expand on it by directly sending tests to households.”
In addition to strengthening mask protocols, the public advocate urged New York State to adopt the city’s policy of vaccine screenings for indoor venues, “which has been extremely successful and should already have been expanded by this point.
“I know that this moment is distressing, but we are not in March of 2020; we have the knowledge and the tools to protect ourselves and our communities that we didn’t back then. We just need to learn the lessons of the failures at that time, and prevent them from recurring now.”
Over the last weekend, another Caribbean American legislator abruptly closed her Brooklyn office amid “an outbreak of COVID-19.
“I regret to inform you that my office is currently experiencing an outbreak of COVID-19, and we will have to close for the foreseeable future,” said New York Assembly Member Diana C. Richardson, the daughter of St. Martin and Aruban immigrants, in an email message to constituents.
Richardson also did not indicate whether she had contracted the virus.
“This is also a reminder to all of us that COVID-19 is still a risk and to remain vigilant. Please stay safe and healthy, wear a mask, and please get vaccinated,” she added.
Last Friday, New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced that masks will be required to be worn in all indoor public places, unless businesses or venues implement a vaccine requirement.
The governor said this “a major action” to address the winter surge, as COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations rise state-wide, and to be in alignment with the Atlanta, Georgia-based Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) recommendations for communities with substantial and high transmission.
On Thursday, the New York Governor said 237,596 vaccine doses were administered over last the last 24 hours and that there were 53 COVID-19 deaths state-wide on Wednesday.
“This is a public health crisis. We must not make light of the winter surge that we are facing, and we should continue to encourage everyone we know to get vaccinated, get the booster and wear a mask.
“Let’s all get through this holiday season safely,” she urged.