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COVID-19 Update: May 4

New York State is accepting applications for contact tracers. Applicants are being sought for the role ofcontact tracer,team supervisorandcommunity support specialist.

Governor Cuomo announced the results of the state's completed antibody testing study, showing 12.3 percent of the population haveCOVID-19 antibodies.

The survey developed a baseline infection rate by testing 15,000 people at grocery stores and community centers across the state over the past two weeks. Of those tested, 11.5% of women tested positive and 13.1% of men tested positive.

For the full results by region readmore here.

New Yorkers without health insurance can apply for a health plan throughNY State of Health.

If you recently lost employer coverage, you must apply within 60 days of losing that coverage. Because of loss of income, New Yorkers may also be eligible for Medicaid, the Essential Plan or Child Health Plus.

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. The State Department of Financial Services is directing state-regulated health insurers to waive all cost sharing/copays/deductibles for mental health services for essential workers through this crisis.

Frontline workers are making incredible sacrifices for us all, and it's only right that we provide our heroes with the mental health services they may need at no cost.

Even during these unprecedented times, help is always available. You can reach the NYS Mental Health Hotline at 1-844-863-9314

Under the Governor’s Executive order everyone is required to wear a mask or face covering while in public.

The New York State Department of Health has issued guidance on this order. Individuals must procure, fashion, or otherwise obtain face coverings and wear such coverings when they are in a public and are:

• within six feet of distance from other individuals; or

• in a situation or setting where they are unable to maintain six feet of distance

   from other individuals; or

• in a public or private transportation carrier or for-hire vehicle.

Read more of the Department of Health’s Guidelineshere.

The CDC has also provided a step by step guide on how to make your own facecovering here.

Remember to support local restaurants and order delivery or take-out from your favorite local spot!

For a comprehensive list of businesses located in the 108th Assembly District who are currently still offering take out or delivery options see below:

City of Albany:

Also, continue to check out theRensselaer County Chamber Facebook Pageand theRensselaer County Tourism Facebook Pagefor daily updates!

  • Unemployment Insurance - The one-week waiting period for Unemployment Insurance claims for workers directly affected by COVID-19 has been eliminated. The Department has also announced that they are changing the unemployment insurance job search requirement that is currently in place. No work search activities will be required during the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information check out the DOL page here:

  • Those in need can call 2-1-1 from any phone for a free, confidential referral to resources providing food, shelter, rent assistance, childcare options and other essential services. The helpline is also able to answer questions and provide referrals for COVID-19 related concerns. Simply dial 2-1-1 or visit

  • If you believe your business is an essential service but has not been included on ESD’s list, you can apply for ‘essential service status’ at this link:

  • Evictions and other nonessential housing court proceedings are suspended until further notice. For more information you can contact the NYS Courts System at or 1-800-268-7869

  • OAG will halt the collection of medical and student debt owed to the State of New York and referred to the OAG for collection from March 17, 2020 through April 16, 2020. After this 30-day period, the OAG will reassess the needs of state residents for a possible extension.  

  • Charter will be providing free Spectrum broadband and Wi-Fi access for 60 days to households with K-12 and/or college students who do not already have a Spectrum broadband subscription (where service is available), at any service level up to 100 Mbps, as well as opening up Charter WiFi Hotspots across our footprint for public use. For more information or to enroll in the program please contact 1-844-488-8395

  • The Capital District YMCA will provide childcare for emergency personnel who do not have the option to work from home, as defined by The New York State Education Department. For more information visit:


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