The mayor held his daily coronavirus update remotely Thursday, saying, “We’re doing that to protect everyone and to show New Yorkers how important it is to practice social distancing.”
As of Thursday evening, there have been a total of 26 deaths in the city, and at least 3,954 confirmed cases citywide.
Of those 3,954 cases, Brooklyn has 1,195, Queens has 1,042, Manhattan has 1,038, the Bronx has 496 and Staten Island has 179.
The city continues to open additional testing sites, and de Blasio said over 1,700 medical providers have volunteered to help during the outbreak.
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Still, however, de Blasio said New York City cannot get through this without additional resources.
“I know our federal government has the capacity. We have the finest military in the world, the largest by far. Extraordinary resources unlike the city or the state, and I always say it very bluntly, the federal government literally prints money. They can create any credit line they want to save the lives of Americans, but we are not seeing that, not even close at this point,” he said.
According to de Blasio, New York City is “two weeks or three weeks away from running out of the supplies we need most for our hospitals” and the military needs to be mobilized in order to get those supplies in time.
“At this point, there’s never been a greater no-brainer in the history of the republic. How on earth is the finest military on earth being left on the sidelines? That’s what’s happening right now,” he said.
De Blasio says the city needs 3 million N95 masks, 50 million surgical masks, 15,000 ventilators, and 45 million each of surgical gowns, coveralls, gloves and face shields.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo is also calling on the federal government to use its powers to order manufacturers to speed up production of both ventilators and protective equipment.
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De Blasio says he is “heartened” that Congress passed an initial relief bill, but “initial is the key word,” he said.
“We need a huge stimulus relief bill immediately that puts money back into the pockets of people who have lost so much. It helps local governments keep going and doing the work we do,” de Blasio said. “Right now the United States government is not even close to where it needs to be.”
The mayor then went on to specifically talk about President Donald Trump’s response to the pandemic.
“President Trump, I will only say to the president, I don’t understand and I think there are millions and tens of millions of Americans who don’t understand what you are doing right now. You are not using the tools of your office. This is one of the greatest emergencies our nation has faced in generations. Every tool must be brought to bear. For some reason, you continue to hesitate,” de Blasio said.
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De Blasio called the military “the only answer at this point” to get Americans the help needed to fight the coronavirus outbreak.
“It is beyond comprehension, it is immoral, that our president has not ordered our military to full mobilization because this is the great threat to our nation,” de Blasio said.
The mayor also questioned why military medical professionals are not being activated and sent to states that need the most aid, like New York, California and Washington.
“The president gives himself an A grade and he congratulates himself and yet he will not act in the way we need it most. This is patently unacceptable,” de Blasio said.