Buffalo, NY – Today, Mayor Byron W. Brown continued to emphasize the importance of complying with Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Executive Order to wear masks or face coverings when in public spaces where physical distancing is not possible. The order, which goes into effect at 8:00 tonight and applies to all residents two years of age and older, requires them to cover their faces as a means of limiting the community spread of COVID-19.
Mayor Brown stated, “The Governor’s directive is for public spaces where social distancing opportunities are limited, and I am asking residents to please comply with this and cover their faces. I know that this feels unusual and is a dramatic change in what we are used to, but covering our faces and physical distancing are some of our most important weapons in our fight against this deadly disease.”
At a press conference today, Charlene Ludlow, Vice President and Chief Quality and Safety Officer at Erie County Medical Center (ECMC), joined Mayor Brown to offer tips on how families can protect themselves from the virus. She has extensive experience with ECMC’s response to past infectious disease outbreaks, including SARS and Ebola, and is ECMC’s lead representative with local, state and national healthcare organizations. She also oversees ECMC’s COVID-19 Task Force Operations Center.
If you are unable to purchase a mask, Mayor Brown encourages residents to use a scarf or other garments to cover your face. The Centers for Disease Control has a guide on how to make and care for homemade cloth face coverings. For a link to that and other important coronavirus-related resources, including mental health resources, visit www.buffalony.gov and click on the Coronavirus Updates banner at the top.
Mayor Brown continued to advocate for the federal government to fund a relief package for small and medium sized cities that have had drastic revenue reductions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Mayor briefed members of the Buffalo Common Council today on this and other efforts during his weekly meeting with them. He also talked about the plan he is currently developing for economic recovery as we continue to respond to COVID-19.
As part of Mayor Brown’s ongoing outreach efforts to community groups, he and Lt. Governor Kathy Hochul, held a tele-town hall to update Buffalo faith leaders on the State and City’s response efforts to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Mayor assured leaders that their efforts to highlight the health care disparities that this emergency has made even more painfully clear, were having an impact on how government is responding to the public health crisis in our communities. He also urged them to continue to use virtual or remote technologies for services, the importance of physical distancing, and how they can become involved in the Good Neighbors Network.
Mayor Brown and the Buffalo Complete Count Commission are challenging residents to fill out their census forms to boost the City of Buffalo’s census response rate to 45% by the end of this weekend. As of April 17th, the City’s response rate is 38.6%, which lags far behind the 49.4% national response rate. Without an accurate count, the City of Buffalo will lose hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funding needed for community programming that will be essential in the aftermath of the COVID-19 crisis. Please encourage your family, friends and neighbors to complete their forms at 2020Census.gov.
Mayor Brown is calling on City residents to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day by taking part in a week-long series of virtual activities, scheduled for the week of April 20-24, 2020. Earth Day is April 22, 2020. Sketch out some Love your Earth messages on Monday, April 20th and tag us on Facebook/Instagram/Twitter @recyclebuffalo. For more information, go to www.buffalony.gov.
Mayor Brown today thanked members of the Belle Center and the Buffalo Dream Center for giving away bags of free groceries to 150 families in need this morning at the Belle Center, located at 104 Maryland Street.
Mayor Brown stated, “Being a good neighbor means taking care of vulnerable members in our community during times of need. I thank the Belle Center and the Buffalo Dream Center for helping to feed families during this emergency. I encourage other organizations to follow in their footsteps and be part of the thriving spirit of generosity that has made us known around the world as The City of Good Neighbors.”
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