In Wake of Alarming COVID-19 Positivity Rates in the Area
QUEENS, NY — Assembly Member Khaleel M. Anderson hosted a COVID-19 Response press conference on January 28, 2021 in response to the alarming COVID-19 positivity rates in South Richmond Hill.
The press conference was held at South Richmond Hill’s Gurdwara Sikh Cultural Society. Assembly Member David I. Weprin, Assembly District 24, collaborated with Assembly Member Anderson to host the event and provided an introduction to the press conference.
Assembly Member Anderson shared his office’s plans to provide increased amounts of PPE and COVID-19 testing availability to community members, his demand for city-wide and state-wide transparency throughout the entirety of the COVID-19 vaccination process, and his dedication as a legislator to passing COVID-19 economic relief legislation in Albany.
“South Richmond Hill’s COVID-19 positivity numbers are among the highest reported in all of New York City. I am dedicated to taking action that will support the safety of all of South Richmond Hill’s diverse residents, including the Sikh community, predominantly living in Assembly District 31’s South Richmond Hill, in collaboration with elected officials, community leaders and medical professionals. Our district saw some of the first cases of COVID-19 in New York City this past spring; as this crisis continues, we demand transparency and equitable access to resources amid each step of the battle against the pandemic.” Assembly Member Anderson said.
“I am deeply alarmed by the spike in coronavirus cases in Richmond Hill. We must all remain vigilant in wearing a mask and washing our hands. With awareness we can stop the spread of COVID-19,” said Assemblyman David Weprin. “I am committed to helping Queens residents remain safe during this pandemic. That is why my office is here today at the Sikh Cultural Society to donate 1,000 masks and hand sanitizers.”
“South Richmond Hill and South Ozone Park are home to countless Indo-Caribbeans and Punjabis who make up the fabric of our City. We are a hard-working people, many who had no choice but to work through this pandemic. We are the transit workers, grocery workers, healthcare workers, food service workers, domestic workers, airport workers and beyond. It is no surprise that COVID incidence is as high as the figures demonstrate, especially given the large population we know calls these neighborhoods home. Statistics do not account for the many undocumented folks and others who are distrustful of government and live in the shadows. We have historically been overlooked and under-represented. The time is now to speak up to ensure our needs are met during this health and economic crisis. We are thankful that our partners in government, including Assembly Member Anderson, are stepping up to advocate alongside us. We call for increased resources including vaccination centers and culturally responsive outreach that bridges the digital divide in our beloved community,” Aminta Kilawan-Narine, Esq., Founder and Director of the South Queens Women’s March said.
“Women in our community have been hit especially hard by the pandemic. Essential workers are disproportionately women, and the health and financial impacts have been devastating — in addition to the immense emotional toll. We can’t afford for our neighborhoods to be left behind again, as they were with testing. Our community deserves more. We deserve dignity,” Shivana Jorawar and Simone Jhingoor, Co-Directors of Jahajee Sisters said.
“We are in a dire situation as Richmond Hill cases continue to rise. While South Queens has been overlooked in the past, I attest that those days are behind us. We can do better and we will do better and we must do better! This community will receive the results it deserves, the legislation it needs and the vital vaccines it requires to defeat COVID-19. We are fighting to make it happen everyday,” Assembly Member Jenifer Rajkumar, Assembly District 38 said.
Assembly Member Khaleel M. Anderson represents the 31st Assembly District, encompassing the neighborhoods of Arverne, Brookville, Far Rockaway, Hammels, Rosedale, South Ozone Park, South Richmond Hill, Springfield Gardens and Laurelton.