N.Y.C. on Track to Enter Phase 3 of Reopening on July 6 – The New York Times

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It’s Friday.

Weather: Mostly sunny with a high in the upper 80s, turning partly cloudy tonight.

Alternate-side parking: Suspended through Sunday.

Credit…Amr Alfiky/The New York Times

Just days after New York City entered the second phase of its reopening, the next phase is already around the corner.

The city is on track to enter the third part of the state’s four-phase reopening on July 6, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Thursday. The phase allows for indoor dining and services like manicures and tattooing, as long as social distancing is practiced.

Here’s what else you need to know:

New Yorkers will soon be able to eat inside the city’s restaurants instead of being limited to takeout or sitting outdoors. People can also book appointments for their next tattoo or a fresh set of acrylic nails. Outdoor recreational spaces, including basketball courts, tennis courts and dog runs, will also reopen. The city’s public beaches will open for swimming this coming Wednesday.

At a news briefing, Mr. de Blasio said the changes would be a big relief for children, who have mostly been cooped up indoors and away from their friends.

New York City was an epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak and the last region in the state to enter Phase 1. When it began Phase 2 on Monday, barbershops, hair salons, offices and playgrounds reopened.

So far, New York has kept new infections down as it slowly reopens. On Thursday, for the first time since March 18, fewer than 1,000 people in the state were hospitalized with the virus, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said at a news briefing.

Mr. de Blasio said the timing of Phase 3 could change if cases were to surge again.

“Am I 100 percent confident?” the mayor said. “Of course not.”

The news came a day after Mr. Cuomo announced, jointly with the governors of New Jersey and Connecticut, that anyone traveling into New York from certain states with rising infection rates would have to be quarantined for 14 days.

New York City’s suburbs entered Phase 3 this week. Five upstate regions are entering Phase 4 today, allowing for gatherings of up to 50 people.

[Here’s a guide to all four phases of New York State’s reopening.]

Other states have seen spikes in virus cases after more fully reopening. As of Thursday, new infections were increasing in 29 states, including California, Florida and Texas.

Texas paused its economic opening on Thursday. In Florida, Gov. Ron DeSantis also said that he did not intend to move to the next phase of reopening, and he has urged people to avoid closed spaces with poor ventilation, crowds and close contact with others.

Mr. de Blasio stressed that the third phase would be good news for the city’s young people, as well as for struggling businesses.

“There’s been a lot of discipline, a lot of strength, because people want to keep moving forward,” he said. “So, let’s stick to it so we can get to Phase 3, make it work and then keep going from there.”

Not all New Yorkers welcomed the news, turning to social media to express skepticism. “The concept of NYC going into Phase 3 in two weeks is so bad I had to make a TikTok about it,” a writer, Charlotte Dow, tweeted.

Two city councilmen have formed a “CBGB Caucus” to help support independent music venues during the pandemic. [Brooklyn Vegan]

  • Frequently Asked Questions and Advice

    Updated June 24, 2020

    • Is it harder to exercise while wearing a mask?

      A commentary published this month on the website of the British Journal of Sports Medicine points out that covering your face during exercise “comes with issues of potential breathing restriction and discomfort” and requires “balancing benefits versus possible adverse events.” Masks do alter exercise, says Cedric X. Bryant, the president and chief science officer of the American Council on Exercise, a nonprofit organization that funds exercise research and certifies fitness professionals. “In my personal experience,” he says, “heart rates are higher at the same relative intensity when you wear a mask.” Some people also could experience lightheadedness during familiar workouts while masked, says Len Kravitz, a professor of exercise science at the University of New Mexico.

    • I’ve heard about a treatment called dexamethasone. Does it work?

      The steroid, dexamethasone, is the first treatment shown to reduce mortality in severely ill patients, according to scientists in Britain. The drug appears to reduce inflammation caused by the immune system, protecting the tissues. In the study, dexamethasone reduced deaths of patients on ventilators by one-third, and deaths of patients on oxygen by one-fifth.

    • What is pandemic paid leave?

      The coronavirus emergency relief package gives many American workers paid leave if they need to take time off because of the virus. It gives qualified workers two weeks of paid sick leave if they are ill, quarantined or seeking diagnosis or preventive care for coronavirus, or if they are caring for sick family members. It gives 12 weeks of paid leave to people caring for children whose schools are closed or whose child care provider is unavailable because of the coronavirus. It is the first time the United States has had widespread federally mandated paid leave, and includes people who don’t typically get such benefits, like part-time and gig economy workers. But the measure excludes at least half of private-sector workers, including those at the country’s largest employers, and gives small employers significant leeway to deny leave.

    • Does asymptomatic transmission of Covid-19 happen?

      So far, the evidence seems to show it does. A widely cited paper published in April suggests that people are most infectious about two days before the onset of coronavirus symptoms and estimated that 44 percent of new infections were a result of transmission from people who were not yet showing symptoms. Recently, a top expert at the World Health Organization stated that transmission of the coronavirus by people who did not have symptoms was “very rare,” but she later walked back that statement.

    • What’s the risk of catching coronavirus from a surface?

      Touching contaminated objects and then infecting ourselves with the germs is not typically how the virus spreads. But it can happen. A number of studies of flu, rhinovirus, coronavirus and other microbes have shown that respiratory illnesses, including the new coronavirus, can spread by touching contaminated surfaces, particularly in places like day care centers, offices and hospitals. But a long chain of events has to happen for the disease to spread that way. The best way to protect yourself from coronavirus — whether it’s surface transmission or close human contact — is still social distancing, washing your hands, not touching your face and wearing masks.

    • How does blood type influence coronavirus?

      A study by European scientists is the first to document a strong statistical link between genetic variations and Covid-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus. Having Type A blood was linked to a 50 percent increase in the likelihood that a patient would need to get oxygen or to go on a ventilator, according to the new study.

    • How many people have lost their jobs due to coronavirus in the U.S.?

      The unemployment rate fell to 13.3 percent in May, the Labor Department said on June 5, an unexpected improvement in the nation’s job market as hiring rebounded faster than economists expected. Economists had forecast the unemployment rate to increase to as much as 20 percent, after it hit 14.7 percent in April, which was the highest since the government began keeping official statistics after World War II. But the unemployment rate dipped instead, with employers adding 2.5 million jobs, after more than 20 million jobs were lost in April.

    • What are the symptoms of coronavirus?

      Common symptoms include fever, a dry cough, fatigue and difficulty breathing or shortness of breath. Some of these symptoms overlap with those of the flu, making detection difficult, but runny noses and stuffy sinuses are less common. The C.D.C. has also added chills, muscle pain, sore throat, headache and a new loss of the sense of taste or smell as symptoms to look out for. Most people fall ill five to seven days after exposure, but symptoms may appear in as few as two days or as many as 14 days.

    • How can I protect myself while flying?

      If air travel is unavoidable, there are some steps you can take to protect yourself. Most important: Wash your hands often, and stop touching your face. If possible, choose a window seat. A study from Emory University found that during flu season, the safest place to sit on a plane is by a window, as people sitting in window seats had less contact with potentially sick people. Disinfect hard surfaces. When you get to your seat and your hands are clean, use disinfecting wipes to clean the hard surfaces at your seat like the head and arm rest, the seatbelt buckle, the remote, screen, seat back pocket and the tray table. If the seat is hard and nonporous or leather or pleather, you can wipe that down, too. (Using wipes on upholstered seats could lead to a wet seat and spreading of germs rather than killing them.)

    • What should I do if I feel sick?

      If you’ve been exposed to the coronavirus or think you have, and have a fever or symptoms like a cough or difficulty breathing, call a doctor. They should give you advice on whether you should be tested, how to get tested, and how to seek medical treatment without potentially infecting or exposing others.

Transit officials are renaming two subway stations in Brooklyn after Medgar Evers College. [Gothamist]

What we’re watching: “The New York Times Close Up With Sam Roberts” includes a segment on The Times’s At Home section, which helps give New Yorkers and others ideas on what to do and how to entertain themselves during the coronavirus pandemic. The show airs on Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 1:30 p.m. and Sunday at 12:30 p.m. [CUNY TV]

The Times’s Melissa Guerrero writes:

Although most performance spaces, museums and community centers are closed, people are finding creative ways to connect through virtual events and programs. Here are suggestions for maintaining a New York social life this weekend while keeping a safe distance from other people.

At 7 p.m. on Friday, celebrate Pride with live D.J. sets from Papi Juice, an art collective celebrating queer and trans people of color, and Rimarkable as part of HBO’s weekend-long Human by Orientation event.

R.S.V.P. on the event page.

Join the Asian-American Feminist Collective for a workshop on Saturday at 1 p.m. Participants will gain tools and strategies to build solidarities through poetry, literature from “The Bridge Called My Back,” essays by Audre Lorde and bell hooks, and other writings.

Visit the event page to R.S.V.P.

On Sunday at 8 p.m. the writer Lara Rabinovitch will be in conversation with the television personality Phil Rosenthal about the North American Jewish deli, its immigrant history and its cultural impact in American food culture.

Register here for access to the livestream.

It’s Friday — enjoy the weekend.


Dear Diary:

It was fall 1966. I had just moved to New York from Oklahoma. My first job was as Christmas sales help in the men’s department at Bloomingdale’s. I was stationed near the Third Avenue entrance by a section of the store called Peterborough Row.

On one of my first days there, a woman rushed in the door trailing two very small, frisky children, a boy, a girl. They began to play with a mannequin, and I reached for the security phone.

My adviser, a man who was known as Fat Freddy, said I shouldn’t bother: It was Phyllis Newman and her children.

By then, the boy and girl had pulled an arm off the mannequin. Ms. Newman picked it up, looked around and banged it on the counter.

“I believe this is yours,” she said.

And with that, the three of them sped off.

— Robert Eaton

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