NEWBURGH – New York State Senator James Skoufis and New York State Assemblymember Jonathan Jacobson joined forces on Sunday to hand out free masks and hand sanitizer to local residents.
The distribution took place outside their district offices on Grand Street. Throughout the pandemic, both elected officials have given out the much needed supplies to hospitals, police, fire fighters, first responders and the community at large.
In May Jacobson donated surgical masks to RECAP/Newburgh Mutual Aid, the Good Sherpherd Soup Kitchen and the Town of Newburgh Emergency Medical Services. He said, “I was fortunate enough to be able to buy a small quantity of surgical masks. Since our first responders and those distributing food to local residents regularly come into contact with the public, I wanted to do my part to help protect them since they are working tirelessly to care for our community.”
Skoufis announced that he had suffered Coronavirus symptoms and had recovered in May. He self-isolated after experiencing fever, headaches, shaking chills and exhaustion. He said of the illness, “The past two weeks are the sickest I have ever felt and serve as a reminder that no matter one’s age or underlying health, COVID-19 is a virus that ougth to be taken with the utmost seriousness.”
Since recovering Skoufis has delivered hundreds of “Recovery Kits” to local healthcare workers at Montefiore St. Luke’s Cornwall and Cornerstone Family Healthcare, as well as joining with his staff to volunteer to help feed the local community.
The two lawmakers have continued to call for commonsense measures that can help reduce the spread of COVID-19. Wearing a face covering in public when you can’t social distance and washing hands frequently or using hand sanitizer are two prime examples. Hence why the two spent part of their Sunday distributing the items and giving back to the community.
“Protecting the public’s health has always been and will continue to be a top priority of mine which is why I’m constantly working to secure supplies and distribute them in our communities,” said Senator Skoufis. “It’s important as ever that we all continue socially distancing and wearing masks when unable to be six feet apart. A special thanks to Newburgh Counts and the Newburgh Free Library for partnering with us on census outreach to help get more Hudson Valley residents counted.”
“I was happy to be able to distribute masks and hand sanitizers in Newburgh with Senator James Skoufis,” said Assemblymember Jacobson. “Just as important, I was glad that representatives of the Census Bureau were there signing people up. For every person who does not register with the Census, the municipality will lose $2,600 in federal aid. Community organizations such as Newburgh Counts are helping the cause and we must do better for all of us.”
The Newburgh Census Complete Count Committee was also on hand handing out educational material. The group of volunteers explained how the information from the Census is used at the local level – from grants and funding to representation in Washington, DC. Anyone who needed assistance with completing the Census was able to ask questions, get answers, and get their Census form complete.
Mary Lou Carolan, Director of the Newburgh Free Library said, “The Newburgh Free Library, a partner in the Newburgh Counts! complete count committee, is dedicated to ensuring that our people’s survey count rises far beyond the 57% of 10 years ago. Newburgh Counts! has scheduled a week-long effort, in conjunction with National Census Week, to be present at community events, places of worship, and on the streets with laptops, tablets, and hotspots to have people complete the simple survey on the spot. It takes less than 10 minutes to impact the next 10 years. Let’s get counted!”
In partnership with Cornerstone Family Healthcare, Senator Skoufis is hosting a day of COVID-19 antibody testing for first responders on Wednesday, July 29 from 9:00 AM – 4:15 PM at his Newburgh office. Appointments are still available and first responders who would like to be tested should email email@example.com.