Reopening New York while protecting children proves complicated for Cuomo

REUTERS/Mike Segar

With no easy answer on the safety of schools and camps for children as cases of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children related to COVID-19 seem to grow, Governor Andrew Cuomo is advising families to keep their children isolated.

Budget Director Robert Mujica said the state is reevaluating the current coronavirus guidelines toward daycares and summer camps in particular in light of new threat which seems to have doubled internationally in the past few weeks, according to Cuomo.

“This inflammatory syndrome is more frightening in some ways than the COVID respiratory illness because it inflames the heart. We know it exists, we don’t know how widespread it is; the more we look the more we find it,” Cuomo said. “Until we have this answer on the pediatric syndrome, as a parent, until I know how widespread this is, I would not send my children to day camp.”

With the tenuous standing of additional aid from the federal government in the next stimulus, Cuomo said education and hospitals were at the highest risk should the state budget shortfalls not be met.

Despite this fact, Cuomo was enthusiastic about the statistics coming out of hospitals.

New COVID-19 cases are down to 246 which Cuomo says is within the range New York started in March, but 105 people died statewide on May 20.

But as the COVID-19 numbers continue to improve, Cuomo says the state is considering its legal abilities to question newcomers to the state regarding their exposure history to the illness, but more or less claimed this is a federal obligation and could be an overstep on the part of New York state.

Although cautious in regard to this, the governor reiterated his disappointment in federal officials in not responding to up to 3 million travelers from affected countries in Europe between January and March when the shutdowns finally began, but admitted this was an indulgence on his part to “Monday morning quarterbacking.”

“Who knew the virus left China, who knew the virus went to Europe, who knew the virus was already here January, February, March? It’s above my pay grade as a governor of one state… Somebody has to answer that question,” Cuomo said.