Dr. Oxiris Barbot,


NYC Dept. of Health and

Mental Hygiene

Dr. Barbot:

On behalf of the residents of the Black communities of NYC, we demand to know what is New York City’s plan to implement an aggressive Public Health Campaign (as is already evolving in Milwaukee and Chicago) against the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), to save Black lives. Unless, of course, Dr. Barbot, you see nothing wrong with FEMA continuing to bring in more refrigerated trucks to store Black bodies. We need a plan to address prevention as well as confront the virus itself.

Your own statistics on your COVID-19 Daily Data Summary web page clearly indicate the disparities of Black and non-Black deaths in the boroughs of The Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens, versus Manhattan and Staten Island. NYC Health data report that as of April 6, 2020, 19.8% of COVID-19 fatalities have occurred within the Black community, although Black people comprise around only 14% of New York State’s total population (9% outside of NYC).

Going forward, commissioner, along with the New York State Nurses Association and NNU, we see that all roads point toward the absolute necessity for a National Health Care System/single payer, providing coverage for all, and we will look to you for your assistance in achieving this necessity. Health care is about people taking care of people.

I look forward to hearing from you since this pandemic condition only grows worse on a daily basis.

Yours truly,

Loretta Vaughan-BA, MS