Churches, mosques and synagogues can reopen as Suffolk County enters Phase Two of its reopening this Wednesday, albeit with only 25 percent capacity.
Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) announced that these houses of worship could admit community members and that religious leaders were responsible for ensuring compliance with the public health guidelines designed to limit the spread of COVID-19.
“It’s an important time for our faith-based communities to be opened back up,” County Executive Steve Bellone (D) said on his daily conference call with reporters. “Our faith-based communities are ready to this. They understand what needs to be done.”
Separately, as protests continue on Long Island and throughout the world after the killing of Minneapolis resident George Floyd at the hands of a former police officer, who has been charged with his murder, public officials are engaging in ongoing conversations with community leaders bout ways to create greater equity and opportunity for everyone.
“There are areas for us to make progress,” Bellone said. “There is more work to be done.”
Bellone suggested the police department can look to make itself more diverse so that it “reflects in terms of its diversity the communities it serves across the county. That’s a priority for us.”
Bellone said conversations about equal opportunities occurred before the killing of Floyd and are moving into a “new phase” amid the protests and demonstrations.
The number of people who have tested positive for COVID-19 rose by 39 to 40,239 over the last day.
The number of residents in the hospital due to the pandemic declined by 13 to 200, while the number of people in Intensive Care Unit beds declined by one to 53 through June 4th.
An additional 24 people left the hospital over the last day.
The number of people who died due to complications related to COVID-19 in the last day was five, bringing the total to 1,923.