Two members of the New York State Assembly have tested positive for the coronavirus, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Saturday.
“It has come to our attention that two of our Assembly colleagues, Helene Weinstein and Charles Barron, have been diagnosed with COVID-19,” said a statement, posted on Twitter Saturday. “It is important to note that both members have not been in Albany since early March for separate reasons. Speaker Heastie has been in contact with both members, and we are taking swift action to address this situation.”
Unfortunately, our Assembly colleagues Helene Weinstein and Charles Barron have been diagnosed with COVID-19.
I’m hoping they get well soon.
Out of an abundance of caution the Capitol will be closed to visitors effective tomorrow pic.twitter.com/6GUU1dHbQn
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) March 15, 2020
We have spoken with the Senate and are undertaking an intensive cleaning of the Capital and the Legislative Office Building. All legislators and staff that have come in contact with these members will be tested to ensure the safety of everyone.
Additionally, out of an abundance of caution we are closing the Capitol to visitors effective [Sunday].
We are working hand in glove to contain and mitigate the impacts of COVID-19 in New York but we will continue to act aggressively to protect the public health.
Officials on Saturday reported New York’s first two deaths linked to the coronavirus, the New York Times reported. As of Saturday night, there were 613 confirmed coronavirus cases in New York, with the largest concentration in New York City. (RELATED: President Trump Tests Negative For Coronavirus)
Gov. Cuomo thanked the Trump administration during a Friday press conference for working with states to increase testing.
“I want to thank the vice president, and especially the president, who facilitated this and moved quickly,” Cuomo said.