What to Know
- A monument will be erected in Battery Park City in honor of the essential workers who served their communities during the pandemic, Gov. Andrew Cuomo revealed Wednesday.
- Construction of the Essential Workers Monument is due to be completed by Labor Day, Sept. 6.
- Additionally, on Wednesday, it was announced that New York State will provide $25 million in child care scholarships to all essential workers.
A monument will be erected in Battery Park City in honor of the essential workers who served their communities during the pandemic, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday. He also said the state would provide $25 million in childcare scholarships to essential workers. The latter program starts now.
Construction of the Essential Workers Monument is due to be completed by Labor Day, Sept. 6. The commission of labor leaders representing all essential workers have chosen a location in Battery Park City to install the monument. The monument's location will be along the water, in view of the Statue of Liberty.
"In the beginning of the pandemic when people were told to stay home, essential workers went into work day after day, making sure their fellow New Yorkers were safe, fed and cared for," Cuomo said in a statement. "While we will never be able to fully repay our essential workers, we can honor and celebrate them with this monument that will stand forever as a tribute to all that they have done for New York in our greatest moment of need and beyond. These heroes continue to inspire us every day and we are forever grateful for their service and sacrifice."
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The Circle of Heroes will include 19 red maple trees symbolizing the essential workers that carried New York through the pandemic, including nurses, doctors, healthcare workers, transit workers, police officers, EMTs and paramedics, firefighters, correctional officers, store employees, the National Guard, government employees, building service workers, utility and communications workers, delivery drivers, teachers, sanitation workers, construction and manufacturing workers, food service workers and hospitality workers.
The monument will also feature an eternal flame as a symbol of New York State's everlasting gratitude for essential workers.
In April, Cuomo announced the formation of the Essential Workers Monument Advisory Committee. The committee, comprised of essential workers, met to advise on locations, design and installation of the Essential Workers Monument.
Additionally, on Wednesday, it was announced that New York State will provide $25 million in child care scholarships to all essential workers.
Essential workers include first responders such as health care providers, pharmaceutical staff, law enforcement, firefighters, transportation workers, food delivery workers, grocery store employees and others.
Child care costs will be covered for essential staff whose income is less than 300 percent of the federal poverty level (or $79,500 for a family of four) and will be paid up to market rate for each region statewide for children aged six weeks through 12 years. Families currently receiving child care scholarships under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) are strongly encouraged to also apply since the CARES child care scholarships will end on June 28.
To streamline the application and funding process, parents will apply for funding through a single online application, and providers will be paid directly on behalf of the parent. The online application can be submitted starting June 23, 2021, until funds are depleted. For more information and to apply for the funding, please click here.
Essential workers can use the funding to pay for their existing care arrangement, or for a new child care provider.