He spoke from Riverside church on Claremont Avenue on Sunday morning and vowed not to allow the injustice to continue.
The governor said New York will mobilize an army to make sure everyone is vaccinated, but he will need federal resources to do it.
Cuomo said the Black and Brown communities have been impacted more greatly by COVID-19, and he will not allow that to continue when a vaccination is ready for distribution.
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“Because enough people have died and enough injustice has been done — it stops now, it stops with this vaccine,” Cuomo said. “We need to make special efforts with the vaccine to reach the underserved Black, Brown or poor communities, the private market alone will not do it. We need to enlist community groups to distribute the vaccine in their community. We need faith-based groups that the community trusts to distribute the vaccine.”
Cuomo said New York needs medical teams and outreach teams to go into public housing and low-income communities.
He said if the Trump administration does not change its plan and provide an equitable vaccination process, the state will enforce its legal rights and will bring legal action to protect New Yorkers.
“Don’t tell us it’s a state responsibility without giving us the resources to do the job — you fool no one,” Cuomo said.
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He vowed that New York will join forces with the Urban League and with the NAACP to make sure every life is protected equally.
“We are being attacked by other viruses – COVID weakened our immune system and when weak, you get attacked by others,” Cuomo said. “We’re being attacked by multiple viruses at the same time and we must fight them all. Because racism is a virus and sexism is a virus and discrimination is a virus and injustice is a virus and division is a virus and distrust is a virus and abuse of power is a virus and hatred is a virus and our America is better than this. Our America is strong enough to admit her mistakes, and to grow from them.”
The governor urged President Trump to spend his final months in office to stop the anger, division and hatred. He said Trump should work to help Americans by “repairing the damage you have done.”
Cuomo ended his speech by promising that “New York will lead the way.”
The speech came just days after President Donald Trump said that a vaccine will be widely available for all Americans by April, except for New York, where he said it will not be delivered.
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