Apr 9, 2020
California Gov. Gavin Newsom Coronavirus Briefing Transcript April 9
Governor of California Gavin Newsom held his daily press briefing on coronavirus April 9. He announced hotel vouchers & stipends for California healthcare workers. Full transcript here.
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Gavin Newsom: (00:00)
Families that have been broken apart because their loved ones are spending 24 hours a day, seven days a week, attending to the needs of others and not able to come back home. In many cases, sleeping in their cars overnight. In other cases, unwilling because they’ve been exposed to this virus to even want to expose their family back at home and are spending their own money to go to a motel or a hotel overnight. We’ve heard countless examples of these stories. And instead of continuing to absorb those stories, we wanted to do something more and do something better. And so I’m really pleased today to announce an effort in the state of California to directly support those caregivers, those healthcare workers, those frontline heroes, by providing them vouchers and stipends and in many cases for low wage workers, 100% reimbursable costs at hotels all up and down the state of California.
Gavin Newsom: (01:05)
We currently have an inventory over 150 hotels that have been part of a bulk purchasing of room program through our department of general services. Some of the nicest and finest hotel chains in the world are participating in this program, providing deep discounts to the state of California and we will extend those deep discounts directly to our caregivers. And in other cases, again for low income workers, we’ll provide 100% reimbursements so that they’re allowed to stay closer to their patients and provide them the opportunity not to worry about being out of pocket or worry about exposing their families or God forbid worried about another night sleeping in their car, so they can stay closer to the needs in their communities. Let’s remember people are commuting for an hour, hour and a half in the good days. And the idea that you’re doing a 12 hour shift and at two, three in the morning have to drive all the way back home only to get right back up and do a double ship early in the morning.
Gavin Newsom: (02:09)
That’s not appropriate and that’s not right. We need to do better for these workers, and so I’m very pleased that we have put together a new website, CalTravel shop, rather caltravelstore.com, caltravelstore.com is the site that will have the list of these 150 plus hotels. Every day we’re getting more hotels to participate in this and make available these vouchers for those individuals. Lower wage workers, richer supports, the higher wage workers, deep discounts across the panoply of our healthcare workforce. I want to also thank the airlines that have also stepped up. United Airlines, they reached out to us and they said, you know what? We read about the health corp website that you put together. All now 86,516 individual strong, 86,516 individuals have signed up on our health care site.
Gavin Newsom: (03:14)
And United Airlines called and said, if you have folks that are traveling into the state that want to be part of that health corp, we want to take care of their travel costs, 100% round trip tickets, no matter where they are at any point of the globe, not just across the United States or within the state of California. And I just want to thank United Airlines for stepping in in a big way to help that workforce address the other anxiety, which are travel costs, not just accommodation costs, hotel costs. No sooner by the way, United reached out and we got a call from Southwest Airlines, Alaska Airlines and Delta. Those are the four airlines that met this moment and let me thank, not just United, but once again Southwest. Let me thank Alaska airlines, and thank Delta for committing to do exactly the same.
Gavin Newsom: (04:08)
And so that information is also available at our website and we couldn’t be more grateful for their largest and their support. By the way, that’s an open ended commitment until this crisis pass, and our commitment to the commendations and hotels extend accordingly. So more care for our heroes, for our caregivers, at a time when we need to be there for them so they can attend and focus on the needs of the most vulnerable patients throughout the state of California. And also I should just extend, those that are in the workforce that may have been impacted and tested positive healthcare workers for COVID-19. We also are providing these sites, these hotel rooms, as isolation rooms as quarantines for those individuals as well. And those that have also been exposed and are worried about their health and their process, getting back results in their tests that can’t go to work until those test results come back, these are also hotel rooms that are set aside for you.
Gavin Newsom: (05:13)
And so I just want to thank all our partners in that endeavor and also all the individuals. We did one of those Zoom calls about 10 days ago and universally this was the number one ask for the people that participated in that call. And these were representatives of our doctors, the California Medical Association, our Nurses association, Bonnie and her team, April at SEIU and Bob and Dave Regan and others that all participated in that. And they said this was one of the top asks of their members, and one of the most important things we can do to help with their stress and ease their anxiety, also their financial burden at this time of crisis. So that’s the announcement we wanted to make upfront. In addition to that, I want to just extend a few updates in terms of data and new information that’s come in as we do on a daily basis.
Gavin Newsom: (06:13)
In terms of the total number of individuals impacted and currently testing positive for COVID-19, 18,309 is the official state count of those that have tested positive. 492 families torn apart. These are not statistics. Behind every stat is a real person, real lives that have been torn apart. 492 lives lost now in the state of California. 50 other families torn asunder yesterday that lost their lives over the course of the last 24 hours to this virus. 1,132 individuals are in our ICU’s and 2,825 are now hospitalized in the system. Let me just put that into statistical terms. In terms of percentage increase, the 2,825 the total number of hospitalized is roughly 4.1% increase from yesterday. And here very importantly, is a statistic in terms of percentage drop that I haven’t been able to communicate in any of my daily briefings. And that is the total number of individuals in the ICU.
Gavin Newsom: (07:25)
That number of 1,132 represents a drop of 1.9% from yesterday. One data point is not a trend. One that appoint is not a headline. So I caution anybody to read too much in to that one point of data, but nonetheless it is encouraging and it just again, reinforces the incredible work that all of you are doing to practice physical distancing. The stay at home is working in the state of California. That curve, it has been bent in this state, but it’s also again been stretched, and we continue to be vigilant and do more every moment of every day to procure the physical assets in terms of alternative care sites as well as the appropriate levels of PPE. We made a significant announcement about that last night, and that includes ventilators that we confidently have secured within the hospital system and on our own state cash to meet the needs based upon our models and projections. And on that front, let me just reinforce a number that I gave a week or so ago.
Gavin Newsom: (08:41)
Well, let me go back. About a month ago, I reminded all of you that we had 7,587 ventilators that were identified within our 416 hospitals. That was the number that we advanced in the beginning of this curve. We said that the hospitals like the state, were going to do everything they can to procure even more ventilators, refurbish ventilators, get supplies donated and alike. Just a week ago I announced that they had done just that no longer 7,587 that the hospitals had 11,063 ventilators, which was good news. Today, because the hospitals every day are doing everything they can like the state of California to procure more ventilators. Today they have 11,747 ventilators. I make that point to make this point. I think some people have expressed some concern about California’s willingness to extend a hand to New Jersey, New York, Illinois, D.C. to Maryland, to Nevada, and to other States across this country by lending ventilators to deal with the crisis at hand in those States.
Gavin Newsom: (10:03)
We thought it was the right thing to do, but I also want you to know it was the responsible thing to do as American citizens from a moral and an ethical imperative to save lives. All of us Americans, but also responsible in this context. The hospital system alone is currently utilizing 31.89% of all their ventilators. Forgive me for the precision, but I think you deserve precision. 31. 89% of those ventilators are currently being used, which means over 8,000 ventilators are not being used within our hospital system. That does not include the number of ventilators the state of California has in its storage facilities and the number of ventilators we have been sending out over the course of the last number of months. So I just want to secure any anxiety that people have and also reminds you of this.
Gavin Newsom: (10:58)
Ventilators are different than personal protective gear. They’re consumed personal protective gear and they are destroyed with, again, the exception of N95 masks, which we are now able to reuse because of the new Battelle system that we have procured. That will be operational by April 20th of this month, but ventilators can be used over and over and over again. And when those ventilators are used to save lives in those other States, we have the firm commitment from those States to send them back to the state of California, and why? Because again, our curve is not bending like other States. We have stretched our curve, giving us a little bit more time, but we can’t just sit on assets when we can save lives and help our fellow Americans. And so I just want to clear up any anxiety in that space or any ambiguity or any misinformation to be candid with you that’s been expressed in this space. I am not though naive.
Gavin Newsom: (12:03)
… that’s been expressed in this space. I am not, though, naive on this front that we live in the aggregate. I give you those numbers and that does not necessarily reflect the reality in each and every County in the state of California. But within the hospital system themselves, they have a remarkable mutual-support program and strategy and the state of California, led by David Dunkin, is responsible for our state’s effort. They check in every single day to all the county health directors to check in on their current supplies current need. Our ongoing resolve is each county should at least have two times as many vents as they need on any given basis, on the basis of how we then procure and process the redistribution or distribution of those assets. That is something every morning we check in and we update and that’s a protocol that we’ve advanced from the beginning of this process. That’s what [AMSA 00:13:03] does, that’s what Dave Dunkin does and that’s what he continues to do and proud of his work and proud of the work of the team that we have assembled.
Gavin Newsom: (13:12)
By no stretch am I naive as well that things can change and that we need to double down on our procurement and double down on our redistribution of these assets. That’s a dynamic reality. We’re well aware of that reality and we have strategies to address that and I just want folks to know those strategies include regionally pre-positioning these ventilators as well, which we’ve done so that we can save not just a day on the delivery but quite literally hours on the delivery as those assets are called upon and needed.
Gavin Newsom: (13:51)
PPE, again, we mentioned yesterday the significant capacity now for California to procure hundreds of millions of units of protective gear, substantively n95 masks and surgical masks, but also coveralls, gowns, gloves, shields, and the like. I know that people are out there wanting and demanding more PPE in real time, not just our health care workers, but our grocery frontline employees, our grocers. We recognize that our IHSS support needs more. Their teams need more PPE. Just want folks to know, soon as we get deliveries, we get them right back out. Quite literally, hundreds of thousands went out yesterday. Every day we’re pushing these things out. The announcement we made yesterday was not immediate, it’s over the next few weeks. Over the next few weeks we’re going to start seeing our numbers increase significantly and the redistribution of those assets in real time throughout the state will also significantly improve. That’s a little bit of an update on the PPE side, ventilator side, update on the overall numbers in the state of California and some good news on those ICU numbers. But again, just one day, one point of data. We’ll check in tomorrow and of course in the next few days to see if those numbers continue to show positive signs.
Gavin Newsom: (15:21)
I also want to just make a point to those that are anxious on another topic about the delay of the fishing season in the state of California. I may have lost half of you, but if I was watching I’d start paying attention right now. I’m passionate about fishing myself and I am getting inundated by people that are concerned that we’ve canceled the fishing season. That is not the case. We are not canceling the fishing season in the state of California. We just want to delay, not deny that season.
Gavin Newsom: (15:53)
But here’s why, and I hope it makes some sense. At least from our perspective it does and hope I can extend a capacity of understanding at least on the way we’re thinking about this. We had two small counties call us up that have some of the greatest fishing in the world, quite literally in the world, not just in the United States, Mono and Inyo County. They have fishing season coming up and they’re just worried about being overwhelmed by everybody that has a little cabin fever, that want to get out and get on those streams. There are derbies that are out there, people that are, that wait ever year, the end of the season, for the beginning of the next season. They felt concerned about the number of people. That is quite rational. The healthcare system up there does not have the resources that many other systems do if indeed people got injured for any reasons, not just coming into contact with others related to this virus.
Gavin Newsom: (16:49)
We started to reach out to other counties that expressed similar concern and we realized that we need to process a protocol working with our county health directors and fish and game to then work on a county by county basis to address that anxiety, and that’s what we have proposed to do. We had a little bit of problem yesterday, technical problems because so many people called in to the Fish and Game Commission that the system was overwhelmed and we delayed an official decision on this. But let me just make this point clear to all the people that love the outdoors and love trout fishing or fishing more broadly in the state of California, We hear you, we deeply care about addressing your anxiety and just know we are not ending the season. We just want to delay it a little bit and work with the counties to address the surge of interest and the need to keep everybody protected and everybody safe in this circumstance.
Gavin Newsom: (17:49)
Forgive, me may have been a deviation talking about fishing at a time of a health crisis, but it’s important as all of us are trying to find some semblance of normalcy, a time of deep, deep anxiety. I just want to express again to those that have that kind of anxiety that you’re not alone. You may be staying at home, but you’re not alone. That we have resources and we have support. If you have a teen who in crisis and you’re concerned about a loved one, we have resources and we have the capacity to help. If you are in an abusive relationship, you are not alone. Reach out to us: COVID19.ca.gov. COVID19.ca.gov.
Gavin Newsom: (18:43)
There is a treasure trove of resources there, hotlines you can call. If you’re being abused or know someone who’s being abused, if a child is being abused, if your loved one is having a particularly difficult time, go to that site. Get the support that you need. No one should be ashamed for asking for help. Nobody. The strongest people I know are the ones that have the courage to reach out and ask for help. Please do so. I recognize how difficult this is for all of you, particularly our parents and how disproportionately this is impacting women.
Gavin Newsom: (19:20)
I just want to, again, thank all the mothers out there that have to do so much on the natural and now I have to double down yet again and again to manage the household, manage the kids disproportionately. I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. I was raised by a single mom and I know the struggle she had. I can’t imagine particularly for single mothers what you’re going up against and just know we want to be there for you and do what we can to help support you.
Gavin Newsom: (19:48)
That’s an update and we’re here, of course, to answer any questions you may have.
Speaker 2: (19:54)
Laurel Rosenhall, Cal Matters.
Laurel Rosenhall: (19:58)
Hi, Governor. Thank you so much. Last week you mentioned the rollout of the Chromebooks and the hotspots, but we are hearing still from school officials who expect that some number of their students are just not going to be connected for the rest of the year, maybe they don’t have the right technology or they just might not have a household where they can concentrate on learning. What is the state going to do for these many children who are going to be so far behind? Is there going to be a mandatory summer school? Will families get an option to have their child repeat a grade next year? What’s going to happen?
Gavin Newsom: (20:36)
All that’s being worked on in real time. As you know, CDE, Tony Thurman, Linda Darlene Hammond, the president of our state school board, I’ve been having webinars about distance learning, focusing on special education as a particular topic of prioritization. As you also know, we are able to get 100,000 spots to get people connected throughout the state of California because of the generosity of Google, also thousands and thousands of Chromebooks. But let me extend to your question the obvious, that’s not enough and there are gaps still.
Gavin Newsom: (21:12)
The superintendent quite literally for the last two days has been lighting up my phone and our team saying we need more help and we need to go out together to procure more resources, more assets to help people with their distance learning in addition to finding more WiFi hotspots to avail the concerns that still remain about parts of the state that are still struggling with broadband access. Those two things are happening in real time, again, at a scale that is larger than any other state in our nation. I want to applaud the superintendent for his focus on this.
Gavin Newsom: (21:50)
He, as well, just put it in a specific budget request to me and my office as it relates to procuring assets that go to the second part of your question about what we do for those that are in this void, in this gap and how we make up for time lost and that includes conversations, yes, we are having around summer support and preparing kids for the fall school year. Just know that we are deeply focused on that and over the coming days and weeks we should have a lot more to say on this subject.
Speaker 2: (22:27)
Brody Levesque, L.A. Blade.
Brody Levesque: (22:31)
Governor, my colleagues at NBC News reported that the pandemic is a perfect storm [crosstalk 00:22:37]
Speaker 3: (22:36)
We’re listening in here as the governor is giving his daily noontime briefing. He talked about a number of things. First of all, he said today he wants us all to focus on care for caregivers. We’ve talked a lot about essential workers, those on the front lines of the fight against coronavirus, doctors, nurses, so many more.
Brody Levesque: (22:52)
… obviously are living on the streets. Conversely, with LGBTQI students that are still enrolled in California school systems, has your office or superintendent Thurman’s office looked specifically at the issues for these kids? Because in many cases, Governor, a GSA in a school, a supportive counselor, an affirming teacher or interaction with other LGBTQI students is a critical and much needed concern for these kids. I’m going to throw the two parts at you, sir.
Gavin Newsom: (23:25)
Yeah. Well, this is a deeply personal issue for me that cares deeply about the LGBTQ community. Let me extend this a little bit more personally still. I just learned a few hours ago that one of my heroes, Phyllis Lyon, 95-years young, passed away. Phyllis, as you may know, I had the privilege of being involved in a marriage ceremony between Phyllis Lyon and Del Martin. The couple had been together almost half a century, the manifestation of faith, love, and devotion, and yet they were denied, on the basis of their sexual orientation, the right to say to-
Gavin Newsom: (24:03)
… [inaudible 00:24:00] on the basis of their sexual orientation, the right to say two extraordinary words, I do. The power and potency of those two words is profoundly significant as is the frame of your question. We are struggling, as you know, as a nation to address the needs of our LGBTQ youth in particular. The state of California bears a unique responsibility to do more and better than any other part of the nation to address those needs. And we’ve done so through policy, through advocacy, and through highlighting those challenges. LA County in particular has been a leader and as you referenced and as you know well, the number of LGBTQ youth, homeless youth, disproportionately is represented in LA County. And so we look at the world not through the lens of one size fits all, but through the competency lens and the unique needs, the unique challenges, that reside within the LGBT community and not just within the community writ large, but specifically on the basis of age as well.
Gavin Newsom: (25:10)
And so no, that is a big part of our agenda. A big part of our focus, a big part of the reason we’ve been so aggressive in terms of these helplines, these teen crisis lines. They include specific resources on that COVID19.ca.gov website. Specific resources and hotlines for the LGBT community. And so I encourage you and others to direct people to that site and the resources we’ve made available specifically to the community on this site and know that we’re going to do everything in our power to continue to support incredible organizations, nonprofit associations, community centers, as we recover from this crisis because they disproportionately will be bearing the brunt of those that are particularly in need for a multitude of reasons and issues.
Speaker 4: (26:06)
[inaudible 00:02:08], SF Chronicle.
Speaker 5: (26:12)
Hi, governor. Earlier this week, Santa Clara County published the model for coronavirus infections online. Will the state make its model public at all so that people can understand why your projections differ so much from other models that have infections and resource use peaking in the next few weeks rather than late next month?
Gavin Newsom: (26:35)
Yeah, we’ve done that. As you know on multiple occasions we’ll continue to make them public. And so the answer is absolutely. We will continue to make presentations, continue to make available that information. As you know, we continue to iterate based on the data and what comes in and what’s happening in counties, not just Santa Clara. We’re monitoring what’s happening all 58 counties throughout the state of California. Some counties impacted more than others, but one thing is certain. Our models have improved and that’s because individuals have met the moment, individuals are practicing physical distancing. Individuals are doing the right thing in terms of the stay at home order and that has allowed us to not only bend the curve, it’s allowed us to update our models as we do on a daily basis, but it is extended the period of time to which we have to prepare and to organize ourselves for a peak that, yes, is different from the one advertised by academics in other states within the state of California. A peak that we believe extends into May, not in the next week or two.
Speaker 4: (27:46)
Phil Willon, LA times.
Phil Willon : (27:48)
Hi governor. Thank you so much for the update on the ventilators. I do have a question about that though. I mean, how can you short counties throughout the state that when they need ventilators, the state will be able to provide them and if supplies become scarce, especially when there’s a surge, what’s the state protocol over who receives them first?
Phil Willon : (28:08)
Secondly, blood tests for COVID-19 antibodies are becoming more popular and getting more attention. How would you use those results from the test to inform your decision making and do you have any concerns that data gathered by that, possibly about lower mortality rates or widespread immunity, could generate complacency?
Gavin Newsom: (28:29)
Well Phil, this is a great opportunity. I have my doctor standing right beside me. Could talk more about the antibody tests, Dr. Ghaly, well familiar to folks in Southern California since he was running the system down there before now running our state system. He can talk more about the antibody tests. We continue to see progress in terms of not just more tests being conducted, but we have substantially reduced that backlog. Today, the number came in. It was 13,900, that’s the current backlog. It’s still too high, but remember we were as high as 59,500. I believe that was our peak number in terms of that backlog, so we are seeing quicker results. Still not as quick as we want to see them and as you rightly test on the basis of your question, we’re not just doing traditional PCR tests. These are the swab tests, but now doing these serum tests, these antibody tests, these blood-based tests, which will be critical in terms of our capacity to make determinations about community spread and about immunity. But again, I am not a doctor and I have one and he will talk more about that.
Dr. Ghaly: (29:39)
Thank you governor and thank you for the question. We continue to be very encouraged about serologic testing for the state of California. We have some of the best laboratorians, labs, academicians, and scientists around serology testing here in California. We are tapping them every single day to understand where the science is heading. We want to use these tests responsibly. You can use them in a number of different ways to get an understanding of community prevalence. Some suggest it might even be a trigger to immunity and understanding who is immune from the disease and maybe re-infection. We know that around the globe, the use of serologic testing is being discussed. There are countries that have gone out ahead and made decisions on how to use them and today, they are rethinking how they’re used. So we in California are looking at serologic testing with a great deal of hope and anticipation, but also being very methodical on how we use these to guide our decisions.
Dr. Ghaly: (30:40)
We continue to build up capacity on our ability to do the PCR tests, getting those not just into hospitals and not just into clinics, but more and more into the communities. To prioritize testing healthcare workers, people on the front lines, and making sure that we expand that thoughtfully to touch communities that haven’t been tested as much as they should. Communities of color, communities of lower income, ensuring that California keeps that equity lens at front and center with all of our testing and all of our work.
Dr. Ghaly: (31:12)
So as we remain hopeful around serologic testing and we build up our understanding and science, not just the availability of those tests, we continue to work on our PCR capability and really expanding as the governor put together the testing task force, not just our understanding of how testing is going in the state, but also our strategy to make sure it targets the right people and then we get it broadly to as many Californians as who need them.
Gavin Newsom: (31:40)
On the ventilators.
Dr. Ghaly: (31:43)
Oh yes. On the ventilator question. Thank you. We also continue to work, as the governor mentioned, have a strategy to make sure that our ventilators are prepositioned, that we have a mutual aid system that allows those hospitals that need another ventilator to lean on each other in a regional system. We also reach out to our critical access hospitals where there may not be very many ventilators on hand, and where even a small surge would demand that they need more ventilators. Checking in with them continuously, making sure that we prioritize their needs, so that every hospital has enough to be able to serve the surge that we anticipate.
Dr. Ghaly: (32:27)
We also know as the governor said, that there’s an ability to call back ventilators that we’ve loaned to others to save Americans, to make sure that they’re available here. We continue to refurbish many, many ventilators from across the state so that those are working and available to patients when they need them. So it’s an ongoing work between Cal EMSA and OES and our local partners to ensure that they have what they need so that patients who need them at that time have them available.
Gavin Newsom: (33:00)
Appreciate that doctor and look, no one’s naive. We’re all searching for more ventilators. As you know, Phil, our goal is to find 10,000 additional ventilators. We’ve been working with companies to procure and supply chains to secure a new ventilators directly from around the world. We’ve had some success in that area. Some have been delayed, but we’re also not waiting around and I’ll just remind you and others of the work that Virgin Orbit is doing. They’re repurposing their lines down in Southern California. They brought up a prototype last week, right here at the Cal OES, at the state operations center. These ventilators were incredibly impressive. They’re bridge ventilators. They’re not built to last forever, but they’re built to address the acute needs within our healthcare delivery system. These things are now being produced and it will provide us a capacity, in addition to what the doctor just said, not only to prioritize traditional ventilators, but also to create step- down ventilators, these bridge ventilators, and make them available to people that are not at same state of acuity as others may be.
Gavin Newsom: (34:09)
So again, it’s all part and parcel of a broader strategy. We continue to be blown away by the work that Bloom Energy and others are doing, refurbishing ventilators as they come in. We’re sending them out to get fixed and then we’re getting them out into the system. But again, over 8,000 currently available as I speak within the healthcare delivery system. But each part of the system has different needs and I think the most important thing you just heard from Dr. Ghaly Was some of these rural systems, some of the smaller hospitals. Quite literally one or two ventilators is an order of magnitude versus the other larger hospital systems where that may be insignificant. It is precisely those hospitals, the smaller ones that we’re really hyperfocused on as a top priority in terms of answering your question.
Speaker 4: (34:59)
Kathleen Ronayne, AP.
Kathleen Ronayne: (35:02)
Hi governor. I have two different questions for you. One is about the distribution of the new masks that we’re going to be procuring. You said that these masks would go to health care workers, grocery workers, some others. I talked to the California Retailers Association yesterday and they said that at this point, the state has not been providing grocery chains that they represent like Safeway [inaudible 00:35:26] with PPE. So if you could just be clear on what are the pool of industries that we’re expecting to distribute those new masks to? And then second question, on the hotels for healthcare workers, what’s the estimated costs to the state and how does this affect the availability of hotel rooms for homeless individuals?
Gavin Newsom: (35:46)
It doesn’t compete with Project Roomkey at all. By the way, Project Roomkey now has 8,742 rooms that we have been able to get operating agreements. Thousands, now people, are moving in. Getting close to 2000 individuals that were on…
Gavin Newsom: (36:03)
… lessons now people are moving in. Getting close to 2,000 individuals that were on the streets or in shelters now into those hotel rooms. Hundreds every single day are moving in in real time so it doesn’t compete with those resources. These happen to be some of the larger hotel chains that are participating in this program. And the program is paid for, let me be specific, again by the incredible support of FEMA. We built this in partnership with FEMA and the State of California.
Gavin Newsom: (36:32)
Not dissimilar to Project Roomkey, FEMA has prioritized, to their credit, the federal government to get people out of congregate facilities, congregate settings that may have been exposed to COVID-19 or have contracted the virus. Those are the priorities for reimbursement through FEMA to isolate these individuals in hotel rooms and quarantine individuals in hotel rooms. We also, as you know, because we announced this a few days back, have received $25 million from Mark Zuckerberg to help with stipends. And these are the folks that are part of our health Corps. And by the way, 350 people are getting letters literally today to begin to be introduced into our workforce from the Health Corp database. So 350 people have been interviewed, vetted. We’ve identified spots for them. They will be prioritized at our FMS sites throughout the State of California. The acceptance letter is going out today. They will be state employees, part-time state employees on the basis of the need to address this crisis and deployed at those federal medical stations that were also sent to us with support of the federal government.
Gavin Newsom: (37:58)
That’s the framework for the how we pay does not compete with our homeless program. As it relates to prioritization, it always remains in this order. We were clear about this yesterday. We were clear about this last week. We were clear about it a month ago and I’ll continue to reinforce and I appreciate the opportunity to do so again today. We will prioritize our front line employees in the hospital system and our nursing homes. Those that are on the front lines, that includes broadly those that are in community clinics, not just those acute facilities. So hospital healthcare workers, top priority. First responders, broadly defined. The second prioritization in terms of the PPE.
Gavin Newsom: (38:43)
I am well aware of the needs of the grocers as you appropriately and correctly identified. Their union in particular has made it crystal clear that they’re not getting the kind of support even within their companies, let alone by the state and the federal government that they believe they deserve and I believe that they deserve. So we are opening up as these new supplies come in to broaden our prioritization to be inclusive of our grocery workers. And I also made this point and I’ll repeat it, I want to see if we can extend that into our logistics operations. A lot of our folks in warehouses, a lot of our folks that are transporting goods and food and commodities also have requested support. We want to provide for as many people we can. Never forget our IHS workers as well.
Gavin Newsom: (39:36)
So look, if these numbers come in as we are hoping they will as contractually they’re obliged to come in, over the course of the next few weeks you’ll be hearing about substantial increases in personal protective gear that will be distributed across the panoply within the system.
Speaker 6: (39:55)
Final question. Vicky Gonzalez, KCRA.
Vicky Gonzalez: (39:59)
Governor, is the state considering emergency funding to help property owners receiving reduced or going without rent as well as financial help to renters who will need to make up that background.
Gavin Newsom: (40:10)
Oh, that’s part and parcel of ongoing conversations with legislative leaders. I just want to make this personal point. I cannot thank Tony Atkins enough, senate pro Tem, Speaker Anthony Rendon. We had our regularly scheduled calls again this morning. We communicate on a consistent basis. They have been extraordinary leaders at a time of crisis. Their members have been extraordinary and have been incredibly supportive of the broader state efforts that transcends political parties. I would extend that to Marie Waldron as well as a Senator Shannon Grove.
Gavin Newsom: (40:46)
I want to also extend that to our federal partners, Republicans and Democrats both in our house of representatives as well as the US Senate. Kamala Harris checking in consistently, Dianne Feinstein, and the incredible leadership of Speaker Nancy Pelosi. We are working very closely with her specifically to answer your question in this respect on the next federal stimulus, and that stimulus will address a myriad of issues including the anxieties of renters, property owners, small business owners and across the spectrum hospitals, caregivers. To help us through this crisis, we’re going to need all the support we possibly can get.
Gavin Newsom: (41:30)
And as you know, we’re in the process of reviewing what we refer to in Sacramento speak as our May Revise, which is taking my January budget that I submitted for consideration to the legislature for their concurrence and approval. I will be updating that consideration based upon all of the incoming that we’re receiving, including relationship to the question you’ve asked, the question that were asked yesterday and the day before and the day before that about this group or that group or this concern or that concern, and we will all put this together and hopefully through this process the collective wisdom will come forth with a document that will be sober. But hopefully we’ll advance the cause of doing our best for as many people as we can always with an eye on the most vulnerable, and let me end on that.
Gavin Newsom: (42:24)
I wanted to update all of you on the numbers that are coming in. Again in real time on the desegregation of data that we’ve received on the total number of positive cases in the State of California, the total number of deaths in the State of California from a lens that is more appropriate; and that is issues how it’s impacting, virus, the African American community, the black community, how it’s impacting the Asian community and the Latino community. The new numbers are in. 53, 54% of the numbers now have reported up to the State of California. Again, we were 37.2% yesterday. We’re 53, 54. Why do I say 53, 54? Because that’s the total number of positives versus total number of deaths. We’re going to get to 100% soon. Bear with me, but full transparency, I committed you that.
Gavin Newsom: (43:20)
Here are the current numbers. 30% of the positives impacted the Latino community, 25% of the deaths. 7% of the positives impacted the black community, 8% of the deaths. And 13% of the positive are now identified within the Asian community, 18% of the deaths. We will put out additional numbers on native Americans, on Caucasians. All of that will be available on our website for individuals to review. But those numbers are not inconsistent with the first tranche we put out yesterday, but 53, 54% of the data, it’s not 100%. And so, we’ll continue to provide those in real time and do our best to keep everybody informed and not only just inform people of that data, but to inform you on what we’re doing with that data to actualize strategies and plans to address those disparities as we must as a state and obviously as a nation.
Gavin Newsom: (44:26)
Let me, again, thank everybody for all your extraordinary work and continuing to practice physical distancing, continuing to consider the benefits of wearing face coveralls as it relates to your face masks of some sort when you go out and you cannot practice physical distancing, particularly in our grocery stores and the like. Continue to be inspired by the leadership of Mayors London Breed to Sam Liccardo to Darrell Steinberg on what he just did. We’re getting thousand folks that he’s committed to getting off the streets and sidewalks of Sacramento County. Eric Garcetti, incredible work that’s being done in the Central Valley. Republicans, not just Democrats, in communities large and small across the state. Down in Long Beach, Mayor Garcia. I just want to just thank them all for their incredible work.
Gavin Newsom: (45:17)
For all the county health directors that are putting out the prescriptive guidelines and directives everyday, thank you. You have the toughest job of all of us, making decisions in real time about what’s best for your local community. Thank you for continuing to have a collaborative spirit with all of us here in the State of California. And I want to thank the other governors in states large and small. The conversations every day are growing in number and in impact. I know what they’re up against. We all are dealing with our own set of challenges but none more than Governor Cuomo and Governor Murphy and others in New York and in New Jersey.
Gavin Newsom: (45:55)
I just want to thank them for their hard work. Thank them for their incredible generosity in terms of the work they’re doing to see what they can do to help support our efforts here in California. And I continue to be inspired by their leadership as well as the great work that’s been done nationally by our task force FEMA, the White House and their support. Forgive me for being long winded, but gratitude is deserving at this moment and extending it is important as it is to each and every one of you that continue to do everything in your power to continue to bend this curve. Please volunteer. Please do more for food banks. Please contribute blood, time and please continue to stay safe, stay healthy, and check in on others.