In the midst of an alarming spike of Covid cases in New York, Rockland’s representatives are urging the state to convert a piece of Harriman state park into a testing center as county residents wait in extended lines to determine who has the virus. Senator Reichilin-Melnick, Senator James Skoufis, and Assemblyman Ken Zebrowski have issued a joint statement calling on the governor to enact their suggestion, and we at the Rockland Times thought it best to let them speak for themselves on the matter:
“Like elsewhere in the state, many of our constituents have reported waiting in line for hours to get a COVID test, and some cannot even find a site that has any tests available. Rockland County and Eastern Orange County are in extreme need of additional testing capacity.
“There is a ready-to-go location that is well-suited to address the urgent need. At the height of the first wave of the pandemic in 2020, the state opened a drive-in testing center at the Anthony Wayne Recreation Area off the Palisades Parkway. This facility provided a safe, reliable and free place for area residents to be tested for COVID, but was closed this summer as infections fell and vaccinations ramped up.
“With the exponential growth in COVID cases, we urge Governor Hochul and the Department of Health to act now and take whatever steps are necessary to immediately re-authorize and re-open the Anthony Wayne Recreation Center drive-in COVID testing site or create an equivalent facility nearby.
“While we continue to urge all of our eligible constituents to get vaccinated and boosted immediately as the best form of protection from COVID, it is imperative for public health and our economy to dramatically increase testing capabilities as soon as possible.”