Flushing, Queens, March 27, 2021: Mayor Bill de Blasio: So, this is a beautiful day in so many ways, everybody. You can feel it is springtime, baseball season is about to begin. Are you ready Mr. Met? Are you ready Mrs. Met? The true VIPs are here with us today. And this is also so exciting to be here because when we inaugurated this vaccination center at Citi Field, this is one of the most exciting days in this fight against COVID because you could tell something was happening, something special, something special was happening here. People were so excited to see Citi Field be part of the vaccination effort. I want to thank the Mets because the Mets really stepped up. From the first moment, we said we need your help vaccinating New Yorkers and particularly vaccinating residents of Queens, the Mets were there for us. And they are continuing to keep this vaccination center open, which is going to help thousands and thousands of New Yorkers to get vaccinated and be safe. So, a special thanks to the Mets for being part of the community, for caring about the community. And today we celebrate the fact that our city workers, our city employees who have seen us through this fight are going to get vaccinated here. Members of DC 37 AFSCME who have been heroes in the fight against COVID, absolute heroes. They have been there at the frontline every step, along the way.
And no matter what COVID threw at us, members of DC 37 fought back. And part of why this city is coming back strong is because of their commitment. I want to thank all the members of DC 37, who do so many important things for this city. I also want to thank the folks who played an extraordinary role, and they also have been part of the DC 37 family, so many members of our Test and Trace Corps. who have been absolute heroes as well. Test and Trace is one of the reasons why New York City has been able to fight back. And I want to thank the Chief Equity Officer of Test and Trace Annabel Palma, thank you for your leadership.
So, we’re coming back – every single day you can feel the comeback in New York City. You can feel that there’s going to be a recovery and it has to be a recovery for all of us. And that means our city workers getting vaccinated. The people have been our heroes, getting what they need to be safe for the families to be safe. That’s why this special effort here at Citi Field for members of DC 37 is so important. We’re bringing our workforce back to serve the people in New York City to make sure this recovery is strong, but we want to keep them safe. And making sure the vaccination effort worked for them was part of it. So, we worked with the union, we worked with the union every step of the way to figure out what’s the right way to do this? This has to be one of the key sites, there’s going to be sites all over the city, able to support our DC 37 members. So, everybody, every day feels like a step forward lately. Every day feels like a step in the right direction. This is exciting. Here today we celebrate another step forward. And I want to bring up someone who has been just an absolute extraordinary partner as we fought through these really difficult times, the union movement in this city has proven what a partner can be to make things happen for the people of New York City. One of the great leaders of the labor movement in New York City, Executive Director of DC 37 AFSCME Henry Garrido.
Now, I want you to hear from two elected officials, they have been absolute stalwarts through this crisis, fighting for the members of their community. And this is, let’s be clear one of the hardest-hit parts of New York City was Central Queens. And the leaders stood up for the community. They made sure that there was masks available, food available, whatever it took. I want to thank them both for that. And especially for fighting for the things we needed to reach people. And that fight in Albany has not always been easy because we still need to restore our local democracy here in New York City and get Albany to let us make more of the decisions so we can protect our people. Someone who’s been fighting for us every day in Albany, led the charge to get us the help we need, State Senator Jessica Ramos.
And in the City Council, fighting to make sure that we had all the tools we needed to fight back COVID and protect people. He’s been doing that every day. He’s been out in the community, working with people, keeping them safe, Councilmember Francisco Moya.
Everybody, I want you to notice that Francisco Moya is a true fan and he just represents his true self at all times. He comes here wearing a Barcelona face mask. I’m like, okay, that’s honesty. I admire that. Wrong sport, but God bless you. That’s cool. All right. Here’s my final statement. I have a prediction everyone. So, a lot of times the attention in this city goes to another baseball team and we wish them well too. But, but here’s my prediction. I predict a very big year for the New York Mets.
All right. We will see you in October, Mr. And Mrs. Met. Thank you, everybody.
SOURCE: City Hall. Mayors Office.