Community News

Hempstead Town Board Calls on Governor to Allow Young Athletes to “Play Ball” at Town Parks

Hempstead Town Supervisor Don Clavin and the members of the Town Board today called on New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo to issue an executive mandate that would permit America’s largest township to hold safe, outdoor youth athletics at town facilities. Advocating on behalf of Hempstead Town’s younger residents, the board co-wrote a letter to the governor, stressing the importance of outdoor recreation especially during a period of prolonged quarantine.

“Our young residents have endured the ‘new normal’ of at-home learning and social distancing, it’s time to return some normalcy to their lives,” said Clavin. “After an abrupt closure of schools to combat COVID-19, the students of Hempstead Town deserve a positive outlet of healthy exercise and socially-distant comradery to raise morale.”

Citing a rise in mental health issues among youths due to forced isolation and a lack of socialization, the Hempstead Town Board reiterated their call on the Governor to allow outdoor recreation in a safe, socially-distant manner. With the cancellation of extracurricular activities and important milestone ceremonies for younger residents, who have been remote-learning from home since mid-march, the Town Board strongly urged the Governor to reconsider his stance on youth outdoor recreation.

“Healthy exercise and some fun in the sun is exactly what our residents need as we overcome this deadly virus,” said Senior Councilwoman Dorothy Goosby. “I am positive New York State will do right thing and allow our children some much-needed recreation at our beautiful Town of Hempstead parks.”

After successfully lobbying New York State to include outdoor dining in Phase 2 of New York on Pause and allow educational institutions to hold in-person graduation ceremonies, the Town Board is reaching out once again to fight for the younger residents of Hempstead Town. As the township’s multiple beaches have demonstrated they can safely accommodate large crowds of residents, town facilities are eager to once again offer the best recreational services at the lowest possible costs.

“The safety and well-being of our residents is paramount, and that includes their mental health as well,” added Councilman Bruce Blakeman. “A positive recreational outlet would do wonders for the children of Hempstead Town.”

“Our beaches have proven their efficiency in handling large crowds safely,” said Councilman Anthony D’Esposito. “Long Islanders have deftly adapted to the ‘new normal’ and I am confident that we can allow outdoor recreation with appropriate precautions.”

“Companionship and team-oriented environments are greatly important to a child’s upbringing,” commented Councilman Dennis Dunne, Sr. “The children of our township have missed out on so much already, outdoor recreation is a step in the right direction to socially recover from COVID-19.”

“Outdoor recreation is vital for a child’s growth. It brings communities together in a friendly and competitive fashion,” said Councilman Thomas Muscarella. “Sports and athletics are the work ethic of the youth, as summer rolls around it’s important to allow our children the option of safe outdoor recreation.”

“As a sports parent and passionate advocate for Little Leagues and all youth sports throughout my district, I strongly support the Town Board’s call for the allowance of outdoor recreation at town facilities,” stated Councilman Chris Carini. “We are at a pivotal moment in New York’s recovery efforts. I firmly believe that it is past time for a re-opening of our economy under safe precautionary guidelines – quicker than the Governor’s phases allow.”

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