“Headed back to the office after yesterday’s briefing. After 75 days, this is what sleep looks like…,” New York Governor Andrew Cuomo captioned a May 15 Instagram post. In the picture, the 62-year-old politician gets in a quick snooze while aboard what appears to be a private plane. His daughter, Michaela Kennedy-Cuomo, 22, is by his side, and she sweetly uses his shoulder as a pillow for her own nap. Michaela and her sister, Mariah Kennedy-Cuomo, 25, have been helping their father’s efforts in getting New Yorkers to adhered to social distancing guidelines, so it seemed like she was tuckered out, too.
Michaela has been helping her father in New York State’s efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19. During the Governor’s briefing on March 19, she joined him at the table to help urge all young people to take social distancing seriously. “These pictures of young people on beaches and videos of them saying ‘this is my spring break, I’m out to party, this is my time to party.’ This is so unintelligent and reckless. I can’t even begin to express it. I had a conversation with my daughter about this,” said Gov. Cuomo, before joking, “As Governor of the state, I can order a quarantine of 10,00 people, but I can’t tell my daughter to do anything.”
Michaela implored her generation to not mess around with the coronavirus and shared clips of the press conference to her Instagram Story that day. “40% of US hospitalizations are people ages 24-50,” she captioned one story. “Our generation can get corona. Without symptoms, we can also spread it to the vulnerable populations who are isolating responsibility. Failing to isolate not only puts us at risk but everyone around us! Risking other’s lives is not worth it.”
Her sister, Mariah, has stressed how New Yorkers need to wear facemasks when they go out in public during the pandemic. During Gov. Cuomo’s briefing on May 5, he brought up how she suggested that citizens “produce an ad that the state could run on explaining to New Yorkers why they should wear a mask — the rationale and the health reasons and the social responsibility.” Contestants had until May 15 to put together a Public Service Announcement about the importance of wearing personal protective equipment (PPE), with the winning video being aired throughout the state.
Mariah’s Michaela’s generation – and all of New York state – will have to continue social distancing and wearing PPE for a little bit longer. The Governor’s stay-at-home order was initially set to expire on May 15, but hours before it was about to be lifted, he extended it for nearly another month. “All enforcement mechanisms by state or local governments shall continue to be in full force and effect until June 13, 2020, unless later extended or amended by a future Executive Order,” the order reads, per the New York Post. This order comes after Central New York became the state’s fifth (out of 10) economic region to qualify for the first phase of reopening. The other areas – the North Country, the Southern Tier, the Mohawk Valley, and the Finger Lakes – met the seven state criteria on testing, tracing, hospital admissions, and available beds.