The funeral was for Rabbi Chaim Mertz, also known as Tolaas Yakov, a well-respected rabbi in the community who died at age 73 from COVID-19 complications. Councilman Chaim Deutsch criticized the mayor, who he said allowed people to gather to watch yesterday’s Blue Angels and Thunderbirds fly over to honor health care workers. 3. More than 2,000 people flooded the streets of Williamsburg Tuesday for the funeral of a well-known rabbi. Tipster says this is the Williamsburg funeral today of Rabbi Chaim Mertz who died from COVID-19 pic.twitter.com/wsTvCrlzpb, "The next gathering will be met with summonses and arrests, period. But large gatherings will only lead to more deaths + more families in mourning,” de Blasio added. More than 2,000 Satmar Hasidic Jewish residents jammed the streets of Brooklyn Tuesday night to attend a funeral for a venerable rabbi  — ignoring social distancing guidelines and increasing their own risk of contracting the virus. One of the women arrested said she spent 36 hours in a crowded cell with no protective equipment to guard against the virus. https://www.amny.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/rabbi-funeral-Covid19-C.mp4, Breonna Taylor protests: Thousands on march in Manhattan against racial injustice, COVID uptick in Brooklyn and Queens neighborhoods make up 20% of new citywide cases. Cuomo has since increased the fines for flouting social distancing rules from $500 to $1,000. Mourners, surrounded by a chaotic throng of people, carried the coffin to a waiting funeral van, with numerous police trying to keep the crowds back so that the van could be rushed out. Across the city, more than 40,000 New Yorkers have been hospitalized due to COVID-19 since the first case on March 2, and the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene reported that more than 11,820 residents have died from the virus. The mayor and Police Commissioner Shea, whose department has lost 37 members since the onset of the virus, visited the scene near Rutledge Street and Bedford Avenue to help disperse crowds themselves. I have instructed the NYPD to have one standard for this whole city: zero tolerance.”. The mayor and Police Commissioner Dermot Shea, whose department lost 37 members so far, showed up on the scene of the gathering where hundreds of masked cops worked to disperse the crowd. How to Celebrate Yom Kippur this Year in 2020, amRUSH Baseball: What Steve Cohen could do in Queens, the Yankees hunt for October. To speak to an entire ethnic group as though we are all flagrantly violating precautions is offensive, it’s stereotyping, and it’s inviting antisemitism. "We had an understanding with the police department that the Shomrim patrol would have 50 members and make sure everyone is wearing masks," Rabbi Abe Friedman, a Williamsburg community leader, told Gothamist. Mourners, surrounded by throngs of people, carried the coffin to a funeral van as numerous police officers tried to keep the crowds back so that the van could be rushed out. “We have lost so many these last two months + I understand the instinct to gather to mourn. Period. — Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) April 29, 2020. Support for Gothamist is provided by Craig Newmark Philanthropies. Has he been to a park lately? Local Jewish leaders have sharply criticized the mayor’s response. Do it. I have instructed the NYPD to have one standard for this whole city: zero tolerance.”, “Did the mayor of NYC really just single out one specific ethnic community (a community that has been the target of increasing hate crimes in HIS city) as being noncompliant?? “We will not allow this. "We will not tolerate it.". “This has to be a joke,” said Chaim Deutsch, who represents a large swath of southern Brooklyn, in a tweet. “Okay, you get sick for a few days, then you get over it,” one mourner told this reporter. As said, we thought the procession was in accordance with the rules and we apologize that it turned out otherwise.”. A few others told this reporter that they refused to wear masks and insisted that the coronavirus information was “not accurate,” and said the city should “mind its own business.”, Others admitted to having gotten COVID-19, but downplayed its severity. The thousands of Satmars massed for the funeral of Rabbi Chaim Mertz, 73, also known as Tolaas Yakov, a well-respected rabbi in the community. © 2020 New York Public Radio. Mayor Bill de Blasio condemned the gathering as dangerous, prompting a war of words between Jewish leaders and the administration. (What am I saying – of course he has! Mayor Bill de Blasio condemned the gathering as dangerous in a series of controversial tweets. As was easily predicted, the funeral was not socially distant (even with masks on) and spiraled embarrassingly out of control - so much so that the mayor rushed to the scene to “fix” the problem. But a number of crowd members dismissed the warnings. Share your email address to get our top stories each day. Do you know the scoop? While many wore surgical masks, some did not. I have instructed the NYPD to have one standard for this whole city: zero tolerance.”, Obviously everyone should be social distancing and being extremely careful – and almost everyone has been! “Did the mayor of NYC really just single out one specific ethnic community (a community that has been the target of increasing hate crimes in HIS city) as being noncompliant?? (What am I saying – of course he has! More than 2,000 people flooded the streets of Williamsburg Tuesday for the funeral of a well-known rabbi.