Committee Comprised of Representatives from the Range of Essential Worker Groups That Aided in New York’s Historic Response to COVID-19

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the creation of the Essential Workers Advisory Committee to provide design input and recommendations for a monument in New York City honoring the service and sacrifice of New York’s essential workers throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

“There can be no way to ever fully repay the essential workers who aided in our recovery from this devastating, once-in-a-century pandemic,” Governor Cuomo said. “These true heroes continue to aid and inspire us and they have our utmost respect. To honor them, we want them to create a monument to stand for all time as New York emerges tougher and stronger than ever.”

The Essential Workers Monument will recognize the 17 essential worker groups whose members continued selflessly serving their fellow New Yorkers during the State’s coronavirus pandemic response. These groups include: Nurses, Doctors, Hospital Staff, Teachers, Transport Workers, Police, Ambulance/EMT, Firefighters, Corrections, Sanitation, National Guard, Store Employees, Government Employees, Building Service Workers, Utility Workers, Delivery Drivers, and Construction/Manufacturing.

The Essential Workers Advisory Committee, comprised of 23 individuals representing these worker groups, will advise on design, location, and installation of the new monument. The members of the Essential Workers Advisory Committee are:

  • Mario Cilento, President, New York State AFL-CIO
  • Gary LaBarbera, President of the New York State Building & Construction Trades Council and President of the Building & Construction Trades Council of Greater New York
  • Vincent Alvarez, President, New York City Central Labor Council
  • Stuart Appelbaum, President, Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union
  • Oren Barzilay, President, Uniformed EMT’s, Paramedics & Fire Inspectors – FDNY
  • Kyle Bragg, President, 32BJ SEIU
  • Sam Fresina, President, NYS Professional Firefighters Association
  • Henry Garrido, Executive Director, DC 37
  • Thomas Gesualdi, President, Teamster’s Local 282
  • George Gresham, President, 1199 SEIU
  • Pat Kane, RN, Executive Director, New York State Nurses Association
  • Bonnie Litvack, MD, President, Medical Society of the State of New York
  • Rich Maroko, President, Hotel Trades Council
  • Harry Nespoli, President, Uniformed Sanitationmen’s Association
  • Andrew Pallotta, President, New York State United Teachers
  • Michael Powers, President, New York State Correctional Officers Police Benevolent Association
  • Major General Raymond F. Shields, Jr., Adjutant General of New York
  • James Shillito, Utility Workers of America Local 1-2
  • Wayne Spence, President, New York State Public Employees Federation
  • Mary Sullivan, President, CSEA Local 1000
  • Dennis Trainor, Vice President CWA District 1
  • Tony Utano, President, TWU Local 100
  • Richard Wells, President, Police Conference of New York State

While the vaccination process is underway, every New Yorker should continue to wear a mask, social distance, and avoid small and large gatherings. Sign up for daily COVID and vaccine updates here.

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