New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Tuesday that summer day camps can open starting June 29, but has not yet issued the same announcement regarding sleepaway summer camps, where most NY Jewish kids have been getting their sun and recreation for more than a century.


So on Thursday, Chassidic Jewish kids in Williamsburg took to the street in a series of protest demonstrations that lasted into the night, yelling out: “We need our camps.”

Now, normally, children are not allowed to be outside in close proximity of one another and without face masks, but this was a protest rally, which has its own protections under the law.

In addition, the children protested against Mayor Bill de Blasio’s closing down parks and public gardens – which is also ironic, seeing as under the law these kids can demonstrate together on the sidewalk but can’t kick a ball in the park.

NY State issued its Child Care and Day Camp Programs Guidelines this week, and they are quite elaborate. This guidance does not apply to overnight child care and camp programs, which are not authorized to operate at this time.

Among other things, the guidelines demand that camp managers must “ensure that employee and children/camper groupings are as static as possible by having the same group of children/campers stay with the same staff whenever and wherever possible. Group size must be limited to no more than 10 children/campers (not including
employees/staff … and different stable groups of up to 10 children/campers have no or minimal contact with one another or utilize common spaces at the same time, to the greatest extent possible.



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