The Gramercy Park Block Association teamed up with NYC Makes PPE to distribute personal protective equipment for Manhattan’s police precincts.
Since its inception in 1994, the Gramercy Park Block Association has been dedicated to public safety, crime prevention, historic preservation, and quality-of-life. In March, Gramercy Park Block Association President and Gramercy Park Trustee Arlene Harrison got a call from a Gramercy Park resident whose husband, Guan Yang, is involved in NYC Makes PPE.
“We send out a newsletter every week and she wanted to see if we could write about what [NYC Makes PPE] was doing and try to fundraise for them,” said Harrison. “We decided to find a way to work with them and give them a wider approach.”
By the time Harrison and Yang spoke about the partnership, NYC Makes PPE had already produced more than 20,000 pieces of PPE for hospitals, frontline workers. Harrison pulled some strings to get NYC Makes PPE connected to the NYPD’s 13th Precinct and Gramercy Park Block Association was able to raise $1,000 for NYC Makes PPE. After NYC Makes PPE made 300 units for the precinct, the police chief there asked if it were possible for the organization to make PPE for more of Manhattan’s precincts.
In that time period, production at NYC Makes PPE began to skyrocket. According to Yang, NYC Makes PPE shifted from 3D printing to injection molding, which is used to produce many things that are made of plastic in the industry.
“[NYC Makes PPE] got together with a donor and we started to mass-produce design models and molds,” said Yang. “With the move to injection molding, what would have taken months is now moving a lot quicker.”
NYC Makes PPE aims to help frontline workers, including those in places that you might not immediately consider because they aren’t in health care, so working to produce PPE for the NYPD precincts made sense to Yang.
“We get a lot of requests from places where you wouldn’t necessarily think of as frontline workers, like nursing homes, daycares, homeless shelters,” said Yang. “The need at local precincts is there. They need protection for themselves.”
NYC Makes PPE and the Gramercy Park Block Association distributed 2,800 face shields to ten Precincts in Patrol Borough Manhattan South, from 59th St to Battery Park, and Emergency Service Truck #1. Each Precinct sent the following message to the organizations:
“We extend our deepest appreciation for the generosity shown by the Gramercy Park Block Association, its President Arlene Harrison, and NYC Makes PPE for donating protective face shields, which will help keep our officers safe. Special thanks to the GPBA for their long history of support for the NYPD!”
For more information about the Gramercy Park Block Association, visit gramercyparkblockassociation.org. For more information about NYC Makes PPE, visit nycmakesppe.com. To volunteer or donate to NYC Makes PPE, you can visit their website.
Photos courtesy of the Gramercy Park Block Association