Coronavirus Impact: Paul Feiner tells Story of one Cruise passenger and the plight of their cruise. Warns against prejudice against Chinese Residents in Greenburgh

WPCNR THE FEINER REPORT. By Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner February 10, 2020:

(Editor’s Note: the cruise ship discussed in this article by Mr. Feiner is not the cruise ship, the Diamond Princess, currently quarantined in Yokohama, Japan. It is with regret, WPCNR notes that Japan authorities confirmed today that 130 persons of 3,700 passengers and crew on the Diamond Princess have caught the virus, doubling the number fallen ill on that ship.)

The Coronovirus has impacted members of our  Greenburgh community in different ways.

There is a large Chinese population in Greenburgh. And some worry about discrimination against the Chinese community. We must  not tolerate any racial discrimination. If any resident is victimized – please advise so we can forward the complaints to the Human Rights Committee and to other authorities..

As far as I know, so far no resident of Greenburgh who is part of the Chinese community has experienced any direct discrimination because of the virus. If that changes or if you know of any incident please advise.

Some residents of Greenburgh have family in Wuhan. They are anxious and stressed out – receiving bad news from people they know or someone who passed away or got critically ill. It’s a difficult time for the Chinese/Greenbugh community. It’s my hope that all Greenburgh residents will be understanding and help our Chinese neighbors during this difficult time.

CORONOVIRUS IS IMPACTING A FAMILY CRUISE FOR ONE GREENBURGH RESIDENT- WHO CAN’T DOCK AT ANY PORT IN ASIA

Earlier this week Glenn Eisen, a former member of the Greenburgh Ethics Board and a an instructor of Tai Chi for Balance and Minimizing Fall Risks at AF Veteran Park in Greenburgh, celebrated his 80th birthday. He and his wife,  Barbara McNear decided to take a cruise on the Westerdam on the South China sea– a place he visited in 1960 when in the army on a Navy troop ship.  Their cruise highlights the impact that the coronavirus has had on travelers.

 I have been in touch with Glenn many times since he left for vacation. This is the most recent update.

The ship left from Hong Kong for different ports. Because of the coronavirus problems he and other passengers have been frustrated because they haven’t been allowed to dock in other ports.  They haven’t been able to visit the Phillipines, Taiwan, Korea and Japan. As they approach each country the Captain told them the country decided to not allow them to dock. 

And the cruise line (Holland American) hasn’t provided them with much info. For example, he learned that Guam denied the ship docking privileges through an article in the LA TImes.  The Captain implies that they are exploring ports but refuses to name them. 

One issue concerns passengers who were in China in the past 30 days, most places won’t allow them in the country.  For the first time since February 1, yesterday all passengers and crew passports were collected and a questionnaire required with questions about Hong Kong, Macau and mainland China.   The cruise line today(Monday) told passengers that an unnamed country may grant the passengers permission to dock and get off the ship –possibly as early as Monday. But as of this morning there was no final destination.

Cruise members feel that if they had not stopped in Hong Kong on February 1 they would not be in this mess They have been promised future cruise credits plus refunds of fares. But those who had additional air fares and hotel accommodations prior or after the cruise are worried that they will come out behind.  The service crew in the food, beverages and staterooms continue to be very helpful and supportive.  They don’t demonstrate any outward frustrations.  They deserve great credit for an outstanding job

The captain reassured everyone that the ship was not in quarantine and that no one on board has coronavirus symptoms. He said that that Holland America is working with the US government, including the Navy and Dutch government to find an appropriate port for the ship to dock.

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