Brooklyn lawmakers cut locks on coronavirus-shuttered Hasidic neighborhood playgroundcloseVideo
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Three New York City lawmakers gathered Tuesday morning to cut the locks on a Brooklyn playground in defiance of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s coronavirus lockdown keeping them closed, according to a report.
It happened at Kolbert Playground in Midwood, a Hasidic neighborhood, New York 1 News reported.
On Monday evening in Brooklyn’s Williamsburg section, Hasidic leaders cut the locks on Middleton playground following a rally led by state Assemblyman Joe Lentol and local officials.
Middleton playground in Brooklyn's Williamsburg section. (Google Maps)
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Shortly after, the Hasidic Satmar sect posted on its Twitter page footage showing dozens of children without masks gathered around as the locks were being cut.
“This park is going to stay open and if they ever close my park again, I’m going to come every morning and I’m going to open the park up,” one of the leaders said, according to WABC-TV.
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The locks were cut at Kolbert by State Senator Simcha Felder, Assemblyman Simcha Eichenstein, and Councilman Kalman Yeger, New York 1 reported.
All New York City playgrounds have been shuttered since April to contain the spread of the coronavirus.
Before Monday at Middleton playground, workers welded the entrance shut.
The city Parks Department said it was necessary because the playground has been broken into 25 times since it has been closed.
De Blasio criticized the Jewish residents for cutting the locks, warning about the risk of contracting the coronavirus, National Review reported.
“We’re not going to allow people to take the law into their own hands,” the mayor said at a press conference Tuesday.
He said the playgrounds will remain closed until the city reaches phase two of the reopening process.
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“I understand people’s frustrations, but if folks act prematurely and that causes the disease to start spreading again, then that’s the kind of thing that will undermine our ability to get to phase two and stay in phase two,” de Blasio said.