Billy Joel and his wife Alexis have donated $500,000 to coronavirus relief efforts in New York state. The couple have said the donation is the first in a “series of donations”.
“As New Yorkers, we have personal ties to so many of these Heroic healthcare workers that are risking their own lives,” reads a statement posted on Joel’s official Twitter account. “The pandemic has created a massive deficiency in the care for those infected.”
The Joels’ initial $500,000 donation will go towards purchasing Personal Protective Equipment such as masks and hazmat suits for health care professionals in the New York area. 75% will be allocated to hospitals in New York City and Long Island and 25% will be allocated to the rest of New York State.
The Billy Joel Foundation is working with BStrong, in partnership with the Global Empowerment Mission, who have sourced and are distributing the equipment.
New York has become the epicenter of the outbreak in the U.S. The number of cases in the state exceeded 92,000 as of April 2nd, approximately 40% of the national total. Fatalities in New York City alone have exceeded 1,300.