The Coast Guard Foundation, a non-profit organization committed to strengthening the Coast Guard community and service by supporting members and families, announced Coast Guard Sector New York was recognized at the Foundation’s Salute to the Coast Guard event on October 5, 2022, for its service and response during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Sector New York is the Coast Guard’s largest operational unit on the East Coast, and is comprised of nearly 1,000 active-duty, reserve and civilian personnel, as well as six cutters, three boat stations, two aids to navigation teams and over 1,400 auxiliary volunteers. It is responsible for maritime safety, security and environmental protection in the busiest and most diverse port complex on the East Coast.
Despite significant challenges in a dynamic and uncertain COVID environment, Sector New York maintained operational success and fully carried out critical missions such as search and rescue, law enforcement, pollution response, ice operations and aids to navigation.
As New York City rapidly became the COVID-19 epicenter, Sector New York and its field units rose to the challenge, ensuring the uninterrupted delivery of crucial commodities serving one third of the Nation’s population, and developing COVID safety and response protocols that were emulated nationally.
During the early onset of the pandemic in New York City, Sector New York facilitated the short order arrival of the U.S. Naval Ship Comfort by leveraging extensive public and private port partnerships to ensure early completion of major pier dredging operations. These forward leaning actions decreased the arrival timeline by two-weeks. The Comfort not only provided increased medical access to the city’s eight million residents but also offered a symbol of hope during one of the worst periods of the pandemic.
Sector New York reservists staffed FEMA’s first mass-vaccination sites in the U.S., providing vaccines for hundreds of thousands of residents in the greater New York City area. The Sector New York Spouses Club led the development of a local “sewing corps” that produced 3,000 face coverings when they were not widely available, making the workplace and community safer.
“We are honored to recognize Sector New York for their exceptional work,” said Susan Ludwig, Coast Guard Foundation President. “Throughout the sector, Coast Guard members kept the port safe, secure and open for vital commodities and other commerce.”