The Documentary Podcast
Missing from Manhattan
Thursday, 8 July
Last spring New York looked like the epicentre of the pandemic with boarded up shops, makeshift morgues in refrigerated trucks and the constant wail of ambulance sirens echoing through the deserted streets. This summer, as America’s biggest city emerges from the coronavirus crisis, what has changed? For Assignment, Lucy Ash focuses on the most dramatically affected area – the Midtown section of Manhattan – and goes on a hunt for the missing people in this once dynamic, densely populated part of the Big Apple. She talks to those who have fled for the greener pastures of New Jersey where property prices have spiked and she meets a Broadway star who became a florist when theatres went dark. Lucy also finds out what happened to tens of thousands of Midtown cleaners and restaurant staff who couldn’t work from home and were abruptly laid off with no safety net. As undocumented migrants, most didn’t qualify for any state aid.
New York producer: Guglielmo Mattioli
Editor: Bridget Harney
(Image: A view of Midtown Manhattan and Bryant Park. Credit: Reuters/Carlo Allegri)