Brooklyn Lawmakers On The Move Aug. 17, 2016

News Site Brooklyn

Cuomo Signs Bill To Give Research Dogs & Cats A Home

Gov. Andrew Cuomo
Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo yesterday signed legislation requiring cats and dogs used for research by higher education institutions be offered for adoption through private placement or shelter organizations.

“This is a humane law that, for these animals, provides the opportunity for a new lease on life,” said Cuomo. “Dogs and cats are like members of the family for many New Yorkers and this action will allow for more four-legged friends to be adopted into a caring home.”

The bill (S.98-A/A.8261-A) would require the animals be deemed suitable for adoption by the attending veterinarian at the research facility. Once the research involving these dogs and cats is completed, academic institutions would then make them available to local shelters, animal rescue centers and humane societies, in order to be adopted.

Numerous animals in New York are currently suitable for adoption at research institutions, yet because of barriers in the placement process, animals may instead be euthanized. Shelter organizations have expressed great interest in adopting these animals due to their status. This new legislation will save the lives of countless cats and dogs by placing them with authorized animal protective associations, which will manage their care and ensure their well-being throughout the adoption process.

The measure will also permit research facilities and adoption organizations to enter into a long-term adoption program to accept these cats and dogs on a rolling basis.


Gillibrand Wants Guidelines For Prescribing Opioids

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand
U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) sent a bipartisan letter urging President Obama to use his administration to develop and publish guidelines for prescribing opioids for acute pain treatment.

Currently, the CDC is focused primarily on opioid prescribing guidelines for the treatment of chronic pain. However, many individuals become addicted to opioids after taking prescriptions for acute pain, such as a broken bone or wisdom tooth extraction.

“Prevention of overprescribing or inappropriate prescribing of opioids is a key component to combating the opioid epidemic. By developing and publishing a comprehensive guideline for prescribing opioids for the treatment of acute pain, we can minimize the initial exposure to opioid medications and further limit diversion of opioid prescriptions, which can have positive downstream effects on combating opioid abuse,” the Senators wrote in the letter.

“Similar to CDC’s development of the Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain and the other ways in which your administration has taken initiative to use administrative authority to address the opioid epidemic, we encourage your administration to use its authority to develop and publish comprehensive guidelines for prescribing opioids for the treatment of acute pain,” they added.

In February 2016, Gillibrand and Capito introduced S.2567, the Preventing Overprescribing for Pain Act, which would require the CDC to issue guidelines for prescribing opioids for the treatment of acute pain. The CDC does not need an act of Congress, however, to develop and publish guidelines for prescribing of opioids for the treatment of acute pain.

The Obama Administration has taken initiative in the past to use administrative authority to address the opioid epidemic and could use its authority again to develop and publish comprehensive guidelines for prescribing opioids for the treatment of acute pain.


Levin Resolution Calling For Resettlement Of Syrian Refugees Passes Council

City Councilman Stephen Levin
City Councilman Stephen Levin

City Councilman Stephen Levin (Downtown Brooklyn, Williamsburg, Boerum Hill) yesterday saw the city council pass his Resolution 1105 calling upon the President and the State Department to resettle at least 10,000 Syrian refugees in the U.S. by the end of fiscal year 2016 and to increase such number to 65,000 by the end of fiscal year 2017.

The measure was one of two the Council passed regarding immigration with the other one being Resolution 1103 calling upon the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security to designate Ecuador for Temporary Protected Status to provide temporary immigration relief to eligible Ecuadorian nationals in the wake of a devastating earthquake.

“In a political climate increasingly hostile to immigrants, we must stand up for the rights and dignity of all people – especially the most vulnerable in our global community,” said Levin. “Our New York values guide us to reject xenophobia and welcome refugees, asylum seekers, and immigrants with open arms because we recognize that our diversity strengthens our city and enables us to flourish.”

City Councilman Carlos Menchaca
City Councilman Carlos Menchaca

The Council passed the resolutions as New York City prepares to host world leaders for a September high-level Summit for Refugees and Migrants where world leaders will discuss an international response to large movements of refugees and migrants now and in the future.

“Here, in New York City, we must show strong support for immigrants and call on our federal government to take the necessary steps to finally bring comprehensive immigration reform and create more humane laws and policies that treat immigrants with dignity and respect,” said City Council Member Carlos Menchaca (Red Hook, Sunset Park), chair of the Committee on Immigration.


Deutsch Bill Informing Seniors To Scams Passes Council

City Councilman Chaim Deutsch
City Councilman Chaim Deutschim Deutsch

City Councilman Chaim Deutsch (Sheepshead Bay, Manhattan Beach, Brighton Beach, Homecrest) yesterday saw the city council pass his bill requiring the city’s Department of Consumer Affairs to conduct education and outreach to seniors and their caregivers about ongoing scams, how to protect oneself from these kinds of calls or interactions, and how to report it to the proper authorities.

The measure passed as research showed older adults make up 30% of all scam victims and are far more likely to fall prey to fake telemarketing or IRS calls, consumer fraud, or the “fake grandchild scheme.” The bill also mandates information on scams to be posted within Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities (NORC) and senior centers.

“Scams plague one in every five seniors, who are often targeted because of qualities that make them more susceptible to those looking to cause harm for personal gain,” said Deutsch. “Older adults above the age of 60 lose billions of dollars every year, falling victim to schemes and fraud. The outreach that will be generated because of the passage of this bill is an important tool in the effort to protect those who may be most vulnerable.”


Cumbo, Espinal Informational Bill For Women Passes Council

City Councilman Rafael Espinal Jr.
City Councilman Rafael Espinal Jr.

City Council Members Laurie Cumbo (Fort Greene, Clinton Hill) and Rafael Espinal (Cypress Hills, Bushwick, Oceanhill/Brownsville) yesterday saw the city council pass their bill requiring the city’s Department of Consumer Affairs to establish and implement an outreach and education program on consumer protection issues that uniquely affect women.

The program would be developed in consultation with the Commission on Gender Equity, the Mayor’s Office to Combat Domestic Violence, and other city agencies as appropriate. The program would provide information on issues such as short- and long- term financial planning, navigation of public benefits programs, the prevalence of gender-based pricing and deceptive business practices and predatory consumer and financial products.

City Council Member Laurie Cumbo
City Council Member Laurie Cumbo

“The City of New York is home to thousands of domestic violence (DV) survivors, many of whom are unknown and their stories untold, fearing the stigma that they can not step into the light because of financial dependency from their abuser. Supported by the Department of Consumer Affairs, Office of Financial Empowerment, Intro 1085 will provide women in the city an opportunity to take advantage of valuable resources, through increased awareness, outreach and financial literacy workshops that address some of the unique challenges faced by women, DV survivors and immigrants,” said Cumbo.

 

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