Adams Supports Yemeni Bodega Owners Shut Down
Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams today will rally for religious freedom alongside hundreds of Yemeni-American bodega owners and grocers on the steps of Brooklyn Borough Hall, in solidarity with a mass shutdown of businesses citywide tomorrow between 12 noon and 8 p.m. in protest of President Donald J. Trump’s executive order banning the migration of citizens from several Muslim-majority countries, including Yemen.
According to community leaders, there are an estimated 4,000 to 6,000 small businesses owned by Yemeni-Americans living in New York City, reflecting a population that has grown out of Downtown Brooklyn in the last half-century. As a result of the White House’s action, many local families have been split apart, with loved ones detained, sent back, or not allowed to enter on an existing green card or visa.
Adams will stand in solidarity with allies as Muslims in attendance observe their call to prayer at 5:15 p.m. Following that, several local Yemeni-Americans will tell their stories about how they’ve been personally affected by Trump’s executive order. Adams and other civic leaders will also share accounts on behalf of those who are too scared to go public with their concerns.
The event is slated to start at 5 p.m. today, Feb. 2 at Brooklyn Borough Hall Plaza, 209 Joralemon Street in Downtown Brooklyn.
Cumbo Hosts Update On Bedford Union Armory
New York Council Member Laurie A. Cumbo (Fort Greene, Clinton Hill, Prospect Heights, Crown Heights) tonight will present the first of two community updates on the Bedford Union Armory project in the Crown Heights.
The New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC) and BFC Partners, the developers tabbed to renovate the city-owned armory will also be on hand.
The project, which Cumbo has largely supported, has become a lightening rod issue in Crown Heights with Crown Heights lawmakers including Congresswoman Yvette Clarke, State Sen. Jesse Hamilton and Assembly Members Diana Richardson and Walter Mosley insisting that the housing portion of the development be 100 percent affordable. These lawmakers have also filed a Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) requested with the EDC for all the information involving the deal between the city and BFC Partners.
Following a presentation of the project there will be a Q&A with attendees.
The meeting is slated for between 6:30-8:30 p.m., today, Feb. 2 at Medgar Evers College, 1650 Bedford Avenue, Founders Auditorium in Crown Heights.
Cornegy Holds Emergency Town Hall With Bed-Stuy Muslim Community
City Council Member Robert Cornegy, Jr. (Bedford-Stuyvesant, Northern Crown Heights) tonight is holding an emergency Town Hall meeting with the district’s Muslim leaders regarding President Donald Trump’s Executive Order issued last Friday involving the immigration ban from seven Muslim counties.
The order bars entry to refugees from anywhere in the world for 120 days and from Syria indefinitely. It also blocks any visitors for 90 days from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. The order caused chaos at airports around the country and internationally as travelers with proper paperwork were detained. This includes Muslims that for years had filed paper work and spent untold money to immigrate and/or visit the U.S. legally.
The Department of Homeland Security initially said the order would bar permanent alien residents, also known as green card holders, from those seven countries from returning to the United States. It has since recanted that part of the order.
The Town Hall Meeting is slated for between 7-9 p.m., tonight, Feb. 2 at Masjid Abdul Muhsi Khlifah, 120 Madison Street & Bedford Avenue in Bed-Stuy. RSVP to 718-783-1279.
Espinal’s Bill Reducing Supermarket & Retail Food Outlet Fines Passes City Council
City Council Member Rafael Espinal, yesterday saw the City Council unanimously pass his supermarket and retail food business item pricing bill.
The measure, Int. No. 436-A will provide supermarkets and other retail food establishments with more than $2 million in sales that the City’s Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) inspects an opportunity to “cure” certain item pricing violations, rather than receive a monetary fine.
Int. No. 436-A will allow retail establishments subjected to the city’s item pricing law an opportunity to cure first time violations by submitting proof to the DCA that their violations have been corrected. Business owners will have 30 days to submit their corrective actions to the DCA.
“There are over 5,717 supermarket and grocery stores across the five boroughs, which employ 60,000 people and provide consumers with their essential household supplies,” said Espinal. “I am proud that today we made it possible for these businesses to cure item pricing violations before receiving a burdensome fine. Owners were being fined hundreds of dollars on a regular basis because of a simple oversight, making it harder to do business in this city. This law will not only reduce the burden on businesses, but it will also function to actually educate store owners and employees on proper practices so that the intent and spirit of the law can truly be carried out.”
The law takes effect immediately upon receiving Mayor Bill de Blasio’s signature.
Golden Lauds City’s Expanded Moves To Combat Sex Trafficking
State Sen. Martin J. Golden (R-Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights, Bensonhurst, Marine Park, Gerritsen Beach, Gravesend) yesterday hailed the de Blasio Administration’s announcement it would be expanding its resources to combat sex trafficking in New York City.
The expansion includes dedicating 25 new detectives to focus on investigating sex trafficking and establishing a NYPD Trafficking Hotline at 646-610-7272 for victims and concerned individuals who want to report sex trafficking.
“I want to thank Mayor de Blasio, First Lady Chirlane McCray and NYPD Commissioner James P. O’Neill for their commitment to combat sex trafficking and their dedication to helping those exploited by this
horrible crime,” said Golden. “Many come here for the promise of a brighter future, however too many are victimized and abused by sex traffickers. In the past years, New York City has enacted many effective programs and laws. However, these new measures will go further to encourage people to report suspected abuses, lift barriers to access important services, and provide free legal help to sex trafficking victims.”
Gillibrand’s Statement On Trump’s Nomination Of Gorsuch To Supreme Court
U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) yesterday issued the following statement on President Donald J. Trump’s nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the United States Supreme Court:
“All branches of the federal government should stand on the side of the citizens they were created to serve. The Supreme Court is supposed to be the ultimate arbiter of justice for our citizens. Unfortunately, Judge Gorsuch has proven to have a judicial philosophy outside of the mainstream and time and again has subjugated individual rights to those of corporations,” said Gillibrand.
“I fundamentally disagree with his ruling that a boss should be able to make family planning decisions for an employee and that corporations are people. I plan to stand up for individuals over corporations and oppose his nomination, and I will insist that his nomination meet a traditional 60 vote threshold.”
Adams, Squadron Release Early Childhood Development Report
Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams and State Senator Daniel Squadron (D-Northern Brooklyn, Lower Manhattan) today will unveil a report authored by their Early Childhood Development Task Force that showcases statistical evidence for a greater financial investment in early childhood development, in particular on growth between ages birth and three years.
Standing with toddlers and teachers at the Magical Years Early Childhood Development Center in Sunset Park, a nationally-accredited child care facility providing full-day, year-round support for families, they will detail the importance of early life intervention on school readiness, emotional and social development, family health, economic growth, and public safety.
Adams and Squadron first convened their task force in September 2015.
The report unveiling is slated for 9:30 a.m., today, Feb. 2 at the Magical Years Early Childhood Development Center, 230 60th Street in Sunset Park.