Queens County Politics March 5, 2018

Queens County City Council News

Crowley, Meng Hold Immigrant Community Resource Fair

U.S. Rep.Joe Crowley

U.S. Reps. Joe Crowley (D-Sunnyside, Astoria, College Point, East Elmhurst, Jackson Heights, Corona, Woodside, parts of the Bronx) and Grace Meng (D-Bayside, Flushing, Forest Hills, Rego Park, Fresh Meadows, Glendale, Kew Gardens, Maspeth) teamed up with the city’s office of Immigrant Affairs yesterday to hold a community resource fair at Iglesia St. George in Flushing.

In the ultimate city of immigrants, and in the city’s most diverse borough, Queens residents were able to access City services. Staff from the Department of Education, the Department of Consumer Affairs, the Queens District Attorney’s Office of Immigrant Affairs, legal services providers, and local community groups provided Flushing residents with information and resources, such as IDNYC, the city’s official municipal ID card and ActionNYC, free and confidential immigration legal services available to all New Yorkers.

U.S. Rep. Grace Meng

In addition, New Yorkers received the latest information on federal immigration policy, including on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA), Temporary Protected Status (TPS), and more. Live Spanish interpretation services were available during the forum.

“As elected officials representing New York City, we have a responsibility to push back against the Trump administration’s despicable attacks on immigrant families,” said Crowley, Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus. “Events like these allow us to reach out to members of our community whose lives have been disrupted by President Trump’s anti-immigrant agenda, like the thousands of individuals from El Salvador, Haiti, and Nicaragua living in New York under temporary-protected status, and make them aware of the legal protections they have at their disposal. This is how we keep our communities strong and united.”

“As we fight the President’s cruel and un-American immigration policies, it is imperative that immigrant families have access to the resources and services they require,” said Meng. “This important resource fair goes a long way in providing that critical assistance, and it does so confidentially and free of charge. I’m proud to partner with the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs and my colleague Joe Crowley in standing with immigrant New Yorkers.”

Dromm, Stavisky, Constantinides Host 8th Annual New Year Celebration

City Council Member  Daniel Dromm

City Council Members Daniel Dromm (D-East Elmhurst, Elmhurst, Jackson Heights) and Costa Constantinides (D-Astoria, East Elmhurst, Long Island City) and State Sen. Toby Ann Stavisky (D-Bay Terrace, Bayside, Beechhurst, Clearview Gardens, Flushing, Rego Park, Forest Hills, Hillcrest, Elmhurst, Electchester, Pomonok, Queensboro Hill, Whitestone, Woodside) along with the Celebrate Asian Community United Society, Coalition of Asian American Children and Families on Saturday hosted the 8th Annual Lunar New Year Celebration in Elmhurst.

The event featured traditional Korean drumming, traditional Chinese dance, traditional Vietnamese music, performances by PS 7, PS 13 and IS 5 students, free face painting and a dog puppet workshop for children, lion dancing and more.  It also included a resource fair with representation from nearly 30 local civic groups, social service providers, and city agencies.

Dromm founded the event in 2011 to create an opportunity for the Asian American communities of Elmhurst to increase their visibility and celebrate their cultural pride while sowing the seeds for future organizing. The Elmhurst celebration has steadily grown from the small block of performances the community enjoyed in its first year and is now among the neighborhood’s most cherished events.

Kim & Lawmakers Demand Trump Seek Peace Not War with North Korea

Assembly Member Ron Kim

Assemblyman Ron Kim (D-Whitestone, Flushing and Murray Hill) and dozens of New York State lawmakers signed and sent a letter that Kim wrote to the White House, demanding that President Trump halt his increasingly reckless actions and statements on the North Korean nuclear issue.

The nearly forty lawmakers urged him to do everything possible to seek a peaceful resolution to the Korean Peninsula crisis, and emphasized the harrowing reality that millions of lives were at stake. Following the president’s State of the Union Address and his announcement of even greater sanctions against North Korea, Kim began drafting the letter in response his increasingly aggressive brinksmanship.

Kim’s district encompasses a large population of Korean Americans, most of whom still have ties to and family on the Korean peninsula, and he himself has relatives and extended family still living there.

Since his inauguration, President Trump’s stated foreign policy toward North Korea has been one of maximum pressure. In public, he has often resorted to insults and name-calling against its dictator, Kim Jung Un, and hinted at a willingness to assert military dominance over the isolated country. Only recently, relations between South Korean and North Korea appeared to be thawing. The commencement of the Winter Olympics in February, which was preceded by meetings and negotiations between the two countries, had signaled a potential de-escalation following a year of sanctions and missile tests.

However, these efforts at defusing tensions occurred against the backdrop of the White House’s perpetually aggressive posturing, including the president’s own pledge to unleash on North Korea “fire and fury…the likes of which this world has never seen before.”

“This president is making the case for war and has been doing so for months,” said Kim. “His campaign of “maximum pressure” has done little to solve the crisis but left millions of Americans in fear of imminent thermonuclear conflict. Many in the Korean American community have expressed frustration with his dangerous statements, fearing they will only bring the two countries closer to war, with millions of Koreans caught in the crossfire. We must make it clear to the President that there are millions of Americans that do not agree with his methods, who want to find a solution that will de-escalate this conflict. I thank my colleagues for joining me in calling on the White House to change course and stop its reckless brinksmanship.”