Brooklyn Lawmakers on the Move August 14, 2020

News Site Brooklyn

Rose Calls on Mayor to Bring Healthcare Services to NYCHA Residents

Max Rose
U.S. Rep. Max Rose

U.S. Rep. Max Rose (D-Southern Brooklyn, Staten Island) yesterday called on Mayor Bill de Blasio and New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) Chairman Gregory Russ to allow currently unused spaces in NYCHA properties to be used as sites for Federally Qualified Health Centers.

“Public housing residents face a myriad of health challenges, from environmental risk factors manifest in their housing to those tied to socioeconomic opportunity, challenges that have been exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic.” Rose wrote in a letter to de Blasio and Russ. “Allowing unused NYCHA community spaces to be used by healthcare providers will allow services to be present in the communities most in need.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has hit public housing residents and communities of color most severely, and the Center for Disease Control has cited the disease’s top risk factors as being socioeconomic status, access to healthcare, and increased exposure to the virus, all of which are disproportionately present in public housing communities.

“Especially during the current pandemic, when social distancing precludes the large-scale gathering of people in community spaces, as well as the increased demand for medical care, there is a clear opportunity to utilize these spaces for the benefit of the community, Rose continued. “Furthermore, these providers can reduce the burden on emergency rooms and hospitals by providing primary and preventative care before patients need more serious treatment.”

 In March, in response to the coronavirus’ added strain on our nation’s healthcare system, Congress passed H.R. 6074 to allocate $100 million to FQHCs nationwide, and in April, the CARES Act provided an additional $1.3 billion.

Colton to Mayor: Don’t Lay Off City Workers 

Assembly Member William Colton

Assemblyman William Colton (Gravesend, Bensonhurst, Bath Beach, and Dyker Heights) is outraged that Mayor Bill de Blasio still plans to lay off 22,000 city workers on October 1, 2020, if he can’t get funding from Washington DC or find savings through unions.

“It is outrageous to lay off dedicated city employees especially during the COVID -19 crisis. There must be absolutely no lay off of city workers. Mayor De Blasio asks for funding from Washington and pressures Unions to find saving, instead, he should come up with the plan and publicly announce how he’s planning to use the funds. The Mayor is putting pressure on Albany and Unions by jeopardizing 22,000 human destinies. He should put more thoughts to create more jobs and boost the economy, not to force more people to file for unemployment,” Colton said.

“Enough is enough. Mayor was elected to be the people’s voice, not their nightmare. Our city was already damaged by the Mayor’s decision to defund the NYPD. We are not going to let him play with people’s lives any longer,” Colton added. 

Myrie Updates 

State Senator Zellnor Myrie
State Senator Zellnor Myrie

State Sen. Zellnor Myrie (D-Brownsville, Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Gowanus, Park Slope, Prospect Heights, Prospect Lefferts Gardens, South Slope, Sunset Park) sends a few reminders about important resources available to the public and events coming up.

  • Online appointments for constituent services: Our Brooklyn office (1077 Nostrand Avenue) is now open for one-on-one constituent service appointments. Schedule an appointment to get help with housing, legal services, immigration and more. All services are by appointment only– walk-ins are not permitted at this time. To schedule your appointment, click here.
  • New COVID-19 testing sites in the district: All New Yorkers are encouraged to get tested for COVID-19, even if you are not experiencing symptoms. Free testing, without an appointment, is available at these locations in our district:
    • Sunset Park
      • Brooklyn Herald Gospel Center, 809 44th Street (Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.)
      • Mobile testing unit at corner of 44th Street and 6th Avenue (Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m.)
      • Brooklyn Army Terminal, 140 58th Street (every day, 9 a.m.- 7 p.m.)
    • Brownsville
      • Mobile testing unit at Kings Church of Christ in Brownsville, 361 Rockaway Avenue (Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m.)
    • East Flatbush
      • NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County, 451 Clarkson Avenue (Monday-Saturday, 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Sunday, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.)
  • Fill out the census in front of our office: Every Thursday in August, from 3 – 6 p.m., the Myrie Census Corner event will be happening in front of 1077 Nostrand Avenue. Come by and fill out the Census if you haven’t already, and spread the word!
  • NYC Department of Finance Lien Sale Virtual Info Sessions throughout August: The deadline to resolve debt on homes before the city’s lien sale is September 3. Find out if your property has a tax lien and sign up for an info session here. Feel free to contact our office with questions or for assistance.
  • Traditional Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits are now extended for up to 59 weeks: Traditional UI lasts for 26 weeks in New York, and has been extended by both the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) program, which adds 13 weeks, and the Extended Benefits (EB) program, which adds an additional 20 weeks.
  • Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) benefits are now extended for up to 46 weeks: Under Federal law, those receiving Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) are not eligible for PEUC or EB, but are now eligible for up to 46 weeks of benefits in New York – up from the original 39 weeks.
  • To continue receiving these benefits, it is important to re-certify your claim every week. Please visit the Department of Labor online for more information, and contact our office if you’re having difficulty with unemployment.

Persaud on New Seat Belt Law

Roxanne J. Persaud
State Senator Roxanne J. Persaud

State Sen. Roxanne Persaud (D- Canarsie, East New York, Brownsville, Mill Basin, Old Mill Basin, Sheepshead Bay, Bergen Beach, Marine Park, Flatlands, Mill Island, Georgetown, Ocean Hill, Starrett City) reminds the public about a new seat belt law that will take effect in November. 

“As many people begin to hit the roads and start traveling again, I want to bring to your attention a new seat belt law that will take effect in November.  The new law states that everyone regardless of age and whether they are sitting in the front or rear of a vehicle, must wear a seatbelt or run the risk of a fine if out of compliance. 

“Also, while on the topic of cars, I want to remind drivers in the district to remember to always lock your car doors, regardless if your car uses a fob for entry.  The 61st Precinct alone has reported over 130 cars stolen over the past few months and all were because of doors being left unlocked,” she said   

Simon and Adams Blood Drive 

Jo Anne Simon
Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon
Borough President Eric Adams
Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams

Assemblywoman Jo Anne Simon (D-Brooklyn Heights, Downtown Brooklyn, Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens, Gowanus, Park Slope, Boerum Hill, DUMBO) and Borough President Eric Adams partnered with the New York Blood Center and held a summer blood drive that culminated in a total of 236 donors giving 203 pints of blood. 

“I am always so pleased and proud that when an urgent need affecting our city presents itself, Brooklynites are among the first to answer the call, and the need for blood donations, even in the midst of a pandemic, was no exception. The generosity and selflessness of the 236 donors who stepped up to answer the desperate call to donate is much appreciated and highlights the spirit of Brooklyn Strong. Having the opportunity to partner with Assembly Member Simon and the New York City Blood Center on such a worthy cause re-emphasizes that, in difficult times, the residents of our City stand up for one another,” said Adams. 

 “When times are tough, you can count on New Yorkers to show up for one another. I’m delighted that so many Brooklynites participated in our blood donation events with Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams and the New York Blood Center. It is so important during this pandemic to know that other New Yorkers have your back and care about the health and well-being of their neighbors,” said Simon.  

In New York City, the cancellation of scheduled blood drives when businesses were forced to close in response to the pandemic and the mandated sheltering of the city’s residents that ensued further hampered donation efforts, resulted in a huge drop in Brooklyn and New York City’s overall blood supply. In response, the 203 total pints of lifesaving blood collected during the blood drives held at Brooklyn Borough Hall on June 1st, June 8th, and August 7th will benefit three patients in need per pint being served, and the potential of saving 609 lives. 

Louis Calls for Pay Parity on Black Women’s Equal Pay Day

Council Member Farah Louis
Council Member Farah Louis

City Council Member Farah N. Louis (D-Flatbush, East Flatbush, Midwood, Marine Park, Flatlands, Kensington), the Women’s Caucus Co-Chair, yesterday called for pay parity on Black Women’s Equal Pay Day.“The pay gap between American men and women is one of the greatest injustices this country has battled for decades. Women across the nation bear the consequences of being paid a fraction of the compensation that their male counterparts are paid — for the same work. For Black women, this gap is far worse,” said Louis.

“In New York, Black women’s median wages are $42,499 compared to white, non-Hispanic men who earn $66,549. Black women earned 64 cents for every dollar earned by non-Hispanic white men in 2018. Consequently, these women will lose $962,000 in their lifetime. 

“Today, I want to thank all of my colleagues in the Women’s Caucus as well as PowHER NY for their continued commitment to building a better city where Black women are fairly compensated, supported, valued, and nurtured in all of the ways we deserve.”