MANH Lawmakers on the Move, Oct. 2, 2020

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Rosenthal Criticizes Cuomo’s New Eviction EO

Assembly Member Linda B. Rosenthal (Photo credit: Steven Barall, CC BY-SA 3.0)
Assembly Member Linda B. Rosenthal

Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal (D-Upper West Side, Hell’s Kitchen) released a statement yesterday regarding Governor Andrew Cuomo’s (D) recent Executive Order to provide eviction relief.

Last March, Cuomo issued an Executive Order suspending evictions for all tenants who have endured financial hardship due to the pandemic. Yesterday, he issued an order extending that suspension until Jan. 1, 2021.

However, as Rosenthal pointed out, the so-called “moratorium” on evictions offers tenants less protection than you’d think.

“The EO announced yesterday protects tenants who can prove financial or other loss as a result of COVID-19,” said Rosenthal. “However, it places the burden of proof squarely on struggling tenants to show they are worthy of not being kicked out of their homes. What’s worse, perhaps, is that other tenants, like low-wage or gig workers, may not be able to meet the burden despite being otherwise qualified. And the protection is just too narrow; the EO does not prevent holdover proceedings and allows all eviction proceedings initiated before COVID-19 to progress.

“COVID-19 has wreaked havoc on all our lives. People have become sick, lost jobs, and, tragically, lost loved ones. So many of us are experiencing anxiety and depression related to the social and physical distancing required to keep us safe. And one of the best ways to keep people and communities healthy is to keep everyone in their homes. Evicting people will destabilize communities and expose tenants and all of us to an unnecessary risk of harm.”

Johnson Wishes New York a Happy Mid-Autumn Festival

Council Member Corey Johnson (Credit: Jeff Reed)
Council Member Corey Johnson

Council Speaker Corey Johnson (D-Chelsea, Hell’s Kitchen) released a statement yesterday in recognition of the Mid-Autumn Festival.

The Mid-Autumn Festival, also known as the Moon Festival, falls on the fifteenth day of the eighth month of the Chinese calendar. It originated thousands of years ago, when Chinese emperors would worship the moon and thank it for a bountiful harvest.

“Today marks the Mid-Autumn Festival, the time of year when many Asians around the world get together with their families and celebrate the fall harvest, as they have for thousands of years,” said Johnson. “It‘s also a time to reflect on the hard work that comes before the harvest. The pandemic has changed how people celebrate this festival as many won’t be able to come together in person but it will not change the spirit of this time of reflection. We have hard work ahead of us but together we will triumph.

I wish all who celebrate a happy and safe Mid-Autumn Festival and look forward to the day when we can come together and celebrate again.”

Nadler Hails Passage of Five New Judiciary Bills

U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler (Photo Credit: U.S. House Office of Photography)
U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler

Yesterday, U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-Manhattan, Bronx) issued a statement after the House unanimously passed five bills favored by the Judiciary Committee.

Earlier, the House passed the following five bills:

  • The Criminal Judicial Administration Act of 2020, which would allow courts to order U.S. marshals to cover travel and food expenses for defendants who must attend court hearings;
  • The Protecting the Health and Wellness of Babies and Pregnant Women in Custody Act of 2020, which would instate mandatory policies and guidelines regarding the incarceration of pregnant and postpartum women;
  • The Fight Notario Fraud Act of 2020, which would make it illegal to offer legal consulting on immigration matters without authorization to practice law;
  • The Empowering Olympic, Paralympic, and Amateur Athletes Act of 2020, which would establish safeguards to protect Olympic athletes from physical and sexual abuse;
  • and the Promoting Alzheimer’s Awareness to Prevent Elder Abuse Act, which would ensure that the Department of Justice’s elder abuse training includes specific guidelines for caring for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients.

“The bipartisan legislation passed today brings us one step closer to creating a more just criminal justice system, combatting notario fraud committed against our immigrant community, and protecting our nation’s athletes from sexual abuse,” said Nadler. “I am proud to see these meaningful bills passed with overwhelming support from both sides of the aisle, and I thank all who worked to get these reforms passed by the House of Representatives.”

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