Brooklyn Lawmakers on the Move Nov. 30, 2020

News Site Brooklyn

Deutsch Helps Combat Digital Hate & Terrorism

City Councilman Chaim Deutsch

City Councilman Chaim Deutsch (D-Sheepshead Bay, Manhattan Beach, Brighton Beach, Homecrest) helped allocate a combined $115,000 of their block allocations under the City Council’s Digital Inclusion Initiative to fund Simon Wiesenthal Center’s (SWC) Combat Digital Terrorism and Hate Project.   

 SWC’s program will be brought to New York City public middle and high schools during this academic year, at a time when anti-Semitism, racism, bigotry, homophobia, Islamophobia and all other forms of online hate are dramatically increasing. Especially with the increased usage of digital platforms since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

  “Antisemitism is the oldest form of hate, but it has had a resurrection in the form of online hate. In recent years, we have seen an unfortunate rise in hate speech online translating into physically violent acts. The Simon Wiesenthal Center’s program to combat digital hate is fulfilling a critical need in teaching young people to identify and combat hate online. I’m glad to support their great work” said Deutsch. 

“It is largely understood that there is a direct parallel from hate speech on social media to the serious level of increase in hate crimes that we have witnessed in New York City, the New York Metropolitan area and across the nation. I congratulate the members of the New York City Council for recognizing the imperative of this reality and thank them for entrusting the Simon Wiesenthal Center with educating our children in ways to better understand and directly combat such activities,” said SWC Eastern Director Michael Cohen.  

 “In these trying times, when hate is all too present online and in life, it is incumbent upon all of use to fight back against bigotry. The Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Digital Terrorism and Hate project is doing the vital work of informing young people about the dangers of digital vitriol and how it can translate into real world violence. The Council is proud to fund this important endeavor and stand against hate and violence” said NYC City Council Speaker Corey Johnson (D-Manhattan).  

Malltiokais Applauds Court Decision on Houses of Worship Gatherings 

Congresswoman-elect Nicole Malliotakis

U.S. Rep.-elect Nicole Malliotakis on Friday released a statement in support of the U’S. Supreme Court ruling in favor of Houses of Worship to gather. 

“Last night’s Supreme Court decision is a victory for religious institutions, their congregations and all freedom-loving Americans. Governor Cuomo’s arbitrary restrictions not only infringed on our First Amendment rights but did not take into account building capacity or safety protocols put in place,” said Malliotakis.

“It is fitting that the Court’s decision was made on the eve of Thanksgiving, a holiday founded by Pilgrims who settled in North America in search of religious freedom. New Yorkers and all Americans have one more thing to be thankful for today,” she added. 

Adams Encourages Local Holiday Shopping

Borough President Eric Adams
Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, city business leaders, and local business owners called for a local “sales tax holiday for the holidays” on Black Friday, saying the City and State must do everything possible to encourage New Yorkers to shop locally during the COVID-19 crisis. 

Adams joined the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, the Bed-Stuy Gateway Business Improvement District (BID), and employees of Moshood Creations, a Black-owned clothing store in Bedford-Stuyvesant, to push the tax-free proposal as New Yorkers considered their purchases on what is traditionally the busiest shopping day of the year.

“The pandemic has devastated local businesses and the New Yorkers who depend on them to provide for their families,” said Adams. “The City of New York should create a local sales tax holiday for the holidays in order to boost our local businesses at this difficult time and remind New Yorkers of the value in shopping locally. Lifting the sales tax will also keep money in the pockets of New Yorkers at a time when they need it the most.”

New York City imposes a 4.5 percent sales tax on most goods and services. If the State authorized the tax holiday, the City could then apply the break. Noting the need to prioritize our small businesses and the workers who keep them going over government excess, Adams noted that this break is affordable through his months-long call for Mayor de Blasio to implement Programs to Eliminate the Gap (PEGs) and reduce agency budgets by 5-10 percent, primarily by not replacing staff that are departing to retire or to take other jobs. 

Schumer: $30B Fed Money Needed For COVID Vaccine Rollout

U.S. Senator Charles Schumer

U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) yesterday with a COVID-19 vaccination nearing the ready for distribution, that a successful rollout will require about $30 billion in federal funds to ensure states like New York have the resources to distribute the vaccine for free.

The rollout would include educating the public, hiring health workers and establishing clinics among other items.

“With a COVID-19 vaccine waiting in the wings, federal dollars need to follow if we are going to get this right and overcome this pandemic,” said Schumer.“States like New York will need funding to make sure the resources required once the vaccine is made available are both in place and in progress. New York will require hundreds-of-millions of dollars to hire health workers, establish clinics, including possible mobile ones, and make sure that we have boots on the ground engaging with people in communities, particularly those that often struggle with access to healthcare—and that is going to cost money.”

Schumer explained, the federal government will buy COVID-19 vaccines and then deliver batches of them to where states say they’re needed. Sites can range from massive hospital systems, like in New York City, all the way to mobile vaccine sites upstate, even pharmacies. States will need dollars to administer this work, hire the appropriate staff and prepare for information tracking, outreach awareness, engagement with community leaders, minority groups and more, he said.

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