Lawmakers on the Move, Jan. 27, 2022

Lawmakers on the Move

Hochul Announces New Resources to Aid Long-Haul COVID-19 Workers

Governor Kathy Hochul

Gov. Kathy Hochul announced yesterday that New York State is offering new, online educational opportunities to help workers who believe they contracted COVID-19 due to exposure at work, especially those suffering from ongoing long-haul symptoms. 

A new series of webinars – offered through the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board – will provide information on workers’ rights when it comes to filing a workers’ compensation claim and the cash and/or medical benefits they may be eligible to receive.

“It has been nearly two years after the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in our state, and many hardworking New Yorkers are still experiencing long-haul COVID-19 symptoms that are adversely impacting their health, wellbeing, and ability to support themselves and their families,” said Hochul. “Those still suffering from the lasting effects of this horrible virus deserve to understand their rights and to have access to assistance with filing workers’ compensation claims. By launching these new online resources, we can ensure that those who had to work despite the risk can secure both the adequate medical treatment and lost wage benefits that they deserve.”

Those with a work-related injury or illness have two years from the date of becoming injured or ill to file a workers’ compensation claim, so the deadline is approaching for workers who contracted COVID-19 due to their employment in the early days of the pandemic. 

Even workers who have had a good outcome after COVID-19 can file a claim to protect their future rights to these medical benefits, should they ever need them. Workers should know that while not all claims will be accepted, there is no risk or harm in filing a claim, even if it ends up getting denied. 

The webinars are slated for February 23 from Noon – 1 p.m.; March 9 from Noon – 1 p.m. and April 13 from Noon – 1 p.m. These webinars are free and open to the public. Participants do not need to register in advance, and can join the sessions via the links above, which will also be accessible through the Board’s dedicated COVID-19 webpage at wcb.ny.gov/covid-19.

AG James Answers Trump’s Efforts to Stop Her Investigation of Him

Attorney General Letitia James

New York Attorney General Letitia James yesterday took action to stop Donald J. Trump’s efforts to thwart the ongoing lawful and justified investigation into his and the Trump Organization’s financial dealings. 

On December 20, 2021, Trump filed a lawsuit against James in federal court seeking to stop this investigation and interfere with the related state court proceeding. 

In a motion to dismiss the federal lawsuit, filed yesterday in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York, Attorney General James argues that the lawsuit is a baseless attempt to forum shop and should be dismissed on both procedural and substantive grounds.

The motion to dismiss argues that the federal court should decline to hear the case in deference to the ongoing state court action under well-settled legal doctrines that bar federal courts from considering claims that could be more efficiently and appropriately brought in ongoing state court actions. 

It also argues that Donald J. Trump and the Trump Organization have acknowledged the legitimacy of this investigation and largely complied with it for almost three years, which precludes them from contesting the basis for the investigation or asserting their claims in federal court.

“This lawsuit is nothing but a baseless and meritless collateral attack by Donald Trump to stop our legal and legitimate investigation into his and the Trump Organization’s financial dealings,” said James. “In the three years that we have been conducting this investigation, the Trump Organization and its principles have never challenged the legality of the investigation, until now, when Mr. Trump himself was subpoenaed to testify. We will not be deterred by frivolous lawsuits and will continue to follow the facts of this case because no one is above the law.”

Clarke, Espaillat Urge Blinken to Support Haiti’s Safety, Security and Development

U.S. Rep. Yvette Clarke
U.S. Rep. Adriano Espaillat

U.S. Reps. Yvette D. Clarke (D-Brooklyn) and Adriano Espaillat (D-Manhattan, Bronx) this week led a letter signed by seven members of Congress urging U.S. Department of State Secretary Antony Blinken to take additional steps to mobilize international support for the Haitian people as they work to rebuild from years of natural disasters, economic hardship, and political turmoil.

The letter comes in response to widespread civil unrest that continues to rise in Haiti due to the life-threatening shortages of fuel, food, medicine, and insecurity.

“[W]e ask for a whole-of-government effort to ensure Haiti receives the necessary aid to achieve lasting security, health care, and economic mobility through coordinated strategy and funding,” wrote the members. “As you know, the July 7th assassination of the country’s president, Jovenel Moïse, has thrown the Caribbean Island nation of 11 million into disarray. Well before this tragic incident, Haiti’s situation was volatile as the island grappled with political protests, gang violence, crushing poverty, rising COVID-19 cases, and no vaccine doses. Currently, the country’s economic situation is dire, and recently, widespread civil unrest continues to rise in Haiti due to the life-threatening shortage of fuel, food, medicine, and insecurity.

“While the House of Representatives passed an appropriations measure for Fiscal Year 2022 supporting dialogue in Haiti aimed at resolving the political crisis, urging stronger action against human rights abuses, and addressing the plight of pregnant Haitian women leaving their country to seek neonatal care—this dialogue must be met with funding, a comprehensive strategy, and international coordination to mitigate on the ground challenges,” the members concluded.

Suozzi Raises Alarm on Crimes Against Humanity by Chinese Communist Party

U.S. Rep. Tom Suozzi

U.S. Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-Long Island, Queens) and human rights activists tomorrow will raise the alarm on crimes against humanity carried out by the Chinese Community Party (CCP) ahead of the Winter Olympics in Beijing. 

During the event, the attendees will call on the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to publicly condemn the human rights abuses by the CCP. 

The crimes of the CCP have shocked the conscience of the world. There is clear documentation of the CCP’s crimes, including forced labor, mass surveillance, forced assimilation, mass detention, sexual violence, forced sterilization, and torture. But while these crimes have been clearly documented, the International Olympic Committee has turned a blind eye and emboldened Beijing’s attempt to evade scrutiny and allow corporate sponsors to ignore these human right abuses. 

The event is slated for 12:30 p.m., Friday, January 28 at Dag Hammarskjöld Plaza, East 47th Street and 1st Avenue, between the Citi Bike Docking Station and the Glass House in Manhattan.

CM Won, AOC, Ramos, Barnwell to Tour Woodside Houses 

City Council Member Julie Won

City Council Member Julie Won (D-Queens) will be the lead elected official in touring the NYCHA’s Woodside Houses today along with other Queens lawmakers including U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, State Sen. Jessica Ramos and Assemblymember Brian Barnwell.

The tour comes after numerous complaints from residents of no heat or hot water resulting from the destruction of the heating plant by Hurricane Ida.

The tour is slated for between 5-6 p.m., today Jan. 27 at 49-51 Broadway in Woodside, Queens.

 

 

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