MICHAELTRANCE
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August 30, 2014
IS A ASESINO
Show of support for homeless, criticism for shelter sytem
Aug 30, 2014 | 1069 views | 0 0 comments | 1 1 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Homeless advocates rallied last week in support of residents at the Pan Am Shelter on Queens Boulevard. The facility has been targeted by multiple protests in the past months, with signs and chants admonishing residents with phrases like "get a job" and "shame on you," and referring to them as "bums" and "vagrants."
"I've been here four months and keep getting denied for housing, telling me I'm not eligible," said Pan Am Hotel resident Amy Rojas. "I fell into this situation because I lost my job. They're not helping homeless people, we need permanent housing so we can look for and get a job. Here they keep pulling you back."
Immigrant organizations from the Asian and South Asian communities joined the rally to stress unity and underscore that the real problem is the lack of housing affordable for working-class New Yorkers.
"We do not condone the rhetoric shaming homeless individuals and families,” said Cathy Dang, executive director of CAAAV Organizing Asian Communities. “CAAAV believes that everyone has a right to housing and that we are all fighting together for that common goal."
New York City spent $1 billion on the shelter system in Fiscal Year 2013, but homeless advocates argue people don't benefit from being warehoused in facilities like the Pan Am Hotel. Shelter residents have little control over their lives, and families are transferred with little notice and against their will, uprooting and destabilizing families. 
"As I'm out here in Elmhurst, I see how these families are struggling at a broken down shelter system," said PTH member Andres Perez. "DHS is still not acknowledging the serious effect this has on children and families. Homeless people need housing, not shelters."
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Sunnyside bix district gets bike friendly
Aug 29, 2014 | 802 views | 0 0 comments | 1 1 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Pictured from left to righta re State Senator Michael Gianaris, Julie Roberts, co-chair for Transportation Alternatives Queens Activist Committee, Rachel Thieme, executive director of Sunnyside Shines Business Improvement District, Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer, and Shira Siegel, social coordinator for Transportation Alternatives Queens Activist Committee.
Pictured from left to righta re State Senator Michael Gianaris, Julie Roberts, co-chair for Transportation Alternatives Queens Activist Committee, Rachel Thieme, executive director of Sunnyside Shines Business Improvement District, Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer, and Shira Siegel, social coordinator for Transportation Alternatives Queens Activist Committee.
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The Sunnyside business district has become the first in Queens to be declared bike friendly. On August 23, local elected officials and Transportation Alternatives (TA) joined local business owners and over 50 cyclists and pedestrians to launch the borough’s first Bike Friendly Business District. "Sunnyside entrepreneurs understand that bicycling is not only an enjoyable transportation choice, it's good for business, too,” said Caroline Samponaro, senior director of Campaigns and Organizing for TA. “Local merchants are supporting more livable streets that prioritize walking, biking and public transit access - safety improvements that have proven to boost local retail sales." Participating businesses will advocate for a transformed Queens Boulevard that would include safe space for pedestrians, protected lanes for cyclists and dedicated lanes for buses. Supporting local activists’ efforts to transform Queens Boulevard into a more people-friendly corridor, local merchants are taking the lead on street safety. “Designating Sunnyside as a Bike Friendly Business District means that we’re committed to making the neighborhood safe, accessible and fun for everyone,” said Rachel Thieme, Executive Director of the Sunnyside Shines Business Improvement District. “I am encouraged to see so many local businesses signing on to this important cause.” Following the announcement, Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer and Transportation Alternatives led a leisurely tour through the neighborhoods of Sunnyside and Woodside to highlight over 70 local participating businesses who joined the cause. “The launch of Sunnyside’s very own Bike Friendly Business District is an opportunity for our neighborhood to showcase its diversity as well as its eclectic mix of shops, restaurants and cafes,” said Van Bramer. “As ridership climbs in our City, and the cycling infrastructure grows here in Western Queens, Sunnyside hopes to capitalize by highlighting all we have to offer.” New York City Council Majority Leader Jimmy Van Bramer was joined by Transportation Alternatives, Rachel Thieme, Executive Director of Sunnyside Shines Business Improvement District,
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Available on Amazon.com
Available on Amazon.com
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Brian F. Martin, founder of Childhood Domestic Violence and author of Invincible
Brian F. Martin, founder of Childhood Domestic Violence and author of Invincible
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