Melissa has written a letter with Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. to Real Bronx Tours, a company that reportedly gives tours of the South Bronx that offer “a ride through a real New York City ‘GHETTO.’” The letter urges the company to radically change the way this tour is marketed and presented to the public. You can read the letter by clicking here.
The account of the tour published in the New York Post yesterday is sickening. The tour guide not only painted the South Bronx as a haven for crime, but also mocked local residents who were waiting on line at a food pantry.
WHO: Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito, East Harlem Immigrant Service Network, CUNY Citizenship Now, Make the Road New York and the New York Immigration Coalition WHAT:Community Briefing on Proposed Federal-Level Immigration Reform WHEN: Thursday, May 16th from 9:15 AM to 11:30 AM WHERE: Union Settlement Association (237 East 104th Street, between 2nd & 3rd Avenues)
All attendees should RSVP to Joe Pressley at email@example.com or via telephone at 212-828-9800.
The New York City Council is holding a hearing today about Intro 410: The Immigrants Voting Rights Bill, which would allow 1.3 million voting-age, tax-paying New Yorkers to vote in NYC municipal elections. Melissa is a strong supporter of Intro 410, along with 34 other council members. This is a very exciting time in our city and will directly affect around 27,000 individuals in District 8 alone! You can watch the hearing live at 1 PM on the City Council’s website, or stop by the Council Chambers at City Hall to show your support.
A selection committee comprised of business and civic leaders in NYC will choose winners in September 2013. Winners will be honored at a ceremonial gala in October 2013. They will also receive city-wide recognition and have exclusive use of the Age Smart Employer Award 2013 Winner logo graphic, as well as receive promotion at national and international conferences and meetings.
It is a sad fact that mothers and newborns living in low-income communities like East Harlem suffer from preventable illnesses and serious health risks that tragically take or undermine lives. Just because there are mothers and babies that live in poverty and do not have access to health care or may lack the presence of family or mentors that can help and teach them how to keep their babies well, doesn’t mean they shouldn’t have access to knowledge about completely preventable health problems. The Little Sisters of the Assumption Family Health Service (LSA) has made it their priority to bring maternal awareness to this travesty. And there are two ways you can get involved:
LSA is hosting a Virtual Baby Shower through Amazon.com, where you can donate necessities to those who need it most – it includes everything from diapers to baby formula.
We are happy to share with you a very clear rundown on Immigration Reform, provided by CUNY Citizenship Now:
Visit CUNY Citizenship Now’s website. It’s a great resource to learn about everything from protecting yourself from immigration fraud to finding English language classes and preparing for the citizenship test.
There are two fantastic opportunities available whose deadlines are nearing. Please share this news with anyone that you deem to be eligible and whom would benefit from these opportunities.
COMITE NOVIEMBRE SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM
Comité Noviembre will be awarding a $1,000 scholarship to exceptional Puerto Rican youth who are making a difference in their community. Applicants should have a minimum of one-year of volunteer community service experience and be between the ages of 17 and 25 years old. DEADLINE: May 31, 2013. Link to application.
NEW YORK LEAGUE OF PUERTO RICAN WOMEN’s 2013 COLLEGE AWARDS
The New York League of Puerto Rican Women (NYLPRW) Inc. is currently accepting applications for their 2013 College Awards which will be given out during their annual College Awards Gala Dinner Dance in the Bronx on August 22, 2013. NYLPRW is looking to recognize undergraduate Puerto Rican women for their academic excellence and service to the community. DEADLINE: June 7, 2013. Link to application.
This will be the seventh year that Comité Noviembre (CN) will be holding their Annual Trip to Puerto Rico – Buscando Nuestras Raices VII. You must be 21 or older to partake in this 10 day/9 night trip that will take place from Tuesday, August 6, 2013 to Thursday, August 15, 2013. Enjoy all that Puerto Rico has to offer with educational workshops, films, live entertainment and guided tours through San Juan as well as small mountain towns, coastal landmarks and museums. CN is a non-profit organization that keeps the Puerto Rican life alive in NYC through celebrating its’ social, cultural, educational, economic and political accomplishments.
Space is limited so if you are interested, reserve your spot now or contact CN for more information. Early Bird Special must be paid in full on Monday, May 6, 2013. That is also the same date that a deposit of $500 is due to hold your reservation.
Teresa A. Santiago – 914.263.6599 – firstname.lastname@example.org
Angel Santini – 212.677.4181 – email@example.com
Lourdes R. Torres – 646.541.8326 – firstname.lastname@example.org
This issue prompted Melissa to write a letter to the Department of Education last year, signed by thirty-five Council Members inquiring about the DOE’s plan to improve the quantity and quality of gym class in City schools and to address the disparities between schools. Melissa was joined by education chair Robert Jackson along with other phys ed experts, all of whom discussed the many evidence-based benefits of PE, including improved academic achievement along with physical health.
Melissa expressed her strong stance on this issue:
“Providing quality physical education in our public schools is critical in a time when our City is facing a staggering childhood obesity epidemic! It is shocking that according to the City Comptroller’s Audit none of the 31 elementary schools visited were meeting State requirements for gym class, due to factors such as co-locations and budget cuts. This issue is particularly important to low-income communities of color such as the South Bronx, East and Central Harlem, and Bedford-Stuyvesant which are disproportionately impacted by higher rates of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and other related illnesses. The issue of gym class is a symptom of the overall direction the DOE has been headed over the last decade. Budget cuts, a lack of gym teachers, an overemphasis on high-stakes test prep, and the co-location of charter schools, have all served to undermine physical education in our schools.”
The Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP) is a six-week program open to all NYC residents between the ages of 14-24 – and the application is available now. We highly encourage District 8 youth to apply to SYEP because of the one-of-a-kind work experience they can receive in a variety of jobs, ranging from government agencies, community-based organizations, private sector businesses and more. Last summer, DYCD employed around 30,000 teenagers and young adults and placed them at 5,677 work-sites. Click here to download the paper application in PDF; and if you have questions, you can download the 2013 SYEP FAQ here as a PDF.