Issues: Human Rights

April 16, 2014
Read more...

Peralta discusses bills to fight sex trafficking

As reported by The Times Ledger:  

Few politicians aspire to bring the ambiance of Times Square to their districts, but state Sen. Jose Peralta (D-East Elmhurst) said a stretch of Roosevelt Avenue that has grown saturated with prostitution could use some of the sterilization that transformed Times Square in the 1980s.

While speaking at Queensborough Community College April 3, Peralta described various legislative endeavors to crack down on sex traffickers and prostitution businesses and fund organizations that provide pathways out of the industry for victims.

The senator said afterward he believed recruiting Disney to open a store in Times Square anchored commercial development and ushered in an era of strict policing.

“We don’t need to bring in the big, big box store on Roosevelt Avenue — a mid-size box store,” Peralta said, noting he wanted to “keep the flavor of the mom-and-pop shops” nearby.

But the senator emphasized that wooing Disney took assistance from federal, state and local officials, and he is hoping Mayor Bill de Blasio would join him and U.S. Rep. Joe Crowley (D-Jackson Heights) in scouting for a Roosevelt Avenue anchor.

As Times Square spurned prostitution, the industry migrated along the No. 7 train line, and Peralta said businesses began offering free car service to patrons from midtown to Corona and Jackson Heights.

For full article, click here 

April 14, 2014
Read more...

Peralta decries human trafficking

As reported by The Queens Chronicle:  

State Sen. Jose Peralta (D-East Elmhurst) addressed an audience of over 200 students and faculty at Queensborough Community College in Bayside last Thursday on “Human Trafficking in Our Own Backyard,” drawing a near-capacity crowd.

The talk was the culminating event of a three-week-long ongoing series of related activities, all part of the college’s Common Read Initiative, inspired this year by the featured text, “The Road to Lost Innocence,” the true story of a Cambodian woman who overcame great obstacles and used her experiences to help others stand up for human rights.

The book, written by Somaly Mam based on her own life of abuse in Cambodian brothels, had become a shared reading experience by some 1,300 students and over 35 faculty members from across academic disciplines.

The senator focused on problems relating to human trafficking which, he indicated, runs rampant along Roosevelt Avenue, particularly between 69th and 112th streets.

So-called chica cards, featuring what Peralta described as “degrading pictures of women,” are commonly distributed in the area, so commonplace that “children trade them like baseball cards.”

Peralta indicated that “many women from around the world are brought to Queens and enslaved. The victims are very afraid,” and sometimes seen by the law as criminals. He pointed out that some members of the taxi industry are known to have been “involved in moving these women along. There are those bad apples that perpetuate this crime.”

He said that often these women who come to this country to live the American dream instead “live that American nightmare.” There is a need, he said, to “toughen laws.”

For full article, click here

April 11, 2014
Read more...

SENATOR VALESKY HAILS PASSAGE OF FOURTH CONSECUTIVE ON-TIME STATE BUDGET

ALBANY, NY—State Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) today lauded the passage of the state’s fourth and historic consecutive on-time budget. This has not been accomplished with the same Governor and legislative leaders in more than 40 years.

April 1, 2014
Read more...

In the News: Campaign Finance Reform Benefits Women (Source: LoHud.com)

New York state is on the cusp of making history — and that's a good thing for women.

Earlier this year, Gov. Andrew Cuomo included a proposal for the public financing of state elections in his budget. The plan creates a system where public funds match citizens' small campaign contributions to reduce the influence of big money in politics.

March 24, 2014
Read more...

In the News: Senate Dems To Cuomo: Dream Act Will Pass If It’s In The Budget (Source: NY State of Politics)

The Dream Act will be approved if it is folded into the 2014-15 state budget, Senate Minority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Queens Democrat Jose Peralta wrote in a letter to Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

The letter send on Thursday comes several days after the Senate voted down the measure by two votes, 30-29.

Click here to read the full article.

March 21, 2014
Read more...

Senator Stewart-Cousins Remarks on Women's History Month

“It is up to the women,” was the theme of Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins' remarks on the floor of the State Senate as a resolution she sponsored in honor of Women's History Month was adopted. "It's important to celebrate the other women in the Chamber, [as well as] the unsung heroines like mothers, including my own mother," said the Senator. She also recognized various women throughout history, like Eleanor Roosevelt who not only served as First Lady but also was a great leader who fought for human rights.

March 6, 2014
Read more...

Senator Parker Passes A Bill to Honor Our Fallen Veterans

(Brooklyn, NY) - Earlier today, State Senator Kevin Parker’s bill (S1615B) passed the Senate’s Corporations, Authorities and Commissions Committee. The bill, which will take effect November 11, 2015, ensures the remains of a cremated American veterans’ body are properly and respectfully disposed of if not claimed, thereby allowing for proper acknowledgment of those who have served to protect the life and liberty of our nation. 

February 26, 2014
Read more...

1917-2014 A Look at the History of the Legislators of Color

It is with honor that I present to you this up-to-date chronicle of men and women of color who have served in the New York State Legislature.

This book reflects the challenges that resolute men and women of color have addressed and the progress that we have helped New Yorkers achieve over the decades. Since this book was first published in 1977, new legislators of color have arrived in the Senate and Assembly to continue to change the color and improve the function of New York State government.

February 21, 2014
Read more...

Statement From State Senator Jose Peralta On Washington State Legislature’s Passage Of DREAM Act

“Washington is on the verge of becoming the fourth state to provide college financial aid to undocumented immigrants, after the legislature there last night passed the state’s own DREAM Act with strong bi-partisan support.

“Here in New York, making the DREAM Act a reality will also require support across conferences.  Fortunately,  there is a growing consensus among business, labor and Republican and Democratic leaders across the country, both on the need for immigration reform and the obvious economic benefits of reform.  We saw evidence of that last night in Washington.

“That consensus is building because of the growing recognition that the DREAM Act is an investment in the workforce of tomorrow that would pay for itself many times over in increased tax revenues; and that with the demand for higher-skilled workers increasing, it only makes sense to encourage our young people to pursue higher education

“There is also an increasing realization that the young people who would benefit from the DREAM Act are as American as Thanksgiving.  They arrived at an early age and don’t know any country but the United States.  Their hearts are here and so are there futures.

“Let’s help them better provide for themselves and their families, contribute more to the economy and fully integrate into the American mainstream.”

-30-

February 19, 2014
Read more...

"Building A Leadership Pipeline For Women" Discussion Panel

Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins, along with Assemblywomen Robinson and Titus, hosted a discussion panel during Caucus weekend in Albany about roles of women in society, and how women helping women can make a bigger impact in the workforce. The panel also discussed some of the hardships of being a woman in the professional world and the choices that professional women have to make about family and career. Panel participants included Jackie Williams (State & Broadway), Jennifer Jones Austin (FPWA), Leecia Eve (Verizon), Mylan L. Denerstein (Counsel to the Governor), Carolyn McLaughlin (Albany City Council), and Mecca Santana (Chief Diversity Officer of the State of New York).

February 17, 2014
Read more...

Timothy Cardinal Dolan, Catholic bishops back state DREAM Act for financial aid

As reported by the Daily News:

ALBANY — Timothy Cardinal Dolan and the state's Catholic bishops have come out strongly in favor of creating a state DREAM Act allowing state financial aid to go to the college kids of undocumented immigrants.

"It's one of our top priorities this year," state Catholic Conference spokesman Dennis Poust said.

The Catholic Conference, a strong advocate for national immigration reform, views the DREAM Act legislation sponsored by Sen. Jose Peralta (D-Queens) and Assemblyman Francisco Moya (D-Queens) as something the state can do in the interim.

For full article, click here.

February 10, 2014
Read more...

Senator Stewart-Cousins Remarks on Black History Month

Senator Stewart-Cousins acknowledged the many accomplishments and contributions made by African Americans in the Senate Chamber for Black History Month.

February 6, 2014
Read more...

United Way Women's Leadership Council Breakfast

Senator Stewart-Cousins spoke about the importance of having more women in the legislature, as well as leveling the playing field in the overall workforce and how the job still is not done at the United Way Women's Leadership Council Breakfast January 31st.

February 3, 2014
Read more...

SENATE UNANIMOUSLY PASSES FELDER’S & LENTOL’S LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION IN MEMORY OF HOLOCAUST RESCUER RABBI MICHOEL BER WEISSMANDL

Senator Simcha Felder (D-Brooklyn) and Assemblyman Joseph Lentol (D-Brooklyn) introduced a Legislative Resolution in Albany yesterday -- which was passed unanimously -- honoring the memory of Rabbi Michoel Ber Weissmandl, who is credited with saving countless European Jews, especially Jewish prisoners in Auschwitz, during the Holocaust. The ceremony took place in the Senate Chamber in Albany and was attended by members of Rabbi Weissmandl’s family and the Jewish community.

According to some accounts, Rabbi Weissmandl is credited with rescuing approximately two-thirds of the Holocaust survivors living in Brooklyn today. Senator Felder spoke about Rabbi Weissmandl’s valiant efforts saying,

"וכל המקיים נפש אחת, מעלין עליו כאילו קיים עולם מלא

January 28, 2014
Read more...

Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins Memorializing Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Tremendous Contribution To Civil Rights

Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins memorialized the life and achievements of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with a resolution, commenting on how much he had accomplished in his brief life of 39 years. In Senator Stewart-Cousins remarks, she stressed that Dr. King's belief in nonviolence changed the world, and how it is still relevant today, reminding us that he died speaking for jobs and freedom, and argued that Dr. King would be working for those who work hard and still don't have sufficient opportunities if he was alive today. Senator Stewart-Cousins concluded her remarks by reminding the chamber of all the work that still needed to be accomplished for those people, and for Dr.

January 27, 2014
Read more...

Sen. Parker Implores President Obama for Capital Infusion for Brooklyn Hospitals via Medicaid Waiver

In a letter to President Barack Obama, Senator Kevin Parker (D 21) describes the magnitude of Brooklyn's health care crisis, its looming fiscal challenges, and requests of the President that Brooklyn receives its $10 billion in waiver money from the Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) which has not yet been granted. 

Please clink on the pdf link below to view the letter in its entirety. 

File: 
Letter to President Obama re CMS waiver monies for Brooklyn

January 27, 2014
Read more...
Syndicate content