NYS Senator Eric Adams (D, Brooklyn) hosts a community forum to explore the negative impact of senior center closures by the Department For The Aging (DFTA). Smaller senior centers may be discontinued, despite their effectiveness, and be replaced by centralized multi-service facilities in each borough. Senator Adams promised to work in the NYS legislature to enact legislation to prevent closures.
Presided over by NYS Senator Eric Adams, the forum at St. Gabriel’s attracted more than 250 senior citizens and their representatives from various senior centers. Public officials from city, state, and federal governments were also in attendance.
Comptroller William Thompson provided an overview and in-depth analysis of the RFP (Request for Proposal) process, its ramifications, and its potential negative impact on existing senior centers.
Congress Member Yvette Clarke, Congress Member Anthony Weiner, NYS Assembly Member Karim Camara, NYS Assembly Member Vito Lopez, NYC Council Member Mathieu Eugene, NYC Council Member Letitia James, NYC Council Member Darlene Mealy, NYC Council Member Felix Ortiz, NYC Council Member Kendall Stewart, and representatives from the office of Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz attended the forum.
Senator Adams states: "Mayor Bloomberg is backing a DFTA plan that may result in the closure of many smaller senior citizen centers. This proposal may negatively affect the delivery of vital services to thousands of community residents. Using the patent subterfuge of ‘restructuring and modernization,’ the city is attempting to award new contracts through a process that makes it virtually impossible for the small non-profits that operate existing centers to compete."
Senator Adams further states: "The Mayor’s DFTA commissioner has testified, and I quote him here, that he can’t guarantee who the losers will be! It is clear that this ill-advised approach will make the senior citizens of the City of New York the losers."