Jose Peralta

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Statement From State Senator Jose Peralta, Lead Sponsor Of The NYS DREAM Act, On President Obama's Executive Order

"The good news is that millions of upstanding, hardworking undocumented immigrants will now be able to continue contributing to our economy without having to live and work in fear of deportation.

"The bad news is that millions of other upstanding, hardworking undocumented immigrants will remain in the shadows of our economy and society.

"President Obama is to be applauded for taking a strong first step toward long-overdue reform of our broken immigration system.  Like the president, we in New York should not wait on Congress to make additional necessary repairs.

"The DREAM Act is sensible, compassionate public policy.  It is the law in Texas, a red state, California, a blue state, and New Mexico, a purple state.  Here, the New York DREAM Act is supported by editorial boards throughout the state, including those at newspapers as different as the New York Post, The New York Times and the Daily News.

"Let’s follow the bipartisan example of the five states that have already passed a DREAM Act.  Let's collaborate in New York on making an investment in our young people, our economy and our state’s future that will pay for itself several times over."

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November 21, 2014
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Restaurant owner blasts city fines over single-gender ads

As reported by the NY Post:

The owner of an Upper East Side restaurant who read in The Post that a downtown eatery was fined $5,000 fine just for placing an ad for “waitresses” is issuing a call to arms against the gender-based penalties.

“This is an outrage, and more restaurants need to share their stories so this nonsense is stopped,” Giuseppe Bruno wrote to The Post.

“Someone needs to help these restaurants.”

State Sen. José Peralta (D-Queens) slammed the agency for targeting “unintentionally gendered language.”

“Of the 53 discrimination settlements reported by the commission in 2014, 18 — or more than a third of all settlements — are for this sort of case,” Peralta said

For full article, click here.

November 21, 2014
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Peralta wants avenue under single precinct

As reported by the Queens Chronicle:

Roosevelt Avenue, a major corridor that runs from Sunnyside to Flushing, is known as the “Old Times Square” for its high crime rates and deteriorating infrastructure in certain areas.

The street acts as a border for two precincts — the 115th to the north and the 110th to the south — something state Sen. Jose Peralta (D-East Elmhurst) said limits the police’s ability to adequately serve the community to its capability.

“It becomes an issue, not only with crime or cleanliness, but the day-to-day issues as well,” the senator said. “It’s an issue people have complained about for years in regards to Roosevelt.”

For full article, click here

November 21, 2014
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Lawmaker wants to end the divide of Roosevelt Avenue

As reported by the Times Ledger:

State Sen. Jose Peralta (D-East Elmhurst) believes there is an easy way for the city to improve conditions on Roosevelt Avenue: single command of the commercial corridor by a single police precinct.

The senator sent a letter to NYPD Commissioner William Bratton explaining the problem along his district’s main business corridor.

“At present, the 115th Precinct is responsible for policing the north side of Roosevelt Avenue, while the 110th handles the south side,” he wrote. “A dividing line running miles down the center of a busy street makes no sense and almost certainly stretches resources thin. It also makes it more difficult to institute community policing measures when smaller neighborhood enclaves are split in half. Worse yet, it creates a situation where an officer is not technically responsible for responding to a crime taking place across the street.”

For full article, click here.

November 12, 2014
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Make college more affordable by making more Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) grants available

As reported by the Daily News:

By State Senator Jose Peralta and Assembly Member Francisco Moya

As the lead sponsors of the New York DREAM Act — a proposal to provide state-financed college tuition aid to undocumented immigrants — we often hear: “You should help struggling, taxpaying families that are in this country legally pay for college.”

We couldn’t agree more.

College costs have skyrocketed. The graduates of the class of 2014 have the distinction of being the most indebted ever, owing an average of about $33,000 each. Even after adjusting for inflation, that’s nearly twice as much as what student borrowers owed 20 years ago.

What’s more, we are at a critical juncture in our state’s trajectory — we will either choose to invest in our future, or we will choose to ignore it. In a future without financial aid reforms, more New Yorkers will be unable to afford college and will enter a job market that is increasingly inhospitable to those who lack a college education. Without action, these two intersecting forces may collide, driving up unemployment.

One way to make college more affordable for New Yorkers is to make more and larger Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) grants available to more students, immigrant and non-immigrant alike.

To view full article, click here.

November 10, 2014
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Statement From State Senator Jose Peralta On NYC Human Rights Commission

"I applaud the mayor's decision to bring in new leadership at the Human Rights Commission.  Instead of tackling the thousands of citizen-initiated complaints it receives annually, for the past several years HRC was disproportionately focusing its limited resources on fining businesses for using unintentionally gendered language in job recruiting advertisements," (i.e. posting an ad for a ‘waitress’ or ‘hostess’).

“Of the 53 discrimination settlements reported by the Commission in 2014, 18, or more than a third of all settlements, are for this sort of case.  Of those 18, only two appear to have been tested to show actual discriminatory intent. There is a similar pattern in 2012 and 2013, where employment ads allegedly showing gender discrimination made up 40% and 30% of total settlements respectively and only a few were tested to prove actual discriminatory intent.

"Many of the cases don’t come out of actual complaints, but rather from college students getting paid by HRC to troll on-line classifieds. 

"It is extremely troubling that this kind of questionable case comprises a third or more of the Commission’s enforcement output when so many complaints of actual discrimination go unanswered.

“New Yorkers expect and deserve a Human Rights Commission that helps bring justice to those who have been wronged, not one focused on generating revenue through petty fines.”

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November 7, 2014
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Following in the Statue of Liberty's Footsteps

As reported by City and State:

By State Senator Jose Peralta:

The Somos El Futuro conference provides an opportunity at the conclusion of the election cycle for state elected and government officials to collectively assess the lay of the political landscape and plan accordingly for the January start of the new legislative season.

With beautiful Puerto Rico providing the tropical backdrop and virtually every Hispanic elected official in New York on hand for the conference, the focus of those assessments invariably is on initiatives important to Latinos and the politics of turning those proposals into policy.

For full article, click here

November 5, 2014
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Cuomo signs new law to protect trafficking victims

As reported by Times Ledger:

“These new protections build upon our work to combat human trafficking in New York by providing more tools to help victims escape their circumstances and to get a fresh start,” Cuomo said.

The new law requires that all case records concerning 16- or 17-year-old victims be sealed so that future employers cannot find out about their history. The records can only be unsealed if they are needed in a case against the victim’s trafficker.

Roosevelt Avenue in Queens has been the borough’s epicenter of human trafficking over the years, as many young, foreign-born women migrating to the borough have fallen prey to traffickers, advocates say.

“Putting an end to human trafficking is the moral issue of our time,” he said. “Women are shipped here from around the world and the country. They’re brought right here to my district and enslaved. The standard response is that it’s a victimless crime, which it is not.”

For full article, click here.

October 30, 2014
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Op-ed: Roosevelt Avenue needs Street Vendor Review Panel

As reported by the Queens Courier:

By State Senator Jose Peralta:

Walk along Roosevelt Avenue in Jackson Heights and Corona, and everywhere you go you’ll see small businesses, the vast majority of which are mom-and-pop operations.

These businesses, including the street vending carts and stands, sustain families and breathe life into the community.

From early in the morning until well into the evening, you’ll come across rows of street vendors offering up a smorgasbord of tasty dishes from throughout Latin America, as well as fresh fruits and vegetables, books, homemade trinkets and on and on. All this amidst a sea of commuters and shoppers flowing in out of the subway stations and many retail stores along the avenue.

For full article, click here.

October 27, 2014
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City Should Boost Number of Street Cart Permits, Politician Says

As reported by DNAinfo:

CORONA — A local politician is pushing the city to lift the cap on its number of food cart street vendor permits — while also forcing them to obtain letter grades like restaurants — in a bid to ease tensions between popular vendors and neighborhood store owners.

State Sen. Jose Peralta is also suggesting restarting the Street Vendor Review Panel, which was created in 1995 to help determine where the carts could set up shop, but which hasn't met since 2001.

For full article, click here.

October 24, 2014
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MTA, DCP Look For Broader Transportation Access

As reported by the Queens Tribune:   

Multiple City agencies are looking to expand transportation access in Western Queens.

A long awaited Long Island Rail Road station may come to fruition in Elmhurst now that the MTA has earmarked $40 million for the project in its proposed 2015-2019 Capital Plan. The station would be on the Port Washington Branch.

Elected officials have voiced their support of the plan.

“We welcome the proposals with open arms,” State Senator Jose Peralta (D-East Elmhurst) said, adding that commuters “need and deserve” the LIRR station and other upgrades proposed in the capital plan. 

For full article, click here.

October 21, 2014
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Attorney Gen. Eric Holder resigns after nearly six years

As reported by the Times Ledger:  

When Attorney General Eric Holder announced last week that he had submitted his resignation after nearly six years as the first black leader of the Justice Department, Queens leaders reflected on the legacy of the man who grew up in East Elmhurst.

“Seeing someone from the neighborhood rise to attorney general of the United States has long been a source of enormous pride for this community,” state Sen Jose Peralta (D-East Elmhurst) said. “Eric Holder’s legacy in the areas of civil rights, criminal justice reform and in standing up for the poor and disenfranchised is something that he and all Americans can be profoundly proud of.”

For full article, click here.

October 21, 2014
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Working to aid the many victims of domestic abuse

As reported by the Queens Chronicle: 

BY STATE SENATOR JOSE PERALTA

Every 15 seconds, a woman in the United States is battered.

That adds up to more than 16,000 homicides and more than two million medically treated injuries due to intimate partner violence each year in this country.

Domestic violence is an epidemic affecting individuals in every community, regardless of economic status, race, educational background or age. We see that in front-page headlines about athletes and entertainers either being violent or victimized.

And we see it in a study of New York high school students, for example, that found that 16 percent had already experienced sexual violence at some point in their young lives. Among those who dated, more than half had experienced some form of physical violence from their partners.

For full article, click here.

October 17, 2014
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Statement From State Senator Jose Peralta On NYCHA’s Handling Of Domestic Violence Victims’ Petitions For Emergency Housing

“Published reports and a City Council hearing today are shining a long overdue light on NYCHA’s broken system for providing emergency shelter to victims of domestic violence.

“It is a travesty to require women to risk their lives to produce the paperwork needed to qualify for emergency housing—and then not provide that housing.

“The expansion of the list of crimes that would not require a second documented instance of abuse is a welcome change, but more needs to be done to protect those who are unable to go to the police in the first place.”

 “I have introduced a bill that would enable domestic violence victims to be considered for emergency NYCHA housing without having to first contact authorities and put themselves in danger of retribution from their batterers.

“What my bill can’t do is make NYCHA cut wait times of as long as 10 years.  That is something NYCHA needs to address.

 “The many advocates for domestic violence victims who support my bill do so because  the lack of safe, affordable, permanent housing is one of the biggest impediments victims face in their effort to escape an abusive environment.  NYCHA has taken a small first step toward cutting red tape for victims, but much, much more needs to be done to fix the system.”

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October 14, 2014
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Charter School Supporters Want to Get More Students Struggling With English Into System

As reported by NY1:

Charter school supporters say they want to get more students struggling with English into the system.

The Charter School Center calls them "English Language Learners," or ELLs.

The head of the nonprofit organization says it is launching a six-month, six-language ad campaign to encourage more parents to sign their kids up for charter school lotteries.

For full article, click here.

October 10, 2014
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Queens pol says he has a way to make both street vendors and restaurants happy

As reported by the Daily News:

It could be back to the future for street vendors.

The city should resurrect and revamp a Mayor Giuliani-era taskforce to quell tensions between the mobile peddlers and brick-and-mortar businesses on Roosevelt Ave., state Sen. Jose Peralta said.

“Street vendors are established fixtures in many neighborhoods and critical parts of the fabric of many communities,” he wrote in a letter to Mayor de Blasio, asking for the defunct inter-agency Street Vendor Review Panel to be reconvened.

For full article, click here.

September 26, 2014
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Queens Rep Wants Street Vendor Review Panel Restored

As reported by NY1:

NY1 VIDEO: Senator Jose Peralta says tension is high between the storefront businesses and the vendors who share space in his district.

To view full video, click here.

September 26, 2014
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CBS 2 Investigates: Why Are There No Crossing Guards Outside Jackson Heights School?

As reported by WCBS TV:

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Getting to school safely is challenging enough in the city, but take crossing guards out of the situation and parents say it is a recipe for disaster.

As CBS 2’s Vanessa Murdock reported Wednesday, that is exactly what happened in Jackson Heights, Queens.

“We’re missing about 12 or 13 crossing guards in various schools,” said New York State Sen. Jose Peralta (D-Queens.)

Peralta said it is unacceptable, especially considering the statistics.

“Between the years of 2011 and 2013, the number of kids that have been struck and killed in New York City by cars has almost doubled, from seven to 13,” Peralta said.

For full article, click here.

September 25, 2014
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Autoridades buscan soluciones que mantengan la armonía

Según ha informado WXTV 41:

Dueña de negocio asegura que vendedores ambulantes afectan sus ventas.

Para el vídeo completo, haga clic aquí.

September 24, 2014
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Nearly a Dozen Western Queens Schools Lack Crossing Guards

As reported by DNA Info:

JACKSON HEIGHTS — More than a dozen schools in Western Queens are either without crossing guards or do not have a sufficient number, an elected official said.

The claim comes as parents and administrators at The Renaissance Charter School are pushing to reinstate a crossing guard who was pulled just days before the year kicked off.

For full article, click here.

September 24, 2014
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