Senator Lanza wrote the following letter to HHC urging them to hold Great American Smokeout event in Staten Island:
December 4, 2010
Alan D. Aviles, President
NYC Health & Hospitals Corporation
125 Worth Street
New York, NY 10013
Dear Mr. Aviles:
I read with disappointment the November 19th article in the Staten Island Advance titled: “Great American Smokeout Snub.”
HHC participated in the Great American Smokeout at part of a nationwide effort to educate New Yorkers about the importance of quitting smoking. Information booths were set up to help smokers quit in every borough -- except for Staten Island.
I was very disappointed that Staten Island was left out. You missed the opportunity to reach thousands of smokers here on Staten Island, which has the highest smoking rate of the five boroughs. Citywide programs like this should be extended to all boroughs, and especially to the borough most in need. This omission by HHC is both inexplicable and inexcusable. Once again HHC has excluded the more than one half million people of Staten Island in carrying out their mission to serve the health needs of the entire city. This is really getting old. It deserves repeating that Staten Island is the only borough in which HHC does not provide a public health hospital -- all the more reason that HHC should in fact consider Staten Island first when providing services like this.
I’m calling upon you to undo this slight and immediately schedule a similar event for Staten Island. I am glad to join you in either sponsoring or supporting such a program in partnership with you. I ask that you respond to my office expeditiously.
ANDREW J. LANZA
Senator, 24th Dist.