Inspiration in every act of resistance

After President Trump’s bizarre press conference on Thursday, I’m in need of a new dose of inspiration and action.

Trump promised to push forward with plans to bar immigrants and refugees and to repeal the Affordable Care Act. Amidst many attacks on the press, he angrily ignored the respectful-to-a-fault question of an Orthodox Jewish reporter from Brooklyn who simply asked about the spike in anti-Semitic incidents (like the two our #NotInOurCity working group highlighted in their most recent vigil). Meanwhile, the growing ICE raids are terrorizing immigrant families, despite the sanctuary our cities are working to offer.

Fortunately, inspiration and action are not hard to find. Read more »

Statement of Council Members Brad Lander and Margaret Chin on Albany's Pre-Emption of NYC's Bring Your Own Bag Law

"We fought plastic bags, and for now, plastic bags won. They are stubborn and toxic forms of solid waste. They never biodegrade, so they pollute our trees, oceans, and landfills forever. And they are hard to dislodge from the State Legislature, too.  Read more »

Help #CLOSERikers & Design a More Effective & Humane Jail System

For decades, Rikers Island has been marked by violence, corruption, and the needless destruction of human lives. Over 75,000 New Yorkers cycle through Rikers Island every year. 80% of the people detained on Rikers are New Yorkers that have not yet been found guilty of a crime. They are simply too poor to make bail while they await trial. Nine-of-ten of those detained at Rikers Island are people of color. Read more »

Nevertheless, they persisted. We will, too.

I was distressed to wake up this morning to news of ICE (Immigration & Customs Enforcement) raids in cities across the country.

Our Local Progress colleague Greg Casar, a city council member in Austin, TX reached out to let me know about raids taking place in his community. Greg has led the way in making Austin (and the surrounding Travis County) into a sanctuary city, refusing to hand over immigrants in local jails to ICE for possible deportation.

The Washington Post reported raids in at least 6 states last night. It’s clear that many of those rounded up have no criminal records. The result: “panic and terror … running through many immigrant communities,” according to Make the Road NY. And that, of course, that is exactly what the Trump regime is aiming for. Read more »

Overwhelming Support for NYC’s "Bring Your Own Bag Bill" // Request for Governor Cuomo to Veto Pre-Emption

New York's environmental and climate justice groups, labor unions, good government organizations, local elected officials around NYS, business leaders & editorial boards overwhelmingly support New York City’s "Bring Your Own Bag Law" and urge Governor Cuomo to veto state legislation (A.4883/S.4158) which would unfairly pre-empt NYC's new law. Read more »

Contact Governor Cuomo TODAY to Save NYC's "Bring Your Own Bag" Law

This is our last chance to save NYC's Bring Your Own Bag Law. Governor Cuomo will make his decision in the next few days. 

Please call or write Governor Cuomo TODAY and ask him to VETO A. 4883S. 4158 and allow NYC to implement our Bring Your Own Bag Law. And please share this message and encourage others to do the same.

Contact information and suggested messages are below. Read more »

Help NYC Develop a Citywide Transit Plan

As NYC grows, we urgently need thoughtful planning to improve our public transportation. So I’m very pleased that the NYC Department of Transportation (DOT) is working with us to do just that. Read more »

We must keep organizing. Here are 4 more chances.

Your activism is truly what is keeping me going.

This has been one of the darkest weeks our lifetimes. Xenophobia is now the official policy of the White House. The Dakota Access and Keystone XL pipelines roll back hard-fought environmental wins – just as the planet once again experienced its hottest year ever. We have a President committed to lying, stoking Islamophobia, and provoking hostility with our neighbors. And we’re only one week in.

But your commitment to getting and staying organized has been extraordinary. Last Saturday’s marches were the largest democratic mass demonstrations in American history – and it felt like everyone we knew was in the streets together (thanks for all the great pictures & videos you shared). This Wednesday, so many of you helped launch the Kensington Hate Free Zone, led by Desis Rising Up & Moving and leaders of the Bangladeshi Muslim community, where we pledged to support a community defense system to love and protect our neighbors. You’ve continued to write letters and make phone calls by the thousands.

Still, each day’s news from Washington is going to be bleak. So we must stay active.

Here are four more opportunities: Read more »

More School Crossing Guards: A Big Win for Keeping our Kids Safe

Statement of NYC Council Members Lander and Gibson Commending Mayor de Blasio’s $6.3 Million Increase for School Crossing Guards in FY18

January 24, 2017

“We applaud Mayor de Blasio for including in the FY18 Preliminary Budget a $6.3 million increase to hire 100 new School Crossing Guard Supervisors, a newly established NYPD position, along with 200 new School Grossing Guards to cover the City’s existing vacant posts.  Read more »

A few suggestions for fighting the Inauguration Day blues

You know I'm pretty relentlessly upbeat ... but I'd be lying if I told you I wasn't feeling pretty bleak this morning.

It really hit me last night what we are losing in President Barack Obama. It is impossible to describe how grateful I feel to him for giving my kids an example of democratic leadership that is so fundamentally decent, smart ... and irrepressibly committed to the idea of American democracy as a vehicle for mobilizing our better angels.

Read more »

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