A note on the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire

100 years ago today, in a building off Washington Square, 146 Jewish and Italian immigrant seamstresses died because their employer cared more about a few extra pennies of profit than about their lives. The tragedy sparked a movement for the rights of workers that helped bring many of the legal protections and safety standards that we take for granted today. Unfortunately, 100 years later, we’ve still got a long way to go.

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A Night of Conversation between District 39 Parents and Teachers and DOE's Shael Polakow-Suransky

About 200 community residents, parents, and teachers joined us on March 14th for a community conversation on public school instruction, assessment, and accountability with Shael Polakow-Suransky, the Chief Academic Officer and Senior Deputy Chancellor at the NYC Department of Education. While we did not answer every question, and we certainly did not reach a consensus, it was a thought-provoking evening, and I wanted to share some of what was discussed with those of you who were not able to make it. Read more »

Show your support for rent regulation at a rally tomorrow night

Tomorrow night, the main group fighting against rent regulation, the “Rent Stabilization Association” (a very misleading name) is having a town hall meeting in the heart of Park Slope. This is a great opportunity to make our voices heard and let the landlords and property owners know that New Yorkers want to see these rent regulations and tenant protections extended and strengthened.

Please join me for a rally outside the meeting tomorrow (Wednesday) night:

  • When: Wednesday, March 23, 5:30-7 p.m.
  • Where: 53 Prospect Park West, Brooklyn

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In the Press: Brooklyn pol wants to put banks on the hook for maintaining New York homes they foreclose on

New York Daily News
03/02/2011

A Brooklyn city councilman wants to put banks on the hook for maintaining the homes they foreclose on in New York.

Democrat Brad Lander plans to introduce a bill on Wednesday requiring banks to post a $10,000 bond with every foreclosure case, which the city could tap to pay for housing code violations and emergency repairs.

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Save the date: 4th annual PTA 5K run in Prospect Park on Sat., 4/30!

Start of 2010 PTA 5KSave the date of Saturday April 30th for the fourth annual PTA 5K run in Prospect Park. Last year’s run was the best one so far, with over 500 parents, teachers and students from 17 different Brooklyn public schools taking part. Their efforts raised over $6500 for the participating schools and we hope to build on that success this year. Read more »

Upcoming Community Discussion with Schools Deputy Chancellor Shael Polakow-Suransky

On Monday, March 14th I am hosting a Community Conversation on Public School Instruction and Assessment with Shael Polakow-Suransky, the Chief Academic Officer and Senior Deputy Chancellor at the NYC Department of Education.

This event will be a dialogue about teaching, learning, assessment, and accountability in New York City's public schools, including: Read more »

In the Press: Tax breaks on real estate deals for people like A-Rod cost city 900M a year

New York Daily News
02/25/2011

Yankees star Alex Rodriguez will pay virtually no property tax for a $6 million apartment he is buying on the upper West Side due to the 421A program, which ended in December for any new construction. The city's powerful real estate industry is determined to get it renewed and even get it expanded.

Brooklyn City Councilman Brad Lander has been leading the fight against that renewal.

It's too much of a giveaway to developers, Lander says, especially since there's already a glut of luxury housing in this town.

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Standing in solidarity this weekend (with pride, and some distress)

Progressive activists are taking to the streets this weekend to show support for two important causes:

On Saturday, from 1-3 pm at Foley Square, I'll be joining Planned Parenthood, NARAL, NOW and a wide range other groups to Stand Up for Women's Health.

On Sunday (at 1:30 pm at City Hall), I will join other elected officials in solidarity with public sector workers and unions in Wisconsin, and on Saturday at 11 am Moveon.org is hosting a public solidarity rally of their own.

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In the Press: Legislation To Reduce Alternate Side Parking Regulations Moves Forward

Carroll Gardens Patch
02/16/2011

In her State of the City address yesterday, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn announced her support of legislation introduced by Councilmember Brad Lander that will drastically affect the lives of city drivers.

The legislation (Intro 287) will reduce alternate side parking regulations citywide to once a week per side of the street in districts that achieve cleanliness ratings of 90 percent or above on the Mayor's Office of Operation's "scorecard," which the city  uses to measure street cleanliness. Read more »

In the Press: Naked lunchroom! PS 107 left without its cook in city budget cut

The Brooklyn Paper
02/19/2011

Parents at Park Slope's PS 107 are fired up over a city decision to transfer their beloved lunch lady because the lunchroom serves slightly less than the minimum daily requirement of school meals.

The Department of Education has transferred Lucy Torres — who has worked at the school for 17 years — because her school is about 50 PB&Js short of the required 300 lunches.

"It seems like a stingy and heartless decision to make her transfer only one year before retirement," said Rachel Goodman, an aide to Councilman Brad Lander (D−Park Slope).

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