Jobs & Economic Development

New York City needs job policies that makes work pay for New Yorkers, and build a fair economy for all of us. By guaranteeing paid sick leave for all workers, supporting the rights of independent and low-wage workers, retaining good jobs that are pathways to the middle class like manufacturing, and reforming low-road economic development subsidies so they create living wage jobs, New York can regain its place as the largest engine of economic mobility for the United States.

The Credit History Underclass

The New York Times
05/31/2012

Millions of Americans with damaged credit records are at risk of being unfairly denied job opportunities by companies that use credit histories to screen applicants. Faced with growing public complaints, seven states have rightly limited the use of credit histories by potential employers. Federal, state and local lawmakers who are considering similar legislation are on the right track. Read more »

Help End Credit Discrimination

Victory! Thanks to your help, New York City now has the strongest law in the nation to end credit checks for employment. Click here to see the full text of the law

The use of credit reports to discriminate against job applicants is on the rise, with over 60% of employers nationwide using the credit histories of prospective employees to inform their hiring decisions.  

Read more »

Brooklyn city councilman wants to bar employers from doing credit checks on job applicants

New York Daily News
05/15/2012

A city councilman wants to help more workers land jobs by barring employers in the city from running credit checks on job-seekers.

“In a time of continued economic hardships, employers shouldn’t deny people jobs based on their credit history,” said Brad Lander (D-Brooklyn), who plans to introduce legislation on Tuesday.

In the city, the jobless rate was 9.7% as of March, the most recent data available. Across the country, about 60% of employers use credit checks to weed out job applicants, a study by a national human resources umbrella group found. Read more »

Do you think it's fair …

… to deny someone a job because they have student loans? Or because huge hospital bills from an injury forced them into bankruptcy? Or because they were a victim of identity theft?

Many employers in New York City and across the country routinely use credit reports to discriminate against job applicants with poor credit histories. This puts people in a cruel Catch-22: they can’t get a job because they are in debt, and they can’t catch up because they are unemployed.

One of these New Yorkers is Alfred Carpenter. After working 20 years in retail, Alfred suffered a serious knee injury playing hockey. Facing catastrophic medical costs, he had to file for personal bankruptcy. Alfred had great experience and good job interviews, but kept being denied jobs because of his credit history. Watch this interview with Alfred Carpenter to hear more about his experience. Read more »

Response to Mayor's Budget

Mayor Bloomberg’s FY13 Executive Budget:
Some Good News for Our Classrooms, Bad News for Just About Everything Else

City Councilmember Brad Lander had the following statement in response to Mayor Bloomberg’s Executive Budget:

"Mayor Bloomberg presented his FY2013 Executive Budget proposal this morning. There was some good news for our public schools, but bad news for just about everything else.

"For the first time in five years, there will not be cuts to our teaching force through attrition. Earlier this spring, my office released a report highlighting the painful impact of the loss of teachers in recent years: the number of 1st, 2nd, and 3rd graders in general education classrooms of 30 or more students has grown tenfold during this period (and overall class sizes are up significantly). The Mayor’s Preliminary Budget in February proposed to continue teacher attrition, projecting a loss of 2,570 teachers, which would have resulted in thousands more young kids in very large classes. I am pleased that the Mayor and the Department of Education recognized this problem, and took these cuts to our classrooms off the table. It will make a real difference in our schools.

"Unfortunately, the Mayor’s Executive Budget continues to propose devastating cuts to child care and after school programs, to our public libraries, to 20 fire companies, to senior services, and to shelter beds for runaway homeless youth. The cuts to child care and after-school are particular unacceptable: 47,000 kids will no longer have somewhere safe to go after school, on top of more than 40,000 childcare slots that have been lost in recent years (more than 60% of the slots that existed in 2009). Read more »

Apply for Teen Battle Chef 2012

This summer (2012), the Office of Councilmember Brad Lander and Family Cook Productions will once again be bringing the Teen Battle Chef program to the Kensington/Windsor Terrace area. Over eight training sessions, the students in the program will learn food preparation and cooking, with an emphasis healthy, nutritious food. This hands-on culinary training program empowers youth to challenge themselves and develop leadership, teamwork, and culinary skills as well as gain nutrition knowledge and a new appreciation for diverse, healthy and sustainably-produced food. Read more »

Participatory Budgeting: Vote Results

April 2, 2012
For Immediate Release

Over 2,000 Residents Turn Out
In First Participatory Budgeting Vote
 

Seven winning projects in Councilmember Lander’s district to be funded with $1 million in City funds

This weekend, 2,213 residents of City Councilmember Brad Lander’s diverse Brooklyn district voted in NYC’s first “participatory budgeting” election, a groundbreaking initiative that lets community members decide how to spend their own tax dollars on projects in their neighborhood. Voters selected from among twenty projects proposed by neighborhood residents. The seven projects receiving the most votes will be prioritized for funding as part of the City’s FY2013 budget, which will be adopted in June, with just over $1 million in City capital funds committed by Councilmember Lander:

Bathroom Renovation for the Children of PS 124 - $150,000 

Renovate two dysfunctional bathrooms that serve over 136 of the youngest students daily in a high-needs elementary school. 958 votes

Brooklyn Neighbors Composting - $165,000

Pest-free, smell-free compost system near Gowanus Canal uses 1 ton/day of kitchen food scraps collected at local greenmarkets and schools to create rich soil for our gardens, parks, and trees. 919 votes

 District 39 Tree Planting - $100,000

Plant 100 new trees and install tree guards on blocks with few or no trees (Parks Department will contribute an additional $85,000 to this effort for tree planting). 767 votes

 Technology: A Better Future for PS 154 / PS 130 Students - $140,000

Installation of 15 Smartboards (PS 130), 45 13" Macbook computers with 2 carts and 2 wireless printers (PS 154 grades 1, 3, & 4). 758 votes

 Prospect Park Pedestrian Pathway Rehabilitation - $205,000

Repair Prospect Park pedestrian paths near Park Circle and Long Meadow to prevent flooding, add 10 trash cans in park. 648 votes

 Pedestrian Hazards at the Prospect Expressway - $200,000

Repairs & additions to badly damaged and dangerous 9 lane Prospect Expressway pedestrian crossing at Church Avenue, area and landscape. 606 votes

 Kensington Library Resources and Community Space - $80,000

New books/DVDs for library, equipment for meetings, storytelling, rehearsals, and small performances promoting Kensington's cultural diversity. 582 votes

Vote totals for all projects can be viewed here.  Read more »

Our million dollar decision: please pledge to vote

UPDATE: See the full list of projects that will be on the ballot here.

This is our million dollar decision. How will we invest in our community to ensure that we have great schools, parks, and cultural institutions, safe streets, reliable transportation, and a healthy environment?

In Participatory Budgeting, you are the decision maker - and voting will begin later this month!

Can we count on you? Pledge to vote as part of participatory budgeting at BradLander.com/pbPledge. Read more »

Workers being mistreated - in our backyard

golden farm supermarket protest

Last week, I joined some of your neighbors at a meeting to support workers at Golden Farm supermarket. The store has been the site of many protests recently, because for years its workers were forced to work long hours for less than minimum wage.

At the meeting, Golden Farm employees spoke passionately about their fight to gain fair wages at the store and improve working conditions. They said that Golden Farm had threatened they would lose their jobs if they tried to organize. Read more »

2011 Annual Report

Over the past year, people in NYC and around the globe have called for government that is more accountable to the people. I’ve worked to achieve a high standard of accountability – in that spirit I’m pleased to share this annual report on what we accomplished in 2011, what we learned, and what we’re hoping to do in the year to come. You can view the report below, download it, or explore our interactive map of accomplishments from the past year.