Thursday, September 28, 2017

Emergency rally for Puerto Rico's hurricane relief

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New York, NY - The Puerto Rican community in NYC put out an open call expressing their outrage by the unfolding humanitarian tragedy and the ineptness and callous disregard the US Government has shown the people of Puerto Rico. 

Hundreds held a rally at 26 federal Plaza in Manhattan, on September 28, 2017; one week after hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico. Millions of Puerto Ricans remain without power, water, food and thousands are homeless while the Federal Government is warehousing food, fuel, water and other supplies critically needed.

The island is in a state of devastation after both Hurricane Irma and then Hurricane Maria made their way through leaving countless of inhabitants homeless, without electricity, no communication and a very long road ahead of them of recovery.

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After Hurricane Maria devastated the island, many people in Puerto Rico are fighting to stay alive due to the inaction and incompetence of the local and Federal Government. Food and supplies are sitting on docks while people go hungry. 

The Puerto Rican community in NYC is demanding the Federal Government to:

* Distribute Food, Water, and Fuel they are holding.

* Authorize the use of military equipment & personnel for Transportation, Distribution of Aid, Rescue, and Clean-up efforts. NOT for repression. 

* Lift the Jones Act for good- Allow Puerto Rico to receive international aid. 

* Fully Fund Puerto Rico’s Recovery.

* Cancel Puerto Rico’s Debt.

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#AbolishJonesAct #AbolishTheDebt #austerity #Boricua #cutbacks #DebtCrisis #DumpTrump #FeedThePoor #HurricaneIrma #HurricaneMaria #HurricaneRelief #JonesAct #LaGenteAntesQueLaDeuda #manhattan #NewYork #NoALaJunta #NYC #PeacefulProtest #PROMESA #PRSeLevanta #PuertoRico #PuertoRicoNoSeVende #ReleaseTheRelief #Solidarity #streetphotography #UnitedAgainstPromesa

© Erik McGregor - erikrivas@hotmail.com - 917-225-8963

Saturday, September 23, 2017

New York Activists to Stage Symbolic Funeral March in Times Square To Call Public Attention to Dangerous New Senate Health Care Bill

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New York City - Members of New York City organizations affiliated or allied with Health Care for America Now (HCAN), a nationwide campaign to defend federal health care programs led a "Funeral March to Bury TrumpCare" in Times Square on September 23, 2017; carrying tombstone props, a coffin, led by a Grim Reaper, to call on US Senators to Reject “Graham-Cassidy” bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act, Gut Medicaid, Limit Family Planning Services, and Weaken Consumer Protections.

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For nine months now, Republicans who control Congress has been attempting to “repeal-and-replace” the Affordable Care Act (ACA), while simultaneously striving to fundamentally restructure and slash funding for Medicaid, and end federal funding for family planning services provided by Planned Parenthood. The public strongly opposes such ideas by a 4:1 margin, and prefers that Congress and the Trump administration instead work together on a bipartisan basis to make needed improvements to the ACA, and leave Medicaid and Planned Parenthood alone.

While the House passed a Republican bill in early May, the Senate failed to pass three varying ones in late July. Since then, it has turned to bipartisan efforts to stabilize insurance markets and continue funding for the State Child Health Insurance Program. However, suddenly a new comprehensive ACA and Medicaid-related bill from Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC) and Sen. David Cassidy (R-LA) has gained traction as one last attempt to pass legislation before a Sept. 30 deadline, when authorization for special parliamentary procedures expire.

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Under this new bill, New York State would lose $19 billion over the next decade in federal health care funding, and more than a million New York residents could lose their current insurance coverage, as well as important consumer protections and rights provided under the ACA. Those most likely to be adversely impacted are seniors, people with disabilities, children, and those with special needs, particularly with pre-existing health conditions.

Participants in HCAN’s NYC Organizing Committee include 45 community-based agencies, grassroots activist groups, trade unions, and professional associations. 

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#ACA #Activism #AffordableCareAct #AHCA #CareNotCuts #DefendHealthcare #DieIn #DieIn4TheACA #DumpTrump #Dying4Care #HealthcareForAll #HealthcareIsAHumanRight #HealthcareNotWealthcare #Medicaid #Medicare4All #MedicareForAll #NewYork #NYC #NYHA #Obamacare #PeacefulProtest #PeacefulResistance #ResistTrump #RiseAndResist #SinglePayer #‎Solidarity #TimesSquare #tombstones #TrumpCareKills #trumpvsallofus #UniversalHeathcare

© Erik McGregor - erikrivas@hotmail.com - 917-225-8963

Friday, September 22, 2017

Gays Against Guns protest Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price in Manhattan

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New York, NY - GAYS Against GUNS confronted Tom Price outside the New York City office of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at Thomas Paine Park in New York on September 22, 2017. GAG demands that Price, the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, start supporting stronger background checks, and stop blocking funding for research into gun violence. 

“Tom Price is on the record as being against marriage equality and has repeatedly supported dangerous gun legislation like reciprocity” said John Grauwiler, an organizer of today's protest. “91 people die a day and what does Price do? He looks away. Flawed gun policy and homophobia = Orlando." 

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In addition to opposing the background check expansion of 2013, Price is also a fierce opponent of the Affordable Care Act. “He was a very vocal mouthpiece for repealing ACA during the Kill The Bill protests,” according to GAG member Brigid McGinn, “so he obviously has no regard for human life.”

Tom Price is on the record saying "…guns are used more often to protect lives, not take lives. Steps to remove firearms from the hands of law-abiding citizens endanger those very citizens,” which entirely contradicts the facts. GAG will not stand by while politicians like Tom Price lie. 

Tom Price is flying around in private planes while WE THE PEOPLE are dying from gun violence down here on Planet Earth! 

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#Activism #DumpTrump #FoleySquare #GAG #GAGisWatching #GAGNY #GaysAgainstGuns #GunControl #GunViolence #LGBTQ #NewYork #NotMyPresident #NRA #NYC #OrlandoVictims #PeacefulProtest #PeacefulResistance #Protest #Pulse #rally #‎Solidarity #stopgunviolence #StopTheHate #TomPrice #trumpvsallofus #WeAreNotAfraid #WeAreOrlando

© Erik McGregor - erikrivas@hotmail.com - 917-225-8963

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Sheridan Hollow Alliance for Renewable Energy
New coalition urge Governor Cuomo to pull the plug on Capital Fracked-Gas Power Plant

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ALBANY, NY— Leaders of local community organizations, backed up by environmental organizations throughout the state, released a letter on September 19, 2017; calling on Governor Cuomo and the Department of Environment Conservation (DEC) to undertake a full environmental review, including an Environmental Impact Statement on a 16-megawatt gas-fired power plant proposed in Sheridan Hollow, a low income, people of color, neighborhood near the State Capitol. The new coalition, Sheridan Hollow Alliance for Renewable Energy (SHARE), is calling on the state to evaluate alternative ways to address the energy needs of state facilities that utilize renewable energy such as wind, solar, and geothermal rather than by fossil fuels. The project is formally called the “Empire State Plaza Microgrid Project/Sheridan Avenue CHP Project, Albany, NY”. The plan calls for oil as a back up to gas.

According to Merton D. Simpson, Albany County Legislator for the 2nd District: "I live less than eight city blocks from the proposed microgrid, we do not want to be poisoned more slowly, we want to eliminate the poison. We don't need a slightly more efficient horse and buggy, we want to join the rest of the major countries in the world and have genuine sustainable energy use and eliminate obsolete fossil fuels. In the wake of mega-storms Harvey and Irma our children deserve nothing less."

Merton D. Simpson, Albany County Legislator for the 2nd District
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“New York State exhibited global leadership in 2014, when it banned high-volume hydraulic fracturing,” said Sandy Steubing of People United For Safe Energy (PAUSE), speaking on behalf of the coalition. “However, this 16 megawatt power plant, as currently proposed, would run on the very fuel that the Governor explicitly banned -- fracked natural gas. In fact, it would make the Empire State Plaza and the City of Albany more dependent on fracked gas for electricity than today. New York can and should do better.”

Over 100 organizations and Capital District elected officials have already signed the letter, which has been in circulation for just over a week and more are signing on every day.

“While it recognizes the intent and many benefits of an integrated Micro Grid System, the Arbor Hill Development Corporation requests all actions to construct a micro grid plant in the residential neighborhood of Sheridan Hollow be stopped until the State performs its due diligence to conduct environmental, social and economic impact reviews and has fully engaged the affected communities of Sheridan Hollow, Arbor Hill and downtown businesses. This is a matter of Environmental, Social and Economic Justice,” said Arlene Way, Executive Director of the Arbor Hill Development Corporation.

Arlene Way, Executive Director of the Arbor Hill Development Corporation
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Sheridan Hollow has seen more than its fair share of polluting power plants. The ANSWERS Plant, a trash-burning incinerator, pumped hazardous toxins into the Sheridan Hollow community for twelve years until it was finally closed in 1994. Now families who struggled with asthma and other health impacts are being asked to shoulder the burden of pollution again.

Gwen Pope, President of Albany NAACP explained: “Sheridan Hollow is an economically disadvantaged community that is still living with the toxic health impacts of the ANSWERS plant. Lower income communities and communities of color have been targeted for sighting the most environmental dangerous projects. This practice must stop. Sheridan Hollow must not be a toxic dumping ground.”

Gwen Pope, President of Albany NAACP
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The SHARE letter calls on DEC to prepare a full Environmental Impact Statement for the project and urges Governor Cuomo to issue Requests for Proposals for alternatives which could power the Empire State Plaza and other buildings in downtown Albany with renewables and energy inefficiency. The State of Michigan, for example, is planning to heat its capitol building with geothermal.

“If Governor Cuomo wants to be a climate leader, he can start with his own capitol. We need Cuomo’s leadership in moving New York from dirty fossil fuels to 100 percent renewable energy, and this project should be a model for the state and the nation,” said Laura Shindell, New York Organizer for Food & Water Watch.

Laura Shindell, New York Organizer for Food & Water Watch
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In addition to calling for a renewable alternative, SHARE and its partners outlined several questions about the project as currently proposed, including the lack of community outreach and important information missing from the state’s feasibility study.

“Only four months have been allocated to permitting, including for an Environmental Quality Review this is a very short timeline. Was the state not planning to consult the community? Governor Cuomo boasted of cost savings -- how has the state calculated those costs? Why does the feasibility plan not show how greenhouse gas impacts were determined? Has anyone studied the health impacts of putting another power plant in Sheridan Hollow? We have these questions and many more,” said Kim Fraczek, Director, Sane Energy Project.

“This past month devastating superstorms in Texas and Florida, wildfires burning out of control in Montana, record heat in California, as well as deadly floods and mudslides in Sierra Leone, the Himalayas and South China make it clear that the climate crisis has begun. There is no excuse to build new fossil fuel burning power plants that add to the climate crisis when renewable solutions are possible,” said Anita Thayer, Co-Board Chair, Capital District Chapter of Citizen Action of New York.

Anita Thayer, Co-Board Chair, Capital District Chapter of Citizen Action of New York
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SHARE and its partners emphasized that their goal is to work with Governor Cuomo and the state to meet the state’s energy and climate change goals, and are looking for a public process to address their concerns. The SHARE letter to the Governor is attached.

#Activism #ActOnClimate #Albany #CitizenActionNY #cleanenergy #ClimateChange #climatejustice #FoodAndWaterWatch #FossilFree #KeepItIntheGround #MakeREVreal #Methane #NAACP #NewYork #NoPipelines #NYrenews #PeacefulResistance #PeoplesClimate #PowerPlant #RenewableEnergy #renewables #REV #SaneEnergyProject #SaneSolutions #SHARE #SheridanHollow #Solidarity #YOUAREHERE

© Erik McGregor - erikrivas@hotmail.com - 917-225-8963

Monday, September 18, 2017

NYC Residents Stage Protest Against Administration's White Supremacist Policies While Trump is in Town

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New York, NY - On September 18, 2017; Rise and Resist, a direct action group conducted a demonstration focused on the administration's racist policies at the main corridor of Grand Central Terminal, followed by a march to Times Square. A total of !0 demonstrators were arrested during the march.

Trump will be addressing the United Nations' General Assembly on Tuesday, September 19th. 

The Trump administration's white supremacist views aren't just exemplified by his 'many sides' comment; they are built into the administration's policies including the repeal of DACA, the Muslim Ban, prison privatization, focus on drug criminalization, racist voter suppression efforts, and tax breaks for the wealthy. 

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Mass Incarceration IS White Supremacy!
Repealing DACA IS White Supremacy!
The Muslim Ban IS White Supremacy!
Voter Suppression IS White Supremacy!
The War on Drugs IS White Supremacy!
Tax Breaks for the 1% IS White Supremacy!

Rise and Resist is a direct action group made up of new and experienced activists committed to opposing, disrupting, and defeating any government act that threatens democracy, equality, and our civil liberties. 

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#Activism #AffordableCareAct #arrests #CareNotCuts #CivilDisobedience #corruption #DefendDACA #DefendHealthcare #DefendTPS #DreamAct #DumpTrump #Dying4Care #HealthcareForAll #HealthcareIsAHumanRight #HealthcareNotWealthcare #Here2Fight #HereToStay #humanrights #ICEfreeNY #immigration #impeach #MassIncarceration #Medicaid #MedicareForAll #NewYork #Ni1Mas #NoBan #NoHumanIsIlegal #Not1More #NoWall #NYC #Obamacare #PeacefulProtest #PeacefulResistance #RefugeesWelcome #RejectPresidentElect #ResistTrump #RiseAndResist #SanctuaryCity #SinDACASinMiedo #SinglePayer #‎Solidarity #Somos11Millones #StopDeportations #StopICEraids #StopTheHate #TaxTheRich #TrumpCareKills #UniversalHeathcare #VoterSuppression

© Erik McGregor - erikrivas@hotmail.com - 917-225-8963

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

NYC Says: Do it Like Durham! Topple White Supremacy

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New York, NY - On September 12, 2017; many of those arrested in Durham had their first court date since their arraignment after pulling down a Confederate soldiers' monument back in August 14. Workers World Party is calling solidarity actions all around the country for the brave freedom fighters in Durham, NC, who are facing arrests, house raids and trumped up charges.

In New York City, Workers World Party held a rally at the statue of Christopher Columbus, a genocidal pillager whose monuments belong in the dustbin of history. It is an insult to all oppressed peoples, and in particular the First Nations of the Western Hemisphere, that a monument to him continues to stand in New York City.

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The rally also honor the resistance in Charlottesville, VA on the one month anniversary of the murder of Heather Heyer, and the struggle across the South to tear down the vestiges of the Confederacy and white supremacy - from monuments, to the school to prison pipeline, police brutality, the prison industrial complex, and more.

The events in Charlottesville and Durham have lit a spark of resistance across the country to the neo-fascist, far-right, and white supremacist forces who have been emboldened by the Trump presidency. 

#AltRight #BlackLivesMatter #Charlotsville #ChristopherColumbus #ColumbusCircle #DefendDACA #DefendDurham #DoItLikeDurham #DumpTrump #Durham #EndRacism #EndWhiteSupremacy #HeatherHeyer #NeoNazi #PeacefulProtest #PeacefulResistance #racism #ResistTrump #streetphotography #TakeEmDown #WhiteSupremacy

© Erik McGregor - erikrivas@hotmail.com - 917-225-8963

Sunday, September 10, 2017

National Day of Action against Energy Transfer Partners

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New York, NY - On September 9, 2017 at Chase Bank in New York City, Sane Energy Project participated in a National Day of Action against Energy Transfer Partners - stopetp.org - to #StopETP and defend indigenous rights and our water, land, air, and climate. Sane Energy core member and documentary filmmaker, Lee Ziesche, spent time at Camp White Pine, and read aloud her recently published article about the encampment built to defend the home of the Gerhart family in Huntingdon, PA against Energy Transfer Partners.

Puppeteers illustrated the article with 8 foot tall trees and a zipline with a silhouette of Elise Gerhart, resident of Huntingdon, PA where Energy Transfer Partners, the same corporation responsible for the Dakota Access Pipeline - DAPL - cut down the Gerhart’s purposely conserved 100 year old forest holding up the steep hillside leading to their home and tributaries leading to the Susquehanna River using Eminent Domain for the Mariner East 2 pipeline. “A twin pipeline project, two 24 pipelines with a capacity of 700,000 barrels a day of natural gas liquids to sell to European petrochemical corporation INEOS for plastic manufacturing. “They are using eminent domain in multiple counties because people don’t want to agree to these easements. People understand this is not about the public good. It’s for a private corporation” stated Elise Gerhart. 

After the presentation and reading, the group placed small trees inside Chase Bank with the story of Camp White Pine to inform customers and staff that Chase Bank is financially supporting the destruction by Energy Transfer Partners that harms our water, land, air and climate and abuses Indigenous nations and many other communities far and wide. 

Sane Energy Project is a New York based organization fighting shale gas infrastructure and building a transition of justice to a renewable sustainable economy. They use art, puppetry and performance in the public square as a tactic to illustrate, magnify and explain complex narratives that are happening in the region and world. www.saneenergyproject.org and www.youareheremap.org to see the storymap of fracking resistance. Scroll to Chapter 3 to read more about the Gerhart’s story.

To read Lee Ziesche’s article and see a short film about Camp White Pine visit: http://medium.com/@leeziesche/camp-white-pine-the-pipeline-fight-among-pennsylvanias-woods-793bf73175c5 

#Activism #CampWhitePine #ChaseBank #CorporateGreed #DefendTheSacred #demonstration #divest #EliseGerhardt #EnergyTransferPartners #FossilFree #KeepItIntheGround #NoPipelines #PeacefulProtest #PeacefulResistance #ProtectTheSacred #SaneEnergyProject #SaneSolutions #‎Solidarity #StopETP #StopMarinerEast2 #StopTheBlackSnake #StopThePipeline #StreetTheater #WaterIsLife #WaterProtectors ‪#‎weareallconnected‬ #YOUAREHERE  

© Erik McGregor - erikrivas@hotmail.com - 917-225-8963

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman and a Coalition Of 16 Attorney Generals In Eastern District Of NY files lawsuit to protect dreamers and preserve DACA

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New York, NY - On September 6, 2017; New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman led a coalition of 16 Attorney Generals in filing suit to protect Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) grantees. The lawsuit, which was filed this afternoon in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, details how the Trump administration has violated the Equal Protection clause of the Constitution by discriminating against DREAMers of Mexican origin, who make up 78 percent of DACA recipients; violated Due Process rights; and harmed States’ residents, institutions, and economies.

“Immigration is the lifeblood of New York State. The Trump administration’s decision to end DACA is cruel, inhumane, and devastating to the 42,000 New Yorkers who have been able to come out of the shadows and live a full life as a result of the program,” said Attorney General Schneiderman. “These DREAMers play by the rules. They work hard and pay taxes. America is the only home they have ever known – and they deserve to stay here and keep contributing to our state and our nation.

“That’s why we’re taking the Trump administration to court to protect DREAMers and the New York employers who rely on them. It’s clear that President Trump’s DACA repeal would cause huge economic harm to New York – and that it’s driven by President Trump’s personal anti-Mexican bias. Attorneys General have not hesitated to act to protect those we serve, and I’m committed to continuing to use every tool to protect New Yorkers,” Attorney General Schneiderman concluded.

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The lawsuit was led by New York Attorney General Schneiderman, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey, and Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson, and filed by a total of 16 Attorneys General: New York, Massachusetts, Washington, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Virginia.

New York is home to nearly 42,000 DACA grantees. There are approximately 800,000 DACA recipients across the country. According to the Center for American Progress, 97 percent of DACA grantees are employed or go to school; they pay $140 million annually in state and local taxes in New York, as the Institute of Taxation and Economic Policy has detailed.

The lawsuit also includes a number of declarations from businesses, academic institutions, local governments, DACA grantees, and others impacted by the Trump administration’s decision to end DACA.

“Donald Trump's decision to end DACA means that September 5th, 2017 will be remembered as a dark day in our nation’s history,” said Steven Choi, executive director of the New York Immigration Coalition. “New York will not be safer or richer by depriving 50,000 young people of their liberty and livelihood, or robbing our economy of more than $140 million. We applaud the Attorney General for standing up to this senseless and self-defeating act and protecting the principles that truly make New York the empire state: opportunity and justice for all.”

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“There are 30,000 DREAMers in New York; they are our friends, family, and neighbors. And in New York, we don’t let anyone mess with our neighbors. That is why we are joining together to fight the inhumane and cruel decision made by President Trump to end DACA protections,” said Mayor de Blasio.

“Yet again, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman stands on the right side of the law and on the right side of history by using all legal remedies at his disposal to defend our DACA youth,” said Angela Fernandez, Esq., Executive Director and Supervising Attorney of Northern Manhattan Coalition for Immigrant Rights. “We will work tirelessly with the Attorney General and our DACA youth to keep these young Americans here in this country where they belong.”

“Since 1979, NMIC has been committed to supporting people of all nationalities and statuses. We'll continue to work with our partners and allies to defend DACA and stand alongside DACA recipients,” said Maria Lizardo, Executive Director of Northern Manhattan Improvement Corporation (NMIC).

"To me, DACA represented security and a chance to strive in this country that I love. I call the United States my country because it's the only country I've ever known,” said Eduardo Garcia, DACA grantee and John Jay College student.

“President Trump’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program is further proof of his deep-rooted xenophobia and animus towards our nation's immigrants,” said Jose Calderón, President of the Hispanic Federation. “We are grateful that Attorney General Schneiderman has taken the lead to arrest this action by the President through a multistate lawsuit filed in the Eastern District of NY. We are ready to stand and work with his office and other allies across the United States to protect our Dreamers and uphold the values in which our nation was built on: justice, inclusion and democracy.”

Chancellor James B. Milliken said, “CUNY has always been a beacon of hope for immigrants and the greatest engine of social and economic mobility for new Americans. We will never waiver from that essential mission, or from our commitment to the ideals upon which our country and University were founded. We are grateful for the strong resolve of our political leaders and proud to be a part of this historic effort.”

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As the lawsuit states,

“Since 2012, DACA has allowed hundreds of thousands of young people to live, study, and work in the United States, and to become stable and even more productive members of their communities, without fear that they could be arrested and placed in deportation proceedings at any moment. Throughout the country, DACA grantees are employed by various companies and State and municipal agencies, which benefit from their skills and productivity. DACA grantees also contribute significantly to State and local revenues and tax bases. Yet, as a result of the DHS Memorandum, approximately 1,400 DACA grantees will lose their work authorization and risk termination of employment each day as their terms begin to expire. DACA recipients will lose their eligibility for public and employer-based health insurance programs that reduce the states’ health expenditures and promote public health. They also will lose their right to enroll in higher education institutions with in-state admissions preferences and tuition; thus, public universities will be deprived of a means by which they enrich the experience of all students and faculty through diversity and new perspectives.

“…More than 78 percent of DACA grantees are of Mexican origin, which is more than double the percentage of people of Mexican origin that comprise of the overall foreign-born population (29 percent) of the United States. Ending DACA, whose participants are mostly of Mexican origin, is a culmination of President’s Trump’s oft-stated commitments—whether personally held, stated to appease some portion of his constituency, or some combination thereof—to punish and disparage people with Mexican roots.

“The consequence of the President’s animus-driven decision is that approximately 800,000 persons who have availed themselves of the program will ultimately lose its protections, and will be exposed to removal when their authorizations expire and they cannot seek renewal. The individuals who have relied on DACA are now more vulnerable to removal than before the program was initiated, as they turned over sensitive information to the federal government in their applications. Despite the federal government’s repeated promises that it would not use such information to conduct enforcement measures, the Memorandum does not explain how the government will keep that information secure, nor does it provide any assurances that immigration enforcement agents will not use such information to find and remove those who applied for DACA.

“Rescinding DACA will cause harm to hundreds of thousands of the States’ residents, injure State-run colleges and universities, upset the States’ workplaces, damage the States’ economies, hurt State-based companies, and disrupt the States’ statutory and regulatory interests.

“The Attorney General is empowered to advance New York’s strong and important public policy against unlawful discrimination. New York’s Constitution guarantees all persons the right to equal treatment under the law and forbids discrimination based on race, color, creed or religion. And New York’s statutes reiterate the State’s strong interest in combatting discrimination and prejudice.”

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#AttorneyGeneral #DACA #DACArepeal #DefendDACA #DefendDemocracy #DefendTPS #DreamAct #dreamers #EricSchneiderman #Here2Fight #Here2Stay #HereToStay #ICEfreeNY #immigration #NewYork #Ni1Mas #NoBan #NoHumanIsIlegal #Not1More #NoWall #NYC #PressConference #ResistTrump #SanctuaryCity #SinDACASinMiedo #Somos11Millones #StopDeportations #StopICEraids #TakenFromUs #TPS #trumpvsallofus

© Erik McGregor - erikrivas@hotmail.com - 917-225-8963

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Activists tell Senators Gillibrand and Schumer to Get “Back To Work” to Strengthen Healthcare in March to Their Offices

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New York, NY — Activists marched to the offices of Senators Schumer and Gillibrand in New York City on September 5, 2017; carrying a giant lunchbox filled with messages from constituents that urged them to get “Back To Work and Save Our Healthcare”. Senate hearings on stabilizing the Affordable Care Act begin the next day, along with the fast-approaching deadline for insurance companies to commit to the 2018 ACA marketplaces, so New York residents are pressuring their Senators to fight to ensure their constituents’ health care coverage isn’t compromised. 

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The group delivered a letter to the Senators, recommending ways to fight for important sections of the ACA, defend anticipated efforts to sabotage the ACA, and to improve U.S. healthcare overall.  “Ensure that not one penny of funding is taken from Medicaid and Medicare” and “Defend the ACA requirement that employers offer plans that provide contraception coverage” are two of the messages included in the letter.

“While we won the battle in defeating Obamcare repeal, the GOP is still waging the war on vulnerable Americans, threatening to destroy healthcare protections,” said Mark Milano, a member of Rise and Resist. “Many of us will be directly affected by these decisions, and will be voicing our concerns every step of the way.” 

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#ACA #Activism #AffordableCareAct #AHCA #CareNotCuts #DefendHealthcare #Dying4Care #HealthcareForAll #HealthcareIsAHumanRight #HealthcareNotWealthcare #KillRepeal #KillTheBill #Medicaid #Medicare #Medicare4All #MedicareForAll #NewYork #NYC #Obamacare #PeacefulProtest #PeacefulResistance #rally #ResistTrump #RiseAndResist #SinglePayer #TrumpCare #TrumpCareKills #trumpvsallofus #UnionSquare #UniversalHeathcare

© Erik McGregor - erikrivas@hotmail.com - 917-225-8963
Over fifty DACA recipients and allies were arrested in Sit-Ins throughout New York City after Sessions announces repeal of DACA

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New York City, NY - In response to Attorney General Jeff Sessions to announcing the end of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program today, thousands of New Yorkers took to the streets on September 5, 2017; holding rallies with DACA recipients. Over fifty people engaging in non-violent civil disobedience were arrested throughout New York City in response to Trump’s decision to repeal DACA. 

The Trump administration announced today that it will phase out the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which protects over 800,000 young people, who were brought to the United States as children, from deportation. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a news briefing this morning that the Department of Homeland Security will allow the program to wind down in six months if Congress does not pass legislation.

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In response to Trump’s decision to repeal DACA, nine undocumented youth were arrested at Trump Tower in a civil disobedience on Tuesday morning at 11:30. For the DACA recipients participating in this action, the threat of facing ICE retaliation is real- just as it was seven years ago when the first undocumented youth began risking arrest and coming out as ‘Undocumented and Unafraid’. Hundreds of immigrant workers, DACA recipients and allies rally in support.

The repeal of DACA, together with the likely repeal of TPS, means that over a million immigrant workers stand to lose their jobs. It means massive layoffs across the country, at an unprecedented scale. Over the course of the next two years, an average of 1,400 DACA workers will lose their jobs every single day. DACA and TPS recipients with families that depend on them to get by will no longer be able to support their parents and children. 

"Donald Trump's decision to end DACA means that September 5th, 2017 will be remembered as a dark day in our nation’s history,” said Steven Choi, executive director of the New York Immigration Coalition. “America will not be safer or richer by depriving nearly one million young people of their liberty, tearing away 700,000 workers from our labor force or robbing the U.S. economy of $460 billion in GDP.  This is a senseless and self-defeating act which flies in the face of the principles that truly make America great: opportunity and justice for all." 

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DACA is an important economic development tool for the nation, providing educational and job opportunities previously unavailable to nearly 1 million young people; 65% of DACA recipients are currently in school, and of those, 70% are currently working. 

New York State protects more than 50,000 DACA recipients, one of the largest populations in the nation. Repealing DACA will significantly harm the local to economy as DACA recipients pay more than $140 million in state and local taxes and contribute nearly $2.6 billion to New York’s annual GDP. 91% of DACA recipients are employed nationwide. 

"Jeff Sessions and the Trump administration's decision to rescind DACA is appalling and disgraceful,” said Angie Kim, DACA recipient and community organizer at MinKwon Center for Action. “This will in effect jeopardize over 800,000 innocent young lives including myself. I will stand with my undocumented community until we have justice."

According to a memo released by the Department of Homeland Security the following policies are effective immediately: 

* The administration won't consider new applications for legal status dated after Sept. 5.
* Those who are not currently protected by the program may not file for an application, but those submitted before Tuesday will continue to be processed.
* Anyone who has a DACA permit expiring between now and March 5, 2018, can apply for a two-year renewal. That application must be submitted by Oct. 5.
* Those with permits that expire between now and March 5, 2018 will be eligible for legal status for another two-plus years. For others, legal status ends as early as March 6, 2018.

Today’s announcement comes after nine states led by Texas threatened to sue the Trump Administration unless it moved to end the program by Tuesday. A coalition of legal experts, business leaders, elected officials and advocacy groups called on the Trump administration to uphold the program. 

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DACA allowed individuals who were brought to the U.S. as children or teens before mid-2007 to apply for protection from deportation and work permits if they met certain requirements. Beneficiaries had to be under the age of 16 upon entering the country; no older than 31 as of June 15, 2012; lived continuously in the U.S. since mid-2007; be enrolled in high school or college, already have a diploma or degree, have a GED certificate or be an honorably discharged veteran of the U.S. military; and have no felony criminal convictions, significant misdemeanor convictions, no more than three other misdemeanor convictions or otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.

"This is about the heart and soul of America — who we are, what we believe, and how we treat young people. Every Dreamer should know that we are prepared to fight. New York City won't give up, because we will always stand up for right over wrong," New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stringer said.

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