DACA Immigration Forum with Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez

This Saturday September 16, 2017

University Settlement’s Houston Street Center, 273 Bowery

Flyers: Spanish, Chinese, English below:


Democracy: Keep It Alive. Vote Tomorrow.

Polling site information here.

In thanks, here are some flowers:

Progress on Stanton Buildings Repurposing & Concerted Efforts on Safety


Parks Department’s Castro and Borough President Brewer and Council Member Chin are marshaling their resources to find an alternative storage site and to remove the container and repurpose the building to positive and active use.

Borough President Brewer is looking for sites throughout Manhattan (this holds storage for all of Manhattan parks) – she is awaiting Parks response to her question about what capacity is needed to replace the current facility.

Parks Department has strongly clarified their desire to move storage out of the building and recapture it for more park-like and community use and to remove the container that sits alongside the building (which the police would like out as well). And Council Member Chin and MBP Brewer are using their offices to move us forward.

Everyone wants the container out. It creates areas that become hiding places for negative use.

Bad news:

Uptick in drug dealing and aggressive behavior in the park.

If you feel endangered or see something dangerous please call 911.

If you see something that is simply a problem or have a complaint call 311.

Good news:

Several meetings across agencies and providers and police have taken place. Everyone understands the situation in SDR Park requires us to take more active steps.

The 5th Precinct, Parks Enforcement and Homeless Outreach workers are coordinating their efforts on a daily basis to ensure the safety of park-goers.

The Commissioner for Manhattan Parks Department Castro is actively involved.



From Neighbors to Save Rivington House: Successes Thus Far

“It always seems impossible until it’s done” – Nelson Mandela

– On December 2014 we were told it was over. It’s September 2017 and Rivington House is not occupied by luxury owners.

– MFY is suing for the FOIL release of documents from the NY State Department of Health in the case of Rivington House and CABS.

– The AG is persisting in their refusal to allow The Allure Group who flipped Rivington House to buy two other nursing homes. One that houses former occupants of Rivington House.

– Pike Street will be a site for assisted living for seniors (we still need nursing homes but this is a positive outcome).

– Transparency requirements enacted for deed restriction removals City-wide (thanks CM Chin and MBP Brewer).

– Our electeds (Brewer, Chin, Squadron, Niou) have followed our communities request to fight alongside us for RH – They have stood with us. We won’t agree on everything – but we knew this was a cause we collectively wouldn’t give up on.

– Community board 3 passed every necessary resolution on behalf of this struggle.

– Added to exposure for the need of a funded and independent (from politics and the nursing home industry) NYState watchdog role for the nursing home industry.

– We held a forum on Health Care on the future use of Rivington House. Imagining a future with a continuum of care with options to move in and out of care as needed. Building a community hub of active, desegregated care for everyone.

– We built a coalition of groups and individuals who made us smarter on senior right, disability rights, care providers and receivers and building a caring society that works for everyone.

– We helped keep RH alive in the media with the help of the free press.

– We were among this years recipients of the LES Hero Awards.

– We helped expose corruption and/or incompetence in city and state agencies. Five Investigations transpired from City to State to Federal.

– We added our voice to other worthy struggles such as the return of Charos.

– We have a promise made at the Town Hall by the Mayor for an invitation to a meeting with the buyers of Rivington House asked for and planned by Council Member Chin.

– We modeled the refusal to turn our backs on our neighbors and a stand against the enormous wealth, power and influence in our city.

– We asked a Garden Group who hired the Capalino lobbyists firm not to use Rivington House as the backdrop for an unrelated cause (Capalino played a pivotal role in Rivington House’s ultimate sale to luxury developers). It was an affront to the people here who lost their homes.

We will not give up this fight: win, lose or draw.


From University Settlement In Defense of DACA

From Eric Weingartner, Chief Executive Officer University Settlement:

“This is one email I wish I didn’t have to send, but political events make it unavoidable.

Today, President Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions jeopardized the futures of 800,000 young immigrants, known as Dreamers, when they rescinded Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). This generation of Dreamers, who would have been our future doctors and lawyers, teachers and policemen, neighbors and friends, will be lost if this injustice is allowed to stand.

It’s unjust because Dreamers were brought to the United States when they were very young and have only ever known one home. They have done everything that was asked of them – go to school, stay out of trouble, work hard – and yet our country’s promise to them has been broken. 

DACA may be a federal program, but the real action is in neighborhoods throughout New York City and across the country where University Settlement and other nonprofits work in the trenches and fight for these young immigrants.  We know them and we know their stories. We know that Dreamers are United States citizens by every meaningful measure.

Let me tell you about Tomas, one of the young people who has benefited from DACA. He was born in Mexico but moved to the United States when he was a small child. Although he was undocumented and very poor, he graduated from college and dreamed of working in a fine arts museum. But because DACA didn’t exist at that time and he didn’t have a work permit, the only job available to him was working in his father’s fencing company. His life changed when he received a work permit through DACA. Today, he’s employed at a major art museum. His hard-won success is in peril because there is a strong possibility that he will lose his job, and he will certainly be at grave risk of deportation to Mexico.

Tomas, who is a hardworking, tax-paying American, is now vulnerable, just like hundreds of thousands of young people across the nation. 

I promise you that all of us at University Settlement will never stop fighting for these young people. Our exceptional team will do everything in their power to protect our participants, and convince Congress that it must right this wrong.

We’ll keep you posted through social media and emails of our progress and approach over the coming days and weeks.  Thank you for being our partners in this fight. Your support gives us strength.”

Yellow Roses & Morning Glories in The Hort/Emma Lazarus Garden, A Tree Limb Falls in MKGarden


NYC Park’s Department City Pools and Bath Houses

Here’s an article about city pools. We used to have at least two wading pools in this park!

 Crowds outside the city’s first municipal bath, on Rivington Street. CreditNew York City Department of Parks and Recreation


Most of the city’s public pools are open until Sunday, Sept. 10.

You can look for a location nearest you here. But before jumping in, here’s a little trivia on our city’s pools:

Before there were pools, we had public baths.

The city opened its first municipal bath in 1901 at 326 Rivington Street — a bathhouse that became so coveted that during a fatal heat wave a few years later, a small riot broke out in the long line there. The site, later renamed the Baruch baths, is no longer in use, though the building remains.

But several of the city’s former bathhouses are still up and running — in the form of swimming pools. [several] …recreation centers “all began life as bathhouses,” said Liam Kavanagh, the first deputy parks commissioner…

In the 1930s and 1940s, under Mayor Fiorello H. La Guardia, Robert Moses created a new set of outdoor pools that, with their heating and filtration systems, were considered at the forefront of engineering.

…The city’s free public pools are open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. (Mini-pools will close on Labor Day.)”

Allen Street Baths photo Curbed

From Curbed NY and The Tenement Museum: Allen Street Bath

“The last man standing of New York’s municipally funded baths, the Allen Street Bath provided its visitors with opportunities for relative cleanliness until 1975. The building’s fate seemed doomed when it was sealed in 1988, but 1992 brought a new lease on life when it was auctioned off to a Chinese congregation, the Church of Grace to Fujianese, which still uses it today.”

Migrating Striped or Black and White Warblers and (Vireos) in MKGarden!

photo by Steve Elson

Black and White or Striped Warblers in MKGarden!

photos Steve Elson or K Webster


And Vireos (no photos – they moved too fast) But here’s one from the internet:

Unknown photographer



New Liquor License Requested 100 Forsyth Street

Community Board 3 Calendar: (check the calendar for updates from venue and for withdrawals before you head out)
SLA & DCA Licensing Committee
Monday, September 18 at 6:30pm — Public Hotel, 17th Floor, Sophia Room – 215 Chrystie Street (btwn Houston & Stanton Streets)

New Liquor License Applications on the agenda:

# 20.    100 Forsyth Restaurant LLC, 100 Forsyth St (op)

Please Note:  Applicants must submit withdrawals and residents must submit materials and agreements by Friday before meeting at noon.
To contact the CB3 office to submit materials:
Phone: 212-533-5300
E-Mail: info@cb3manhattan.org
  • The SDR Coalition is listed on the CB3 site as an organization to contact in reaching out to the neighborhood. We’ve heard nothing from this owner.
  • In general, unless there is a very real community benefit (beyond that you are serving a special cuisine that is nowhere else in the neighborhood?) but a real benefit (like Dixon Place, a decades old arts space that shows new talent) we tend to oppose licenses especially for venues on the park itself (one of our quality of life goals).
  • We are struggling with homelessness, poverty and lack of real resources in this community – becoming an attraction for drinking? Not so useful here.
  • Beyond just the park, the neighborhood is being inundated with bars. Once a license is installed on a location – it stays forever. Requiring the neighborhood to police it for any infractions forever.

Turtles in M’Finda Kalunga