Thursday, February 9, 2017
Homeless removed from hotels featured in DHS' race-baiting videos
Even though the DHS has agreed to no longer house homeless in these two hotels, the owners are still being pressured and getting occasional calls from DHS contractors requesting to house homeless families. This type of pressure and putting these hotel owners in this position is unfair and contrary to the agreement in which DHS was informed about.
Let me also provide background on this entire episode so that everyone understands how our community succeeded in fighting back deBlasio homeless housing overreach. Back in November, I received a call from one of the owners of these hotels who asked for my help in terminating the use of these hotels for homeless individuals. These hotels had signed NO contract with DHS and never agreed to house homeless for an extended period of time, but had been continually pressured by DHS and its vendors to do so.
The reason the hotel owner called me is that as President of Glen Oaks Village Co-op I have known him from the community and he has a trusting and amicable relationship with me. I urged him to meet with members of the local civics in which I am an active participant to work out a plan with the local community to extricate these hotels from housing homeless individuals and families. These hotels were not in appropriate locations (no subways, limited bus service, no job sites) to house homeless individuals. When I approached the civics I was met with very strong opposition which came from their distrust of the hotel owners. I urged them to meet as we had an opportunity to finally resolve this issue and we shouldn't let this opportunity slip away. I told my fellow civic leaders that even if we did not succeed, we would be in no worse position. They were not convinced.
I did not want to lose this opportunity to finally resolve this homeless hotel problem on Jericho Tpke and contacted Councilmember Grodenchik who I know well and explained to him the situation in detail and asked if he would be willing to host a meeting between the hotel operators and the civics. I felt the civic leaders would be more inclined to participate if the Councilman hosted the meeting. He agreed to do so and he urged the Civic leaders who strongly opposed the meeting to attend. My strategy succeeded and a meeting was held between a number of civics, elected officials and the hotel owners. We all agreed that it was in the best interest of all to terminate the relationship with DHS (Dept of Homeless Services).
The parties agreed that by 12/31/16 all homeless being housed in these hotels would be out. Due to DHS delays, it took about a week after the 12/31/16 timetable for DHS to find alternate living arrangements for the few that were still in the hotels. That is the complete and accurate story to date of this chapter. I am proud that we were all able to finally work together and resolve a perplexing problem that many communities have been unable to resolve."
President, Glen Oaks Village
Take a lesson from these folks. They did great work by sticking together. The fact that they actually have electeds who support them instead of just paying lip service to them helped as well. These hotels were where the DHS made 2 videos, one of which shows shots of black homeless children dubbed over with someone yelling "white lives matter". They craftily blamed Maspeth for this despite it allegedly happening in Bellerose. Aja Worthy-Davis was moved over to ACS (which must be the de Blasio administration's version of a punishment) and the "f*ck whiteness" guru Lincoln Restler is still in hiding as BdB prepares to meet Preet. - QC