Queens marches against environmental racism

Council member Costa Constantinides of District 22 spoke to the crowd. Pointing to the waste plant in their neighborhood, he said, “This plant burned six million gallons of No. six oil this year and 12 million gallons last year. This grade of oil has many noxious gasses when burned. My district has higher levels of asthma and hospitalizations. When Trump is stepping out, we have to step up!”

Costa’s is co-author of INT. 359 (bit.do/INT359), which ensures that the Department of Environmental Protection and Department of Mental Health and Hygiene will identify and study environmental justice communities, neighborhoods with a significant low-income population and communities of color. The study would include sources of pollution, adverse health impacts on the pollution, the environmental impacts of city policies on communities, barriers to participation by the communities in environmental decision-making, use and potential future use of renewable energies, and policy recommendations to address environmental concerns.

Hotline Volunteer: ‘Empowering Tenants to Stand Up’

Knowledge is empowerment, she believes. Callers almost always “feel that they have control over their situation” and that their concerns are valid after speaking to a volunteer, she says. “All we talk about in this city in terms of housing is building new developments. Meanwhile, people are suffering in their housing situations now, and there’s no one out there saying, ‘you should be mad and stand up to your landlord if they are doing something wrong.’”

How the Preferential Rent Scam Works

A reform bill introduced in the state legislature would require landlords to renew the lease based on the lower preferential rent as long as the tenant stays in the apartment. The Assembly has passed the bill every year for the last several years, but the Republicans and turncoat Democrats who control the state Senate have refused to pass it.