In Public Service – October 11, 2019

Cuomo approves Ortiz’s LGBTQ+ bill

Assemblymember Felix Ortiz said Gov. Andrew Cuomo has approved a bill he sponsored to require employees of programs that provide services to runaways and homeless youths to attend LGBTQ+ specific training.

“Many of these young people have faced difficult family situations due to their sexual orientation and/or gender expression. We need to support all young people, ensuring that homeless youth of all orientations are treated with the respect and sensitivity they may not have gotten at home,” said Ortiz, a Democrat representing Red Hook, Sunset Park and parts of Bay Ridge.

Nearly 40 percent of the population in facilities that care for homeless youth and runaways are LGBTQ+ young people, according to Ortiz, who said it is common sense to ensure that staff members in these facilities are trained in the use of appropriate terminology and how to address homophobia or trans-phobia.

Cymbrowitz hosts rent freeze days

Residents who qualify for the city’s Rent Freeze Program but who haven’t yet signed up will be able to do so during two designated enrollment days to be hosted by Assemblymember Steven Cymbrowitz in partnership with the New York City Department of Finance.

Two enrollment days for the Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption and Disability Rent Increase Exemption programs will take place on Wednesday, Oct. 23, from 10 a.m. to noon, and Thursday, Nov. 7, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., in Cymbrowitz’s office, 1800 Sheepshead Bay Rd.

No appointments are necessary.

“Housing is fundamental to our daily lives, and every person deserves an equal opportunity to have safe, quality and affordable housing. I’m pleased that so many more vulnerable New Yorkers will be able to have peace of mind in knowing they can now benefit from SCRIE and DRIE at their lower preferential rent,” said Cymbrowitz, a Democrat whose district includes Sheepshead Bay, Brighton Beach and Manhattan Beach.

For more information, visit:, or call Cymbrowitz’s office at 718-743-4078.

Myrie sees Census trouble ahead

State Sen. Zellnor Myrie said a report recently issued by the state-appointed Complete Count Commission that looked at how New York State can achieve a full count in the upcoming 2020 Census “reaffirms the fact that New York City faces significant barriers to achieving a full count.

The report found that New York City has the highest percentage of at-risk populations for being undercounted.

Myrie, a Democrat representing Crown Heights and parts of Park Slope and Sunset Park, said he and 33 other Brooklyn elected officials sent a letter to Gov. Andrew Cuomo last month requesting that Cuomo dedicate millions of dollars in resources to ensuring a full Census count in Brooklyn.

“All hands are on deck in Brooklyn, and as this report makes clear, the state needs to do the same. It’s time for the state to release these funds, and release them in a way that meets the challenge,” Myrie said in a statement

Frontus lauds equal pay law

“It’s hard to believe that in 2019, hard-working Americans are being paid less than their colleagues because of their gender, age or the color of their skin,” said Assemblymember Mathylde Frontus.

Frontus, a Democrat representing Coney Island and parts of Bay Ridge and Dyker Heights, said New York State is one step closer to rectifying pay disparity, thanks to a new law designed to combat wage discrimination.

“The law, which I helped pass earlier this year, requires equal pay for substantially similar work, prohibiting pay differentials based on factors including age, race, gender identity or expression, national origin and all other protected classes,” Frontus said.

The law is badly needed, according to Frontus.

“Women make up about half of our workforce, yet still earn only 80 cents for every dollar their male counterparts make. And for women of color, it’s even less. As one of only 50 female legislators in the Assembly, this issue hits close to home,” she said

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