Advocacy Groups Set Up Joint Office in Brentwood

By VICTOR MANUEL RAMOS, Newsday

Three community organizations that advocate for low-income people and immigrants are joining forces to launch a new Brentwood office tomorrow by offering free counseling and legal assistance.

The office will house Make the Road New York, which focuses on immigration advocacy; New York Communities for Change, which works on affordable housing and foreclosure prevention; and the Long Island Civic Engagement Table, an umbrella group for advocacy efforts in minority communities.

Following their noon grand opening and until 3 p.m., volunteers will assist homeowners fighting foreclosure and young undocumented immigrants preparing to apply for deferred action” to allow them to stay and work in the United States.

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Check Out Our New Press Packet

Friends, check out our new press packet, which highlights selected press coverage since late 2011.  We hope you enjoy! 

Press PDF

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Brentwood School Board Election Results

Thank you so much to everyone who came out and volunteered their time to join our Get Out the Vote efforts for the Brentwood school board elections! 

The election results are now in, and the winners were Gail Kirkham, Keith Allison, and Ana Martinez.  Though our work is strictly non-partisan, it bears mention that, for the first time, a majority of the Brentwood school board will now be people of color.   To read more about the election, click here for Long Island Wins' coverage.

Thanks again to everyone who joined to help Get Out the Vote!

 

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Newsday Coverage: Brentwood School Board Candidates Seek Change

Brentwood school board incumbent Gail Kirkham and newcomers Ana Martinez and Keith Allison told roughly 140 people at a public board of education candidates’ forum [co-hosted by the Long Island Civic Engagement Table] Wednesday night that they are running as a slate partly because they want a change in leadership that better embraces Brentwood’s diverse population.

“I’m tired of what’s happening at the school board,” Allison said. “There’s infighting, back biting. There’s an image that our children are not learning and not achieving, and that’s not true.”

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Newsday Video of Voter Registration Launch!

Thanks so much to all who joined us for our voter registration launch.  Check out Newsday's excellent video coverage!

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AOL Latino: Masiva Campaña para Registrar Votantes Hispanos

Por David Ramirez, AOL Latino (lea el articulo original aqui)

Al menos quince organizaciones de jóvenes y grupos comunitarios lanzaron en Nueva York una masiva campaña para registrar votantes de cara a las elecciones presidenciales de noviembre en la que el voto latino podría ser decisivo.

"Este es el comienzo de una larga campaña para asegurar que nuestras comunidades expresen su poder en las elecciones de 2012", dijo Daniel Altschuler, coordinador de la Mesa de Participación Cívica de Long Island (LICET), una coalición de organizaciones no partidistas que defiende los derechos civiles.

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Newsday: Groups Push to Register Minorities to Vote

By Víctor Manuel Ramos, Newsday

Several dozen advocates and volunteers from minority community groups launched an effort to register more blacks and Hispanics to vote at a Brentwood gathering on Thursday, where many said the only way their communities will earn respect is by turning out to the ballots.

Among the key issues where they would like to see local officials, legislators and national candidates be more responsive are increasing the minimum wage, passing immigration reform that would help the undocumented and help low-income families facing foreclosure, they said.

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Cuomo Caves on Redistricting, But Fight Not Over Yet

By TED HESSON, Long Island Wins 

Despite having vowed to veto unduly partisan state district district lines, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo made a deal with legislators in Albany on Wednesday night, agreeing to permit the existing gerrymandered lines if legislators backed a constitutional amendment that would create a bipartisan redistricting commission after the 2020 census.

A bipartisan commission, however, isn’t the same as a non-partisan commission, and as long as legislators have significant influence on the redistricting process, now or in a decade, district lines will be geared toward preserving incumbents. Long before election day, politicians in Albany will have decided who will represent you. Amendment or not, that won’t change.

That’s especially clear in places like Brentwood and Hempstead on Long Island, where the voting power in communities of color has been diluted by the newly approved district lines.

About the deal, Cuomo said, “I supported an independent commission for these lines. I lost.”

But the reality is that the governor didn’t support the commission. When the time came to veto what were clearly gerrymandered district lines, he opted for the path of least resistance.

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Siguen Esfuerzos por Redistribución Electoral Justa en LI

By ELIANA LOPEZ, Noticia

Apocos días de que se lleve a cabo en la legislatura estatal la votación sobre los nuevos mapas electorales para el senado y la asamblea estatal propuestos por LATFOR, una coalición de organizaciones comunitarias en Long Island encabezada por la Mesa Cívica de Long Island, realizó una conferencia de prensa en Brentwood de forma simultanea a otras cinco conferencias que tuvieron lugar en otros lugares de Nueva York, para pedir al Gobernador Andrew Cuomo que cumpla su propuesta de vetar los mapas si son aprobados por la legislatura.

Durante la conferencia de prensa que se llevó a cabo en el lugar exacto donde se dividen los distritos del senado 3 y 4 en Long Island, varios miembros de organizaciones como Se Hace Camino Nueva York, NAACP, New York Communites for Change, SEPA Mujer y Long Island Wins, entre otras, manifestaron una vez más su preocupación por los mapas de LATFOR y aseguraron que seguirán luchando para que el Gobernador Cuomo vete los mapas actuales. 

“Acá en el área de Brentwood, Bay Shore y Central Islip, nosotros [latinos] somos la mayoría, con nuestros hermanos Afroamericanos. Entonces no entiendo porqué los políticos que están en poder en Albany quieren coartar el poder que puede tener nuestro voto en las próximas elecciones”, declaró Maria Magdalena Flores, miembro de Se Hace Camino Nueva York, “estamos aquí hoy para poner un alto a esta injusticia. Le pido encarecidamente al Gobernador Andrew Cuomo que vete estas líneas y que esto no se lleve a cabo”.

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Long Island Groups to Cuomo: Veto New York’s Gerrymandered District Maps

By TED HESSON, Long Island Wins

Community leaders gathered in Brentwood today to call for Gov. Andrew Cuomo to veto proposed district maps that would fracture the voting power of black, Latino, and immigrant residents on Long Island.

Representatives from groups like the NAACP, Make the Road New York, and 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Workers East gathered symbolically along a district line that would cut through the Brentwood community, demanding that the governor reject gerrymandered district maps. 

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