cvh & allies launch "our city, our homes"
On April 18 in New York City, we joined with hundreds of allies to launch the "Our City, Our Homes" effort, which is raising the importance of affordable housing in this year's elections. The picture above shows the 300+ people that made it out for the launch, but we expect it to be much, much bigger for the June forum with the candidates for New York City mayor.
At the forum, we will ask them about improving code enforcement to improve housing safety, committing to create truly affordable housing, improving and preserving public housing, and promoting home ownership and preventing foreclosure. We will be reaching out to many of you, so take this opportunity to get involved and make sure affordable housing is a priority this year!
To learn more about "Our City, Our Homes," contact Kflu@CVHaction.org.
THOUSANDS VOTE TO DECIDE HOW TO INVEST $10 MILLION IN NYC PARTICIPATORY BUDGETING!
In this year's Participatory Budgeting process, CVH helped to drive thousands of voters to the polls, doing outreach to public housing residents in East Harlem and the South Bronx, to the Bengali community in Kensington, Brooklyn, to the Korean community in Northeast Queens, Sandy-impacted residents in the Rockaways, and many many more.
And this year, PB is gaining more and more energy.
CVH and partners at Participatory Budgeting Project (PBP) hosted a briefing for candidates running for City Council this year, with over 25 campaigns represented, while a number of NYC Mayoral candidates have begun to publicly take positions in support of PB. We also worked with PBP and the Community Development Project at the Urban Justice Center to talk about how PB can help fight corruption in government.
To learn more, explore the winning projects and final press release or you can read our statement about how PB can be used as a tool to fight corruption.
Contact Vincent@CVHaction.org for more info.
POUGHKEEPSIE'S "OVERPASS LIGHT BRIGADE" CALLS OUT CORPORATE TAX EVADERS
On tax day this year, Poughkeepsie leaders came together for a game of “Corporate Tax Dodge Ball” at the Poughkeepsie Post Office to to highlight who pays their fair share of taxes in the U.S. and who doesn’t. Speakers at the event highlighted tax dodging companies like Bank of America which stashed $17.2 billion in accumulated profits overseas in 2012. This was coordinated as one in a series of actions in over a dozen states part of Americans for Tax Fairness, a national coalition of more than 275 groups pressing for a fairer tax system.
In the evening, CVH members helped to lead Poughkeepsie's first-ever "overpass light brigade", hanging giant lighted signs over Route 9 to call our Bank of America for evading its fair share of taxes.
Check out the Overpass Light Brigade pictures on Facebook, and contact Blair@cvhaction.org to get involved!
YONKERS "STATE OF THE PEOPLE" TELLS OUR SIDE OF THE STORY
The Yonkers Daily Voice reported on March 19:
Hoping to capture the attention of City Hall, Community Voices Heard presented its inaugural State of the People address Tuesday night inside its North Broadway offices. There, the group talked about the need for more affordable housing, job creation and education, particularly for low-income and minority residents of southwest Yonkers.
“Mayor Spano will be giving his State of the City address on Wednesday, and I am sure he will mention the downtown area developments, the improvement of Yonkers’ financial rating,” said Carlos Hodgson. “This is just one side of the story. It’s time to tell our side.”
Read some of the media coverage in the Yonkers Daily Voice, and see a brief fact sheet about poverty in Yonkers.
Also, the federal government has found that Westchester County is not compliant with civil rights laws related to housing and may withold $7.4 million from the County. The County Executive, though, has refused to budge. Check out our statement on fair housing and civil rights in Westchester.
Contact Juanita@CVHaction.org for more info.
at npa conference, cvh joins fight to pass the robin hood tax
To call for the Robin Hood Tax, CVH joined with our allies at VOCAL last year to march on Wall Street and again to bring the message right to the homes of New York's 1%. In April, we again joined again with VOCAL, along with National People's Action, the National Nurses United, and others to call for the this tony tax on Wall Street transactions that would raise billions (BILLIONS!) of dollars for public services that we all rely on.
Check out our Twitter feed to see what we were up to in DC during the NPA conference, which included a huge public meeting with the chief of staff from "Fix the Debt" a coalition of the 1% fighting for themselves uin Washington, actions at the home of Eugene Ludwig, a member of Fix the Debt, and many more actions and events that saw CVH leaders play key leadership roles.
For more info about the NPA trip, contact Sondra@CVHaction.org.
NYC Housing AUTHORITY PROPOSES PRIVATE DEVELOPMENT ON NYCHA LAND
The NYC Public Housing campaign has come out in opposition to the Housing Authority's proposal to build market-rate housing on NYCHA land in 8 NYCHA developments in Manhattan, including three developments in East Harlem and West Harlem.
The campaign will be working to push back against this effort that would see NYCHA destroy community centers and other public resources, in order for private developers to build on the NYCHA land. Allies around the city are already gearing against this "infill" proposal, fearing that if it happens in Harlem and the Lower East Side, it would soon spread to other developments around the city.
Our friends at Met Council on Housing have some background on the proposal, and we recently received word that the proposal has been slowed down, but it is no time to rest easy.
Get involved now by contacting Kflu@CVHaction.org.
NYC WELFARE CAMPAIGN CONTINUES ITS PUSH IN ALBANY & nyc
The Welfare Campaign, the longest-standing effort at the organization, has been responding to new, humiliating rules that require WEP workers in New York City to wear bright green reflective vests on their worksites, along with badges that read "non-employee". CVH leaders delivered this some of this "WEP Humiliation Gear" to the head of the city's welfare agency, but he refused to accept it, understanding just how embarrassing that can be. Meanwhile, the campaign has continued its state-level effort to end the Work Experience Program through a legislative push in Albany.
We have also gotten word that New York City is now requiring New Yorkers receiving food stamp to perform WEP duties. Expanding WEP to food stamp recipients is a terrible policy and we will be fighting against that, as we continue the fight to ensure Transitional Jobs, like those in the Parks Opportunity Program, are fully funded this year in the New York City budget.
To see the video of members delivering the "WEP humiliation gear" to the city's welfare commissioner, or to get involved with the campaign fights in New York City or Albany, contact Jennifer@CVHaction.org.
CALLING ALL VOLUNTEERS FOR MAJOR ELECTION OUTREACH THIS YEAR!
Not everyone may know this, but 2013 is a major election year for us. There are local elections in each of our chapters, with important issues at stake. We will be conducting non-partisan voter outreach, voter registration, and education.
Just last week when we joined with hundreds of allies from around New York City to launch the "Our City, Our Homes" effort, which is raising the importance of affordable housing in this year's local elections. The picture above is the 300 person launch event last week, but the forum with the candidates for mayor will be even bigger in June!
If you are interested to get involved in elections outreach this year in New York City, Westchester County, Orange County, or Dutchess County, please contact Chris@CVHaction.org.
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