Sep 272015
 

Candles for Clemency from emmanuel fineus on Vimeo.

More than 150 Candles for Clemency Lit Up Mt. Kisco on Sept 26th

In a departure from his previous policy, Governor Andrew Cuomo is establishing a system to review requests to shorten prison sentences of rehabilitated prisoners.

Four days before a planned demonstration near his Westchester County home that had the backing of a wide array of elected officials, the governor called longtime gay activist Allen Roskoff, saying, “I get it. I get it. It will be done.” Cuomo pledged to review requests for clemency from state prisoners.

The September 26 demonstration in the parking lot of the Presbyterian Church of Mount Kisco was the second annual “Candles for Clemency” gathering demanding that “Governor Cuomo get a heart; issue clemencies now.”  Nathan Riley, Gay City News, Sept. 27

Cuomo chief counsel, Alphonso David, addressed the demonstrators and described the new review plan: “Particular attention will be paid to prisoners who received sentences for crimes committed at a young age, elderly prisoners who pose little risk to society, and prisoners who have served long sentences but have demonstrated that their release would not harm others.” The latter may prove controversial.   David specifically offered the assistance of his office to help attorneys and advocacy groups through the clemency process.

You can also see video news coverage of the Candles for Clemency vigil by Diana Campbell on Fios News

Endorsements for the vigil included:  City Comptroller Scott Stringer, Public Advocate Letitia James, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, seven local members of Congress, and 17 members of the City Council, including Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito.

The event was organized by Tony Hoffmann of VID and Allen Roskoff of The Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club.

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Sep 092015
 
Candles-for Clemency

RALLY FOR PRISON JUSTICE  AT HOME OF GOVERNOR CUOMO

 


To protest Governor Andrew Cuomo’s cruel and unjust prison policies, elected officials, celebrities, religious leaders, and other people of conscience will gather for a candlelight vigil to respectfully insist that New York State demonstrate wisdom, mercy, and righteousness.

The rally and vigil will take place at the intersection of Crow Hill Rd. and Millwood Rd.,
in Mount Kisco, on Saturday, September 26 at 7 p.m.

Buses will leave New York City from 10th Avenue, (btw 16th and 17th Sts.) at 5 p.m.
Mount Kisco is also accessible by car and Metro North railroad.

New York State prison policies are in desperate need of reform. Many people are unjustly incarcerated, given unreasonably long sentences and have been placed in solitary confinement.

Prisons hold many elderly, ill and disabled people who have served excessive time, pose no threat to society, and can live productive lives and make a positive contribution to the world. They must be released. Why should people die in prison separated from their loved ones and families?

Why won’t the governor give incarcerated people a second chance? The support for clemency transcends national party lines. But in close to five years, the Cuomo administration has not issued a single clemency to anyone in prison.

In April, the Governor’s counsel, Alphonso David, promised that the governor would begin a process of identifying viable candidates for clemency and to begin issuing clemency to those deemed worthy. But he has reneged on his promise. The Candles for Clemency Rally will help ensure that Governor Cuomo hears and heeds the public demand to reform New York’s prison system, stop playing politics with people’s lives, and show mercy and compassion by issuing clemency to those who deserve it.

Principal sponsors of the rally and vigil are the Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club and the Village Independent Democrats. The event‘s supporters include some of New York’s most respected political, religious, and civic leaders and organizations, prison reformers, and leading figures in arts and entertainment.

Demand justice and compassion. Join us.

For more information, go to https://www.facebook.com/CandlesforClemency or http://jimowles.org/events/2015-candles-for-clemency. Follow us on twitter at CandlesForClemency@candlesfor.

Contacts:
Allen Roskoff
Founder, and Co-Coordinator, Candles for Clemency
President, Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club
aroskoff@mac.com 917-553-7180

Tony Hoffmann
Co-Coordinator, Candles for Clemency
Former President, Village Independent Democrats, at
tonyhoffmann26@gmail.com 212-741-3265

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Jun 052015
 

Stop the Loss of Affordable Housing STOP THE LOSS OF AFFORDABLE HOUSING, JOIN THE FIGHT.

WE ONLY HAVE UNTIL JUNE 15 TO CHANGE THE RENT LAWS.

Get on a FREE bus to Albany to demonstrate for changes in the rent law that will stop the loss of affordable housing.   Advocates and tenants will rally in Albany on Tues., June 9. Buses will leave at 7 a.m. at 135th St. and Fifth Ave. in front of P.S. 197 and will return to New York City at 6 p.m. Transportation is free, and breakfast and lunch are included. To reserve a seat on one of the buses, call Darren at Tenants & Neighbors at 212-608-4320 x316 or contact mia.r.mcdonald@gmail.com

You can also call Gov. Cuomo in Albany at 518-474-8390 or at his NYC office at 212-681-4580

TELL HIM:

  1. DO AWAY WITH VACANCY DECONTROL WHICH LETS RENT STABILIZED APARTMENTS GO TO
    MARKET RATE WHEN THE  RENT REACHES A CERTAIN LEVEL AND CAUSES THE LOSS OF AFFORDABLE
    HOUSING.
  2. HIS PROPOSAL TO RAISE THE RENT LEVEL WHEN THAT CAN HAPPEN BY $200. IS UNACCEPTABLE.

See coverage in The Villager

With the city’s rent laws set to expire this month, tenant advocates are planning to head in force to Albany on Tues., June 9, to lobby for their extension. June 15 is the deadline for the expiration of current rent regulations.

Advocates are seeking an end to vacancy deregulation and a change to the practice of rewarding landlords a 20 percent rent increase for vacated apartments — or even more, if the tenant has resided there for more than eight years.

Currently, vacant apartments can become decontrolled if the rent is as little as $2,100; the 20 percent rent increase pushes the rent to $2,500, which is the threshold for vacancy decontrol.

Use our sample letter and send IMMEDIATELY

The deadline to stop the loss of affordable housing
is June 15, ACT NOW

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Sep 222014
 

VID was well-represented at The People’s Climate March March on Sunday, Sept. 21, 2014.  We’ll give you more background soon, but till then, here are the pictures:

Cincopa WordPress plugin

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