SHELTER WATCH: Pol says Cooper site feels like a jail

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At last week’s Community Board 5 meeting, Councilman Robert Holden detailed his March 6th visit to the Cooper Rapid Re-Housing Center at 78-16 Cooper Avenue.

Holden, who toured the site along with Assemblyman Andrew Hevesi and representatives from other elected officials’ offices, said when he walked in he immediately saw a security station and a metal detector.

They walked to the second floor and ran into another security station. On the other side of the hallway was another security checkpoint with monitors and security guards. They found the same set-up on the third floor.

The elected officials then visited the dormitories, which had ten beds to a room. Holden noted that he felt the space was tight, and that the men were “on top of one another.”

“To me, I felt, this is not a place to live,” he said. “This looked more like a minimum-security jail.

Read more of this week’s shelter watch in the Glendale Register newspaper.

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Pol wants investigation into police response at Sacred Heart

Screen shot via Google Maps

Screen shot via Google Maps

After a concerning incident involving a stranger trying to enter Sacred Heart Catholic Academy, a local politician is calling for an investigation into the NYPD’s poor response.

Councilman Bob Holden wants the 104th Precinct to be probed for its four-hour response time after staff members at the Glendale school called 911 to report a suspicious man lurking around the facility.

Holden says that a man knocked on the door of the school at about 12:30 p.m. on February 25 “while holding a stick-like object” in his hand and wearing a bag over his shoulder.

A faculty member answered the door, followed by the man asking for directions. The faculty member, who felt uncomfortable, closed the door. The man lingered for a few minutes.

Sacred Heart faculty then called 911 twice to report the incident, but no officers arrived until after 4 p.m., according to Holden.

The 104th Precinct’s response was that a car accident with injuries took priority over the situation at the school.

“I am extremely frustrated with the lack of response and urgency from the 104th Precinct,” Holden said.

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SHELTER WATCH: Shelter opponents protest mayor’s town hall

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In the wake of the opening of the Cooper Rapid Rehousing Center at 78-16 Cooper Avenue, opponents of the Glendale shelter took their frustration directly to the mayor.

Last Wednesday, members of the Glendale-Middle Village Coalition protested outside JHS 190 Russell Sage in Forest Hills, where Mayor Bill de Blasio hosted a town hall meeting.

Among those protesting was coalition leader Mike Papa, who was collecting signatures for a petition to “remove and prosecute” the mayor for “crimes against the people of the city.”

“We took the opportunity to see the mayor face to face,” Papa said. “We’re here to let him know he’s not getting away with it.”

Among the “crimes” Papa described were closing Rikers Island and other city jails, opening homeless shelters that he said act as “halfway houses,” and signing high-priced contracts for developers to build those facilities.

Other topics that he wants de Blasio to be investigated for include the ThriveNYC program and the deal that sold the Rivington House on the Lower East Side.

“We’re going to take this to the U.S. Attorney’s office and try to get him investigated and prosecuted for it,” Papa said.

The mayor was booed and heckled by the crowd at the town hall in Forest Hills, which focused on topics like bail reform, the new borough-based jail in Kew Gardens, protected bike lanes on Queens Boulevard and the district school desegregation plan.

De Blasio defended the Glendale shelter as a way to put a roof over the heads of “working people.”

He acknowledged that people don’t want homeless shelters in their neighborhood, but blasted any notions that there were backroom “deals.”

Papa, who has been a vocal opponent of the Glendale shelter, made his goal clear.

“We want to get rid of de Blasio,” he said.

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Infit Nutrition celebrates grand opening

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Glendale’s newest health and nutrition-focused store celebrated its official grand opening over the weekend.

Infit Nutrition, located at 69-44 Cooper Avenue, offers a variety of products to help customers live a healthy lifestyle, whether their goal is to lose weight, gain weight or boost their energy.

Among the options on the menu are low-calorie, low-sugar and high-protein smoothies, teas, bowls and other specialty drinks and snacks.

Owner Jonathan Acosta, who opened Infit Nutrition in January, said the smoothies taste like ice cream and their teas taste like juice, but are all healthy. He said they put aloe in many of their products because it helps clean out the digestive system and burn fat.

“We want people to have healthier options,” he said.

Read more about Infit Nutrition’s grand opening on the Glendale Register here.

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Cooper Avenue shelter is now open

The proposed homeless shelter in Glendae on Cooper Avenue

The proposed homeless shelter in Glendae on Cooper Avenue

The Department of Homeless Services (DHS) officially opened the Cooper Rapid Rehousing Center on Friday.

The transitional housing facility at 78-16 Cooper Avenue will provide “high-quality shetler and dedicated employment services” to single adult men experiencing homelessness, a DHS spokesperson said.

The facility welcomed eight men on its opening day, and will gradually increase the number of residents over the next few weeks.

“We look forward to welcoming and supporting more neighbors in need at this location over the next few weeks,” a DHS spokesperson said in a statement. “Working together with service provider Westhab and the community, we’re confident that we will make this the best experience it can be for these individuals as they get back on their feet.”

DHS will also set up a community advisory group that will provide a phone line for community members to call with concerns or issues.

Read more about the opening of the shelter in this week’s Shelter Watch in the Glendale Register.

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Local medical center implements new breast cancer identifying technology

EMU_Logo_HealthEMU Health in Glendale, Queens is now using the SAVI SCOUT® surgical guidance system; innovative technology that allows their Radiologists to more accurately pinpoint lesions prior to surgery.

This new, sophisticated technology helps surgeons with tumor localization, surgical planning, surgical guidance, and confirmation of the tissue to be removed.

 

“The Savi Scout surgical guidance system allows surgeons to pinpoint a lesion with more accuracy prior to surgery, while also alleviating the need for a patient to visit radiology on the morning of surgery,” said Efrat Yaish, Chief Medical Officer of EMU Health in Glendale.

The SAVI SCOUT® uses radar technology and guides the surgeon to precisely target the breast tissue during a lumpectomy or excisional biopsy procedure, plan the incision and direct surgery. The end result is a smoother, simpler and more efficient day of surgery.

Top doctors in NYC practice at EMU Health Center; a modern healthcare facility offering  various multi-specialty health services, such as Radiology, Women’s Health / OBGYN, Orthopedics,

You can contact EMU Health to learn more or schedule an appointment by calling 718.849.8700 or by emailing info@emuhealth.com.

Savy Scout For Breast Surgery

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CB5 chair pens letter blasting DOB on Glendale shelter

The proposed homeless shelter in Glendae on Cooper Avenue

The proposed homeless shelter in Glendale on Cooper Avenue.

Community Board 5 is still not getting the answers it needs from city agencies about the planned homeless shelter at 78-16 Cooper Avenue in Glendale.

On Tuesday, CB5 Chair Vincent Arcuri Jr. penned a letter to Derek Lee, the Queens borough commissioner for the Department of Buildings, blasting his agency for not helping the board obtain amended documents.

“Once again, I must express my displeasure with how your Department is handling the review and filings for the above referenced job,” Arcuri wrote.

According to Arcuri, drawings of the site indicate that the dormitory-style residence will have 210 beds in 22 rooms on two floors.

The CB5 chair asked Lee what has been approved for occupancy at the location, since the project appears to be creating a residence facility that doesn’t comply with the city’s Multiple Dwelling laws.

Arcuri also brought up questions about how the former manufacturing warehouse complies with the city’s zoning code, particularly as transient hotels are not permitted within M1 districts.

“We are completely confused with what has been filed for the above-referenced job,” he wrote, “and dismayed by the fact that the current approved documents are not available for us to review.”

The topic is sure to come up at CB5’s monthly meeting, which is set for Wednesday, February 12 at 7:30 p.m. at Christ the King High School. in Middle Village.

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Community board application deadline extended to March 13

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If you haven’t sent in your community board application yet, don’t fret!

Acting Borough President Sharon Lee has extended the deadline for qualified and civic-minded applicants to Friday, March 13.

That means you’ll have six additional weeks from the original January 31 deadline to submit completed, signed and notarized applications to the BP’s office.

“The extension is to ensure that the pool of applicants is as robust as possible,” Lee said.

The community board application can be found online here.

There are 14 community boards in Queens. The boards hold hearings and issue recommendations on the city budget, municipal service delivery, land use and other matters that impact the community.

The borough president appoints all of the members, but the local City Council representative nominates half of the appointments.

Each member serves a two-year term.

For this upcoming round of appointments, the two-year term begins on April 1, 2020.

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Crowley picks up key union endorsements in BP bid

Former Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley, a candidate for Queens borough president, has earned the endorsements of two major unions in New York City.

Last week, Transport Workers Union (TWU) Local 100 endorsed Crowley, with their president Tony Utano saying they’re confident she “has the best plan to protect and create thousands of transportation jobs.”

In response, Crowley said she will prioritize new rail projects like the QNS Rail, for which she’s been a strong advocate, and oppose the “scaling back” of bus lines in Queens.

This week, Crowley announced the backing of another union, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local Union 3, representing some 30,000 workers.

Crowley has also been leading the pack in fundraising. According to the latest Campaign Finance Board summary, the former councilwoman and Glendale resident has more than $219,000 on hand – far outpacing other leading candidates like Councilman Costa Constantinides and Councilman Donovan Richards.

The candidate closest to Crowley in terms of fundraising was Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer, who has dropped out of the race.

On Tuesday, Crowley released her latest campaign video, which you can see below:

We’ll keep you posted on her campaign for Queens borough president as we get closer to the special election on March 24.

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Rep. Grace Meng hosts supply drive for Puerto Rico

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From January 15 until February 5, Congresswoman Grace Meng is hosting an emergency supply drive to help the people of Puerto Rico following the devastating earthquake that recently struck the island.

Meng is collecting basic necessities such as water, first aid kits, flashlights, non-perishable foods, batteries, baby formula, diapers and feminine hygiene products.

Supplies can be dropped off at her Flushing district office at 40-13 159th Street, Suite C. Drop-off hours at Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

“Our brothers and sisters in Puerto Rico have been devastated by the earthquakes that have hit the island, and my heart aches for all who have been impacted,” Meng said. “Even more heartbreaking is that these earthquakes have struck as many residents continue to recover from Hurricane Maria.”

“We must not sit by and allow our fellow Americans to suffer,” she added. “We must assist them in their time of need.”

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