Posts Tagged ‘new york city council’

New Immigrant ID Bill – A Door Opener for Immigrants

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

immmigrationidcardThe Municipal ID Bill  designed to help immigrants that was just passed by the New York City Council will become law as soon as it is signed by Mayor Bill de Blasio.

The bill allows NYC residents who can prove residency and identity to obtain a municipal ID card that would permit them to access governmental services such as entering public buildings, obtain a library card, open a bank account and gain access to hospitals to visit patients and to schools to meet with their children’s teachers.

The bill is designed to primarily benefit NYC’s immigrants who face barriers to accessing a government issued form of identification. Similar programs have been implemented in San Francisco, Los Angeles and New Haven.

The Municipal ID program will probably be administered by the Human Resources Administration.  The plan is to have at least one site in each borough where applications will be made available for pick-up and submission. Documents will be required to prove identity and NYC residency.

The law should take effect soon —  six months after it is signed into law by the Mayor.  The administrating agency is permitted to establish a fee for applications for the ID card but will adopt rules permitting residents who cannot afford to pay such a fee to receive a full or partial waiver.

For information about the Municipal ID application process – once it becomes available – or if you have a question about an immigration matter, call the Catholic Charities–managed New York State New Americans Hotline at 1-800-566-7636, Monday through Friday, from 9am to 8pm. Hotline operators can answer questions in up to 200 languages.

 

Msgr. Sullivan Supports Mayor de Blasio’s Just-Announced Plan to Fight Homelessness

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

FLOWERS10169Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration detailed plans on May 19, 2014  to expand and create what is described as the largest and most proven homelessness prevention program in the nation.  The plan, announced by Commissioner Gilbert Taylor at the budget hearing before the New York City Council, focuses on reducing homelessness, transitioning homeless families from shelter into permanent housing, and improving shelter conditions.

Catholic Charities, long a leader in preventing homelessness and serving the homeless, supports this plan.

“With today’s announcement, the Mayor has taken an important and necessary step in addressing this crisis,” said Msgr. Kevin Sullivan, Executive Director, The Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of New York.  “This multi-faceted plan includes programmatic and funding commitments to protect families from losing their homes, while creating housing opportunities for those who currently have little recourse but to spend their nights in shelters.  It contains concrete solutions to help vulnerable populations.”

Specifically, the plan:

 •    Proposes creation of two rent subsidy plans that will assist working families who have been in shelter for more than a year and vulnerable populations

 •    Utilizes targeted supportive housing for high needs populations

 •    Reaffirms the administration’s commitment to assess, improve, and reimagine shelter models to better serves families and individuals before they seek shelter, address their needs while in shelter, and strategically plans for families exiting shelter

•    Invests in better outcomes for homeless households as they achieve independence, creates and develops higher quality shelters with better targeted programming throughout the system, and it reduces reliance on shelter models that do not encourage supportive environments.

 “The blight of homelessness causes suffering to far too many New Yorkers,” Msgr. Sullivan added.  “It is unacceptable.”

Proposed NY Bill Would Limit Detaining, Increase Efficiency

Tuesday, September 13th, 2011

A bill recently introduced in the New York City Council would limit the amount of time a foreign-born person can be detained for immigration purposes after the date of release by New York’s Department of Corrections (DOC). The bill, Intro 656, is supported by a majority of Council members including Speaker Christine Quinn, Daniel Dromm, Melissa Mark-Viverito and 32 other Council members, rendering it veto-proof.

New York City Hall

Intro 656 would prohibit the DOC from using city funds to extend the standard time to hold a non-criminal detainee so that the individual could be picked up by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), provided that: the individual has never been convicted of a misdemeanor or felony; is not a defendant in a pending criminal case; has no other warrants; has not previously been ordered deported; and is not on a terrorist watch list.

Council research has shown that more than 50 percent of the inmates in DOC custody had no prior convictions and, more importantly, that the close ties between DOC and ICE are eroding the trust between immigrants and local law enforcement. This type of mistrust makes immigrant crime victims much less willing to come forward, especially in cases of domestic violence. The bill states that for all of these reasons, the Council finds that cooperation between DOC and ICE cannot be supported by the Council and should not be supported by local tax-payer dollars.

“I am happy that Speaker Quinn is taking action on this important issue — saving the City up to $50 million a year while also protecting immigrants with no prior criminal record from unfair, lengthy detention periods,” said Assemblyman Francisco Moya. “This proposal is tough on crime too, making sure that cooperation does take place in other cases […] this proposal also allows for the necessary cooperation between law enforcement agencies.”