The Community Development Project at the Urban Justice Center strengthens the impact of grassroots organizations in New York City’s low-income and other excluded communities.
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New Report on NYC Public Housing After Sandy
CDP is pleased to share our newest report, Weathering the Storm: Rebuilding a More Resilient New York City Housing Authority Post-Sandy.
The report, using data from 600 surveys, interviews and background research, reveals some of the major issues that NYCHA residents have faced since Hurricane Sandy, such as slow and inadequate repairs, malfunctioning boilers, mold and a lack of job opportunities. The report offers practical and effective solutions that the new NYCHA Chair and City leadership can use as a roadmap as they partner with community-based organizations to assess how to spend Sandy-related funds, revise NYCHA’s emergency procedures and consider broader NYCHA reforms.
This report was produced and written in collaboration with community organizations across the City, including Alliance for a Greater New York (ALIGN), Alliance for a Just Rebuilding (AJR), Community Voices Heard (CVH), Faith in New York (FINY), Families United for Racial and Economic Equality (FUREE), Good Old Lower East Side (GOLES), New York Communities for Change (NYCC) and Red Hook Initiative (RHI).
New Consumer Debt Clinic Schedule – 2014
CDP offers a free monthly consumer debt clinic, open to all low-income New Yorkers. Come consult with an attorney on issues such as credit reporting; medical, credit card or student loan debt; identity theft and harassment from debt collectors. See the flyers below for clinic schedule and location.
City Council Approves Bronx Kingsbridge Ice Center
The city has officially given the OK for the redevelopment of the Kingsbridge Armory in the Bronx into a massive ice-skating facility. Council members voted December 10 to approve the $320 million plan for the Kingsbridge National Ice Center (KNIC), which is expected to create 260 permanent jobs and 890 construction jobs, as well as bring in $1 million to the city annually.
The redevelopment will also provide a boon specifically to Bronx residents, thanks to a community benefits agreement (CBA) negotiated by CDP with the KNIC developer on behalf of a coalition of 27 community-based groups, including the Northwest Bronx Community and Clergy Coalition and the Kingsbridge Armory Redevelopment Alliance. Among other things, hiring preference will be given to Bronx residents, workers will be paid a living wage of at least $10 an hour, and money is to be set aside for a free after-school tutoring and ice-skating program.
Daily News Op-Ed by CDP: New City Administration Should Expand/Support Participatory Budgeting
With 21 new City Council members and a new mayor set to start in January, now is a great opportunity to expand participatory budgeting (PB) in NYC, says CDP’s Director of Research and Policy Alexa Kasdan in a Daily News op-ed. The piece, coauthored with incoming Bronx Council Member Ritchie Torres, offers suggestions to strengthen and expand the process by which New Yorkers can decide how to spend city funds.
Kasdan and Torres advocate for a greater allotment of the City budget to be determined by PB, additional funding for winning projects, dedicated City Council staff to facilitate the process, and larger citywide proposals. These changes were first elaborated in a memo by Community Voices Heard, the Participatory Budgeting Project, and CDP. With the progressive wave currently sweeping City politics, these are opportunities to make government more transparent and inclusive, and should be seized.