Monday, July 16, 2018


By Councilman,  Rubén Díaz Sr.
District 18 Bronx County, New York

  You should know that this coming Thursday July 19th  at 11:00 A.M., the Hispanic Ministers will be conducting a prayer vigil at the steps of City Hall.  
This vigil is being organized by “The Clamor for New York” its President Bishop Luis Paniagua from Brooklyn, and the New York Hispanic Clergy Organization which I preside.    
It is important that you know the need for this prayer vigil. 
First: The City of New York has policies in place that have enabled “Uber” and other such companies to destroy the Yellow Taxi industry which has resulted in suicides among its drivers.   The drivers have found themselves destitute, after having invested so much of their life’s savings to acquire the taxi Medallions at a cost of $1,500,000. Now those Taxi medallions are worth a mere $200,000. Having lost their investments, loss their homes and life’s savings some of these drivers sadly have turned to suicide.  
Also, according to Livery Drivers, they are being persecuted, abused and discriminated against by the Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) and its enforcement agents.   Drivers report numerous incidents of entrapments, drivers are being penalized with outrageous summonses as high as $10,000 and double fines (by the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles and by the NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission) for the same violation.
Second: Crime in the City is spiking.  Homicides, rape, and gang violence are on the rise.   It is predicted that this summer the weather will be one of the hottest, but it will also be very dangerous for residents of the City, especially the most vulnerable - the elderly and children.  
Third: The immigrant community is facing many difficulties which our city and state leaders must unify to address as one single voice.  Leaders must work together to develop comprehensive solutions regarding affordable housing, jobs, education, and health insurance these new immigrants entering the City and State. We must do this without ignoring the pain and suffering of our own children and legal City residents.
Fourth: According to recent Federal inspections of the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA), NYCHA neglected to make necessary boiler repairs, leaving its residents to endure the bitter cold winters without heat and hot water.   NYCHA’s years of failures to repair and paint apartments exposed children to the health hazards of lead paint, causing disease and health ramifications.
Fifth: Currently there are close to 70,000 families living in shelter every night, plus many thousand more homeless in the streets. We have to be sure to take care of our own before we take care of anybody else. 
For this and many other reasons The Hispanic Ministers have a call to prayer.  This prayer vigil on the steps of City Hall is to ask God to intervene on behalf of our city and its people.   We will pray that God protect, guide, and grant our Governor, Mayor, City Council, and state legislators the wisdom needed to help heal our city and state.  Our prayers will be that God guide and intervene so we can work together to bring to fruition an end to the abuses, neglect, and suffering of the most vulnerable population of this city.  
There is much power in prayer.  
I am Councilman Rev. Ruben Diaz and this is what you should know.   

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