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EDITORIAL

NO FEE LUNCH
As the federal government and New York State
choke off billions in funding for essential ser-
vices, the Metropolitan Transportation
Authority is not the only agency out there
demanding fee hikes like a troll at an East
River bridge.
By the time you read this, the city Water
Board will have likely passed a 6.5 percent rate
increase. Those fees have increased more than
fourfold since Mayor Koch first created a bond
agency for water and sewage; they now cost a
household about $500 a year, up from about
$85 in the late 1980s. It's for the best that
essential long-term projects aren't subject to
the vicissitudes of the city budget.
But when it turns to fees, the city also has
to do everything in its power to make sure that
they are a boon as much as a burden, particu-
larly for poor people. Several years ago, the
Water Board capped rates for low-income co-
ops overwhelmed by water bills, on the condi-
tion that the buildings plug leaks in their
plumbing. A billing transaction became a con-
servation program, one that was recently
extended through the end of 2004.
If the Bloomberg administration is going to
continue to rely on fees for revenue, it must
commit to such creative solutions, serving larg-
er public goals while minimizing the burdens
on those least able to pay. Increased parking
fines are a baby step, but London has it right:
traffic congestion pricing- requiring payment
for use of a scarce public commodity with high
impact on infrastructure and the environ-
ment-can turn a noxious problem into a
manageable benefit. Likewise, "pay as you
throw," a scheme that some cities use to bill
households for trash disposal proportionately
to the amount they produce, could transform
New York's half-billion-dollar-a-year garbage
sinkhole into a sustainable public service.
MTA fare hikes, of course, are a loser, any
way you count them.
***
It's with more respect and appreciation than
I can fit into this space that City Limits says
goodbye to Senior Editor Annia Ciezadio, who
for the past three years as a writer and editor
Cover photo by Joshua Farley. Mabel Rosenheck, April 24 protest outside the office of State Senator Serphin Maltese.
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has been a driving creative force behind this
magazine. Groundbreaking, impeccably
reported, and deeply moving-Annias work is
all three. And we welcome Debbie Nathan,
who will be channeling the energies she
brought to high-impact national freelance
reporting into New York City and its neigh-
borhoods.
I'm also ecstatic to announce that Associate
Editor Matt Pacenza has won the Columbia
Graduate School of Journalism's Mike Berger
Prize, honoring his compelling coverage of the
lives of ordinary New Yorkers. It's one of only
a few times in more than four decades the
Berger Prize has gone to a publication other
than the city's major newspapers. Congratula-
tions, Matt!
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Editor
SECOND FLOOR
El evators & Private Walk-Up Entrance
Ac ross fram City Hall
15 SUPER BARRIO MAN
Hector Figueroa leads a new wave of savvy organizers
reinventing, and radicalizing, the city's union for
janitors and doormen-provoking everyone from
his own members to the Manhattan DA.
By Hilary Russ
18 THE STEALTH WAR
All may be quiet on the rent laws front, but right behind the
silence the forces hoping to end rent regulation lie waiting. How
this spring's lack of rent rancor may spell doom for tenants.
By Robert Neuwirth
24 MISREPRESENTING FAMILIES
Absurdly low fees for attorneys who represent
poor parents in family court aren't just a problem
for counsel: Parents who can't find lawyers can't
get their kids out of foster care, either.
By Wendy Davis
CONTENTS
5 FRONTLINES: BRONX'S EXERCISE ENTERPRENEUR ... CALL 1-800-SCRWYOU ... TOUR DE
DUMBO ... WILL GOV SHUT PSYCH WARDS? .. SCHOOLS OF NO RESORT ... A QUEENS TEENS
NAVY ... PRAXIS CLEANS UP: NOT!.. .A SURVIVOR'S STORY
11 SOBRO GOES SOHO
Elected officials are charging forward on their plan to make
the South Bronx safe for sculptors and shoppers, but what about the
people who live and work there now?
By Carolyn Bigda
The Future of Public Life
28 THE BIG IDEA
Take a shaky health care system that grew too fast. Add recession. Stir in
Dubya's new deregulation plan. What do you get? Medicaid's collapse.
JUNE 2003
By Kai Wright
2 EDITORIAL
40 JOB ADS
31 CITY LIT
Random Family: Love, Drugs, Trouble, and Coming of Age in the Bronx,
by Adrian LeBlanc. Reviewed by Clarence A. Haynes.
Doiia Julia and Other Selected Poems, by Alberto O. Cappas.
Reviewed by Kenyon Farrow.
35 MAKING CHANGE
Big corporations are running low on cash for charities,
so they're donating something that may be more valuable
in the long run-their employees.
By Mark Lowery
37 NYC INC.
If the city's serious about making downtown thrive, a
small investment in wireless technology will pay huge
dividends. By Jordan Silbert
42 PROFESSIONAL DIRECTORY
46 OFFICE OF THE CITY VISIONARY
3
LETTERS
A PERFECT TAX
Two pieces in your March 2003 issue made
imponant points that need to be considered
together.
In "Future Shock," Mary-Powel Thomas
described, depressingly, how slowly New York
State is moving to upgrade its energy mix from
fossil and nuclear fuels, to non-polluting
renewable energy sources like solar and wind
power. And as].W Mason pointed out, in "Tax
Evasion," because lower-income citizens tend
to be heavier users of public services, taxes that
finance such services aren't necessarily regres-
sive even when paid equally by rich and poor
families.
The logical convergence of these two
insights is to broaden government's revenue
base by taxing the carbon content of fossil
fuels.
A carbon tax of a dime per gallon of gaso-
line would generate $2 billion a year for New
York State. Ramped up to a quarter after a few
years, the statewide take would be $5 billion.
This revenue would go a long way toward re-
floating New York State's foundering budget
and staving off deeply damaging cutbacks. It
would also discourage use of fossil fuels, thus
diminishing New York's "contribution" to
global warming and other disastrous climate
change.
Only a third of the revenue from a carbon
tax would come from gasoline itsel The rest
would be generated from other fuels: coal, nat-
ural gas and petroleum products used in every-
thing from air travel to electricity generation.
A carbon tax would be explicitly ecological.
Every penny would act as a direct inducement
to buy higher-mileage cars, take the train or
bike instead of driving, move downtown,
weather-strip, downsize McMansions, build
windmills, install solar cells, and recycle. This
would be particularly true if the tax were mar-
keted as the global warming antidote it is.
Governor Pataki's January pledge to raise
New York's renewable electricity by 8 percent-
age points over 10 years is a sad contrast.
Though lauded by many environmentalists,
this Band-Aid won't even make a dent in car-
bon emissions. An entirely predictable increase
in the demand for power, at the historical rate
of 1 percent a year, will effectively wipe out the
entire shift to clean power.
Actually reducing use of coal, oil, gas and
nuclear fuels in power generation is evidently
not part of the Pataki program. Nor is reducing
fuel use in transportation and other sectors that
account for more than 70 percent of green-
house gas emissions.
A carbon-based fossil fuels tax will fight pol-
lution and bring in billions for schools, health
care and other social services, without discrim-
inating against anyone region, class or eco-
nomic sector. For these reasons, a carbon tax
merits enthusiastic support from Greens,
unions and traditional liberals alike.
Charles Komanoff
Bridge Tolls Advocacy Project
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CITY LIMITS
Volume XXVIII Number 6
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CITY LIMITS
A
I
FRONT LINES
Carey Kir1<ella
Salsa and Sweat
FOR SOME, THE VIEW FROM THE TREADMILLS at EI Gym is breathtaking: A
Burger King sits just across East 149th Street. Felix Velazquez just hopes
his bay windows, shiny weight machines and thumping merengue are
enough to pull local residents away from their Whoppers and fries.
Last October, Velazquez lefr behind a career in social work to open
El Gym in Mott Haven. Most recently director of the Roberto Clemente
Center, a mental health clinic on the Lower East Side, he had grown
frustrated with the work and with the health care bureaucracy. He says
he got tired of watching the revolving door return the same clients with
the same problems. So he embarked on a business that he hopes will
help his customers change their lifestyles for better long-term mental
and physical health.
A native of Puerto Rico, Velazquez chose Mort Haven for its large His-
panic population-and for the area's extensive environmental and health
problems. About 14 percent of South Bronx residents have diabetes and
27 percent are obese (compared to 18 percent citywide), according to a
recent study by the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, which
ranked the Bronx as the most overweight borough in the city.
Now, El Gym is one of a handful of exercise facilities in the South
Bronx. While he has drawn in only 400 members so far, Velazquez is doing
JUNE 2003
what he can to appeal to local tastes. He doesn't have a swimming pool or
Pilates classes, he says, adjusting his gold-rimmed glasses, "but I do have
salsa aerobics. We'll teach you mambo steps. You're going to hear the most
wicked Puerto Rican and Dominican music and Mexican rock 'n' roll."
He's also keeping the price down, charging $150 a year, substantially
less than some of the Manhattan chains, which charge up to $100
a month.
Still he admits he has his work cut out for him. Physical exercise is not
a regular part of many people's routines in this community, where park
space is limited and sports programs sparse. "Most parents are not active,
and in the Hispanic culture, a chubby kid is a healthy kid," says Pamela
Darby, director of nutritional services at the Children's Health Fund,
which runs programs at the South Bronx Health Center. She also blames
the high obesity rate on typically unaffordable gym fees and the lack of
fresh produce at local bodegas.
Velazquez is determined to make his business different from his expe-
rience in social work. At his old job, "you got the sense that it's a revolv-
ing door," he says. "The only thing that changes is their name. This is an
act of love, a commitment to a lifestyle."
-Lindsay Pollock
s
FRONT LINES
The state punishes
inmates who want
to make cheaper
calls home.
By Lizzy Ratner
WHEN BRIAN PRINS was released from prison on
May 3, 2002, the first thing he did-before he
saw his parents, before he met with his friends,
before he bought himself a decent meal-was
head to the small office in Rockville Center,
Long Island, that a friend had set up for him. It
was a mess, but Prins was "overly joyed" because
it would soon house the business venture he'd
dreamed up while behind bars. With his new
company, Outside Connection Inc., he planned
to reduce the crippling phone rates prisoners'
families are forced to pay to keep in touch with
their loved ones.
Prins spent five years in prison, from age 29
to 34, serving out charges of aggravated assault
and criminal possession of stolen car transmis-
sions, which he intended to sell to support his
cocaine addiction. He managed to kick that
6
Criminal Phone Bills
habit in prison, and instead became obsessed
with the steep charges his parents incurred each
time he called home.
New York State prison rules require inmates
to make collect calls through MCI WoridCom's
"Maximum Security" service. The plan charges
Rolls Royce rates that add up quickly for
inmates' families. The result, says Prins' father:
phone bills as high as $1,000 a month.
So Prins devised a way to cut cosrs in half.
With his "call routing technologies," he could
provide a family with a telephone number local
to their relative's prison. When the inmate dials
that number, Outside Connection then re-
routes the call to the family's home number,
sparing them MCl's hefty long-distance rates.
The idea appealed to inmates' families. With-
in his first few months in business, Prins says he
signed up "hundreds" of customers. Their call
rates shrank from up to 38 cents a minute to an
average of 12 cents.
But in late August 2002, a powerful alliance
of big business and state government took aim at
Prins' operation. First, MCI began blocking
inmates' calls to Outside Connection customers.
Then, pointing to security concerns, the New
York State Department of Corrections declared
the company illegal and, says Prins, initiated its
own series of blocks: The agency refused to place
Outside Connection phone numbers on its list
of approved call numbers, effectively barring
those inmates from calling home.
Within no time, families began canceling
their accounts with Outside Connection.
Then in February, the Corrections Depart-
ment took its most severe steps: It threatened
inmates with solitary confinement if they used
Prins' phone service. The agency also declared
Outside Connection solicitation leners "con-
traband, " and in a memo ordered prison super-
intendents to return the letters to the sender "at
the expense of the inmate" or destroy them.
The company now has one-third the num-
ber of customers it had at its height last fall,
and Prins has laid off two of his seven employ-
ees and taken a 75 percent pay cut.
In retrospect, this crackdown should have
come as no surprise to Prins. Since 1996, MCI
has held a contract with the Department of Cor-
rections that gives the company exclusive control
over prison telephone services and allows it to
jack prices as high as 38 cents a minute and
charge $3.95 hook-up fees. In exchange, the
state keeps over 60 percent of MCl's revenues.
The state expected to net roughly $24 million
last year (actual figures were not available).
The state prison system defends this policy,
explaining that its cut goes into the Inmate Ben-
efit Fund to provide additional services to pris-
oners. Critics counter that the money initially fil-
ters into the state's general fund, and that the dol-
lars that do end up in the fund pay for services-
like AIDS medication and treatment-that the
department is already required to supply.
"Effectively, this is a tax that's been imposed
on inmates' families without legislation," says
Barbara Olshansky, an attorney with the Cen-
ter for Constitutional Rights. In 2000, Olshan-
sky ftled two class action lawsuits on behalf of
inmates' families in New York State against
MCI and the Department of Corrections. In
seeking $90 million in damages for the families
and an end to the contract, she charges that the
arrangement violates freedom of speech,
imposes taxation without representation and
allows monopolistic business practices.
"The whole thing is done in a very anti-
competitive way so that MCl can charge the
highest price and the state can get a kickback, "
she says. Noting that most of her clients are
low-income, she adds that MCI and New York
State "are preying on the most disenfranchised
part of the population. They actually prevent
you from talking to people you love."
The state case is in claims court and the fed-
CITY LIMITS
eral case is still awaiting a decision.
This exclusive deal between a major telecom company
and a state prison system is by no means an isolated phe-
nomenon. Most states, with a few notable exceptions like
Missouri and Nebraska, have struck similar agreements
with major telephone carriers.
And indeed, throughout New York State, thousands of
families have had [0 ration phone calls with loved ones, or
else forego food, clothing, medication, or other necessities
[0 pay their bills. When neither of those solutions has
worked, many have simply had their phone service cut.
"Basically, I work two jobs," says Gillian Bennett of
Albany, who spends between $300 and $600 a month [0
talk to her husband at the Mohawk Correctional Facility
in Rome, New York. "My paycheck goes in[O my phone
bill, bur I don't want [0 work to pay a phone bill. "
So, Bennett was relieved when she discovered Out-
side Connection. Within one month, her phone bill
dropped to less than $50.
But she didn't get to enjoy the service for long. Weeks
later, MCI began blocking her husband's calls home.
Then the Department of Corrections threatened him
with 90 days in solitary confinement. It was only after he
pleaded guilty [0 call-forwarding charges that prison offi-
cials agreed to reduce his punishment to 30 days without
commissary, TV, recreation, phone or package privileges.
The Corrections Department acknowledges punish-
ing a number of inmates for using what it calls an "ille-
gal call-forwarding service. "
"Any inmate violating telephone rules is disciplined,"
says Linda Foglia, spokesperson for the agency. To avoid
undermining prison telephone security measures, she
says, "There is no third-party calling."
Bur Prins bristles at these explanations. "Please make this
very clear: Outside Connection does not offer a call-for-
warding feature for cus[Omers to change the location of calls
at will," he says. "This is a point-A to point-B product."
As for the department's securiry concerns, Prins describes
them as more ruse than realiry. "I designed the system not [0
interfere with security," he says, explaining that he offered to
supply the agency with billing information for inmate calls
on a daily basis. "I said they could have full access [0 my serv-
er, everything, including my books. But it is not in the
department's best interest to allow me to do business."
He is still hopeful that he can get back [0 building up
his business. In March, he filed a petition with the Feder-
al Communications Commission charging that MCI and
the Corrections Department broke the law by harassing
his customers and interfering with his business. While the
FCC has previously called for more competition in the
prison telephone industry, Prins fears that a decision will
not come soon enough (it is expected by November).
Meanwhile, cancellations continue. "If! don't get help
from the FCC, I'm destroyed," he says. "And it means
that New York State and MCI are going to be free to rip
people off even more. "
Lizzy Ratner is a Manhattan-based freelance writer.
JUNE 2003
URBANlEGEND
FRONTllNES
Karen Overton
Bicycle
entrepreneur and
activist
DUMBD
KAREN OVERTON does not
look Dominican. But when
Yoandy Ramirez' high school
shut down a few years ago,
he says, Overton-white,
blonde and blue-eyed-
"made believe that she was
my moms, " to help her
young student get his tran-
script for his new school.
Overton's main job is as the director of Recycle-a-Bicycle, New York's only bicycle recy-
cling program, but it's her generosity and resourcefulness, like she showed Ramirez, that
makes her legendary among friends and co-workers.
Recycle-a-Bicycle started in 1994 when Overton, then working at the transit advocacy
group Transportation Alternatives, commandeered a Washington Heights middle school
classroom to teach kids how to fix bikes, from patching flat tires to overhauling clunky han-
dlebars. At first, Overton learned right along with the kids. But seven years later, the 40-
year-old Massachusetts native is a skilled mechanic-with the sinewy forearms to prove it.
Now independent of Transportation Alternatives, the program has expanded to four
schools, nearly doubled its annual number of students, opened two retail shops, and cur-
rently employs eight full-time staff, some of them former program graduates-including
Ramirez, now a shop manager. In addition to its school-based classes, the program also
encourages young cyclists ages 10 to 18 to map their neighborhoods-and explore the
city-via three bike riding clubs.
The point of it all, says Overton, is twofold: recycling and youth job training. With the
current waste disposal and budget crises, she reasons, turning trash to cash makes sense.
"We have to educate the government that [recycling] is a good use of their time and
money," she says, pointing to the steady sales at their shops. For their part, the kids learn
a marketable skill and, with enough hard work, ride away with a bike they put together
themselves.
Blending social justice with retail business has won support from local funders. Long
supported by groups focusing on youth or environmental issues, Recycle-a-Bicycle recently
won a grant from Seed co. The grant, aimed at supporting business ventures with a social
mission, gave Overton a chance to develop the business end of her work. Recycle-a-Bicycle
won out, says Seedco's director Jaycee Pribulsky, because "Karen is the quintessential entre-
preneur, always looking for new opportunities to expand her work. "
That Overton is winning grants for a unique combination of mission and business isn't
surprising; having built the program from the ground up, she's been doing intense multi-
tasking for years. "She's running two businesses, writing grants, planning functions, doing
clerical work. And mechanics. And holds a relationship. At the same time," marvels the
Brooklyn shop's manager, Noah Harper. "It's pretty Renaissance."
-Tracie McMillan
7
FRONT LINES
Psyching Out the Bronx
How a Pataki
plan rips off
the mentally ill.
By Maura McDermntt
MARY MARCO, AN ElEGANT, soft-spoken woman,
spends a lot of her time on the grounds of the
Bronx Psychiatric Center, but she doesn't have
to. It's been nearly 20 years since the keeper of
the hospital's gift shop called the wards home.
She credits her long tenure without hospi-
talization to the support of her sister Paulina
Magnetti, with whom she lives in the Country
Club section of the Bronx, as well as to the reg-
ular counseling sessions she gets at nearby Jaco-
bi Medical Center and the medication she takes
for schizophrenia.
Marco is one of thousands of New Yorkers
who are able to live outside of the state's hulk-
ing psychiatric hospitals thanks to neighbor-
hood-based treatments and services.
In fact, it's for the sake of those local servic-
es-as well as for reducing New York State's
$11.5 billion budget gap-that Governor Pata-
ki has proposed closing the Bronx Psychiatric
Center and Children's Psychiatric Center and
three other state-run psychiatric facilities in
8
Middletown, Elmira and Syracuse.
"Do we continue to fund beds at the
expense of community beds that are needed,
or do we consolidate somewhat?" asks Roger
Klingman, spokesperson for the state Office of
Mental Health.
The answer, it seems, is neither.
A month before the governor announced
his plans to close the five hospitals, he vetoed a
bill that would have put the Community Men-
tal Health Reinvestment Act back into effect by
this July. First passed a decade ago, the law
required that money saved ftom cutting psy-
chiatric beds go toward counseling at Medic-
aid-financed clinics and small residential hous-
ing facilities.
During the law's eight-year lifespan (it
expired in 2001), the state eliminated about
5,000 psychiatric hospital beds, leaving 4,200
in the system. Local mental health service
providers did see some of the savings-$212
million, according to the state comptroller's
office. But another $100 million, by some esti-
mates, was diverted into the state's general fund.
The law "has failed to live up to its promise,"
says Joseph Glazer, president and chief executive
officer of the Mental Health Association in New
York State. That loss, he says, has resulted in
treatment programs for the mentally ill "bartling
for the scraps from the table." So why should the
governor be trusted now? he asks.
Pataki's December veto is hardly a promis-
ing sign. Explaining that he rejected the rein-
vestment bill because state law prohibits the
legislarure from determining how funding is
appropriated, Pataki promised to include a new
version of the law in the state budget, which as
of late April was still under negotiations.
But even if the governor's bill passes, it will
not take effect until next summer, too late to
ensure that at least some of the savings from the
hospital closures go to neighborhood services,
advocates for the mentally ill say. The three
upstate hospitals are slated to shut their doors
by July 1; the $16.7 million saved will go
directly into the state's general fund.
Assemblyman Peter Rivera, chair of the
Assembly's Mental Health Committee, has spon-
sored rival legislation that would immediately sal-
vage that money for community services.
Still, Rivera's top prioriry is keeping the Bronx
facilities open, despite state budget officials' claims
that closing them would save $74 million. He
says he's received 100,000 letters and petitions
from people as fur away as Sweden and China
who support the effort to save the hospitals.
The aggrieved writers' primary complaints:
The Bronx would become the only borough
without its own state psychiatric hospital, and
the state would lose its only wards designed for
Spanish-speakers. Moving patients to Pilgrim
State Psychiatric Center in Central Islip, Long
Island, and Creedmore Psychiatric Center in
Queens-as Pataki proposes- would alienate
them from their families. (Upstate patients
would also be shifted to far-away hospitals.)
And if patients' only options are living
hours away from their families or living on the
streets, they might choose the streets. "For a
small percentage of people ... there may be a
seriously violent episode, the kind we read
about in the papers and that we really shudder
about," says Dr. Robert Lowinger, a psychia-
trist at the Bronx facility and an executive
board member of the Public Employees Feder-
ation, which opposes the closures.
Even the Bronx's neighborhood-based pro-
grams consider the hospital a hub of psychiatric
services in the borough. Noris Colon, founder
and executive director of HOGAR, a South
Bronx housing program and clinic serving 27
people with psychiatric illnesses, many of
whom don't speak English, says closing the hos-
pital would kill her program.
"If they close down, " she says, "I close down
with them."
Maura McDermott is a Bronx-based writer.
CITY LIMITS
Depression Awareness
THE STATE WELFARE AGENCY cannot penalize
welfare recipients with mental illnesses for
missing appointments or paperwork deadlines,
according to a recent court decision.
In February, a New York State Appellate
Court ruled in favor of Juana Diaz, a Manhat-
tan resident who lost her public assistance in
January 2001 after she failed to respond to a
request for information about her income from
the state Office of Temporary and Disability
Assistance (OTDA).
Diaz argued that she forgot about the form
-====I!4JtJ=&A='ffO:t4===
Older Kids Lose Out
EDUCATION OFFICIALS are quietly pushing a plan
to reorganize six alternative high schools for the
system's oldest and hardest-to-serve students-
a plan that could eliminate seats for older stu-
dents in the future.
Department of Education officials have told
administrators at the Bushwick Outreach
of six city schools for students ages
17 to 21 with few school credits--that they plan
to merge their program in September with rwo
other Brooklyn schools, Two Bridges Academy
and Bedford-Stuyvesant Outreach. Students at
Flushing Outreach say their teachers told them
their school will also be reconfigured in the fall.
Each program would remain in its current
location and continue to serve kids with disci-
JUNE 2003
and missed the deadline because she is clini-
cally depressed. A medical report she present-
ed to the state explained that she is "easily
overwhelmed" and "acutely depressed and
dysfunctional." Still, the state would not rein-
state her benefits, arguing that depression is
not a medical condition. That decision was
upheld at her fair hearing.
The state appeals court saw it differently,
however. If a welfare client can show "good
cause" for failing to comply with certain
requirements, state law says, that client is
exempt from those mandates. Good cause, the
panel of judges pointed out, includes physical or
mental conditions such as clinical depression.
This ruling sets a precedent for people with
mental disabilities, and could affect thousands
plinary and attendance problems, but would be
required to enroll 16-year-olds and to institute
a uniform curriculum.
Department of Education officials would
not comment for this story.
While critics of the Outreach programs call
the schools troubled, staff and students at Bush-
wick Outreach say their school has been a much
better alternative to their neighborhood school.
They fear the proposed change will limit the
seats available to older students in the future,
since the building is already at capacity. The
space crunch could push those students to the
streets or to already overburdened GED pro-
grams intended for adults.
"Bushwick is a poor neighborhood with a big
lack of services for young people," says Jesus Gon-
zalez, 17, a Bushwick Outreach student who is
leading a petition drive to start their own school.
"If you take away Bushwick Outreach, you're real-
ly hurting the furure of a lot of young people. "
FRONT LINES
of New Yorkers on welfare. A study published
in February 2000 by the Center on Budget and
Policy Priorities estimated that "roughly one-
fourth to one-third of current [Temporary
Assistance for Needy Families] recipients have a
serious mental health problem."
In New York City, that would mean berween
44,000 and 59,000 clients. (The Human
Resources Administrations reports that 176,311
adults received benefits this February.)
The Appellate Division also offered a sur-
prisingly stinging rebuke of OTDA. "Regret-
tably, this is not the first time we have found
that an administrative agency ... has used a per-
son's incapacity against her."
A spokesperson for OTDA declined to
comment. -Marley Seaman
In 1980, then-Schools Chancellor Frank
Macchiarola started the schools to serve
dropouts or kids on the verge ofleaving school,
many of whom have a record of disciplinary
problems and too few credits to get into other
programs like night schools.
Since then, the success of those schools has
been mixed. "There might be exceptions, but
most of the Outreach centers, in my opinion, are
horrible," says Jill Chaiferz, director of Advocates
for Children, an education watchdog. "In most
cases, there is virtually no curriculum, the stu-
dents aren't getting their homework, and the
kids aren't getting any credit-bearing classes. "
Add to that the federal No Child Left Behind
Act of2002, which bars schools that do not grant
traditional diplomas from receiving federal fund-
ing. The Outreach schools have specific gradua-
tion requirements but do not issue degrees; to get
one, students must bring their Outreach tran-
scripts to the school they previously attended.
Scill, Bushwick students and parents say their
program should stay as is. While only a few stu-
dents finish on the traditional four-year time-
line, the school graduates over 100 students a
year, nearly one-third of its student body. At
nearby Bushwick High School, the four-year
graduation rate in 2001 was just 24 percent.
So with the support of Make the Road By
Walking, a local nonprofit, the students have
been circulating a petition calling for an accred-
ited, independent school at which students, par-
ents and teachers would design a curriculum
focusing on Latino and African cultures, and
keep focus on older students.
"The teachers here .are really there for you,"
says student Angelica Payano, 18. "Instead of
shutting us down, they should be seeing how it
works and take our model to other schools."
-Daniel Hendrick
9
FRONT LINES
A New Crew
DAWN LADSON USED TO PLAY basketball. Then
she heard about the college scholarships avail-
able for girls who row. Now she can't wait to get
out on the water.
''Anybody can play basketball," she says. "I
row to make my mark as an individual."
The 16-year-old from Queens is part of
Row New York, a nonprofit sports program
started last year as a step toward bolstering pub-
lic school sports in New York. "Sports are not a
special treat, " says program founder Amanda
Kraus, herself a rower. "All kids should have the
opportunity to participate."
But in New York, many don't. According to
New Visions for Public Schools, due to budg-
etary constraints, only 10 percent of the city's
public school students participate in after-
school sports at their schools.
Emphasizing the value in physical activity
and team camaraderie, Kraus says she saw the
benefits at work during her time with a similar
group called GROW Boston in Massachusetts.
After spending the 2002 season teaching
eight girls from Queens the basics of the sport-
"It was just about seeing if the boat would float,"
says Kraus-she is now readying her team of 13-
to 18-year-old girls for its first competitive race.

New Director, Old Ties
THE NEW ACTING DIRECTOR of Praxis Housing
Initiatives, chosen in mid-April as investiga-
tions into the group's spending practices con-
tinued, may have a record as questionable as
the directors he's replacing, according to former
Praxis officials and colleagues, who say the
appointment does nothing to quell concerns
about the future of the organization.
Last month, the Praxis board of directors
named Avi Fichman, the group's chief financial
officer since last summer, to run the organiza-
tion's day-to-day operations after former direc-
tors Gordon Duggins and G. Sterling Zins-
meyer unexpectedly resigned.
Fichman's history with the organization is
almost as old as Praxis itselE From 1997 to early
1999, he served as Zinsmeyer's assistant at the
AIDS housing and social services group, accord-
ing to Duggins' anorney Jeffrey Hoffman; he also
worked as a paid consultant organizing political
10
Working with Flushing High School and
YMCAs in Queens, Kraus recruited 15 girls for
this year's tearn. Thanks to equipment donations
and $120,000 from individuals and a handful of
foundations, she is able to cover expenses.
This spring, the team will take on its first
race, against Beach Channel High School.
They'll face off on Meadow Lake in Flushing
Meadow Corona Park, where Olympic rowers
will compete if New York City wins its bid to
host the Olympics in 2012.
Kraus admits starting a basketball or baseball
tearn is a lot cheaper, but she hopes in the long
events for Zinsmeyer, who was then president of
the Stonewall Democrats, a gay political club.
In his job at Praxis, several former employees
say, Fichman was responsible for preparing
money transfers between Praxis' bank accounts.
A few months ago, following a report in City
Limits, some of those transfers raised red flags
with the U.S. Attorney's office, federal Depart-
ment of Housing and Urban Development,
State Attorney General and city Department of
Investigation. These agencies are currently inves-
tigating whether Praxis shifted hundreds of
thousands of dollars in public funds from the
nonprofit's bank accounts into for-profit enter-
prises owned by Zinsmeyer and Duggins.
"It would be impossible for Avi not to have
known about those transfers," says former Prax-
is comptroller Hugo Puya, who worked regular-
ly with Fichman during that time. "His job was
to do anything Sterling asked-and that specif-
ically included preparing the transfers. "
After leaving Praxis, Fichman served as vice
president for administration and finance at the
Postgraduate Center for Mental Health
(PCMH), which administers about $15 mil-
lion in federal Housing Opportunities for Peo-
run her tearn members will have a leg up when it
comes to college applications. Rowing "is the
fastest-growing women's spott in the NCAA, "
says Kraus, referring to the National Collegiate
Athletic Association. She credits Title IX, the
1972 statute that prohibits sex discrimination in
federally funded education programs, for open-
ing up large nwnbers of scholarships for women.
''This is huge opportunity for our girls,"
she says.
Ladson hopes so. "I am very competitive,"
she says, "and want to carry my commitment to
the sport even further." -Leanne Shear
pIe With AIDS (HOPWA) funds. For several
years, Praxis received between $250,000 and
$500,000 a year in HOPWA money from
PCMH, according to Praxis audits.
Had Fichman known about improprieties at
Praxis when he took the PCMH job, says
PCMH's former director of HOPWA contracts
Jeff Nan, he should have told his boss, Dr.
Jacob Barak, and the Mayor's Office of AIDS
Policy. While rumors about improper financial
decisions at Praxis had been swirling for years,
Errol Chin-Loy, then director of the Mayor's
AIDS office, says Fichman never said a word to
him. Phone calls to Barak were not returned.
Now, former Praxis officials are concerned.
"Avi shouldn't be anywhere near Praxis," says
former Praxis board chair Cyril Brosnan, who
resigned last swnmer, in part, he says, because
Zinsmeyer and Duggins rehired Fichman with-
out the board's consent.
Hoffman defends Fichman: "Avi is a highly
respected person in this community and if he
had known about any improprieties, he would
have informed the appropriate authorities. "
Fichman did not return phone calls.
-Geoffrey Gray
CITY LIMITS
Training Time
THE BLOOMBERG ADMINISTRATION is threatening to sue the
City Council over a new welfare and education law the
mayor says would severely strap the city for cash, but the
mayor is passing up a precious opportunity to enforce the
measure without retaliation from the feds.
On April 9, the City Council overrode a mayoral veto
by passing the Council's Access to Training and Education
(CATE) bill, which allows New Yorkers on welfare to
count time spent in the classroom or in job training pro-
grams toward their work requirements for public assis-
tance. These educational options, say CATE supporters,
are crucial so that recipients can move into permanent
jobs. Bloomberg immediately retorted that he would chal-
lenge the law in court, arguing that it contradicts the fed-
eral government's work mandates and will subject the city
to financial penalties.
But if there is any time when the education and train-
ing law can be enforced without going against federal
requirements, it is now. Current federal welfare law allows
states to reduce their work requirements whenever their
welfare rolls go down. So for every 1 percent drop in wel-
fare caseload since 1995, states can reduce the number of
welfare recipients required to work by 1 percent.
Because of the dramatic caseload drop in New
York City from 1 million in 1996 to 436,000 today,
current requirements for work participation here are effec-
tively zero.
Of course, that is expected to change once Congress
reauthorizes the federal welfare reform bill. The House
bill calls for shortening the time frame of the caseload
reduction credit by comparing today's caseloads to those
from more recent years; the Senate bill rewards states only
for moving recipients into full-time employment. Because
the number of welfare cases has declined at a slower rate
in recent years-it dropped by 18 percent from 1997 to
1998, and by 2 percent from 2001 to 2002-states'
reduction credits could be decimated, predicts Nisha Patel
of the Center for Law and Social Policy. States would then
be required to have between 55 and 70 percent of their
welfare clients in work activities.
There is still some time, though. While insiders say
Congress could pass a new welfare bill as soon as this
month, given the pace of things in Washington, it is not
likely to go into effect until late 2004. Barring legal wran-
gling with the mayoral administration, city legislators say
CATE could be implemented within 90 days.
And besides, add CATE supporters, only a small frac-
tion of New Yorkers on welfare are likely to take advan-
tage of the city law. ''There are a limited number of slots
at CUNY, there are admissions standards, and we're not
providing financial assistance," says Alex Navarro,
spokesperson for City Councilmember Bill deBlasio.
"The bill isn't giving people a get-into-college-free card. "
-Tracie McMillan
JUNE 2003
FRONTLINES
FIRSTHAND
Resilient Mind
MY NAME IS KURT SASS. I've suffered depression since 1979, but the really bad depres-
sion, the one that lasted around 11 months, that was in 1998. That was the one that I was
actually in bed for six months. I was having suicidal thoughts everyday, cutting myself up
to 70 times a day, and I was really in awful shape.
What actually got me out of that depression was a total of 22 EeT treatments-electro-
convulsive therapy. The cutting stopped completely. The thing with the suicidal thoughts: I
still had them, but I didn't have the impulse to act on them. Before I used to get the suici-
dal thoughts, and I'd be immediately thinking, jump out the window. I can joke about it now,
but I remember actually thinking, cursing myself because I only lived on the second floor.
I have a son who's 20 years old who's mentally retarded, autistic, and he's bipolar too.
He lives in a group home. He was a happy kid, even though he had his development dis-
abilities. All of a sudden, he was about five or six or so, he would start laughing uncontrol-
lably. Then he started being violent for no reason at all.
So what happened after two years and seeing six group homes, it was like nobody was
going to take him, mostly 'cause of the violence. So one day we're in a children's psychiatric
emergency room and this ER doctor calls us aside. What he basically told me was, the only
way to get your child in is that you have to pretend to be an abusive parent.
So I went back the next day, but there were people from child welfare there at the time.
I yelled at my son. I called him every name in the book. But the worst part was the look of
fear in his eye. That was awful. So they said, you can't have your child back, which is what
I was hoping for. And, by some miracle, all of a sudden, next day he's in a group home, in
the Bronx, close to the house.
In '98, when I left the hospital, instead of just five days' supply of medication, they made
sure I had the referral for my therapist and they gave me a list of all these support groups.
From that, I started volunteering at NAMI [National Alliance for the Mentally III], just stuff-
ing envelopes. But then I started going to support groups, leading support groups. These
groups are great, because you meet other people that are going through the same exact
thing that you're going through. -Kurt Sass, as told to William Wichert
11
INSIDE TRACK
Sobro Goes Soho
Borough President Carrion wants to bring artists to the South Bronx,
and local residents are bracing for big changes. By Carolyn Bigda
The Blue Ox represents the future of the South Bronx, officials hope.
THE BLUE OX BAR sits amidst the South Bronx's
vacant manufacturing buildings and public
housing high rises-an area Tom Wolfe charac-
terized as a "war zone" in his novel The Bonfire
of the Vanities. But stepping into the bar is like
entering a different world. Inside, white can-
dles glow on the tables and copper-top bar.
Paintings by local artists hang on the brick
walls and an acoustic guitar sits in one of the
paned-glass windows.
"There is no place like this south of 161st
Street," says Aronne Baietti, the owner. "People
call it a beacon of hope in the neighborhood."
That hope is gathering force: In February,
Bronx Borough President Adolfo Carrion, Jr.,
announced that his office and the Department
of City Planning are considering rezoning a
large section of Port Morris, the southeast
Bronx neighborhood bordered by the East
River. Once home to piano, garment and iron-
works manufacturers, many of the old factories
12
have been abandoned since the 1970s, when
most of the port activity moved to New Jersey
and service jobs began to dominate New York's
economy. Carrion, an urban planner by trade,
thinks these properties are ideal as live-work
. spaces for artists and small businesses. He has
put his borough's planners to the task of study-
ing his idea, and it could go into effect as soon
as next year.
Market forces are the impetus: Soaring rents
in industrial-turned-trendy areas like Soho,
Durnbo and Williamsburg have artists looking
for more affordable loft space. With empty
warehouses offering the high ceilings and natu-
ral light artists desire, as well as proximity to
public transportation and major roadways, Port
Morris has become the next ftontier.
"What's happening is just organic," says
Carrion. ''Artists who are always pushing the
envelope, because they need space and afford-
ability, have started coming here."
He is confident that the change could help
the entire neighborhood. Port Morris' 26,900
households earn an average of just $16,000 a
year, in a borough where unemployment is about
11 percent, significantly more than the citywide
average. Carrion has some convincing to do,
however. Many local residents fear they will be
left out as jobs for which they are unqualified pop
up around them.
"The rezoning is good if it is giving people
jobs and opportunities to learn," says Isabelle
Johnson, president of the tenant association at
the nearby Mitchel Houses. "It is not so good
if it is looking to bring people in."
PORT MORRIS OF 2003 is not unlike Soho of the
1970s. Once teeming with trucks and busi-
nesses that made everything from zippers to
leather, the latter area slowly cleared out as
manufacturers sought larger, more modern
facilities west of the city, and as succeeding gen-
erations declined to work in family-owned fac-
tories. Artists discovered large, cheap studio
space in the blocks south of Houston Street
and began moving in by the thousands. While
the city resisted having them there at first, the
artists ultimately won zoning changes that cre-
ated the community of lofts and galleries.
Over the years, the area boomed with high-
end shops and restaurants and rising rents,
pushing out some longtime tenants and ulti-
mately the very artists who made the place.
Whether Port Morris will face the same fate
is unclear. But a pilot program started six years
ago to revitalize a strip of old factories and row
houses along Bruckner Boulevard may offer a
hint of what's to come.
In 1997, the city redesignated three blocks
of row houses from manufacturing space to
mixed residential and commercial properties.
Since then, the buildings have filled up with
antique shops, art studios and galleries, creating
the Art and Antique District.
"We've taken on a physical blight and turned
it into a unique area," says Neil Pariser, vice
president of the South Bronx Overall Econom-
ic Development Corporation, which has invest-
ed about $1 million to spruce up the area with
CITY LIMITS
new sidewalks, trees and decorative lighting. "The
street has its own cachet and own style."
The group's initiatives also include the Bronx
Venture Center, a "smart" office building on East
137th Street that is wired for internet access and
leased at low cost, thanks to reduced-interest
loans and a grant from the Bronx Overall Eco-
nomic Development Corporation.
And the artists are moving in. The Clock
Tower Building, once home to the Estey Piano
factory, was renovated last year and has starred
renting out live-and-work space.
With all these changes, rents have already
started rising. "About four years ago I rented my
store for around $800. Now I am paying
$1,500," says Reies Aguare, manager of David's
Antiques. And that's on the low side, according to
SOBRO, which estimates average commercial
rents are up to $2,500 a month.
Already, the first wave of new shops may be
on their way out. The downturn in the economy
and the lack of foot traffic in the area have hurt
business. If things don't improve, shop owners
say they will close down in the next few months.
"I used to make $2,000 to $3,000 a month
in profit," says Alberto Penafiel, owner of
Jenny's Antiques. "Now I take money from my
other store"- F & J Furniture, on Tiffany
Street- "in order to cover the expenses." His
rent is slated to go up by more than 80 percent,
to $1,500, in September.
"We need to have a lot more people coming
by," says Aguare. "I might be closing pretty soon
after eight years of trying my best."
PART OF THE REASON for this business trouble, say
some longtime Porr Morris residents, is the awk-
ward marriage between the needs and interests of
local residems and the artists and art dealers who
are moving in. "People in the neighborhood don't
know about Antique Road," says Rafael Bueno,
executive director of the Cherry Tree Association,
a community organization. "The developmem is
coming from the outside. Artists are moving in
from somewhere else."
A better strategy for the area, he says, would be
to create mixed-income housing and jobs that pay
a living wage. "We need training for people to get
jobs with a living wage and a working waterfrom
to provide those jobs," he says. "Right now, it
seems people will come in their cars, do their busi-
ness there and then leave their trash behind."
Luis Cerew, a long-time resident of Mitchel
Houses and pres idem of Cherry Tree, agrees.
"We need to have a big company come in, a fac-
tory of some sort, that will hire a lot of people
from the community."
Carrion says he recognizes these issues, and
JUNE 2003
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14
plans to do what he can to mitigate them.
Rezoning the area from the Major Deegan
Expressway south to the Harlem Rail Yards, and
berween the Third Avenue and Triborough
bridges, he says, would help. Artists will help
draw more restaurants, retail shops and other
stores to the area, which will provide jobs and
boost business for stores that are already there.
"The support services for a neighborhood aren't
there yet, but they'll come as the population
increases," says Paula Caplan, Carri6n's deputy
director for planning and development.
Carri6n also says he hopes the Harlem Rail
Yards can be redeveloped to create 2 million
square feet of either retail or distribution space as
another job-creating venture.
In the meantime, Pariser says they plan to
work to preserve existing industrial operations
like the New York Post, S & ] Sheet Metal Sup-
ply Inc., and City Waste Management, which he
says together provide berween 15,000 and
20,000 jobs in the South Bronx.
"The choice for us is do we go the route of
creating manual labor jobs with some technical
skill, or do we go with the retail sector and serv-
ice jobs? Either way, there's going to be several
thousand jobs," Carri6n says.
As for displacement and gentrification, the
borough president argues that these aren't issues
in Port Morris because the population is so
small;, "We're not ~ ; o i n g to box"People out," he
says, because they re not there.
Some of the newcomers agree. "There is not
going to be the overflow. There is a lot to be
filled up all along the waterfront. You are not
moving out the small Spanish restaurant for a
trendy one," says David Graham, who opened
Storage Art Space, a nonprofit gallery, in 2000.
To keep artists in Port Morris, Graham sug-
gests mimicking moves made in Peekskill, where
buildings received government subsidies for ren-
ovations and were designated strictly for artists.
Carri6n says a similar formula for Port Morris is
still being hammered out.
In the meantime, the businesses that are there
now are hoping to profit from busier roads.
William "Willie" Williams srurnbled upon
the Blue Ox Bar while trying to beat traffic one
day. "I turned off the highway, saw this place and
thought I'd better check it out." Nestled in the
corner of 139th Street and Third Avenue, the bar
draws a regular crowd of artists and local entre-
preneurs, as well as people like Williams, who
lives in the north Bronx but comes for the
relaxed atmosphere.
"All the people you never knew who were here
in the neighborhood are here at this bar," says
Baietti, who bought the empty bodega in 2001
and transformed it into a bar. He's also renovated
the upstairs apartment, and has settled in.
CITY LIMITS
Able to unionize tall bui ldings in a single drive, Hector
Figueroa is moving Local 32BJ into progressive politics-
and into a showdown over whom a union works for.
BY HILARY RUSS
S
queezed between panelists at a forum on Paul Wellstone, wear-
ing thick glasses, slacks and a sweater-vest-he's almost always
wearing his sweater-vest-Hector Figueroa looks like a bashful
intellectual. He speaks quickly and quietly and has an accent so strong
that it's sometimes hard to understand what he's saying. Looking
relieved to be finished speaking, he sits down under the hot lights and
wipes his brow. You'd hardly guess this is the same Hector Figueroa who
has no problem screaming before a rally of thousands of chanting door-
men, janitors and porters from the largest private-sector union in New
York City.
During the Q-and-A, moderator Frances Fox Piven directs all the
labor-related queries to Figueroa, though he had specifically requested
otherwise. And sure enough, the audience's questions have little to do
with the Service Employees International Union Local 32BJ, the union
representing 75,000 building-service workers, of which Figueroa is the
secretary-treasurer and political director. Why, he is asked, did the teach-
ers union and the health care workers union, SEIU Local 1199, endorse
JUNE 2003
George Pataki rather than promote solidarity by backing liberal candi-
dates? And what's up with the Teamsters and Bush?
"I was the only person of color on the panel," he sighs later. "I was
really uncomfortable being the only one. I mentioned health care and
immigration in my speech, and no one addressed it."
Liberal white audience members apparently didn't bother to distin-
guish the 41-year-old Figueroa from 1199 president Dennis Rivera.
Both men are in leadership positions in different locals within the same
international union, SEIU. Both were activists in their native Puerto
Rico, and both their unions are highly visible, providing vital services to
millions of New Yorkers. But Rivera, arguably the most powerful Latino
labor leader in the country, has infuriated labor's traditional allies by
using political power strictly for his members' gain, instead of leveraging
broad improvements in public policy. Figueroa, by contrast, has irritat-
ed members of his own union by doing the opposite: trying to push
Local 32BJ toward a broader, more grassroots agenda that embraces pro-
gressive social goals.
Figueroa's grand vision is of a local union that serves more than its
members' immediate needs. He wants the union to embed itself in the
lS
communities of its members, two-thirds of whom are immigrants, as
well as in political parties throughout the region and the left as a whole.
Under his watch, the local has begun working with other unions and
community-based organizations on campaigns for immigrants' rights.
One piece of legislation they've advocated for would give non-English
speakers translators for city services; another would grant amnesty to
undocumented immigrants. In April , 32BJ was the only local to make
a showing at a youth rally for the federal DREAM Act, which would
give permanent residency to undocumented students between 12 and
21 years old.
Figueroa is part of the team that SEIU international president Andy
Stern charged with cleaning up the local when he placed it in trusteeship
in 1999, after Stern ousted former president Gus Bevona. Bevona ran the
union as a fiefdom, spending lavishly on his offices and himself, includ-
ing a salary of $400,000 a year. During his 18-year reign, the union lost
as many as 20,000 members. Now, even the local's most vocal opponents
accede that their union has vastly improved since the Bevona era. Current
president Mike Fishman, Figueroa and vice-president Kevin Doyle are
devoting almost 20 percent of the union's resources to organizing, and
they've brought in 9,200 new members.
But some of the members who led the grassroots effort to topple
Bevona are now angered by what they see as a hierarchical, top-down
unionism, and they have identified Figueroa and other head officers as
symptomatic of that trend. SEIU, they say, has habitually placed young
activist students and outsiders in paid staff positions that should instead
go to rank-and-filers.
These dissenters consider Figueroa, a leftist intellectual who never
pushed a broom in the union, to be an outsider. He's under attack not
just for who he is, but for what he's doing: implementing the union's
program of aggressively organizing immigrants, especially undocument-
ed workers, and boosting the union's political influence.
One vocal critic, 32BJ assistant secretary Dominick Bentivegna, has
posted a Jeopardy game on his 32BJ dissenters web site. One answer
reads, "This local 32BJ official promises illegal immigrants jobs and
green cards if they agree to strike and rally." Question? "Who is Hec-
tor Figueroa?"
B
orn in the Puerto Rican city of Ponce and into its rich polit-
ical tradition, Figueroa grew up admiring Pedro Albizu
Campos, "El Maestro," who waged his fight for Puerto
Rican independence on both theoretical and grassroots
gtounds. A poor orphan, Albizu Campos received five Harvard degrees
in seven years and spoke seven languages. Rather than taking up offers
to work in the U.S. Supreme Court or become a diplomat, he chose to
return to Puerto Rico to fight for independence. His photo hangs in
Figueroa's office.
In Puerto Rico, says Figueroa, culture, education and politics inter-
twine. His parents, both teachers, were the first in their large families to
make it to college. His mother was politically active, and his older broth-
er was expelled from the University of Puerto Rico for his activism
against a five-fold tuition increase. Watching his brother's campaigns at
the university fail , Figueroa decided early on that he wanted to support
labor, and more importantly, he wanted to win.
He came to New York in 1982 on a grant to study economics at New
York University, then took up a doctoral degree in political economy at
New School University under the influential economist David Gordon.
Out of all the lefty academics studying at the New School, recalls Matt
16
Noyes of the Association for Union Democracy, who studied there at the
same time, Figueroa was one of the few who had concrete plans to put
his education to practical use.
In fact, he became so absorbed in research for a textile workers' union
that he never fmished his dissertation, cutting short a promising acade-
mic career. "Hector's a very talented young academic economist who
made a decision to come to the labor movement, " says Ron Blackwell,
an economist who supervised Figueroa's early union work. He has, says
Blackwell, maintained an "uncommon humility" along the way.
Figueroa's educational background sets him apart from most union
members (and most leaders). It doesn't help that he beat out two rank-
and-file challengers to maintain his position in the local's 2000 election.
FIGUEROA, SAYS
IS "PART OF THAT
THAT UNIONS ARE
TO LET WORKERS
THOUGH HE
DOESN'T BELIEVE IT
"He's part of that whole philosophy that says unions are too important
to let workers run them, " says Noyes. "He represents that kind of idea,
though he probably doesn't believe it himself. "
It's not just Hector. None of the trustees has ever been a janitor or
doorman or any other building trades worker. That they run a local full
of janitors and doormen and other building trades workers is part of a
trend that advocates for union democracy criticize the SEIU for in par-
ticular. A union can be "run by very good, smart people committed to
the labor movement," says Steve Early, a representative of the Com-
munication Workers of America who has written extensively about
union politics. "But if they're not from rank and file," he contends,
they become "technocracies. "
When SEIU took over the union, Stern suspended its bylaws so that
his handpicked trustee, Mike Fishman, could run for election to remain
in power as president-a move that many members are still fUrious about.
The fact that Figueroa and the other trustees even still have their jobs is
CITY LIMITS
controversial. The local, says Noyes, "may be quite progressive, bur it's
definitely not ahead of the curve on internal democracy."
Figueroa vigorously disputes the assertion that he's an outsider, part of a
handpicked crowd. "I've been in SEIU for eight to nine years, Local 32BJ
for four years, he says. ''As a working-class Puerto Rican, I'd say I have
more in common with the majority of our members than other members
of the union who've been here for 20 years." And he defends the SEIU lead-
ership's use of trusteeships, which can serve as affirmative action programs,
he notes, when people of color are placed in locals where they're otherwise
underrepresented within leadership. (His union is 40 percent Latino.) "Say-
ing everyone must be rank and me is wrong and ill-conceived," says
Figueroa pointedly. "It's naiVe and myopic and very dangerous."
ONE OBSERVER,
WHOLE IDEA
TOO IMPORTANT
RUN THEM,
PROBABLY
HIMSELF."
But to Figueroa's opponents within the union, it's not just a question
of credentials. Bentivegna, for one, believes that Figueroa also spends too
much time and money on political maneuvers that don't do enough for
members. ''I'm in favor of having a political department," explains Ben-
tivegna, "bur not at the expense of our treasury."
But one aspect of the union's internal conflict has spilled out into the
public realm. Union dissenters, most notably Bentivegna, who helped
oust Bevona but will run against Fishman later this year, have charged
Figueroa with forcing staff to volunteer time to the Mark Green mayoral
campaign. Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau opened an
investigation into the allegations last November, and since then has con-
tinued to request information from 32BJ, which the local has provided.
Yet the claim has tainted Figueroa's tenure as the investigation lingers.
For example, here's another answer on the 32BJ Jeopardy game: "Mark
Green." Question? "Who was Hector Figueroa hoping to work for after
the mayoral election?" (Green's campaign manager, Richard Schrader,
JUNE 2003
former New York City commissioner of consumer affairs, is now a 32BJ
political strategist who consults for 32B].)
"We think all allegations will be found false and we'll be found inno-
cent," rebuts Figueroa. "We did a lot of polls. Mark was the candidate
that had the broadest level support of the membership," says Figueroa of
the unanimous executive board decision to endorse Green.
U
nion staffers refer jokingly to Figueroa as the "Lord of the
Rings," because he coordinates the local's organizing efforts
throughout vast stretches of New York City's outer-ring sub-
urbs-from Westchester and Connecticut to New Jersey and
Long Island. 32BJ annexed several of these areas in 2001. It is as Lord of
the Rings that Figueroa is, one evening, trying to figure out which car
matches the keys in his hand, so that he can drive to New Jersey to visit
cwo small groups of striking workers. He sees this, more than anything
else, as the crux of his work.
"Doo doo doo, here we are!" he hums to himself when he arrives at
the first of two stops, the Newark offices of 32BJ. Next door, a porn the-
ater is showing Latin Adventures and Spectacular Babes. ''This is not a cul-
tural center, by the way," jokes Figueroa.
Inside the union offices, he greets the group of mostly Latino workers
in Spanish, and relays to them a few details of the local's other campaigns,
reassuring them that they can win. They're on strike against St. Peter's
College, which is trying to bring in a new cleaning company, a Jesuit
business called Clean Sweep. Even though some of these workers have
been cleaning St. Peter's for 17 years, the college wants the 29 workers to
cur down from full to part time. One woman, whose son is also on strike
with her, talks abour how a real estate agent kicked her out of the office
after she told the agent how little she earned as a cleaning woman.
The workers seem giddy at Figueroa's presence. He dispenses orga-
nizing advice and urges them to remain active in their union and their
communities. He listens attentively as they vent concerns about the
strike and about their jobs. Somehow, the conversation moves from
Catholics to liquor. A woman reenacts a scene from an encounter with a
drunken priest whose house she was cleaning. Figueroa leaves on a trail
of laughter to visit the next group of strikers.
Behind St. Margaret's church in Morristown, Figueroa runs the car
into a snow bank, shouting "Bong!" He is welcomed into the church by
a round of applause, and by Sister Lynn Jacoby, with thinning gray hair,
glasses and a gap between her teeth, wearing two chunky sweaters and
sassy high-heeled navy slingback shoes with tiny buckles by the ankle. In
this vast, chilly basement, 13 workers, about half of them women and
most from Uruguay, have come in after picketing in the cold night air to
feast on quarter chickens and potato salad. They're celebrating a week's
anniversary of striking against the cleaning contractor Planned Building
Services. Again, Figueroa talks abour other strikes, so that these workers
will feel connected to the rest of the state of New Jersey, connected to
New York, to Los Angeles-"todo el pais."
As he heads out of what 32BJ staffers call Middle Earth (New Jersey),
through the tunnel, and toward the Tower (32BJ headquarters), Figueroa
realizes that he has driven most of the way there in the wrong gear,
because he's used to driving a standard in Puerto Rico, not an automatic.
He doesn't seem tired, though the hour is late. He'll spend the next
several weeks in contract negotiations with the Realty Advisory Board for
residential workers, who granted their approval for a strike. "Some things
in my life I would change," he says later, "bur not working for building
service workers."
17
~
~
18
CITY LIMITS
The laws that keep housing affordable for more than 2.5 million New
Yorkers expire this month. Governor Pataki says he wants to keep rent
regulations alive. That's why tenants still have plenty to fear.
s
o far, no one's making a huge amount of
noise-not the landlords, not the ten-
ants. Despite a few rallies in support of
New York's rent laws, the decibel level has been
decidedly low.
Bur anyone who thinks there's not much at
stake in the renewal of rent regulations this year
ought to go to Queens.
There, in the bedroom borough far from
the gentrification battlegrounds of Manhattan
and Brooklyn, the new frontier in the battle
over rent regulations is taking shape.
Consider, for instance, the Brussels and the
Marseille, two buildings on 67th Avenue in
Rego Park. This twin-building development,
built 41 years ago by developer Samuel LeFrak,
might not seem a likely candidate for high
rents. It's far out in Queens, after all, a long sub-
way ride from Manhattan. But Janet Henne,
president of the Bru-Mar Tenants Association,
reports that at least two-dozen apartments-5
percent of the 485 units in the two towers-are
no longer rent-regulated. Taking advantage of
provisions in state law, the landlord has jacked
up rents for those apartments beyond $2,000 a
month, exempting them from New York's rent
stabilization mandates.
"People really don't believe it's happening in
Queens, " says Henne, who moved into the
complex 40 years ago and has lived there ever
since. In the last few years, she says, "I have
seen rents rise from $600 to more than $2,000.
All of the three-bedrooms and many of the
two-bedrooms here are already that high."
The rent jumps appear legal-a combination
of increases the owner could make when apart-
ments became vacant, rent hikes for renovations,
increases for "major capital improvements" on
JUNE 2003
By Robert Neuwirth
the elevators and the boiler, and more. To
Henne, they signal a move to pull the building
out from the rent stabilization system. "They're
definitely trying to get out from under rent reg-
ulations," she charges. "They've said so."
Henne's landlord can deregulate apartments
thanks to a change in the laws developed by the
City Council in 1993 and extended by the
state in 1997, after a frantic last-minute deal in
Albany that supposedly saved the regulation
system [see "The Victory That Wasn't," page
21]. Now, once the rents on stabilized apart-
ments hit $2,000 a month, landlords can
remove them from rent regulations-a phe-
nomenon called vacancy decontrol.
Today, the average stabilized rent in Manhat-
tan has vaulted beyond $1,000, and landlords
no longer see a $2,000 rent as the Holy Grail.
Now, it's well within reach. "The $2,000 issue
sent my practice through the roof, " says tenant
attorney Sam Himmelstein. "It creates this
tremendous incentive for landlords to phony up
evictions, and my practice has tripled. "
Ten percent of all rent-regulated tenants-
100,000 households-move each year. And
this, tenant advocates say, means that landlords
can easily use legal means to thrust rents
throughout the city beyond $2,000 and thus
get apartments out of the stabilization system.
"Every apartment that becomes vacant in Man-
hattan, and many larger apartments in the bor-
oughs, are in danger, " says Judith Goldiner, a
staff attorney with the Legal Aid Society.
The New York State Tenants & Neighbors
Coalition estimates that 99,000 apartments
have been deregulated over the past 10 years
because their rents rose beyond $2,000-and
the group sees the trend accelerating.
Landlords scoff at this number. "I think that's
an exaggeration," says Dan Margulies, executive
director of the landlord lobby known as the Com-
munity Housing Improvement Program. He sug-
gests that 40,000 to 50,000 high-rent apartments
have been deregulated over the past decade.
All the numbers are estimates, because land-
lords don't have to get approval or even file a
notice to remove the high-rent apartments
from regulation. The Tenants & Neighbors fig-
ure is an extrapolation from U.S. Census data
showing that the number of unregulated apart-
ments in rental buildings has increased that
much. The group argues that since most new
buildings are co-ops or condos, or are part of
the rent regulation system because they have
received city tax incentives, this growth in the
number of unregulated units represents the net
loss due to vacancy decontrol.
The landlords don't offer any statistics to
back up their estimate. Bur even supposing
Margulies' number is correct, the impact is still
huge-50,000 apartments is approximately 5
percent of all rent regulated units.
Given the mounting evidence that seeming-
ly small changes in rent laws have had massive
consequences in the real estate market, you
might expect both landlords and tenants to be
staking big claims as the rent laws come up for
renewal. Six years ago, the last time rent regu-
lations were set to expire, the verbal volleying
was at fever pitch for months. Landlords and
tenant groups were highly mobilized, and both
mounted high-profile advertising campaigns.
For the most part, the press echoed the land-
lords' claims that the rent laws were a curse on
the city. And the final political deal-which
folded rent regulations into New York State's
19
budget package-was passed in such a rush
that most state legislators didn't even have time
to read the bills they were asked to approve.
This time around, it's as iflandlords, tenants
and politicians have all fallen into a black hole.
No more rancor and clamor. No more gnash-
ing and snapping. The hot button issue of six
years ago has gone cold fusion.
Governor George Pataki, quizzed by reporters
back in February, said, "I don't see any need for
any dramatic changes" -though he suggested the
possibility of some "minor changes to be made
here or there." He added that he believed the law
as amended in 1997 "has worked vety well."
Dirto for State Senate Majority leader Joe
Bruno. His staff told reporters that Bruno--
who once vowed to "end rent control as we
know it"-did not want to do anything to dis-
rupt the system in 2003.
Indeed, landlords and tenants, who almost
never agree on anything, concur on this: things
are unnaturally quiescent. "We're not on the
radar this year," says landlord lobbyist Margulies.
"It's an issue in our own minds but not in
Albany's. I think we really do have a budget crisis
and we have a war on. And both are distracting. "
Michael McKee, who heads rent regulation
campaigns for the Tenants & Neighbors group,
suggests that things are quieter because the
20
Republican rhetoric has been more reasonable.
There's a tenant action day planned in Albany
on May 13, and McKee suggests tenants have a
good chance to win back some of the items lost
in 1997. "We're going into negotiations in a
better position, " McKee says. "The renewal is a
given. The laws are going to be extended. "
"There's not that much going on, " adds
tenant activist John Fisher, who runs Tenant-
Net, an internet-based information service. But
unlike McKee, Fisher finds the silence pro-
foundly disquieting. He's concerned that the
more conciliatory words coming from Albany
have sucked the wind out of tenant organizing.
And he may have reason for his fear. Just
because Albany seems relaxed on the rental
front right now doesn't mean that landlords
have given up their desire to end rent regula-
tions. They're just willing to do it gradually.
"Our goal is vacancy decontro!''' says Jack
Freund, executive vice president of the Rent
Stabilization Association, a landlord group.
"But we've never said, 'End the rent laws
immediately.' We've said, 'Phase them out.'"
This year, landlords are looking for some
behind-the-scenes changes. "We'd like to see
the vacancy deconuol concept extended," says
Freund. Margulies gets more specific: he'd like
to see the high-rent uigger for vacancy decon-
trollowered to $1,750, perhaps with a phase-in
to $1,500 over the next few years.
Hearing this, tenant anorney Himmelstein offers
a terse response: "There go Brooklyn and Queens."
N
ew York's rent regulations are actually
two programs-rent conuol and rent
stabilization. Rent contro!' which was
designed to keep families of desperate veterans in
their homes during World War II, is gradually
phasing out. Today it limits rent hikes on just
52,000 apartments. As each controlled apart-
ment becomes vacant, it floats to market rent and
then joins the second program, rent stabilization.
In addition to increases governed by law, sta-
bilization cushions tenants from displacement
by guaranteeing them an automatic one- or
two-year extension every time their lease comes
up for renewal, and gives them certain rights in
court. All buildings consuucted after 1974 are
exempt from rent stabilization, unless a devel-
oper received certain types of public financing.
Approximately 1 million apartments are
rent stabilized, which makes rent stabilization
by far the most important affordable housing
program in the city. By comparison, housing
projects provide 243,000 low-cost apartments
across the five boroughs.
The rent laws must be renewed every few years
CITY LIMITS
by the state legislature because they are nominal-
ly emergency regulations-and thus must be trig-
gered by a finding of a housing emergency.
Though the laws affect only certain buildings in
New York City and in Nassau, Westchester and
Rockland counties, this also means they must win
the backing of upstate Republicans. The current
rent laws are due to end on June 15 unless
renewed by the state legislature and governor.
Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver. ''The list of
trade-off issues is enormous-and only those
players know what they are holding out for."
Judith Goldiner, the Legal Aid staff attorney,
is conflicted about the possibilities. "I don't
think it's a good thing for the rent laws to be tied
up with this budget," she says. "But I don't know
how much power the Assembly has without it. "
In 1997, when the rent laws were part of the
negotiations over the budget, the deal making
became so frenzied that the laws actually
expired for four days before the extension bill
was passed. Earlier this year, it looked like it
might be deja vu allover again.
What's more, Goldiner says, she's not sure why
tenants are trusting Pataki and Bruno to come
through on the rent issue: "Personally, I think you
rdy on George Pataki and Joe Bruno to your peril."
In February, the Assembly passed a strong
bill that would extend the regulations and
remove the most egregious change endorsed in
the 1997 bill-vacancy decontrol of higher-
rent apartments. But it's what they call in
Albany a "one-house bill"-it's supported by
the Democrats who control the Assembly, but
not by the Republicans who dominate the Sen-
ate, and not by me Governor.
But in late April, that didn't seem likely. The
Assembly and Senate hammered out a joint
budget deal . Pataki declared he would veto it.
And rent regulations were not part of the
debate. "As far as I know, there has been no
substantive discussion with the Senate involv-
ing rent regulations," says Jonathan Harkavy,
chief of staff for Assembly housing committee
chair Vito Lopez.
F
ollowing the disaster of 1997, one tenant
group has decided to take on Pataki and
Bruno from inside their own party. Ten-
ants & Neighbors has targeted four key Repub-
lican and Conservative Party districts in and
around New York City for its maximum efforts.
It has led organizing campaigns in the districts
of State Senators Martin Golden of Brooklyn,
Serphin Maltese of Queens, and Long Island's
Dean Skelos and Michael Balboni .
Like most business in Albany, the rent laws
will be negotiated in whatever passes for a
smoke-filled room these days. And that means
that three people will ultimately decide the fate
of a million downstate apartments.
"When the deals get struck, at this level and
magnitude, there are only three players, " says
State Senator Liz Krueger, a Manhattan Demo-
crat. She's referring to Pataki, Bruno and
If the rent laws don't turn out to be part of
the horse-trading for the budget, the Democ-
rats will lose an issue they can use as leverage to
get Republicans to come on board. Lopez sug-
gests that Republicans have other legislative
needs-such as bills to facilitate the cleanup of
toxic brownfields, or certain upstate tax pro-
posals-that the Democrats can hold hostage
to force Republicans to accept the rent laws.
The idea is to get these downstate right-
wingers to put pressure on the leadership in
Albany to extend the rent laws, and it's a cam-
paign that McKee maintains is working.
"There are 15 Republican state senators with
rent regulated apartments in their districts,"
McKee says. "Tenants are getting clobbered by
The Victory That Wasn't
It was around 2 a.m. on Monday, June 16, 1997 when Assembly Speak-
er Sheldon Silver walked up to the microphones in Albany to announce
the deal that saved rent regulations. He had gone into negotiations a man
alone, and he emerged with a striking victory--{)r so it seemed.
Governor George Pataki and Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno
had made no secret of their desire to wipe out the rent regulation sys-
tem. To counteract the Republicans, Silver had helped broker a
renter-labor coalition that became an effective lobbying force. And
when tenants went public with a television advertising campaign, Sil-
ver's fingerprints were on the fundraising.
But it only took a few days for the ttiumphal glow to wear off. Sil-
ver's deal had sounded too good to be true-and it was.
- By extending the laws for six years, Silver allowed Republicans to
remove the rent fight from the political calendar, placing the renewal
in a year when Pataki would be safely installed in his second term and
no state officials would be up for re-election.
- In the fine print of the extension, landlords won deregulation of
apartments renting for more than $2,000 a month. So-called high-rent
vacancy decontrol is not new-a decade ago, the legislature intro-
duced it for all apartments that had reached that level prior to Octo-
ber 1993 and then became vacant. A subsequent city law made vacan-
cy decontrol permanent and ongoing-the same arrangement Silver
accepted statewide in 1997.
- The extension also granted landlords an automatic 20 percent
rent increase any time an apartment became vacant. "Sometimes
landlords report three vacancies in a year," asserts Legal Aid attorney
JUNE 2003
Judith Goldiner. "They can raise the rent 60 percent that way without
putting in a dime." For instance, if an apartment renting for $700
turned over three times, the landlord today could legally charge
$1,200, without making any improvements-and that doesn't include
the annual rent increases granted under the stabilization program. The
latest study from the Rent Guidelines Board shows that while some
operating costs are going up, so are landlords' profits: An average
landlord's net operating profit from rent stabilized apartments is 44
cents on every dollar of rent, up 10 percent from six years ago.
- The deal Silver cut also reversed a legal precedent that allowed
courts to consider old rent overcharges in the process of calculating the
legal rent for an apartment. Today, if a rent overcharge remains unchal-
lenged for four years, that illegal rent becomes the legal rent. Landlords
are required to register their rents every year, but tenant activists say
that in the wake of this change many owners have decided they're bet-
ter off not filing their rent information with the state. Now, when ten-
ants want to prove they are being overcharged, in many cases they find
there's no evidence on file with which they can make their case.
- The package required that tenants who withhold rent must pay it
into an account supervised by the court---effectively making it impos-
sible for tenants to go on rent strike without going to court first. This
provision, however, proved wildly unpopular among judges, landlords
and tenants alike, and has rarely been implemented.
The victory, it seemed to many tenants, was actually a sell-out-
and Silver's been taking heat for it ever since. TenantNet's John Fish-
er still feels betrayed. Proclaims Fisher, "Sheldon Silver, despite what
everyone says, is not a friend of tenants."
-RN
21
rent increases and harassed. Landlords are
being much more aggressive. Republican sena-
tors are hearing from their tenants and we
believe this will put more pressure on Bruno."
Of course, McKee is not the only one trying
to influence the Republicans. The landlord
lobby is working its magic too, using campaign
contributions. Last year alone, the Rent Stabi-
lization Association poured more than a quarter
of a million dollars into state Republican and
Conservative party coffers-and that doesn't
include contributions to individual candidates.
After prodding by McKee's group, several
downstate Republicans did introduce two pro-
tenant rent regulations bills in the State Senate
this year--one that would extend the system
and another that would eliminate vacancy
decontrol. Republican leadership, however, has
kept the bills bottled in committee.
To end the Senate stalemate, Krueger made
a procedural move to force a vote. That was
when a funny thing happened. Even the
Republicans who supported the rent laws
rejected bringing them to the floor. Instead,
they accused Krueger of grandstanding.
"This is childishness," says Senator Frank
Padavan, a Republican from Queens and one
of the sponsors of the pro-tenant legislation.
"It's political nonsense, plain and simple. To
stand up on the floor of the Senate and say you
want your bill voted on: I've been there 31
years and I've never seen anything like this cre-
ate something positive. It's silly." Padavan says
an issue like rent regulations needs "a three-way
negotiation" between the Assembly, the Senate
Banned in Boston
and the Governor-and that no political pos-
turing will make that happen faster.
"Hell, yes, I was grandstanding," Krueger
replies. "I desperately want to get this to the
floor for a debate and vote."
It's because of the perverse nature of Albany
politics-where supporters of rent regulations
wind up, in effect, voting against bringing
them up for a vote-that some tenant activists
distrust the Tenants & Neighbors strategy of
lobbying the downstate Republicans to put
pressure on the upstate Republican leadership.
"If tenants dwell only on Pataki and Bruno,
it won't work," asserts TenantNet's Fisher. "You
have to ask, 'Who can really make it happen?
Of the three men who will make this decision,
who can make it better?' The answer is Sheldon
Silver. Tenants are not focusing appropriately
on the Democrats."
Fisher believes that to win any improve-
ments in rent regulations, the Assembly
Democrats, led by Speaker Silver, are going to
have to threaten to kill some pet Republican
projects. He worries that Democrats won't play
true political hardball unless tenants push
them-by making noise and letting the
Democrats know that there will be a price to
pay for any givebacks to landlords.
This strategy dispute shows a key difference
between the tenant tactics in 1997 and the way
things are working today. In '97, tenants main-
tained a united front. Today, various groups,
including, in addition to Tenants and Neighbors,
Legal Aid, Metropolitan Council on Housing,
and community-based tenant organizations, are
working more independently. It remains to be
seen whether this approach is a winner or will
wind up diluting tenant clout in Albany.
For tenants, Goldiner says, the lesson from
1997 ought to be aggression. "The landlords
went for the jugular and we didn't," she says.
One of her big worries is that the rent laws will
be extended, but at the 11th hour-and that
changes will once again be slipped in without
tenants knowing. This year, she wants tenants
to be involved in the negotiations. "In 1997, the
landlords were in the room. You've got to be
there, and you've got to try to get into the
room," says Goldiner.
Another wild card this year is the role of New
York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. In late
March, he quietly signed the city extension of the
rent laws. But his administration has not taken a
position on the key issue-whether to repeal the
high-rent vacancy decontrol made state law in
1997. "Quite frankly," says Krueger, "I don't hear
Mayor Bloomberg saying he wants this." Across
the aisle, Padavan also says it's key for the Mayor
to take on the vacancy decontrol question. "He's
preoccupied on the budget-as he should be-
and his focus is not on rent regulations," says the
veteran Republican from Queens. "But we cer-
tainly need the Mayor to speak out on this issue."
A spokesman for the Mayor did not return
phone calls seeking comment.
So, for now, the hush persists. If the Armed
Forces were naming it, perhaps this year's rent
war would be called "Operation Enduring
Silence. " Tenants can only hope it's not the
silence of the lambs .
The sky won't fall. That's the argument landlords make about end-
ing rent regulations. And for a time, it seemed that evidence from
Massachusetts was confirming that contention.
Steve Meacham, an organizer with City Life/Yita Urbana, notes
that the gritty neighborhoods he works in have been hit by the over-
heated market as well. In working-class Matapan, tenants in one
building got hit with a $400 rent increase, bringing their monthly rent
for one-bedroom apartments to $1,100.
"1 could give you case after case after case," he says, noting that
even apartments in areas overrun with drugs are getting too pricey.
"The market doesn't work. If there's one thing that's been shown from
the last eight years, it's that."
22
Boston, Cambridge, Brookline, Waltham and Lowell all had some
form of rent control for several decades. That was wiped out in 1994,
when landlords eked out a 51 to 49 percent victory in a statewide ref-
erendum. The result: Rent regulations were banned across the state.
Initially, the result was not dramatic. "Rents went up some at first,"
says Lew Pinfer of the Organizing and Leadership Training Center, a
consortium of six communiry groups. But then came the dot-com
boom, and rents zoomed. "In poor and working-class neighborhoods,
to have people paying $1,500 a month is not unusual. And a few years
ago it would have been half that."
And rents have not dropped despite the deep depression in the
economy. "Despite the decline in the economy, people haven't seen
rents fall-except at the high end," Finfer says. And, he adds, "There's
been a completely parallel increase in home and condo prices."
Last November, Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino proposed a
slimmed-down rent control plan that would have allowed tenants to
appeal rent hikes, but it was defeated in the City Council. This year,
Cambridge tenants are collecting signatures to put a somewhat weak-
ened form of rent regulations on the ballot in November.
But Finfer suggests that the outlook is dim for a return to rent reg-
ulations. "It would be very hard politically," he says. "Local passage is
possible, but it requires the approval of the state legislature and gov-
ernor." He pauses a moment to consider New York's prospects, with
rent regulations up for renewal this year. "It's grim out here," he says
finally. "Hug your kids and hold onto your rent control." - RN
CITY LIMITS
r
THAT
CRAZY
MOTHER TUCKER
To make a case for abolishing rent regulations, a Post pundit turns to creative writing.
W
hatever happens in Albany this summer, there's one
thing for sure. The forces that want to get rid of the city's
rent laws can find their inspiration in one relentless
pundit: William Tucker, a New York Post columnist, who since last
fall has written at least 13 biting opinion pieces decrying rent reg-
ulation-II of them from November to February alone.
Throughout his thousands of words on the topic, Tucker essential-
ly has one argument against rent laws: They cause all the city's hous-
ing problems--homelessness, high rent burdens and crappy condi-
tions-because rent laws keep developers from building new housing.
"Builders refuse to construct new units that will be immediately
regulated," Tucker wrote in his February 7 column. Over and over
again, he repeats this same argument: rent regulations don't allow
private developers to charge high enough rents to pay back their
initial investments. So they don't build at all.
On the face of it, it's a logical contention. Who would build
something if they can't make money off it? But here's the rub: it's a
blatant lie.
In every single column he writes, Tucker blames rent laws but
never states one simple fact: No apartments built since 1973 have
been forced into rent regulation. New units built today are exempt
from all rent price controls, unless developers choose to take advan-
tage of government subsidies or tax breaks that reduce their costs.
Tucker obviously knows this little bit of truth. So every now and
then, he hedges. In that same February 7 column, he actually
acknowledged that rent laws don't cover new apartments. But he
immediately added that despite this, developers still don't build
because of "the ever-present threat that fresh regulations will
'recapture' these units."
That also turns out to be untrue. The last "recapture" of new
apartments was in 1974-today's housing developers probably
aren't quaking in their boots that it's about to happen again any-
time soon. And the state legislature in 1997 forbade itself from
doing just what Tucker claims today's developers fear. Section 27 of
the Rent Regulation Reform Act of 1997 says: " . .. new housing
shall remain exempt from rent control, rent stabilization and any
other form of rent regulation for a term of 50 years."
It should be noted Tucker has some good observations. There's
not nearly as much new housing construction here as there should
be. A lack of construction does in fact help drive everything from
homelessness to high rents. And builders are hesitant to build
JUNE 2003
because it's difficult to tum a profit. But that is simply because it
costs too much to build. As Michael Schill, the director of the
Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy at New York University,
and others argue in their landmark 1999 study "Reducing the Cost
of New Housing Construction in New York City," it's about 25 per-
cent more expensive to build apartments here than in other large
American cities. The high cost of land and construction labor are
the two biggest factors, followed by a cumbersome permit and
approval process that wastes both time and money. Rent regula-
tion, Schill and his co-authors conclude, has at most "a relatively
modest impact on new construction."
Tucker doesn't let careful conclusions like this get in the way of
his harangues against rent laws. When he feels the need, instead,
he comes up with his own crazy math. Tucker relies repeatedly on
a series of rental "studies" he did in the 1990s---of apartment list-
ings from newspaper classifieds. In one hilarious instance last April,
Tucker wrote about how he plugged the advertised rents from the
Sunday papers of 18 cities into a spreadsheet. Upon discovering
that New York's average advertised rent was above $2,000, Tucker
wrote: "What I found made my blood run cold."
Here's what he found: the two cities with the strongest rent
laws, New York City and San Francisco, had by far the highest
advertised rents-and had very few apartments listed at lower lev-
els, below $1,000. That proves, Tucker wrote, that rent control
doesn't preserve affordability but actually makes housing more
expensive-even for the poor.
It's a stunning conclusion-in its audacity. Easily accessible, and
comprehensive, federal Census data would show that while New
York does have high average rents, there are in fact several hundred
thousand rent regulated units going for less than $1,000.
And then there are the columns in which Tucker abandons his
typically professorial voice, with all the lecturing on how regula-
tions kill free enterprise. In those moments, something beyond free
market ideology shines through-an utter lack of familiarity with
what's happening today with low-income people and their neigh-
borhoods, and dare we say it, more than a hint of racism. What he
writes is sad, and not true, but dangerous too: "In the poorest neigh-
borhoods, it often becomes a contest of who will bum down the
building first-the landlord, trying to collect insurance, or tenants,
in order to be moved to the top of the lists for public housing."
- Matt Pacenza
23
What happens
when there are
more foster care
cases than lawyers
to take them?
I n fa mil y co u rt,
'the system itself
breaks down.'
By Wendy Davis
Last July, Oettering "Kool 0" Hamilton
was accused of neglecting his three children by
allegedly using cocaine. The city's Adrninisua-
tion for Children's Services sent the children,
including a newborn, to live with their mom's
sister. Hamilton wanted to be able to see them,
and only a family court judge had the power to
make that order.
Hamilton told the courr he was planning to
hire a lawyer. But like most parents who end up
in family courr, he really couldn't afford one.
Once an engineer for the city Housing Author-
ity, Hamilton now supports himself on disability
payments resulting from a work-related injury.
Even without a lawyer, Hamilton thought
he had a fair chance to convince his judge to let
him at least visit his children. He possessed
documentation that he believed suggested his
positive drug tests were actually based on other
people's samples. One of the tests had an iden-
tification number that did not match his Social
24 CITY LIMITS
Security number. (A representative from the
program later testified that identification num-
bers were different from Social Security num-
bers.) The other test suggested the hair ana-
lyzed belonged to a female. Showing the judge
these documents and pleading his case seemed
like the best thing to do. The judge, however,
wasn't interested in evaluating his papers.
"When I tried to shed light on the truth, " says
JUNE 2003
Hamilton, "I was denied that right. "
Hamilton finally got a lawyer in late Sep-
tember, assigned from a panel of attorneys who
are paid by the city of New York to represent
parents in family court who cannot afford their
own lawyers.
In theory, he would have been appointed one
of these court-assigned lawyers, or "18bs," from
the first day he showed up in court. Until
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recently, when an unemployed or disabled par-
ent like Hamilton showed up without a lawyer,
judges commonly insisted on bringing in an 18b
automatically, to make sure that a case could
move forward without delay. But that didn't
happen here. Instead, each time Hamilton
showed up for a hearing last summer, his case
was adjourned because he didn't have a lawyer.
Once he had a lawyer, Hamilton soon won
visits with his kids. This March, the judge ruled
that he had neglected his children. But later
this spring, Hamilton was certified clean from
drugs. The judge allowed the children to return
to Hamilton and his wife, nearly a year afrer
they were removed from their home.
It's not unusual these days for parents to try
to represent themselves in family court. Or for
people with very low incomes to be told to pay
for their own private attorneys even though
they can't realistically afford one.
For more than three years now, there's been a
crisis in family court in New York City. There
just aren't enough lawyers willing to represent
indigent parents. In Manhattan, there are now
about half as many lawyers on the assigned coun-
sel panel-called "18b" afrer an article of New
York's County Law-as there were in 1999.
In other boroughs, the number of lawyers
officially listed as panel members is approxi-
mately the same, or in some cases greater, than
it was several years ago-for example, Brooklyn
has 94 attorneys now listed as active, compared
to 79 in 1995.
But the numbers don't tell the whole stoty.
Not all attorneys listed on the panel roster are
actually taking work. Some are in family court
every day, representing indigent litigants; others
appear only occasionally. But in the meantime,
the number of judges has nearly doubled, and
case filings have increased by 23 percent-result-
ing in lawyers being spread so thin they can't take
on all the cases coming into court. In Brooklyn,
there are now 14 judges, up from eight in 1991.
On top of that, courts now use hearing examin-
ers to conduct certain routine proceedings; in
Brooklyn alone, there are 20. Harriet Wein-
berger, who oversees the assigned counsel in
Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island, says she
hopes for a 50 percent increase in lawyers.
The lawyer shortage has hardly gone unno-
ticed. On the editorial pages of newspapers and
in the halls of Albany, calls for raising lawyers'
pay above their current rates of $25 an hour for
out-of-court work and $40 for in-court have
Dettering Hamilton tried to
convince a judge that incriminating
drug tests weren't his own.
25
\
been loud and frequent. For more than three
years, Judith Kaye, chief judge of the New York
State Coun of Appeals, has campaigned to raise
the rates, publicly proclaiming the siruation dire.
The lawyer shortage is so bad that this win-
ter, a New York State Supreme Court judge
took the extreme step of declaring New York's
court-assigned representation system unconsti-
tutional, and issued an injunction ordering pay
raises to $90 an hour. New York City and State
have both appealed that ruling.
But while the immediate effect of the attorney
shortage is well-appreciated within the walls of
family coun, its impact on families in the foster
For three years, ACS promised to
return Lasalle's kids to her. But it
didn't happen until she got a lawyer.
care system is far less understood. One immedi-
ate consequence is obvious: Many parents whose
children have been taken by ACS-it's hard to
say how many-have to wait weeks, even
months, for a lawyer to be appointed. But what
then? What happens to families when parents
can't obtain meaningful legal representation,
even when the future of the family is at stake?
In the dingy halls of Manhattan family
court, where parents, family members and
26
caseworkers slump listlessly on plastic chairs
waiting to see the judge, everyone waiting for a
lawyer has a story to tell. Like Hamilton, par-
ents just coming into the process often cannot
see their children. Even if they have relatives
who are willing to take in the children-an
arrangement lawyers commonly request when
a parent is charged with neglect-their chil-
dren might be sent to a foster home instead.
Parents, desperate to get their children back,
try to represent themselves in court-almost
always a strategic disaster.
The lawyer shortage has settled in as a chronic
condition, a painful fact of life in an already
chaotic environment. "It's no different ftom liv-
ing under Orange Alert or some other horror
that we deal with," says Stephanie Nilva of Legal
Information for Families Today, a group that
operates advice tables in the lobbies of family
coun in the city. Her group sees one spillover
effect: Most of the people coming to her table for
help these days are parents seeking custody or
child support. Since assigned counsel are such a
scarce resource, judges tend to allocate the
lawyers to cases initiated by the government-
such as charges of neglect or juvenile delinquency.
But that doesn't mean that parents charged
with child neglect are getting the legal help
they need. Parents who can't afford counsel in
neglect cases have a right to have a lawyer
appointed. But judges have wide discretion to
determine who is actually eligible for the free
service. As the number of available lawyers has
decreased, some judges have been telling any
parents who work-no matter how little they
earn-to hire their own lawyer.
In New York's court-assigned attorney short-
age, much more is at stake than individuals'
legal rights. When parents don't have lawyers in
neglect cases, the child protective system itself
breaks down, maintains Doug Nelson, presi-
dent of the Annie E. Casey Foundation.
"Parental rights and roles are not able to be clar-
ified," says Nelson, who is intimately familiar
with the workings of ACS from his experience
chairing the Special Child Welfare Advisory
Panel that oversaw agency reform in 1999 and
2000. Without parents' counsel, says Nelson,
"there is less ability to hold an agency like ACS
accountable to the people affected-parents
whose children are at risk of removal."
A handful of the 29 or so lawyers active
on the assigned counsel panel in Manhattan
can occasionally be found in a room barely big-
ger than a broom closet, on the fifth floor of
the airless Manhattan Family Court.
When parents charged with neglect or juve-
niles charged with delinquency come to court
needing counsel, court officers go to this room
first to shop the case. "Anyone want to pick up
a 'D?'" an officer calls out, seeking a lawyer
willing to pick up a juvenile delinquency case.
"Kid's out, " she adds. The court officer knows
that it's easier to find a lawyer for a youngster
paroled home than one in custody, because
kids taken into detention must have their first
hearing within three days-wreaking havoc on
lawyers' schedules.
Juveniles are usually represented by Legal
Aid lawyers. When there are multiple defen-
dants in a case, though, Legal Aid can represent
only one kid; to work with more than one
would be a conflict of interest. Judges try to
assign 18b panel attorneys for the other defen-
dants. But nowadays it's so hard to find an 18b
in time for these hearings that judges often ask
Legal Aid to take the cases anyway.
This particular Monday, a lawyer agrees to
take the case. "It's luck of the draw," shrugs
Gary Schultz, a I5-year veteran of the assigned
counsel panel.
In Manhattan, where the lawyer shortage is
the most severe, poor parents whose children
have been taken to foster care are told to
CITY LIMITS
return to court every few days until an attor-
ney can be found. For working people, this is
a significant burden; they lose pay and aLe at
risk of losing their jobs.
Parents are entitled to a hearing, within
three days of corning to court, to determine if
the children need to be in foster care. This pro-
ceeding, known as a "1028 hearing," is the
judge's first chance to hear the details of the
alleged child neglect, assess the caseworker's
investigation and reason for removing the chil-
dren, and get the parent's side of the story.
If parents can't get lawyers immediately, they
have two options. They can agree to adjourn
their cases, which means leaving their children
in foster care. Or they can attempt to represent
themselves.
At these hearings, attorneys for parents can
cross-examine the caseworkers, point out holes
in their testimony that might not be apparent to
laypeople and also help the parents prepare their
own testimony. But when parents proceed with-
out lawyers, they often end up making decisions
that are strategically disastrous. Not understand-
ing the law, they easily end up damning them-
selves, even inadvettently confessing to neglect.
"An extremely high number of people are
going through the system without legal represen-
tation," says Gene Fastook, a Manhattan 18b
lawyer who has represented parents in family
court since 1990. "In some of the other courts, it's
possible to go pro se. " Housing court and small
claims court, for instance, are designed for liti-
gants without attorneys. But family court, with its
technical rules of procedure and specialized jar-
gon, is distinctly user-unfriendly. "Without the
help of an attorney," says Fastook, "people's rights
are being abridged." Parents don't have training in
cross-examination or rules of evidence. And par-
ents don't know a judge's quirks the way lawyers
do, nor do parents tend to know what will
impress judges and what will alienate them.
Other parents simply accede to court
adjournments, returning to court every few days,
or weeks, until a lawyer is available. In doing
that, they lose precious time in which they could
be working to resolve whatever issues led ACf:. to
remove the children in the first place. "There's a
lot of impottant stuff that goes on in those first
couple of weeks," says Caroline Kearney of Legal
Services of New York, which occasionally repre-
sents parents in family court. "There's nobody
there to tell people, 'These are your rights.'"
For instance, says Kearney, if ACS charges
the parents with using drugs and the parents
deny it, a lawyer might advise the parents to
delay the 1028 hearing for several weeks for
JUNE 2003
random drug testing. This tactic gives parents
a chance to prove their children would be safe
at home. But it also relies on a completely
counterintuitive idea: that delaying the hear-
ing may in fact bring their kids home sooner.
A lawyerless parent, anxious to get her chil-
dren out of foster care quickly, isn't likely to
think that seeking postponement of a hearing
is a smart thing.
Or, if ACf:. has placed the children in foster
care with strangers, lawyers for the parents can
propose relatives' homes instead. Although par-
ents can theoretically do this without attorneys,
caseworkers don't always take a parent's sugges-
tion seriously. Lawyers can ask the judge to order
caseworkers to look into relatives, which holds
more weight than parents asking on their own.
Kearney also says a number of parents aren't
getting visits with their children, at least not
early on. For parents with newborns, the visits
are a chance to scart the bonding process. Older
children, who know their parents, often want
to visit because they miss them. Visits are also
necessary for reunification, because parents and
children who haven't kept in contact are likely
to find it difficult to once again live together as
a family. Without lawyers, "there's a gap before
visiting gets set up," explains Kearney.
In many cases, whether or not visits happen
depends entirely on whether a child asks to see
the parent. "If our client is dying to visit with
their parent, then we are obviously going to
assert that," says Legal Aid attorney Ron
Richter, who represents children in family
court. "If the child's on the fence, the parent's
at a significant disadvantage."
The lawyer shortage doesn't only affect
families when a case first comes into the system.
Finding lawyers for parents whose children are
already in foster care is difficult, too. Children
have to wait much longer than they should to
Alice wanted her daughter
back, but she had no lawyer
to stand up for her.
move into a lasting home, whether it's back with
their families or by undergoing adoption.
Even if a parent had lawyers at one time, an
attorney doesn't stay with a case indefmitely.
Instead, lawyers assigned to represent parents
on a neglect case typically work with them
when the case goes to trial and then, if a judge
fmds a parent guilty of neglect, at the hearing to
decide whether to place the children in foster
continued on page 38
27
INTELLIGENCE
THE BIG IDEA
Ailing Giant
The Medicaid colossus is
about to fall-thanks to a
shove from Bush.
By Kai Wright
IN A STATE ACCUSTOMED to boasting about the
breadth of its public health insurance system,
Governor Pataki's proposed $1.6 billion in
Medicaid cuts have struck a deep nerve. It was,
after all, just a couple of years ago that New
York triumphantly expanded Medicaid in ways
no one had seriously attempted since Lyndon
Johnson inaugurated the program nearly four
decades ago.
But it was only a maner of rime before New
York's celebrated Medicaid system-and the
national nerwork it is part of-hit the wall. Fac-
ing rising numbers of uninsured and seeing no
sign of broad national health care reform, Med-
icaid planners throughour the country expanded
their systems in recent years by building a house
of cards. The recession jump-started the col-
lapse, and now a Bush administration plan will
28
likely finish it.
Medicaid grew our of nearly 50 years of
Democratic presidential effortS to create a pub-
lic health insurance system. Each failed, until
the Democrats won lopsided control of Con-
gress in 1965, allowing Johnson to usher in
Medicaid and Medicare. The idea was to first
offer basic health care to poor women, kids,
seniors and people with disabilities, then slowly
grow into a national health insurance system.
Bur Washingron reneged on its promise of
growth. Not until the 1990s, after Bill Clin-
ton's health care reform effortS failed, did Med-
icaid really expand. That growth, however, did
not result from the sort of lasting policy
changes that Johnson pulled off. Instead, state
governors and the Clinton administration dealt
with a hostile Congress by focusing on short-
term growth-since 1998, enrollment has
gone up by seven million people-at the
expense of long-term stability.
Medicaid is an entitlement program, mean-
ing that federal funding is determined by need.
The law dictates which categories of people
states must cover. It also specifies what benefits
the states must offer and how to do so. In
return, Washington pays a proportion of the
costs, no matter how high they get. If a state
wants to do anyrhing beyond what federal law
stipulates, it has to get permission. And any
permanent changes to Medicaid requirements
have to be legislated by Congress. This has
annoyed governors for decades.
Bur the administration can authorize rule-
bending "demonstration projects" that are sup-
posed to be pilots for reform. In the program's
early days, rule bending was rare, but the Clinton
administration changed the game by encourag-
ing states to apply for waivers. Governors were
delighted, but they were also told that waivers
would be approved only if they expanded cover-
age. Today, more than one-fifth of Medicaid
funding is spent on demonstration projects.
The catch-22 is that demonstrations must be
"budget neutral"-meaning they can't cost more
than what the feds would spend without the
waivers. So states submitted applications that
predicted budget neutrality: they said innova-
tions would save money, and the savings would
fund expansion. Would prediction become real-
ity? The answer was left for another day.
The Bush administration has brought us to
that day. In January, Secretary of Health and
Human Services Tommy Thompson proposed
CITY LIMITS
turning Medicaid into a block grant program,
in which Congress fixes an annual payment for
each state, and any further cost is the state's
problem. In return, states will get what Thomp-
son calls "carte blanche" to design much of their
Medicaid programs the way they see fit.
Thompson's proposal lets each state switch
to Bush's block grant or stay with the tradi-
tional entitlements. But the choice is not quid
pro quo. States that choose the new block
grants will be eligible for some of the $13 bil-
lion funding boost the White House is propos-
ing over the next seven years. States that stick
with the old entitlements, however, will have to
lobby Congress to increase the feds' share of a
program that already costs
$280 billion a year.
Thompson says that
expanding each year since Washington
approved the idea in 1997. In 2001, New York
also established Family Health Plus, extending
insurance to families making up to one and a
half times the poverry level and even to child-
less adults living at the poverry level.
This expansion, however, has lime to do with
any savings that might have stemmed from man-
aged care. The United Hospital Fund is com-
pleting a five-year study evaluating costs and
qualiry of treatment afrer New York's managed
care conversion. So far there's lime hard data, so
researchers have turned to piecemeal surveys of
providers. "What came out of that, " says Kather-
ine Haslanger, who is leading the study, "is a
sense that not much has
changed" in terms of
monetary savings or bet-
when freed from the
"straitjacket" of federal
rules, states will come up
with new ways to save
money without hurting
care. That's the same idea
that supported Clinton-era
waiver mania. But here's
what both approaches
ignore: Medicaid is not a
wasteful program; it's just
expensive. The only real
way to trim costs is to cut
services or pay less for
New York can
no longer cling
to the idea that
managed care is
a cost cutter.
ter-qualiry care.
What Haslanger calls
the "el igibiliry noise" of
Medicaid-the constant
monitoring of whether
beneficiaries in fact qual-
ify--cancels out the sta-
biliry of managed care.
Every six months, Medic-
aid applicants have to
verify over 20 factors
about their lives, ranging
from income to family
them-and the only sus-
tainable way to expand the
program's reach is to support people's right to
health care, and commit financially to that right.
WHEN STATES STARTED applying for waivers,
their first and most popular innovation was
managed care-which gives a health care
provider a fixed payment for promising an
enrollee treatment, regardless of how fre-
quently or infrequently he or she actually uses
the service. One of Medicaid's biggest chal-
lenges has been reducing beneficiaries' reliance
on expensive emergency room visits for rou-
tine care, a practice that drives up costs and
makes preventive health care more difficult. In
a 1997 Urban Institute study, 44 percent of
adults had been to the ER in the previous year.
Managed care promises stabiliry. By assigning
patients to a primary care provider, it pro-
motes a long-term doctor-patient relationship
and controls costs.
Today, 49 states have varied Medicaid man-
aged care plans. New York's is among the most
far reaching. It was Governor Pataki's central
health care reform, and it has been slowly
JUNE 2003
size. These details ofren
change, leading to dis-
qualification. So enrollees
cycle in and out of the system, undermining the
long-term doctor-patient relationship the
health plans are supposed to promote. Accord-
ing to one United Hospital Fund study, only 42
percent of people who entolled in 1998 kept 12
months of unintertupted coverage.
New York's system suffers from yet another
profound flaw: providers also cycle through
quickly. So most health plans are sponsored
by hospitals. But hospitals' primary care
providers are their outpatient clinics, where
residents-doctors in training-comprise
nearly half the staff, according to the United
Hospital Fund survey. Residents finish their
training and leave.
The first states to embrace managed care, in
the early 1990s, soon discovered how expensive
it really was. Even in the best of circumstances,
an effective enrollment process requires sus-
tained outreach and case management early in
the program. Getting private health plans to
participate means paying rates that are high
enough to attract and retain them. Haslanger's
review of other states' experience found that
INTELLIGENCE
THE BIG IDEA
NEW REPORTS
The welfare rolls are catching up with the reces-
sion: Welfare caseloads rose in 38 states in late
2002, according to this new report. But as with
any data, there are a few outliers-namely New
York, where caseloads have dropped 34 percent
since the recession began, despite the fact that
unemployment is much worse here. Why is New
York bucking the national trend? No one knows
for sure, but it isn't lack of need:
homelessness and the demand for emergency
food have gone up
"Weffare Caseloads Increase in Most States
in Fourth Quarler"
The Center for law and Social Policy
www.clasp.orgor 202-906-8000
This projection of Medicare's future carefully
makes the case for an overhaul of the federal
program that helps pay seniors' health costs.
Why? Demographics, mostly: The number of
elderly persons will grow sharply in coming
decades, while the number of wage-earning
workers will rise more slowly. Throw in the
increased cost of medical care, and by about
2013, Medicare will dip into its reserve funds.
If future Congresses don't either increase
funding or decrease spending, those reserves
will run out in roughly 2026.
"Medicare: Financial Challenges
and Considerations for Reform"
The General Accounting Office
www.gao.govor202-512-7114
This spring's release of Census findings
includes an incredible amount of data on jobs,
poverty, housing and education-918 pages
worth for just New York State. Look carefully
and you'll find great nuggets: 46 percent of
Queens residents were born in other countries;
36 percent of Bronx workers drive their own
vehicle to their jobs; Manhattan has 346,000
apartments built before 1940; there are only
2,366 homes on Staten Island worth less than
$lOO,OOO-and just 2,927 worth more than
half a million dollars.
"Census 2000: Social, Economic
and Housing Characteristics"
u.S. Census Bureau
www.census.gov or 301-763-4636
29
The Network
o a
Black Professionals And Small Business Magazine
1"01" P,"ofcssionals, Small Busincss Owncrs and l \Iohilc
Indiyiduals who striH for thc Compctitin' Cdgl'
30
www.tnj.com
financial plan homeless economic development budget government offi-
cials ethics social proqrams welfare reform low-income neighborhoods
private sector fOI ;Iation fiscal year
research news leg, STU C 1
ft
's Bush administra-
tion Democractic I .. Grants Social ser-
vices Bronx Bro Greene Harlem
Bloomberg Union '-"J _ . __ Services Banana
Kelly housing developers 101 system hiring freeze federal
funds unemployment Yo U 5t-9/11 living wage workforce
development affordable ape r Manhattan drug addiction
charter school shelter SyStE Are icting housing project public
hearings minority predatory :i al plan homeless economic
development budget governr Here thics social programs welfare
reform low-income neighborl sector foundation giving vol-
unteers legislation fiscal yeal 5 legal aid affordable housing
Labor laws Bush - publican Community ser-
vices Grants Social serviL . 1 Queens Manhattan Fort
Greene Harlem Bloomberg King families HIV/AIDS Ser-
vices Banana Kelly housing l .)bbyists school system hiring
freeze federal funds unemploy .ning programs Post-9/11 living
wage workforce development al. Jle apartments Lower Manhattan
drug addiction charter school she. .. system families evicting housing
project public hearings minority predatory lending financial plan
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none reaped the fanciful 5 to 10 percent sav-
ings first predicted for managed care. Indeed,
few states still bother to promote their man-
aged care systems as cost cutters. "New York is
much more the exception," says Stephen Zuck-
erman of the Urban Institute. And as Pataki's
proposed budget cuts make clear, New York is
one more state that can no longer cling to the
"cost-cutter" notion.
MANAGED CARE'S ECONOMIC failures weren't
important during the economic boom years
when states expanded their systems. Governors
felt flush with money from soaring tax revenues
and from public assistance loads trimmed by
welfare reform. Encouraged by Washington,
states felt safe to open their Medicaid systems
the way Pataki did in New York, even when
savings from managed care never materialized.
But with the recession lingering now, the Bush
plan gives states creative ways to shrink rather
than expand their systems. For example, a state
could offer prescription drugs only to patients
with certain illnesses, or deny enrollment to
people with health problems that cost a lot to
treat. Granted, federal law would still make all
states do some things, but these fixed policies
would account for only 35 percent of all Med-
icaid spending. Under the Bush plan, one-third
of current Medicaid enrollees would get no
protection from federal rules.
Moreover, Medicaid's big growth area, cost-
wise, comes from providing long-term care for
elderly and disabled folks, and prescription
drugs for everyone. Spending on elderly and dis-
abled enrollees accounts for three-quarters of
costs nationally. Prescription drugs comprised
nearly one-fifth of all Medicaid costs between
1998 and 2000, according to the Kaiser Family
Foundation. Under the Bush plan, states that
can't economize with innovations like managed
care will have to either cut drug coverage or stop
paying for long-term care.
Neither option is palatable. That's likely
why governors are in a wait-and-see mode.
Congress must approve Bush's plan, but it is
also considering a handful of bills that would
simply expand the federal share of Medicaid
costs next year, easing some immediate bud-
getary pressures.
If the Bush plan wins out, states will likely
claim the $13 billion additional funding over
the next seven years. But there's a catch. In
keeping with Medicaid's reform habit, the
Bush plan is budget neutral over 10 years. As a
result, states that opt for quick relief will have
to pay it back in a decade-via reduced fund-
ing. Is anyone thinking about this, or are the
governors of one mind with Thompson?
When a reporter asked him about the 10-year
payback, he answered mirthfully: ''I'm not
going to be here to solve that problem. "
CITY LIMITS
Bronx Tales
Why there's no one
"ghetto life."
By Clarence A. Haynes
Random Family: love, Drugs, Trouble,
and Coming of Age in the Bronx
By Adrian LeBlanc
Scribner, 416 pages, $25
"IN THE BRONX, you always had to watch where
you were going. The smallest moves in the
wrong direction could have enormous conse-
quences," journalist Adrian Nicole leBlanc
writes in Random Family.
leBlanc spent more than 10 years following
the poverty-stricken lives of a Puerto Rican
family on Tremont Avenue. Her detailed
immersion reporting, focusing particularly on
the struggles of her female subjects, gives us a
front-row read on a class of people who've been
pushed to the periphery. With her book, which
Commitment is
has been a runaway success, leBlanc has given
a face to some of the forgotten.
But it would be a mistake for readers to
assume that the lifestyle that leBlanc presents is
"the" culture of the ghetto. It's one of many.
Readers shouldn't replace their own vision of
the Bronx with one of it as a dramatic hell. The
lives that leBlanc chronicles are vastly different,
for example, from my own Bronx upbringing.
I grew up in "Little Jamaica," a West Indian
neighborhood in the Bronx's northeast sec-
tion. I was a sheltered bookworm, unaware of
much of the drama that lurked around my
own corner-save for the occasional boom of
bullets at midnight.
My mother and grandmother-my primary
parents-had immigrated to the States from
another ghetto, in Panama, and often fretted
about the dangers of their adopted borough.
My grandmother was reluctant to let me frolic
around the parks of her housing project. And
though my neighborhood consisted primarily
of working-class families (many of whom were
homeowners), my mother still demanded I be
ferried by van to my elementary school, a mere
three blocks away.
Despite our poverty, my parents' choices
emphasized academics and social thoughtful-
INTELLIGENCE
CITY LIT
Random
Family Adrian Nicole LeBlanc
ness. They would have classified themselves as
"decent" folk, a category that, according to the
urban ethnographer Elijah Anderson, many
inner-city residents use to declare their sub-
Tomorro\N starts today
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With a focused strategy of support for com-
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ronment, Deutsche Bank partners with local
organizations to build a brighter future.
leading to results TM
Our commitment to a better tomorrow
starts today.
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JUNE 2003 31
INTELLIGENCE
CITY LIT
NOW READ THIS
New York Ricans From the Hip Hop Zone
By Raquel Z. Rivera
Palgrave Macmillan, $22.95
The experiences of the city's Puerto Rican hip hop
artists, like the late Big Pun (ne Christopher Rios)
have been largely invisible to the outside world,
which thinks all rappers of color are African Amer-
ican. And many Puerto Ricans also dismiss their
fast-talking hermanos, fearing any culture that's
too black. But Rivera's careful history shows that
neoyorquinos like the breakdancing Rock Steady
Crew have been at the heart of New York's hip-hop
culture since its earliest days.
Lost Ground: Welfare Reform,
Poverty, and Beyond
Edited by Randy Albelda and Ann Withorn
South End Press, $18
The only thing more irritating than the way the
right talks about welfare reform-as an unmiti-
gated success-is when the left does the con-
verse. This collection of a dozen essays from pro-
gressive scholars like Gwendolyn Mink and Fran-
cis Fox Piven paints the 1996 welfare laws as an
apocalyptic disaster, an odd conclusion given that
the late 1990s saw historic declines in poverty for
all races. The booming economy probably lowered
poverty more than anything, but it would be
refreshing to see thinkers of all ideologies actually
grapple with the nuances of how poor people's
lives have changed, for good and for bad.
Void Where Prohibited-Revisited
By Marc Linder
Fanplhu3 Press, $8
When University of Iowa labor professor Linder
revealed five years ago that American employers
regularly forbid their employees from taking
bathroom breaks, the Occupational Safety and
Health Administration responded by issuing a
memo requiring businesses to allow their workers
to relieve themselves "when they need to do so."
What a success, right? Not so fast, Linder writes
in this updated version of his original, which
includes enough detailed anecdotes about denial
of bathroom breaks to scare the piss out of you.
32
scription to values that include familial love
and hard (legal) work.
While many of the subjects in leBlanc's
book adhere to some of these values---e.g. the
desire to see their children stay in school-her
work focuses on generations of unabashed
street life. We fust meet Jessica, a sexually
adventurous 16-year-old, whose mother, Lour-
des, becomes hooked on drugs. Jessica's little
brother Cesar, a self-absorbed young criminal,
falls in love during his early teen years with
Coco, a thoughtful, tough and conflicted girl
whose odyssey into
adulthood frames much
of Random Family.
tion nom her father, Cesar, who is in prison.
She identifies herself as a "problem child."
Mercedes temporarily succeeds under the
guidance of a progressive summer camp and
fourth grade teacher, but then slips into the abyss
again because her mother lacks the necessary
time, energy and imagination to give Mercedes a
more formidable escape route. Mercedes' admis-
sion to an uncaring social worker that she doesn't
know how to control her anger highlights the
confounding haze that young people must con-
tend with when they feel as though adult guid-
ance has been insufficient.
LeBlanc excellently
LeBlanc illuminates
the neighborhood's dan-
gers and difficulties in
matter-of-fact, onen un-
sentimental prose. She
numbingly describes the
horrors of ghetto life,
from evictions to shoot-
ings to physical abuse.
Yet the book's disconcert-
ingly nonchalant tone is
Trauma becomes
normalized when
contextualizes these youth
perspectives with adult
experiences. But Random
Family does not look
closely at South Bronx
denizens who paved a way
for themselves, even if
they are exceptions to the
rule, to contrast with the
more tragic figures.
resources are
scarce.
My cousin Carmen
onen faces this juxtaposi-
tion of despair and hope.
She still lives in our old
an accurate reflection of
how trauma becomes
normalized when resources are scarce.
For instance, leBlanc writes that many
people saw Coco as just "regular" and thought
that there were women who had it worse,
despite the fact that Coco dropped out of high
school, has five different children from four
different fathers, routinely gets evicted from
her apartments and ends up in homeless shel-
ters twice.
leBlanc also compellingly illustrates how
interconnected misfortunes lead to despair. To
treat her chronically ill daughter Pearl, Coco
has to quit her job at a nursing home to make
frequent trips to a distant hospital. Her absence
from the house then creates an opportunity for
her drug-dealing boyfriend to turn it into a
spot where he can conduct business. In these
pages, a safe, stable home is rarely found.
For policy makers, Random Family's biggest
draw is its focus on the socioeconomic and cul-
turallegacies that children inherit from the sys-
tem and their parents, especially the severing
effects of jail time. Coco says at one point, "I
feel like I do so much like my mother."
Watching a child try to break away from her
family patterns and circumstances is heart-
wrenching. leBlanc vividly sketches Coco's
oldest, Mercedes, as an intelligent girl who
rages with resentment over her sexual molesta-
tion, impoverished surroundings and separa-
neighborhood, where she's married and raising
two sons. Some of the men and women on
street corners who ask her for money are for-
mer classmates, now burnt out on drugs.
Her oldest boy, Kenric Jr., is 3. His bubbli-
ness and witty conversational skills are some-
times overshadowed by his defiance of parental
authority. Carmen worries about what will
happen to Kenric ifhis stubborn behavior con-
tinues. Will he hook up with the wrong bunch
in our 'hood in his later years?
But Carmen also knows the options she
can provide for Kenric. leBlanc does briefly
mention people who make more well-
informed choices: like Marlene, a hoodlum's
wife who worked, went to college and raised a
daughter. Or Iris, Coco's sister, whose rela-
tively stable home seems perpetually under-
mined by the tension of her surroundings.
But because of their brevity, these particular
portraits shed little light on how their subjects
managed to negotiate a culture of poverty
more successfully. LeBlanc has written a study
of intersecting systems of poverty that should
be recognized as pervasive, but by no means
the only models of limited means that exist in
our ghettos .
Clarence A. Haynes is an editor of New Youth
Connections, a teen-written publication.
CITY LIMITS
DoNA .JULIA I
Power
to the
*
Poets
Doi'iaJulia
I
By Alberto
Cappas
And Other Selected _ by

1st Books
Alberto O. Cappas
I
Library,
l.=:.
- ...... -. ........ --
93 pages, $9.50
IF MORE PUBLIC OFFICIALS and politicians
could write poetry as visceral as the Human
Resources Administration's Director of Com-
munity Affairs Alberto Cap pas, the world
would indeed be in a different place.
Cap pas' third book of poetry, Dona Julia,
explores the complexities of everyday life for
the Puerto Rican immigrant in New York City.
The poems are sometimes touching and nos-
talgic, sometimes painful and alienating, as
Cappas speaks to the ways in which poverty
and racism impact the lives of immigrants who
try to incorporate the supposed American
Dream into their realities-and their varying
degrees of success and failure in doing so.
In "A Distant Despair," Cappas describes
"the BuildinglWith the graffitil'Viva Puerto
Rico Libre' /And other declarationslWoman
and her three children/are evicted for not pay-
ing the rent. " In the same building lives a Mrs.
Garcia, who is "glued to the window/Looking
from corner to corner/For stories to talk about
and invent. " The poem is filled with images of
what life is like for the tenants of this building.
Its beauty (and that of Cap pas' writing) lies in
its ability to cause a tension for the reader, to
leave us torn between those images that evoke
a feeling of warmth for the people of the com-
munity and the ones that inspire anger, or
sometimes hopelessness, over the living condi-
tions that create such poverty.
It is this sort of complexity that keeps Dona
Julia from being a book about feeling pity for
the people and places it portrays. The book's
characters are implicated in their own madness,
too. In ''Aguacate Power," Cappas shows his
frustration with what he calls "unconscious
Puerto Ricans" who "have made it in the
USA/They exist without the ganasIWithout a
Planning for Communities, Cities
and the Environment at Pratt.
Pratt's planning programs prepare students with the theory and skills necessary to respond to the diverse needs of
communities and foster comprehensive social, physical. economic and environmental development. Through courses,
studios and fieldwork, students leam both the principles and the practice of participatory. equity-focused urban planning.
The faculty. which includes practitioners from every arena of planning. introduces students to the real-life challenges
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The Graduate Center for Planning and the Environment offers:
Master of Science degree in City and Regional Planning
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Joint degrees combining planning with law or undergraduate architecture
Concentrations include:
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JUNE 2003
Preservation planning with a focus on integrating historic preservation with
community development
Physical planning. land use and urban design
Courses are offered in the evenings at Brooklyn and Manhattan campuses to
accommodate working professionals.
INTELLIGENCE
CITY LIT
place in the sun/They sing songs for the politi-
cianslWith nothing to offer them in turn for
their dedication/They do not know the harm
they generate."
The standout poem in this collection is the
title piece, "Dona Julia." The poem is about a
woman who commits suicide, and leaves a note
that baffles police, stating, "One way or the
other, I'm going back to Puerto Rico. " The
poem starkly describes what led the woman to
this place. "Dona Julia/Committed suicide last
night/Cause the welfare department/
Demanded too many documents she did
not/know existed." It's quite the indictment
coming from an employee of HRA.
In a city used to low voter turnout in most
elections, where people feel increasingly alienated
from their political and community leaders, it is
refreshing to find someone working in the sys-
tem who is sympathetic to the lives of ordinary
citizens. Cappas' poetry, never overly sentimen-
tal, demonstrates both a talent for the written
word and a deep understanding of people, their
communities and the larger institutions that
influence their lives. The next time you go to the
polls, don't elect a politician; elect a poet.
-Kenyon Farrow
Pratt Institute
Graduate Center for Planning and the Environment
200 Willoughby Ave . B r o o k ~ n . NY 11205
(718) 399-4314 ext. 100 e-mail: gradplan@pratt.edu
33
INTELLIGENCE
MAKING CHANGE
Human Resources
Corporate America's new
philanthropy donates
helping hands.
By Mark Lowery
BEN HECHT SAT in the California headquarrers of
Cisco Systems looking for a corporate handout.
Hecht, president of the Washington, D.C.-based
nonprofit One Economy Corporation, was hop-
ing his March 2001 visit to Cisco Systems would
yield a check or, perhaps, some donated equip-
ment that would help his organization in its mis-
sion of bringing internet access to residents of
low-income and affordable housing develop-
ments across the country. He got much more.
Cisco was in the midst of a round of mas-
sive layoffs, and the company's philanthropy
arm had stepped in with an effort to make
some good out of the situation. It created a
program that sent a small group of the people
being laid off to 21 nonprofits around the
34
country for a year of full-time work. Laid-off
workers could apply to the program and, if
chosen by one of the nonprofits, they'd get
one-third of their former salaries, maintain
their benefits and keep access to continuing
education in technology.
The program hardly ameliorated Cisco's lay-
offs-the company gave out thousands of pink
slips and only 81 fellowships. (At year's end,
nine of the fellows chose to continue working
for the non profits to which they had been
assigned, and 34 got their jobs back at Cisco).
But it did offer a shot in the arm to the partic-
ipating nonprofits, each of which used the fel-
lows to launch long-term projects that required
technology expertise they didn't have in-house
and couldn't afford to buy.
Cisco officials invited Hecht's One Econ-
omy to participate. "We happened to be at
Cisco pitching our program, and Cisco said,
'Wow, many of our employees would love to
do what you're doing,'" Hecht recalls. In fact,
60 of the fellowship applicants ultimately
applied to work at One Economy. Hecht and
his colleagues chose 13 and assigned them to
One Economy offices throughout the country.
With more and more companies facing
declining profits and mounting losses, many
are pursuing new strategies of corporate giving.
In place of cash, they are sharing something
else of value: their employees.
"WE CAll THEM our Cisco accelerators, "
Hecht says of his fellows. "They probably
impacted on three to five thousand units of
housing. " One Economy credits the Cisco fel-
lows with creating content for its website,
producing "how to" guides for housing
authorities looking to wire their facilities,
helping to actually implement the wiring for
75 properties housing 15,000 residents-and
saving the organization a whopping 10,000
hours of staffing time.
But the real impact, says One Economy's
New York director Tom Kamber, may be the
long-term changes the fellows sparked. They
brought a level of tech-world credibility that
helped One Economy transform from, as
Kamber puts it, "tech-savvy people who were
really respected in the housing world" into
CITY LIMITS
technology experts who can show developers
exactly how a project will get done. This new
expertise drew the attention of a Boston-based
technology consulting group that had helped
that city wire one of its public housing com-
plexes, and the rwo groups developed a per-
manent partnership under the name Access
One. "Cisco gave us a really strong toehold in
rhe wiring and wireless access world," says
Kamber. "We'd have housing guys talking to
rhem about rhe ideas, but we had rhese Cisco
guys that could back us up."
Working wirh its Boston partners, One
Economy is now bringing broadband internet
access to all 465 units of rhe Dr. Betty Shabazz
Complex and rhe Medgar Evers Houses, borh
in Bedford-Stuyvesant, which rhe Community
Service Society, rhe Settlement Housing Fund,
Long Life Information and Referral Nerwork
and rhe buildings' tenants associations are in
rhe process of taking over and refurbishing. The
area doesn't have access to DSL or cable modem
service, which would allow each aparunent to
independently plug into rhe internet. So One
Economy plans to install a T1 line-a special-
ized phone line rhat allows scores of people to
connect to rhe internet simultaneously, and
which is found in most offices.
When One Economy pitched rhe idea to rhe
developers, it brought in its Boston partners to
do a full analysis of rhe Bed-Stuy facilities-fig-
uring out where rhe T1 line could come in,
where they could run rhe needed cable, how
much it would cost and so on. That specificity
moved rhe proposal from rhe erhereal world of
bright ideas to a place where everyone could
envision its completion-even rhough such a
project has not been attempted previously on
such a large scale. "Everybody's doing this on rhe
fairh of rhe partnership," Kamber says.
"There are some incredible, innovative pro-
grams out rhere," says Susanne Brose, director of
rhe Committee to Encourage Corporate Philan-
thropy in New York, in reflecting on rhe chang-
ing model for corporate giving. "In rhe evolution
of corporate philanthropy, we are seeing corpo-
rate programs that have moved beyond just cash
grants .... It's less about modeling any particular
program rhan it is about developing strategies
rhat are in line wirh corporate missions."
The Cisco program, for instance, chose its
partner nonprofits based on rheir level of
demonstrated commitment to using technol-
ogy-in particular, rhe internet-to improve
rhe services rhey were already providing.
Of course, rhese new strategies come at a time
when corporate giving is decreasing. According
JUNE 2003
to rhe American Association of Fundraising
Counsel in New York, which tracks corporate
donations, corporate giving dropped 12.1 per-
cent, to $9.05 billion, in 2001. However, rhe
same time period has seen a surge in philan-
rhropy programs focused on volunteerism.
This spring, AT&T employees and retirees
will be cleaning up parks and playgrounds
across the country, including Washington
Square and Battery Park City's green spaces. It's
part of rhe New Jersey-based company's AT&T
Cares program, which it started in 1996. Last
year, more rhat half of AT&T's employees vol-
unteered individually or as part of work teams.
"Our employees
will be the
greatest value
we can add to the
nonprofit sector,"
says a Cisco
executive.
But as more AT &T employees are volunteering
rheir time, rhe company's foundation has scaled
back its giving. In 2001, rhe AT&T Founda-
tion gave out $46 million; this year's budget is
less rhan half rhat amount, $22 million.
Similar programs are springing up around
rhe country. Each year, Whole Foods Market,
Inc. , a Texas-based natural and organic foods
supermarket chain, allows its employees to use
up to 20 hours of rheir paid time each year on
community service for an organization of rhe
employee's choice. The San Francisco-based
Salesforce.com, which provides companies
wirh web-based services for tracking sales and
marketing, has only about 200 employees. But
this relatively small staff has given more rhan
4,000 hours to community-service programs
in rhe past rwo years. They've provided techni-
cal expertise to 41 community technology cen-
ters around rhe world, where students learn
photography, video production and
web design.
At Universal Parks and Resorts in Orlando,
INTELLIGENCE
MAKING CHANGE
Florida, more rhan 3,000 employees have vol-
unteered for more than 8,500 hours of com-
munity service for programs rhat focus on chil-
dren, education, hunger and homelessness.
They serve as mentors at local schools, coordi-
nate carnivals for homeless families, provide
technical expertise to nonprofit organizations
and make visits to children's hospitals.
BUT PART OF WHAT made rhe Cisco program
unique was its ability to generate a parmership:
nonprofits didn't just get one-shot volunteers-
rhey got full-time staff. And rhat meant rhey
were able to launch long-term projects. One fel-
low who worked wirh rhe international human-
itarian assistance group Care USA traveled to
Cambodia, India, Thailand and Bangladesh to
help rhe group determine how it could better
use rhe internet to deliver its programs.
At rhe Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa
Clara and San Mateo counties, fellows were
credited wirh reducing rhe workload of food
bank employees by 450 hours per monrh,
building a database rhat allowed rhe group to
double rhe number of clients it serves and accel-
erating rhe group's technology plan by five
years. In all, rhey provided Second Harvest wirh
more rhan $1.1 million in consulting services.
"The fellows have not only contributed to
rhe ongoing work of CARE USA, " says Eric
Dupree Walker, CARE's strategic planning
and analysis coordinator. "They are also help-
ing to broaden our view of how technology
improves operational effectiveness."
Peter Tavernise, executive director of Cisco
Systems Foundation, rhe company's philan-
rhropy arm, says rhat's rhe point. "The core
competency of our employees will be the great-
est value we can add to rhe nonprofit sector.
And it's more rhan simply nerworking exper-
tise," Tavernise told rhe Philanthropy Journal.
"It's everything we've learned, from human
resources and finance to marketing or opera-
tions, about rhe benefits of appropriate tech-
nology for increasing productivity."
And in rhe end, rhat's a perspective rhat
may be far more sustainable rhan grantmaking.
"Companies are developing programs rhat are
in line with rheir corporate missions, so rhe
companies can sustain rhe programs in good
and bad times, " says Brose, of rhe Committee
to Encourage Corporate Philanthropy. "When
rhat happens, there's no shortage of people who
want to get involved."
Mark Lowery is a freelance writer in Teaneck,
New Jersey.
35
INTELLIGENCE
NYC INC.
Call for Backup
The wireless way to make
downtown's telecom system
more secure than ever before.
By Jordan Silbert
HOW MUCH WOULD it be worth to the city to be
able to tell employers that lower Manhattan is
the most reliable place in the world to do busi-
ness? A billion dollars? Two?
Then imagine that boast could be fulfilled
within one year. Without digging up the
city's streets.
Now how much would you pay?
What if all this could be ours for a public
investment of less than $10 million?
That's the number initially estimated by
technology providers for the Lower Manhattan
Telecommunications Users Working Group-
a group of senior telecom executives from a
variety of downtown's leading companies. The
group, convened after September 11,2001, by
the Alliance for Downtown New York, the Real
Estate Board of New York, the Association for
a Better New York, and the New York Building
Congress, charged itself with identifying the
potential telecom weaknesses revealed by the
attacks, and developing a strategy for ensuring
that the area's communications infrastructure
was made more secure and reliable than ever
before. The participants found two important
ways in which individual building owners
could make tenants' telecom connections more
secure, but it determined that what lower Man-
hattan needs most is a true redundancy, or
backup, system.
It also learned that with new wireless tech-
nology such a system could be implemented
for what, in the context of the larger rebuilding
effort, amounts to pocket change.
The payoff, however, would be enormous.
When companies choose a location, they are
increasingly considering "business continu-
ity"-that is, how certain they can be that their
ability to do business will not be interrupted.
This is particularly true of the communica-
tions-dependent businesses that are both pre-
dicted to grow over the coming decades and
inclined to be attracted to New York City. The
world's most reliable telecom service would be
a very compelling reason for such businesses to
36
A project of the Center for an Urban Future
remain or relocate here.
Says Richard Kennedy, a senior director at
the commercial real estate firm Cushman &
Wakefield: "With the emphasis on business
continuity planning, more and more tenants
in the market for new space are asking, 'How
reliably will the telecommunications infra-
structure at this particular location serve
my business?'
Fortunately, one of the best-kept secrets
about lower Manhattan is that, due to decades
of investment aimed at meeting the needs of
the world's leading financial companies, its
telecom infrastructure is already superb. Sec-
ond only to a tiny island in Hawaii, which
serves as a meeting point for the trans-Pacific
fiberoptic cables to Japan and Australia, lower
Manhattan is the "most wired" place on the
globe. With billions of dollars invested in opti-
cal fiber, routers and switches, and fiber-optic
cable running under virtually every street and
into virtually every major building, down-
town's capacity for communication is already
one of its great competitive advantages.
Since lower Manhattan has such a solid
head start, taking the next steps to make it the
undisputed world leader in telecom reliability
would be a quick and relatively cheap way to
attract and retain jobs in New York City.
The Lower Manhattan Telecommunica-
tions Users Working Group identified a wire-
less redundancy system as the most cost-effec-
tive means of rapidly enhancing the reliability
of lower Manhattan's telecom infrastructure.
Recent technological advances make it possible
to transmit enough data through the air at
speeds high enough to ensure business conti-
nuity in the event of the disruption of tradi-
tional communication lines, even for firms that
are heavily dependent on their ability to share
information. The city could make use of this
technology to build a wireless backup system
that serves all of lower Manhattan.
Here's what such a system would look like:
An individual company's data would flow wire-
lessly between equipment mounted on the roof
of the building it occupies and transceivers
placed atop strategically chosen tall buildings
in lower Manhattan. These transceivers would
in turn connect-also wirelessly-to already
existing hubs both within lower Manhattan
and elsewhere (e.g. Brooklyn or New Jersey) .
These would safely shunt the information onto
or off of the proverbial information superhigh-
way in the event of a problem with the tradi-
tional communication lines.
Companies including Merrill Lynch and
Bank of New York have already given a de facto
stamp of approval to such plan by implement-
ing their own wireless redundancy systems.
However, as one might guess, their systems are
custom-designed to serve their needs alone-a
solution that is prohibitively expensive for all
but the largest companies, and which doesn't
allow businesses to share infrastructure costs, as
they could with the district-wide system
described above.
In a very preliminary analysis for the Lower
Manhattan Telecom Users Working Group,
telecom providers estimate that the shared
infrastructure for such a system would require
a public investment of less than $10 million.
Though both the city and the state are cur-
renrly cash-strapped, this small investment
would quickly pay for itself The Economic
Development Corporation estimates the direct
fiscal impact of one $150,000 financial-ser-
vices job at $150,000 in present dollars, over
ten years. That includes only the income and
sales tax paid by the employee. Consequently,
a lower Manhattan wireless redundancy sys-
tem would have to retain or attract only 67
jobs over the next 10 years to make the initia-
tive cost-effective. And since these numbers do
not take into account the indirect benefits,
also known as the "ripple" or "multiplier"
effect, the actual economic impact would be
far greater.
The funds available for the rebuilding of
lower Manhattan are a good and appropriate
CITY LIMITS
source for the needed investment monies. The
Lower Manhattan Development Corporation
(LMDC) , a joint state-city corporation, was
allocated $2.7 billion by the federal govern-
ment (out of a total federal allocation of $21
billion) and charged with "ensuring lower
Manhattan recovers from the attacks and
emerges even better than it was before. " A
lower Manhattan wireless system would do
just that, by quickly positioning the area to
thrive in the Information Age, and it would do
so at a cost ofless than four-tenths of 1 percent
(.37%) of LMDC's total allocation. In addi-
tion, because a wireless system would not
require any digging up of city streets, it could
be implemented rapidly, easily within one year
of initiation, demonstrating in a highly visible
way that the new and improved lower Man-
hattan was already open for business.
While the wireless system would be a nat-
ural public-sector project, the Lower Manhat-
tan Telecom Users Working Group noted that
the capacity to improve the reliability of the
"wired" telecom infrastructure rests largely
with private building owners. It identified two
specific ways in which individual property
owners could shore up the reliability of the cur-
rent system, making both the area in general
and their properties in particular more attrac-
tive to prospective tenants.
The first is not much more complicated
than drilling a hole. According to a recent
Downtown Alliance survey, 63 percent of
buildings in lower Manhattan have more than
one entrance, or conduit, through which tele-
com cables enter. While this is a greater per-
centage than in virtually all other central busi-
ness districts, upgrading the other 37 percent
of buildings would eliminate one of the last
cracks in the armor. Today, if something hap-
pens at the one conduit entrance in one of
these buildings, whether it be a backhoe acci-
dem or a small explosion, tenants are likely to
lose their voice and data connections to the
world. Adding an additional conduit emrance
and running additional cable through it, at a
cost of approximately $50,000 per building,
would dramatically reduce this vulnerability. It
would also make these buildings much more
attractive to existing and potemial tenants.
"We've found, with our properties, that
offering the best in telecommunications has
helped us attract and retain tenants," says John
Gilbert, executive vice president and chief
operating officer of Rudin Managemem,
which owns and operates 14 commercial office
buildings in the city, including the Information
Technology Cemer at 55 Broad Street. "Any-
JUNE 2003
thing that significantly enhances the reliability
of tenants' telecom systems would undoubt-
edly help. "
The second way the working group found
that building owners can enhance the reliabil-
ity of their tenants' telecom networks is to give
tenants more choices when purchasing tele-
com services.
Within a year, the
plan would make
lower Manhattan
the most reliable
place in the world
to do business.
One of the barriers preveming new telecom
carriers from serving a given building is that
the necessary equipmem and wiring is expen-
sive to purchase and install. As a consequence,
the carrier can only justifY the required invest-
mem with a very large new customer or
numerous smaller customers.
Individual property owners could help solve
the problem by installing and maimaining cen-
tral telecom distribution systems in each of
their buildings-much the way they would
install central heating and air conditioning
units. In other words, rather than requiring
each telecom carrier to install its own equip-
mem and cables-a costly and cumbersome
arrangemem-a landlord would own the
equipmem and a universal system of cables.
Then a variety of carriers could "plug in" at the
building entrance and serve as many tenants as
they could woo with the best combination of
price and reliability.
The cost to install such a cemral distribu-
tion system in one of Lower Manhattan's office
buildings ranges from approximately 65 cems
to $1.25 per square foot, depending on the
building's existing infrastructure. Assuming
that the equipmem can be used for 10 years,
this means that additional per-square-foot cost
would be between 10 and 19 cents per year.
Already a mere pittance, that expense could in
INTELLIGENCE
NYC INC.
some cases be partially offset by existing eco-
nomic incentives. For example, one provision
of the Lower Manhattan Revitalization Plan
offers property tax exemptions to landlords
who increase the assessed value of their build-
ings; another offers real estate and commercial
rent tax exemptions to tenants in downtown
buildings that make investments in their per-
manent infrastructure.
In rebuilding lower Marihanan, billions will
be spem and bold visions will be realized. How-
ever, this will take years, if not decades. Invest-
ing in a wireless redundancy system could,
within a year, make lower Marihattan the most
reliable place in the world to do business. This
would not only be a smart, cost-effective way to
promote the city's economic vitality, but it
would also be a high-profile, high-impact way to
attract jobs that could be started right now.
New York City has faced challenges before.
And each time, in a fashion that has come to
be called "quintessentially New York," we have
responded boldly with new bridges, new
inventions and new industries. Today we have
another opportunity to reach boldly. We must
seize it .
Jordan Silbert is director of rebuilding initiatives
at the Alliance for Downtown New York, which
manages the Business Improvement District for
the area roughly below City Hall.
City UmifS' sister organization. the Center (or on Urban
Future, shows you how to tum your good ideas into reali -
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Misrepresenting
Families
continued from page 27
care. If the judge opts for foster care, the length
of placement is usually for up to 12 months.
The lawyer's job, however, ends the date the
judge's order is made.
At the end of 12 months, if ACS wants to
keep the children in foster care-and it almost
always does-the agency has to file a new peti-
tion asking for an "extension of placement."
Parents are also entitled to a lawyer for these
petitions, but they are only rarely assigned one.
Take Lasalle (not her real name) . She agreed
to extensions of placement three years in a
row--each time without a lawyer. Each year,
ACS said it planned to return the children; each
year, the agency never got around to it. Finally,
Lasalle obtained a lawyer through Legal Ser-
vices. That attorney demanded a court hearing
and got the children home to her.
Or look at Alice's two children, now 10 and
20, who entered foster care five years ago.
(Alice-not her real name-died in April,
shortly after being interviewed by City Limits.)
Her older child lived at home with her, but her
10-year-old daughter, on medication for
ADHD, was just moved to her fourth foster
home in five years. Alice, who suffered from
mental illness, said she was assigned a lawyer in
1998, when ACS first charged her with medical
neglect for failing to seek treatment for an acci-
dental burn her daughter suffered.
Alice didn't remember exactly when her
lawyer stopped representing her, but she knew
she had no attorney when her daughter was
moved from foster home number three, where
the foster mother was teaching her how to read
and how to tie her shoes, to foster home num-
ber four. The reason for the move was that
other foster children entered the home, making
it too crowded for Alice's daughter to remain.
If Alice had had a lawyer during this time,
that attorney could have intervened with the
agency to keep her daughter in the third foster
home, since she was doing well there.
Alice believed a lawyer during this period
might have also worked behind the scenes to
get the family reunited-an option she says the
child's lawyer opposed. "I would have asked if
he could try to talk to the law guardian, to per-
suade her to give me a chance," she said. At the
time of her death, Alice was facing proceedings
to terminate her parental rights and free her
daughter for adoption.
The last time assigned counsel got a
raise was 1986. Still, for 10 years, the fumily
court panel had more than enough lawyers to
represent parents accused of neglect or children
accused of delinquency.
But at some point in the late 1990s, lawyers
simply no longer wanted to work in family
court. "We were losing three people for every
person that came in," says Fastook. Some of
the defectors were no longer content to make a
maximum of $40 an hour during the boom
years of the late 1990s, when 25-year-old
attorneys fresh from law school were earning
$125,000 a year at large firms. Fastook esti-
mates that the pay was a "large factor" for one-
third to one-half of the lawyers who left.
But low pay may be the least of it. In family
court, ACS lawyers cast parents as the enemy,
and children's lawyers and even judges tend to
pile on. Some judges live in constant fear of the
tabloids calling for their heads should they return
a child to a neglectful home. Meanwhile, ACS
caseworkers have already made up their minds
that the parents were neglectful--otherwise, they
would not have brought charges. Overall, the
mentality is to err on the side of safety, which
means that close calls go against the parents.
"It's you against the world," says Brian Zim-
merman, on the assigned counsel panel in
Brooklyn where, he says, the lawyers are hin-
dered by the anti-parent culture.
''This is the most demoralizing work I've ever
done," laments Jill Zuccardy, who represents
battered women in family court. "These cases
are brutal. You don't win. You never win. The
deck is stacked too heavily against the client. "
An unpleasant job became even rougher in
the late 1990s, when ACS made a big push to
move thousands of kids who had lingered in
limbo for years out of foster care and into
adoption. The number of petitions to termi-
nate parental rights, thus freeing children for
adoption, spiked from 3,925 in 1996 to 9,799
in 1997. The number remained similarly high
through the end of the decade.
ACS or private foster care agencies typically
file petitions to terminate parental rights when
children have been in foster care for at least one
year-sometimes significantly longer-and
parents haven't completed their drug programs,
visited or worked toward getting the children
back home. Unlike new neglect cases, where
parents still have hope of ultimately reuniting
with their children, parents facing termination
of their rights are at a desperate juncture.
Children on the verge of being adopted are
also in a bind, since no adoption can go
through until their parents' rights have been
terminated. Until the adoption is finalized,
youngsters have little normalcy, if only because
they and their foster parents must continue to
routinely meet with caseworkers.
But if lawyers are disinclined to take foster
care cases in general, TPRs, as termination of
parental rights cases are called, are anathema. It's
no exaggeration to say that no lawyer will repre-
sent them. "People became disgusted with the
CITY LIMITS
terminations," says Fastook. "There's nothing
you can really do for these people in termina-
tions," he says, and lawyers were tired of feeling
like they were leading "people to the slaughter."
And so these cases can linger indefinitely. In
one case currently pending in Manhattan, a 3-
year-old boy has lived with his aunt for most of
his life. His father, mentally ill and incarcerated
for the foreseeable future, wants to contest the
termination but no lawyer will take the case. The
case has been adjourned for months in hopes
that an attorney will agree to represent the father,
while the toddler remains in a legal limbo.
There are signs that compensation
might soon increase. This year, Governor
George Pataki's proposed budget included a pay
hike for assigned counsel to $75 an hour.
But that's easy for the governor to propose:
As it srands now, the state foots the bill only for
lawyers for juveniles. It's cities and counties
that pay for lawyers for adults, including par-
ents in family court-localities that are already
being crushed under obligations to help fund
Medicaid and other costly state-run programs.
New York City accounts for approximately
two-thirds of all l8b expenditures in the state,
says State Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein,
who chairs the judiciary committee.
For the Pataki proposal to work, she says, the
legislature will have to commit to funding it.
''I'm optimistic that if we end up with a two-
way budget agreement with the Senate, that
JUNE 2003
there will be an l8b solution," says Weinstein.
The Assembly proposal, which includes creat-
ing a fund to reimburse localities for the cost of
assigned counsel, will cost at least $60 million.
On April 30, as City Limits went to press, the
Senate and Assembly agreed to include the fund
in their 2004 budget. It remains to be seen,
now, whether the fund will survive Goveror
Pataki's promised veto of the budget deal.
Others who have studied family court say
representation of parents won't improve as long
as the courts rely on solo practitioners who lack
the resources of an organized group, such as
Legal Services or Legal Aid. The Appellate Divi-
sion First Department Committee on Represen-
tation of the Poor released a report in March
2001 "strongly" recommending that the govern-
ment create an institutional provider such as
Legal Aid to represent parents in family court.
The report also recommended improving the
resources and support available to panel attor-
neys. That suggestion was implemented in May
2002, when the privately funded Center for
Family Representation opened its doors. Lawyers
"can call us and get assistance on a thorny prob-
lem," says center executive director Sue Jacobs.
"We came into being as a consortium of fam-
ily law professionals concerned with representa-
tion of parents," says Jacobs. The center has start-
ed out by offering l8bs training on ACS policies.
For example, ACS' most recent guidelines for vis-
its between parents and children recommend vis-
its as frequently as once a week if appropriate.
Many pracnnoners, however, still don't know
about the new rules. So judges keep ordering
biweekly visits, with the lawyers' consent.
Soon, the center itself will begin represent-
ing a handful of parents, in an effort to be a
model for other lawyers. The plan, says Jacobs,
is to provide parents with intensive social work
support, including referrals to drug programs,
counseling or whatever else is needed to get the
children home as quickly as possible.
If this succeeds, Jacobs hopes Albany will be
persuaded to allocate enough funds so that all par-
ents can receive this type of social work through
their lawyets. Another hope, says Legal Services'
Caroline Kearney, who is also a center board
member, is that the organization will function as a
spokesperson for parents in the media and legisla-
ture. Another, perhaps more modest aim, says
Kearney, is that "parents will be able to work bet-
ter with their lawyers" as a result ' of the Center's
training of lawyers and outreach to parents.
They're not out on a limb with their aspira-
tions. The center has attracted a powerful con-
stellation of allies, including the Casey Founda-
tion-which gave a grant of $200,000-top
officials from ACS and numerous jurists,
including Chief Judge Judith Kaye. "They can
add some momentum to the recognition that
there's something wrong with the representa-
tion of parents in family court," says the Casey
Foundation's Nelson. "The existence of CFR,"
he says, "will accelerate the reform of parental
representation in New York."
39
JOB ADS
ADVERTISE IN
CITY
LIMITS!
To place a classified ad in
City Limits, e-mail your ad to
advertise@citylimits.org or fax
your ad to 212-479-3339. The
ad will run in the City Limits
Weekly and City Limits mag-
azine and on the City Limits
web site. Rates are $1.46 per
word, minimum 40 words.
Special event and professional
directory advertising rates are
also available. For more infor-
mation, check out the Jobs
section of www.citylimits.org
or call Associate Publisher
Susan Harris at
212-479-3345.
RENTAl SPACE
COMMUNITY BASED PROGRAM - Space
available to not-for-profit groups. Bushwick:
3000 square feet of ground floor space near
transportation. Bedford-Stuyvesant: 7500
square feet of classroom space. Also 3600
square feet of open space near transporta-
tion. Manhattan: 6700 square feet of beau-
tiful office space in Midtown South at very
low rental. Bronx: Flexible sublease of beau-
tiful office space from major not-for-profit
near transportation. Additional community
based spaces are also available in all bor-
oughs. For inspection and further informa-
tion, please call Lee Allen of Arc Advisors,
Inc. at 212-447-1576.
SPACE AVAILABLE - 1200 sq ft of office
space available immediately in Jamaica,
Queens. Ideal for non-profit organization, gov-
ernment agency or business. Near LlRR, EFJZ
subway stations and buses. Rent of $2800
monthly includes all utilities and maintenance
cost. Call 516-860-6233.
SPACE AVAILABLE - Girls Incorporated of
New York City seeks partner to sublet excellent
office space. Central Harlem area. Approxi -
mately 2,300 square feet at $25/sf utilities
included. Easy access to BIC lines; 213 lines
and buses. For details contact Doris Rowley-
Hoyte at 212-531-7620, or email
dhoyte.nyc@girls-inc.org
SPACE AVAILABLE - Manhattanville/Convent
Avenue - 3250 Sq. Ft. Raw Space. Could be
used for a Community Health Center for this
neighborhood. DrJDental office, Government
40
Agencies, Non-profit Day Care, Youth and
Senior Center badly needed for this area. Near
all transportation. Call 212-932-0220 or 212-
662-9763 or 212-864-3112 or fax information
to 212-665-6040. Someone will get back to
you.
SPACE AVAILABLE - Part-time, Psychother-
apy office with window, 86th Street near CPW,
ground floor, four-office suite, waiting room
and bathroom, doorman building. Available
all day Monday, Thursday, Saturday and Tues-
day evenings. Call 917-441-3935 for details.
JOB ADS
ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT - The Neigh-
borhood Economic Development Advocacy Pro-
ject (NEDAP) seeks an admini strative assis-
tant. 30 hoursl week. Excellent benefits. Pay
commensurate with experience. Submit
resume and cover letter to: Anna Kalthoff,
NEDAP, 73 Spring Street, Suite 506, New York,
NY 10012 Fax: 212-680-5104, Apply by fax or
mail only. For more information visit our web-
site www.nedap.org. People of color strongly
encouraged to apply.
AFTER SCHOOL PROGRAM COUNSELORS -
The Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) is a large,
multi -service non-profit serving the Bronx for
more than 30 years. The CAB After School pro-
gram is seeking 4-6 part time After School
Program Counselors. The positions require a
high school diploma/GED, experience working
with children in an academic setting and
excellent communication skills. Responsibili-
ties include monitoring children lesson plan-
ning, assisting children with homework and
implementation of literacy activities. E-mail or
fax resume with cover letter to R. Parithivel at
rparithivel@cabny.org or fax 718-590-5866.
CAB is an equal opportunity /affirmative
action employer.
ASSISTANT MORTGAGE OFFICER - FulI -
time assistant mortgage officer for New
Jersey affordable housing lender. Minimum
2 years experience in closings for multi-
family/construction loans. Accurate, artic-
ulate team worker, Excel and MSWord, col-
lege degree and driver'S license. Fax cover
letter and resume to 201-547-5625 or
email gdevoe@communityp.com
ASSOCIATE PROGRAM DIRECTOR - The
Bridge Fund of NYC seeks experienced individ-
ual to work as Associate Program Director for
unique homeless ness prevention program.
Good understanding of housing court proceed-
ing and government benefits is required.
Strong writing/computer skills and Bachelor'S
degree. Salary commensurate with experience.
Fax cover letter and resume to 212-674-0542.
ATTORNEY - Real Estate, Staten Island. Busy
firm seeks attorney experienced in residential
lender closings. Send resume and salary
requirementto fax: 718-983-7078
ATTDRNEY - Bronx based Real Estate Devel-
opment and Management Co. is seeking an
attorney with extensive experience in real
estate transactions, housing court, DHCR and
NYC Regulations. Strong analytical skills and
commitment to excellence. Full benefits pack-
age, salary commensurate with experience.
Fax resume and writing sample to 718-299-
6646 or e-mail toresume437@hotmail.com.
CAREGIVER COORDINATOR - Brooklyn based
Caregiver program seeks a MSW. Knowledge of
aging services, entitlements and supervisory
experience required. Bilingual preferred.
$38,000-42,000 DOE. Please fax resume to
M.Oxley, 718-768-2119 or email to
moxley@broadviewnet.net.
CASE MANAGER - The Citizens Advice
Bureau (CAB) is a large, multi-service non-
profit serving the Bronx for more than 30
years. The agency provides a broad range of
individual and family services, including
walk-in assistance and counseling, services
to special-need populations, such as immi-
grants, children, adolescents, seniors, home-
less families and singles, individuals and
families affected by HIVIAIDS. CAB provides
excellent benefits and offers opportunities for
advancement. Resumes and cover letters
indicating position may be mailed to 2054
Morris Ave. Bronx, NY 10453, or faxed as
directed. The Ryan White Program seeks a
Case Manager. The position requires an Asso-
ciates degree. Experience working with the
HIVIAIDS population, knowledge of entitle-
ments, good communication and advocacy
skills are preferred. Fax credentials to K. Iqbal
at 718-293-9767 or e-mail at
kiqbal@abny.org.
CHILD CARE SUPERVISOR - HELP USA, a
nationally recognized leader in the provision of
transitional housing, residential and social
services is seeking a Child Care Supervisor. As
part of an interdisciplinary team, the Child
Care Supervisor will supervise Child Care
Aides as well as manage and direct a compre-
hensive program of early childhood develop-
ment. This includes assessment, linkage to
health, educational programs and other ser-
vices for families and their children who are
currently residing in a shelter for survivors of
domestic violence. BAIBS Degree in Human
Services or other related field required, with
Early Childhood Education degree preferred.
Candidate should have a minimum of two
years supervisory experience. Excellent oral
communication skills necessary. An unre-
stricted NYS Drivers license as well as a pro-
ficiency in computers, especially Windows
based software, is necessary. Bilingual skills
(Spanish/English) are a plus. Salary starts in
the mid $30's but is commensurate with expe-
rience. Send resumes to: Katherine Sheldon,
P.O. Box 641, New York, NY 10037, fax 212-
862-4376 or email ksheldon@helpusa.org.
CLINICAL COORDINATOR - The Times
Square, a CUCS supported housing program
providing concrete and supportive services to
a mixed population of 650 DHMH, HASA, DHS
and self-referred low-income tenants is
recruiting for the following position. Resp:
Supervision and direct oversight of a team of
five. This position has significant supervisory,
administrative, program management and
service delivery responsibilities. This individ-
ual must have thorough clinical understand-
ing of MI, AIDS, SA issues and the ability to
teach and guide others in good practice. The
Clinical Coordinator is central to fostering the
mission and goals of the agency and should
be able to effectively ensure staff productivity
and the achievement of measurable outcomes
and recipient satisfaction. Reqs: CSW. Mini-
mum of 3 years applicable post-masters expe-
rience with related populations including
supervisory, administrative and management
experience. Good written and written commu-
nication skills, computer literacy preferred.
Bilingual SpanishlEnglish a plus. Salary:
$46,459. Benefits: compo bnfts incl
$65/month in transit checks. Send resumes
and cover letters by 4nt03 to: Karen Oser,
CUCSmmes Square, 255 W. 43rd Street, New
York, NY 10036. Fax: 212-391-5991, E-mail:
tshire@cucs.org . CUCS is committed to work-
force diversity. EEO OoblD: 446)
COMMUNITY LIAISON - Councilmember G.
Oliver Koppell is seeking to hire a Community
liaison to handle constituent cases, commu-
nity outreach, and related duties in a fast-
paced office. Fluency in Spanish is required.
Bronx resident preferred. Casework experience
is preferred, but not required. Salary-$33,OOO.
If interested, please send cover letter, resume
and writing sample via fax to 718-549-9945,
or email tomllfrank@council.nyc.ny.us.
COMMUNITY ORGANIZER - New position
organizing with families of prisoners with
mental illness to reform criminal justice/men-
tal health systems. Requires two years orga-
nizing experience. Must be self-starter able to
planlimplement project independently. Salary
DOE, good benefits. Mail letterlresume to: H.
Barr, UJC, 666 Broadway, 10th Floor, New York,
NY 10012. No calls, faxes, email.
COMMUNITY ORGANIZER - NYC nonprofit
seeks a community organizer to educate resi -
dents on predatory lending issues; identify at-
risk residents; organize outreach and educa-
tional campaigns to target population. Self-
starter with minimum of two years experiences
in community organization; bi -lingual a plus.
Fax resume with salary requirements to C.
Mickens 718-206-9111. E- mail :
hrdept@nhsnyc.org
DEPUTY DIRECTOR - Convent Avenue Fami-
ly living Center, an affiliate of the West
Harlem Group, seeks a Deputy to assist with
the overall development and management of
program operations. Oversee day-today oper-
ations; serve as liaison to staff, service
providers and community leaders; assist in
staff training and development. Please mail
or fax resume to Jakki Peterson-Silkiss, Con-
vent Avenue Family living Center, 456 West
129th Street, New York, NY 10027 or fax 212-
865-8471.
DEVELOPMENT ASSISTANT - Manhattan
based non-profit organization seeks college
graduate for entry-level position with program
CITY LIMITS
development team. Duties include grants
management and proposal preparation. Must
have a BA or BS degree. Should be computer
literate with strong Microsoft Word/Excel skills
required; database experience is a plus. Salary
$28,000-30,000. Send/fax resumes to 212-
444-3860 or email to grants@helpusa.org.
DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT - Self-starter
with proven success wanted for senior man-
agement team. Responsible for overall devel-
opment program plus fund raising events.
Bachelor's plus 3- years; exceptional grant
writing and interpersonal skills. RJA Associ-
ates 230 Park Avenue Suite 610, New York, NY
10169 or information@rja.com
DIRECTOR OF SOCIAL SERVICES - HELP
USA, a nationally recognized leader in the pro-
vision of transitional housing, residential and
social services, is seeking a candidate to
manage and direct a comprehensive program
of social services for 191 homeless families in
East Brooklyn. Will also provide administrative
and case management supervision to social
service staff and oversee case record man-
agement, quality assurance and provide staff
training. An MSW or related Masters Degree,
minimum of 3 years management exp as well
as a thorough knowledge of casework practice
are required. Candidate should have proven
supervisory and staff development skills &
proficiency in Windows based applications.
Salary starts from the mid $40's. Send
resumes to: Gena Watson, Asst Executive Dir,
HELPl , 515 Blake Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11207, fax
718-495-1946 or email
gwatson@helpusa.org. EOE. A drug free work-
place.
DIRECTOR OF SUPPORT SERVICES - Over-
see operations for geriatric center with 35
staff, 2-day center sites, and 9 vans serving
Brooklyn. Supervise transportation/ancillary
services, IT/website (www.psgdc.org).
Deviselimplement client database. Maintain
safe environment for clients. Oversee areas of
HR/staff training. With Executive and Associ-
ate Directors determine program direction and
new programs, carry out requirements of state
and city contracts. Bachelor level degree. 3
years experience in administration, supervi-
sion. Technical (In expertise. Immediate open-
ing! Fax resumes to M. Oxley, 718-768-2119
or email to jobrequest@psgdc.org.
DIRECTOR, INCUBATOR ADMINISTRATION -
The Fund for the City of New York, a private
operating foundation focused on civic innova-
tion, seeks an individual to direct and support
the activities of its Incubator Program and HR
department. The Incubator Program provides
personnel and administrative management to
new nonprofit enterprises. Responsibilities
include: administrative management, over-
sight and support to all Incubator projects;
developing and implementing HR policies,
procedures and programs; providing in-house
legal counsel to Incubator projects. A law
degree is required and a minimum of 5 years
government or non-profit management experi-
ence. Excellent benefits. A complete job
description and application procedures are
JUNE 2003
posted at www.fcny.orgljobs. Email resumes
to hr@fcny.org. The Fund for the City of New
York is an equal opportunity employer and
encourages applications of women and
minorities.
DIRECTOR-REAL ESTATE DEVELOPMENT -
Manage of all aspects of real estate develop-
ment projects. Minimum of five years residen-
tial real estate project development experi-
ence. Should be familiar with all aspects of
housing development. Single and multi-fami-
ly experience preferred. Experience in financial
packaging, including debt and subsidy
financing, and construction management is
desired. Must have a commitment to urban
and affordable housing issues and processes.
Must be able to do financial modeling, per-
form sophisticated and specialized verbal and
written work; handle tight deadlines and
associated stress; handle multiple projects
with grace and accuracy. Must be expert Excel
user, comfortable in Microsoft Office environ-
ment. Must have excellent interpersonal skills,
and be a facile and persuasive writer. Valid
drivers license and have own car required.
Benefits include vacation, health, disability,
life insurance, 401k. Salary based on qualifi-
cations. Email cover letter and resume to
JOBS@ISLES.ORG
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CONSULTANT -
Foundation in NY seeking a consultant to
assist with economic development policy
work. Responsibilities include writing
brochure/white papers on using market forces
to address economic development and/or
poverty, as well as organizing conferences and
other events surrounding the issue. Must have
experience working in a political environment,
excellent writing skills, and the ability to
multi-task. Private sector and microenterprise
experience a plus. Part time or full time avail-
able. Position is paid, salary negotiable.
Please send resume and writing samples to
katie@ettusmedia.com.
EDUCATION & YOUTH COORDINATOR
Growing CBO in the Parkchester section of the
Bronx seeks creative self-starter to implement
and coordinate comprehensive After School
Program. Requirement: 2+ years experience in
education, youth development or social ser-
vices, exceptional leadership skills, strong
communication, organizational & interperson-
al skills, assume significant responsibility,
experience working with diverse youth popula-
tions. BAlBS, Bilingual English-Spanish pre-
ferred. Salary mid 30s+, benefits. This posi-
tion offers an excellent opportunity for profes-
sional growth. Fax resume and cover letter to
SRCO Director of Programs, 718-824-0532.
FISCAL MANAGER - Immediate Opening for
a Fiscal Manager. A Bachelor's degree from an
accredited college with a major in accounting
and one year of satisfactory, full time, paid
accounting experience or a satisfactory equiv-
alent combination of education and experi-
ence is required. Computer expertise and an
ability to troubleshoot office equipment also
sought. For immediate consideration, please
mail or fax resume to: Juanita Butcher, Per-
sonnel Chairperson, Social Concern Vendor
Agency, 184-45 147th Avenue, Springfield
Gardens, NY 11413 Fax: 718-712-8811
GOVERNMENTAL CONTRACTS AND GRANTS
MANAGER - Not-far-profit supportive hous-
ing development and property management
organization has a full-time opening for a
Governmental Contracts and Grants Manager.
BAlBS, program planning, superior writing
ability and budget design and administration
experience required; MAIMS/MBA preferred.
Send cover letter that MUST include salary
requirements with resume to Director, Housing
Development, CGC, 505 Eighth Avenue, New
York, New York 10018. Facsimile 212-389-
9312.
GRANlWRITERlRESEARCHER - The Brooklyn
Bureau of Community Service is one of Brook-
lyn's oldest and largest non-sectarian social
services agencies. The Bureau has been a
leading provider of social services to families,
children, and adults with disabilities since
1866. The Bureau, which presently serves
more than 15,000 individuals annually, is
committed to a broad and diverse range of
services including prevention of foster care
placement; crisis intervention; early childhood
and after school education; and vocational
training, job placement, and clinical services
to adults with physical and developmental
disabilities, and histories of mental illness.
Today, the Bureau operates from 20 sites in
downtown Brooklyn, Fort Greene, East New
York, and Bedford-Stuyvesant. It has an annu-
al budget in excess of $25 million, funded by
various government agencies, as well as with
foundation grants and private contributions.
We are currently seeking a grant
writer/researcher to join our planning depart-
ment staff. The successful candidate will
assist with the development of and record
keeping related to proposals, reports and cor-
respondence to foundations, corporations and
other funding sources. He/she will have the
opportunity to research funding sources and
supporting material for proposals; write and
edit proposals, reports and general correspon-
dence; interface with agency's professional
staff regarding the development of proposals,
reports and other documents; help develop
and maintain records in the foundation data-
base and provide reports as needed; and per-
form additional duties as assigned. We require
a B.A. with three years minimum of grant writ-
ing experience. Experience writing grants for a
variety of social service programs a plus.
Excellent, clear, precise and persuasive writ-
ing ability. Experience in researching, track-
ing, and managing foundation proposals (or
similar) and related information. Experience
with prospect research a plus. Excellent com-
munication and organizational skills. Detail
oriented and self-starter. Works well indepen-
dently. Social service agency experience pre-
ferred. Computer skills required (Microsoft
Word, Excel , Access). EOE. Please apply to:
Ignacio Lopez, Coordinator of Planning, E-mail
lIopez@bbcs.org. Fax: 718-855-1517, 285
Schermerhorn Street, Brooklyn, NY 11217.
GRAPHIC DESIGNER - We are seeking an
experienced, creative graphic designer to pro-
JOBADS
duce a wide variety of campaign and corpo-
rate material, presentations, web sites. Labor
or political campaign experience a plus. Abili-
ty to handle many projects under deadline is a
must. Please respond to JMW925@aol.com
GRASSROOTS POLITICAL ORGANIZER - Work-
ing Families Party is hiring full-time organiz-
ers for NYC and Buffalo to build local WFP
chapters by recruiting, training and mobiliz-
ing volunteers, develop leadership, deepen
involvement of our institutional allies, and
organize political campaigns. Organizing
experience and bilingual in Spanish pre-
ferred. Women and people of color are strong-
ly encouraged to apply. Fax resume and cover
letter to Rachel 718-246-3718 or email
rberkson@workingfamiliesparty.org
GROUP COUNSELOR - The Citizens Advice
Bureau (CAB) is a large, multi-service non-
profit serving the Bronx for more than 30
years. The agency provides a broad range of
individual and family services, including
walk-in assistance and counseling, services
to special-need populations, such as immi-
grants, children, adolescents, seniors, home-
less families and singles, individuals and
families affected by HIVIAIDS. CAB provides
excellent benefits and offers opportunities for
advancement. Resumes and cover letters
indicating position may be mailed to 2054
Morris Ave. Bronx, NY 10453, or faxed as
directed. The Adolescent Development Pro-
gram seeks a part-time Group Counselor. The
position requires at least 2 years of college
and experience in the arts. Responsibilities
include facilitating art projects with teens. Fax
credentials to J. Goldsmith at 718-590-5866
or e-mail at jgoldsmith@cabny.org.
HEALTH PROMOTION COOROINATOR - Not-
for-profit primary healthcare organization
seeks a Health Promotion Coordinator for its
Bronx sites to develop and implement health
education programs to increase community
awareness of the importance of nutrition and
exercise to reduce the risk of diabetes. Activi-
ties include patient education and counseling,
staff training and promoting the diabetes col-
laborative model. Bachelors in health educa-
tion, nursing or related field required. Masters
preferred. Experience developing and imple-
menting health promotion programs for low-
income, ethnically diverse population, espe-
cially in diabetes, nutrition and exercise
required. Bilingual Spanish preferred. Send
resume with cover letter stating minimum
salary required to: Shoumya Roy Choudhury,
Institute for Urban Family Health, 16 East
16th Street, New York, NY 10003. Fax: 212-
989-6170, Email:
hresource@institute2000.org
INDEPENDENT LIVING CASE MANAGER -
Supported Housing Residence is seeking a
Masters Degreed person with recent experi-
ence serving a population with HIV Disease
along with Substance Abuse and persistent
mental health issues. This position requires a
high level of energy and commitment with
superior computer skills. English/Spanish bi
lingual would be a major plus. We offer an
41
JOBADS
above average salary and a compatible pack-
age of benefits. Please forward resume and
cover letter which must state salary required
to: Bob Raphael , Clover Hall , 333 Kosciusko
Street, Brooklyn, NY 11221 or by FAX to 718-
602-9107.
INDEPENDENT LIVING CASE WORKER - Bronx
Supported Housing residence seeks Master
level and/or experienced individual, with com-
mitment to special needs populations, and
extensive experience with Substance Abusers
and the Mentally III. Responsibilities: individ-
ual caseload, group work, service planning in
collaboration with clients. Excellent listening
and communications; patience; energy; com-
puter proficiency. Resume and cover letter fax
to 718-508-3013
INDEPENDENT LIVING SKILLS SPECIALIST -
Responsible for assisting clients/residents
with functioning as independently as possible
in a supportive housing and/or congregate
housing environment. This position works
closely with case managers/family case man-
agers and implements service plans that are
related to clienVresident acquisition of inde-
pendent living skills and activities of daily liv-
ing. Provide hands-on training, coaching and
support, and opportunities for practicing skills
to clients/residents that result in higher hous-
ing retention rates for clients/residents. BA +
minimum 4 years experience assisting clients
with special needs or served as health aid,
occupational therapist, etc. Bilingual - Span-
ishlEnglish. Excellent communication skills
oral/written. We offer competitive salaries,
comprehensive benelits package
(medical/dental insurance, life/disability
insurance, pension plan, five weeks vacation).
Please submit resume/cover letter e-mail :
hr@baileyhouse.org, mail: Bailey House, Inc.
275 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001
Attention: Human Resources, or Fax: 212-414-
1431. Bailey House, Inc. is an Equal Opportu-
nity Employer.
INVESTIGATOR - The Bronx Defenders seeks
field investigators to work collaboratively with
teams of lawyers, social workers and support
staff in providing high quality criminal defense
representation to indigent clients. The Bronx
Defenders is an innovative and energetic non-
profit criminal defense organization committed
to the holistic representation of clients, which
includes working with clients, their families
and the larger Bronx community. Investigators
locate and take statements from witnesses,
take photographs, create diagrams and
demonstrative evidence for trials, and testify in
court when necessary. The majority of an inves-
tigator's work involves speaking with Bronx
residents within the communities themselves;
candidates should therefore be able to com-
municate effectively and adapt quickly to new
situations. Candidates should also be able to
produce high quality written work, and have an
interest in and commitment to social and crim-
inal justice issues. Spanish speaking ability
desirable. $30,000 for entry level. Excellent
benefits. Please send cover letter and resume
to Jan Padios, Investigator, The Bronx Defend-
ers, 860 Courtlandt Ave. , Bronx, NY 10451 or
fax 718-665-0100.
42
JOB DEVELOPER - The Citizens Advice Bureau
(CAB) is a large, multi-service non-profit
serving the Bronx for more than 30 years. The
agency provides a broad range of individual
and family services, including walk-in assis-
tance and counseling, services to special-
need populations, such as immigrants, chil-
dren, adolescents, seniors, homeless families
and singles, individuals and families affect-
ed by HIVIAIDS. CAB provides excellent ben-
efits and offers opportunities for advance-
ment. Resumes and cover letters indicating
position may be mailed to 2054 Morris Ave.
Bronx, NY 10453, or faxed as directed. Bronx
Works seeks a Job Developer to establish a
network of employers to provide employment
opportunities to low-income Bronx residents,
including limited English speakers. The
developer would identify jobs that match the
education and skill level of the clients, inter-
view & pre-screen clients for appropriate jobs
and make referrals to employers. The position
requires a Bachelors degree, excellent com-
munication & organization skills and the abil -
ity to interface with employers professionally
and interact with clients effectively. Fax cre-
dentials to S. Farimani at 718-993-8089 or e-
mail at sfarimani@cabny.org.
LEGISLATIVE/COMMUNICATIONS ASSISTANT
- Working with Associate Director and Direc-
tor of Legislative Communications, researches
information on legislation; maintains databas-
es; assists with office administration; pro-
duces and edits correspondence. Four years
college or relevant experience; exceptional
writing skills, proficiency with MS Office. Apply
to: Office Administrator, re: Legislative/Com-
munications Assistant, 1333 H Street NW, 10th
Floor, Washington, DC 20005 by April 15, 2003.
LENDING OFFICER - Community Develop-
ment Entity seeking a Lending Officer to cre-
ate, implement and manage lending opera-
tions for a de novo community development
bank to be based in the Bronx, NY. The Lending
Officer will be responsible for: Shaping under-
writing criteria, policies and procedures;
Proactively developing lending relationships to
build a profitable portfolio; and Managing the
loan portfolio and collections in compliance
with rules and regulations. This position
requires: A minimum of 8 years diverse lending
and underwriting experience with an emphasis
on bank lending in economically challenged
markets; A highly motivated, forward thinking
team player with fluent English and Spanish
communication skills and strong organization-
al and leadership skills; Knowledge of loan
origination, processing and portfolio manage-
ment software; and Familiarity with lending
rules and regulations and compliance man-
agement. The Lending Officer will report to the
President of the Bank and will playa critical
role in shaping the future of a community
development institution with an innovative
retail model. The position offers competitive
compensation, benefits and performance-
based opportunities. Qualified candidates
please email cover letter and resume to
recruiting@hugeworld.com.
MICA SPECIALIST - Project Reachout
(www.goddard.org) is hiring for a MICA Spe-
cia list. Counseling, leading rehab of MICA
clients on ASCT Team. Case management,
advocacy, treatment planning. CASAC or MSW
required. Salary mid-upper 30's, excellent
benefits. Letter/resume: A. Arthur, 593 Colum-
bus Avenue, NY, NY 10025; fax 212-531-3636;
email aarthur@goodard.org
MRDD CASE MANAGER - Bi-lingual Eng-
lish/Spanish Case Managerto provide services
to individualslfamilies with developmentally
disabled children. Responsibilities include
case management, counseling and advocacy
and crisis intervention. Requirements: BA or
BSW plus 1-2yrs experience working with
MRIDD. Submit your resumes and cover letters
to: Lower East Side Family Union, Executive
Office, 84 Stanton Street, New York, NY 10002
or Fax: 212-529-3244 or Email: info@lesfu.org
NURSE (LPN) - PT - 14 hours/week, evening
and weekend hours available. Starts 7/1103.
Responsibilities: Coordinate with ACT team
psychiatrist and social services staff to deliver
services, including field-based interventions;
manage medication in conjunction with psy-
chiatrist and RN; make and follow-up on refer-
rals to medical services. Requirements:
Licensed LPN, computer literacy. Experience in
mental health preferred. NYS drivers license a
plus. Bilingual SpanishlEnglish preferred.
Salary: $24-$27.50Ihour; commensurate with
experience. Send resumes and cover letters by
3/31103 to: Joe DeGenova, CUCS/Assertive
Community Treatment (ACn Program, 120 Wall
Street, 25th Floor, New York, NY 10005. Fax:
212-635-2191,Email:acthire@cucs.org. CUCS
is committed to workforce diversity. EEO
NURSE (RN) - Responsibilities: One full-time
position; starts 6/1/03. Assess physical health
and psychiatric needs; make appropriate refer-
rals to community physicians; manage med-
ications in conjunction with ACT psychiatrist;
provide a range of treatment, rehabilitation
and support services, including field-based
interventions. Share in rotation of on-call ser-
vices. Requirements: Licensed RN, computer
literacy. Experience in mental health preferred.
NYS drivers license a plus. Bilingual Span-
ish/English preferred. Salary: ($60K-$65K;
commensurate with experience). Benefits:
compo benefits include $65/month in transit
checks. Send resumes and cover letters by
3/31103 to: Joe DeGenova, CUCS/Assertive
Community Treatment (ACn Program, 120 Wall
Street, 25th Floor, New York, NY 10005. Fax:
212-635-2191, Email:acthire@cucs.org.
CUCS is committed to workforce diversity. EEO
OFFICE MANAGER - Long Island University's
Learning Center for Educators & Families
seeks Office Manger for Center which includes
after-school program and college classes. AA
or BA required. Excellent computer and organi-
zational skills, attention to detail , proactive
self-starter. $30,000. Benefits include tuition
remission. Downtown Brooklyn. M-TH Ipm-
9pm, Fri 10am-6pm (flexible hours at times)
Send resume and cover letter to:
cmarchan@liu.edu or fax 718-246-6499. Call
718-246- 6496 for more information.
OFFICE MANAGER - One full-time position;
starts 6/1103. Responsibilities: Oversee office
systems including MIS and Medicaid billing.
This individual will coordinate program's
financial management (petty cash, represen-
tative payee services to clients, purchasing,
payroll preparation) as well as act as liaison to
agency Accounting Department. Some recep-
tionist duties for office serving mentally ill
adults. Requirements: BA, 3 years relevant
experience including strong word processing
skills, database and spreadsheet skills, and
good interpersonal and organizational skills.
Valid NYS drivers license a plus. Bilingual
Spanish/English preferred. Salary: $36,951.
Benefits: compo benefits include $65/month in
transit checks. Send resumes and
cover letters by 3/31103 to: Joe DeGenova,
CUCS/Assertive Community Treatment (ACn
Program, 120 Wall Street, 25th Floor, New York,
NY 10005. Fax: 212-635-2191,
Email:acthire@cucs.org. CUCS is committed
to workforce diversity. EEO
OFFICE MANAGER - Part-time Office Manager
Wanted. Responsible for management and
operations of Comprehensive Development,
Inc.'s service center, a school based organiza-
tion serving 700 students annually. General
responsibilities include the training and super-
vision of young adult trainees who assist stu-
dents, visitors and staff at the center; develop-
ing and overseeing general HR functions.
Responsibilities: Facility management and
maintenance, Supervise, coach and serve as
role model for pool of 15-20 young adult
trainees, Develop, document general office pol-
icy, procedure and systems, Perform general
HR functions: personnel files, orientation, doc-
umentation; schedule, coordinate, plan meet-
ings, retreats etc.; be first point of contact
about benefits, policy and procedure, vaca-
tions, paychecks, overtime, Manage facility
budget. Skill set: Organized, patient, trouble
shooter, Comfortable working in open, vibrant
informal atmosphere with variety of ethnici-
ties, Highly organized, ability to set up and
enforce systems, detail oriented, self-motivat-
ed, Strong interpersonal and communication
skills with ability to interact with all levels of
hierarchy, Strong computer, English grammar,
writing and editing skills, Good sense of
humor. Hours: 21 hours per week: 9am to 8:30
pm, Monday- Friday; 9:30-4 Sundays - flexible
schedule. Salary: Negotiable. Contact: Send
cover letter and resume to Gregory Cohen at:
240 Second Avenue, New York, NY 10003.
Email: mancompl@panix.com
OFFICE MANAGERIBOOKKEEPER - Habitat for
Humanity NYC seeks an Office Manager Book-
keeper (OM) to serve as the organization's full-
charge bookkeeper, reporting to the Director of
Finance. The OM is responsible for receiving
and recording all cash receipts and paying
bills, as well as all record keeping functions
specific to a housing and real estate develop-
ment organization. Receipts, accounts
payable, and accounts receivable are all main-
tained on a computerized accounting system.
In addition, the OM takes care of all office
equipment, orders supplies, and schedules the
use of office space and other Habitat property.
The OM also has some limited building man-
CITY LIMITS
agement responsibilities, including the super-
vision of the custodian and maintaining ser-
vice contracts. Human Resources responsibili-
ties include maintaining personnel files, sub-
mitting payroll information to our payroll pro-
cessing service and distributing paychecks,
and tracking staff vacation- sick-personal
days. The OM must have at least 5 years of
work experience, including at least one year as
a full-charge bookkeeper. Experience keeping
books for a not-for-profit organization is a
plus. The OM must have experience with a
variety of different computer software applica-
tions. Salary will be $25,000 to $35,000 per
year, depending on experience. Benefits
include medical and dental insurance and a
403 (b) retirement plan. To apply, submit a
resume to Jerry Polner, Finance Director, Habi-
tat for Humanity NYC, 334 Furman Street,
Brooklyn, NY 11201, or
jpolner@habitatnyc.org.
OPEN SPACE EQUITY CAMPAIGN OIRECTOR -
The New York City Environmental Justice
All iance, a grassroots network, seeks organiz-
er/director for program to support member
groups' efforts to increase access to open
space by creating parks, cleaning up brown-
fields, establishing/protecting community gar-
dens, etc. 1-3 years of organizing experience;
knowledge of open space and urban ecologi cal
issues, strong writing, research and communi-
cation skills are essential. Spanish a big plus.
People of color, especially those from low-
income areas in the city, are strongly encour-
aged to apply. $40,000-45,000 to start plus
full family medicaVdentaVvision. Resumes &
cover letters: openspace@nyceja.org, or fax:
212-239-2838 or mail: Open Space, NYCEJA,
115 W 30 St #709, NY NY 10001
ORGANIZER - Move NY seeks organizer to
educate and engage community leaders and
residents in targeted NYC neighborhoods
regarding the economic and environmental
benefits of the proposed cross-harbor rail
freight tunnel. Must be detail-oriented and
good communicator. Preferred: knowledge of
NY EJ community and politics, labor/communi-
ty organizing, bilingual Spanish. Full time
position, excellent union health, life, dental,
competitive salary DOE. Fax resume to Alice
Meaker at 646-452-5636 or email
alice@MoveNY.org.
OUTREACH TEAM LEADER - Project Rea-
chout (www.goddard.org) is hiring for an Out-
reach Team leader. Train/supervises staff on
Upper West Side providing outreach/case
management to homeless mentally iIVMICA.
MSW, related MA required. Experience
with/supervision, mental health, addiction
preferred, able to drive. Salary upper 30's or
higher depending on experience, excellent
benefits. New grads welcome. letter/resume:
S.Lewit, Project ReachoutlGRCC, 593 Colum-
bus Avenue, NY, NY 10024; fax 212-721-7389;
email slewit@goddard.org.
OUTREACH WORKER - Project Reachout
(www.goddard .org) is hiring for an Outreach
Worker. Work on Upper West Side
providing/case management to homeless
people w/mental ilinesslMlCA. Able to drive,
JUNE 2003
bilingual Spanish preferred. Salary mid 20's,
excellent benefits. Letter/resume: S.Lewit,
Project ReachouUGRCC, 593 Columbus
Avenue, NY, NY 10024; fax 212-721-7389;
email slewit@goddard.org.
PORTFOLIO ASSOCIATE, YOUTH DEVELOP-
MENT FUND - The Edna McConnell Clark
Foundation seeks a Portfolio Associate.
Reporting on a project-related basis to Portfo-
lio Managers and the Director of Finance and
Administration and working with a team of
other foundation staff, the Portfolio Associate
will help to develop a portfolio of investments
in youth-serving organizations that result in
increases in the positive opportunities for low-
income youth within urban communities, pri -
marily in the Northeast corridor between Wash-
ington, DC and Boston. The Portfolio Associate
will be responsible for helping to conduct due
diligence research on potential organizations,
craft investment recommendations, and sup-
port staff in the management of individual
investments. Requirements: Private and pub-
lic sector experience and particular strengths
in nonprofit organizational development.
Knowledge of youth development is also impor-
tant. Undergraduate degree in business, pub-
lic administration, or a related field, with sig-
nificant experience in financial analysis and
the uses of computer technology; ability to
work independently, yet within a team context;
strong written and oral communication skills.
Salary commensurate with background and
experience, ranging from high $40's to low
$50's with comprehensive benefits package.
To apply: Please mail, fax, or e-mail a resume
with a cover letter to Portfolio Associate
Search, The Edna McConnell Clark Foundation,
250 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10177-0026;
Fax: 212-986-4558; pasearch@emcf.org (e-
mail). Deadline: ASAP. No calls please.
PROGAM ASSOCIATE - NFP law firm seeks indi-
vidual with strong organizational/people skills.
Responsibilities include outreach, intake, edit-
ing newsletter and database management.
Full job description @ www.nylpi.org. Send
cover letter, resume, 3 references and writing
sample by 4/25/03 to NYLPI, 151 West 30th
Street, 11th floor, NYC, 10001. Attn: M. Berk
PROGRAM AND TRAINING MANAGER -
Responsible for all aspects & stages of train-
ing, inc. curriculum development, updating
materials; Supervise program staff; assists in
the development of publications; provide
phone consultation to svc. providers; oversee
PBRC's entitlement counseling services for
the general public & information on client
cases; implement processes with the effective
use of technology; participates on committees
& task forces as needed; dev. strategies for
the expansion of offsite training. Qualifica-
tions: Master's Degree in social work or rei at -
ed field preferred; Bachelor's Degree required
plus 3 yrs expo in pub. benefits admin &
supervisory exp required. Strong training,
writing & MSOffice skills preferred. Resume &
cover letter to: Community Service Society of
New York, HR Dept. PP-27, 105 East 22nd
Street, New York, NY 10010. Fax 212-614-
5336, cssemployment@cssny.org EOE
PROGRAM COORDINATOR - Assist area
director in providing volunteer opportunities
for retired and senior citizens. Develop and
implement strategies for the recruitment of
new volunteers. Interview, train, and place
volunteers at new and existing sites. Provides
management assistance to volunteers. Pre-
pare progress reports as required. Represent
CSS at community meetings and conferences.
Participate in preparation, coordination and
implementation of special events. Bachelor's
degree or equivalent of four (4) years experi-
ence in volunteer management and/or com-
munity organizing or development activities.
Good oral and written communication skill s
required. Knowledge of word processing and
other basic software applications. Submit
resume and cover letter to: Community Service
Society of New York, Human Resources
Department RS-20, 105 East 22nd Street, New
York, NY 10010 Fax 212-614-5336 or e-mail
cssemployment@cssny.org EOE
PROGRAM DIRECTOR - Community Organiz-
ing Grant Program. The Association for Neigh-
borhood and Housing Development (ANHD)
seeks a very capable, highly creative person to
launch and oversee a multi-year grantmaking
and technical assistance program to strength-
en community-organizing efforts around NYC
and support a citywide affordable housing
campaign. The Director will provide overall
management and coordination of this multi-
layered, mUlti-partner program. Responsibili-
ties include finalizing program design,
fundraising, designing and managing techni-
cal assistance initiatives, overseeing housing
advocacy activities. All program administra-
tion including budget development and moni-
toring, marketing, internal and external report-
ing and staff supervision. Candidates must be
highly self-directed and productive, with
strong program management skills, proven
fund raising skills and a commitment to NYC's
communities and community groups. Salary
up to $75,000. Interested candidates should
fax resume and cover letter to Irene Baldwin at
212-463-9606 or e- maillrene.b@anhd.org.
PROGRAM DIRECTOR - New Destiny Housing
Corporation, a citywide nonprofit housing
group providing housing and services to
domestic violence survivors, is seeking a
Director for its Housinglink Program. Director
will implement a training program for advo-
cates and shelter residents on permanent
housing options and subsides; identify and
clarify housing policies and procedures by
building relationships within key agencies;
provide technical assistance to domestic vio-
lence survivors and advocates; provide staff
support for the housing agenda of a coalition
of residential service providers; maintain web-
site providing housing resource information.
Qualifications: Masters Degree preferred,
knowledge of Section 8 and NYCHA housing
required, ability to negotiate bureaucracies,
strong advocacy skills, excellent writing and
speaking skills, high level of motivation. Posi-
tion available in May 2003. Competitive salary
commensurate with experience, excellent ben-
efits. Email cover letter and resume to
jstein@newdestinyhousing.org or fax to 646-
472-0266.
JOB ADS
PROGRAM DIRECTOR - South Asian Youth
Action (SAYA!) NYC non-profit serving South
Asian youth seeks Program Director. Require-
ments: 3 years management experience,
expertise in development and evaluation of
youth programs, knowledge of South Asian
youth issues, excellent written and oral com-
munication skills, strong interpersonal skills.
Fax 718-651-3480
PROGRAM DIRECTOR - The Citizens Advice
Bureau (CAB) is a large, multi-service non-
profit serving the Bronx for more than 30 years.
The agency provides a broad range of individ-
ual and family services, including walk-in
assistance and counseling, services to spe-
cial-need populations, such as immigrants,
children, adolescents, seniors, homeless fami-
lies and singles, individuals and families
affected by HIV/AIDS. CAB provides excellent
benefits and offers opportunities for advance-
ment. Resumes and cover letters indicating
position may be mailed to 2054 Morris Ave.
Bronx, NY 10453, or faxed as directed. The Pos-
itive living Program seeks a Program Director.
The position requires an MSW, MPA, or MPH,
two years of supervisory experience, and
knowledge of contract management and
HIVIAIDS. Responsibilities include manage-
ment of 4 contracts with 12 staff. Fax creden-
tials to K. Iqbal at 718-293-9767 or e-mail at
kiqbal@abny.org.
PROGRAM OFFICER - The Veatch Program of
the Unitarian Universalist Congregation at
Shelter Rock (UUCSR) in Manhasset, long
Island is seeking a full-time program officer
for its grantmaking operation. Responsibilities
include: identifying grassroots and advocacy
organizations that work for progressive social
change; evaluating proposals to make grant
recommendations; monitoring the progress of
ongoing grants; conducting periodic evalua-
tions of programmatic areas; working with
Veatch board members and grantmakers.
Qualifications: prior experience working with
grassroots and advocacy organizations; ana-
lytical skills and ability to work with individu-
als and organizations of different ethnic, reli -
gious and socio-economic backgrounds; excel -
lent writing skills; preferably prior grantmak-
ing experience; familiarity with community
organizing strategies; should agree with UU
principles. Knowledge of environmental jus-
tice, global democracy and media as grant-
making areas is a plus, but not essential.
Availability for travel a must. UUCSR is com-
mitted to affirmative action and invites appli -
cations from candidates regardless of race,
gender, sexual orientation, age or disability.
People of color are encouraged to apply.
Resume, cover letter, at least three references
must be received by ASAP. Applications can be
sent by email to Eileen Jamison at
eileen@veatch.orgortothe following address:
Program Officer Search AB, Unitarian Univer-
salist Veatch Program at Shelter Rock, 48
Shelter Rock Road, Manhasset, NY 11030,
516-627- 6576
PROGRAM SPECIALIST,CONTRACT COORDlNA-
TIDN - Job Description: Assist in the design,
development and implementation of managed
care education programs. Assists in the devel-
43
JOBADS
opment and implementation of processes to
identify, recruit and contract with prospective
CBO subcontractors. Supervise and monitor
the performance of contracts with CBO's of up
to $500,000 providing technical assistance,
training and developing plans for corrective
action when necessary. Participate in team
meetings to track progress and plan future
activities. Assist with data analysis and the
preparation of written reports. Participate in
other activities and perform related duties as
may be required. Job Requirements: Master's
degree in Public Administration, Public Health
or Public Policy with a minimum of two (2)
years of experience in public service settings or
an equivalent combination of education and
experience required. Experience with public
benefits, health insurance and/or managed
care poliCies required. Demonstrated experi-
ence in successful contract management pre-
ferred. Excellent oral and written communica-
tion skills required. Submit resume and cover
letter to: Community Service Society of New
York Human Resources DepartmentPP21/22
105 East 22nd Street, New York, NY 10010 Fax
212 614-5336 or e-mail
cssemployment@cssny.org EOE
PROJECT OIRECTOR FOR HEALTHY HOMES-
UHAB, a citywide co-op housing nonprofit,
seeks a full-time employee to manage a
Healthy Homes Demonstration Project Grant
from HUD. The project will research and devel-
op design guidelines and construction specifi -
cations for the elimination and/or control of
lead, asbestos, molds, roaches, rats, mice,
other pests and other allergens and toxins
associated with asthma. The specifications
and guidelines will also incorporate cost effec-
tive measures for "green building" and high
performance building practices, as well as
energy and water conservation. These specifi-
cations and practices will be used initially in
all construction undertaken by UHAB and
offered to other affordable housing developers.
Location: UHAB's main office at 120 Wall
Street. Qualifications: The successful candi-
date must be an innovative self-starter who is
able to demonstrate that he or she has exten-
sive knowledge and experience of design and
rehabilitation techniques, excellent technical
writing, graphic and computer skills, and the
ability to develop and sustain networks of
expert colleagues in support of innovative pro-
jects. An applicant should also have familiari-
ty with "healthy buildings", high performance
buildings, building science, green buildings,
energy conservation and related fields. Salary:
$40,000 + depending upon qualifications and
experience. Application: Send a letter and
resume to: UHAB, 120 Wall Street, 20th Floor,
New York, NY10005, Fax: 212-344-6457, E-
mail : jobs@uhab.org More Info:
www.uhab.org
PROPERTY MANAGER - Great opportunity
avail. with progressive non-profit community
org. in Bushwick, Brooklyn. One-year assign-
ment - responsibilities include rent collection,
DHCR compliance. Individual must be orga-
nized and Spanish a plus. Salary based on
experience. Send resume to 718-366-8740
attn: Donald Manning
44
PSYCHIATRIST - 1 PT - 24 hours/week; FT
possible for candidates interested in other
CUCS sites. Responsibilities: Starts 6/1/03. In
conjunction with the Program Director, monitor
client treatment and staff delivery of clinical
services. Provide psychiatric assessment and
treatment; clinical supervision, education, and
training to the team. Develop, maintain, and
supervise medication, psychiatric, and med-
ical treatment policies and procedures.
Requirements: Board certified/eligible in psy-
chiatry. Computer literacy. Bilingual Span-
ishlEnglish prefenred. Salary: PT $70/hour. FT:
$ 125K!year. Benefits: comprehensive benefits.
Send resumes and cover letters by 3/31/03 to:
Joe DeGenova, CUCS/Assertive Community
Treatment (ACT) Program, 120 Wall Street,
25th Floor, New York, NY 10005. Fax: 212-635-
2191, Email: acthire@cucs.org. CUCS is com-
mitted to workforce diversity. EEO
REAL ESTATE ASSOCIATE - Real Estate
DeveloperlBuilder headquartered in Trenton, NJ
seeking Associate to assist in Acquisition and
Development site throughout New York and
New Jersey. Must be a self-starter with com-
puter ski lls. Send resume and salary require-
ments. Fax 718-983-7078.
REHABILITATION SPECIALIST - FT position
starts 5/1/03 or 6/1/03. Responsibilities: Out-
reach, assessment and comprehensive case
management. Coordination with psychiatrist,
nurse, and social workers to deliver field-
based services. Expertise in vocational ser-
vices, housing, family education, illness self-
management, or substance abuse treatment
preferred. Shares in rotation of on-call ser-
vices. Requirements: BA & 2 yrs. relevant
direct services exp.; BSW & 1yr exp (excluding
fieldwork); HS & 6yrs expo Note: For applicants
without college degrees, every 30 credits can
be substituted for 1 yr of expo Computer litera-
cy required. NYS drivers license a plus. Bilin-
gual Spanish/English preferred. Salary:
$31,696. Benefits: compo benefits include
$65/month in transit checks. Send resumes
and cover letters by 3/31/03 to: Joe DeGenova,
CUCs/Assertive Community Treatment (ACT)
Program, 120 Wall Street, 25th Floor, New York,
NY 10005. Fax: 212-635-2191, Email :
acthire@cucs.org. CUCS is committed to work-
force diversity. EEO
REHABILITATION SPECIALIST (PART-TIME) -
22 hours/week; evenings and weekends avail-
able. One part-time position starts 6/1/03.
Responsibilities: Outreach, assessment and
comprehensive case management. Coordina-
tion with psychiatrist, nurse, and social work-
ers to deliver field-based services. Expertise in
vocational services, family education, illness
self-management, or substance abuse treat-
ment preferred. Requirements: BA & 2 years
direct services experience with indicated pop-
ulation; BSW & 1 year (excluding fieldwork) or
High School Diploma & 6 years of experience.
Note: For applicants without college degrees,
every 30 credits can be substituted for 1 year
of experience. NYS drivers license a plus. Bilin-
gual English/Spanish preferred. Salary:
$17.42lhour. Benefits: comprehensive bene-
fits. Send resumes and cover letters by
3/31/03 to: Joe DeGenova, CUCS/Assertive
Community Treatment (ACT) Program, 120
Wall Street, 25th Floor, New York, NY 10005.
Fax: 212-635-2191, Email: acthire@cucs.org.
CUCS is committed to workforce diversity. EEO
RESEARCH ASSOCIATE - Skills: Masters in
Public Policy, Economics, Urban Planning or
Policy Analysis, Excellent communication and
analytic skills, Experience collecting, analyz-
ing, and organizing data and producing
reports, Use of SPSS, MAP Info, Excel , Explain-
ing data and statistics in non-technical terms.
The Successful Candidate Will Have the Ability
to: Seek out and use supervision, Maintain
workplan and timeline, Make a twlHhree year
commitment to complete the next edition of
Keeping Track, Use complicated data sets to
tell a clear and simple story about child well -
being in New York City neighborhoods (Collect,
manipulate and analyze data), Work with large
data sets. Tasks: Produce reports and Keeping
Track data book, Update and maintain data-
base and data tracking template. Interested
candidates please send cover letter and
resume to: Jennifer March-Joly, Citizens' Com-
mittee for Children of New York, 105 East 22nd
Street, 7th Floor, New York, NY 10010,
jmarch@kfny.org. Citizens' Committee for
Children is an equal opportunity employer and
does not discriminate on the basis of race,
color, national or ethnic origin, gender, sexual
orientation or disabling condition. Salary and
benefits are commensurate with experience.
RESIDENT COORDINATOR-Supported Hous-
ing facility in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section
of Brooklyn seeks highly motivated individual
(Bi-Lingual Spanish/English preferred) for the
8AM to 4PM Resident Coordinator shift.
Responsibilities will include: tenant
moveins/moveouts; apartment inspections;
light maintenance and repairs; oversight of
shift security; oversight of shift porters and
other assignments. Must be excellent and ver-
ifiable references. Experience in a similar
position is required. Computer literacy will be
given a strong plus. Forward resume and
cover letter to: Bob Raphael , Clover Hall, 333
Kosciusko Street, Brooklyn, NY 11221 or Fax to
718-602-9107.
RESIDENT RELATIONS SPECIALIST, MANHAT-
TAN - New York Quadel Consulting Corpora-
tion, a New York based corporation, serves as
the Contract Administrator for HUD's project-
based Section 8 contracts is seeking a full
time Resident Relations Specialist. Responsi-
bilities include; coordinating and documenting
resident concerns related to HUD Section 8
project-based subsidy. Receive and handle
statewide resident complaints within pre-
scribed timeframes. Follow up on all incoming
resident related calls until the issues are sat-
isfactorily resolved. Follow up with residents on
resolved issues and their customer satisfac-
tion. Assist in developing and maintaining
positive resident relations. Maintain a data-
base system, documenting all incoming resi-
dent calls and enter into Real Estate Manage-
ment System (REMS) and ACAP. Provide feed-
back/updates to Contract Specialist regarding
resident calls and on-going property issues.
Maintain an excellent relation with
owner/manager of Section 8 properties, resi-
dents, HUD and the general public. Attend
regional resident meetings. Bachelor's degree
(8. A.) from four-year college or university. A
minimum of two years experience in the field of
resident relations and/or residential property
management or a related field. Evidence of
training in Section 8 and/or housing related
certifications (CPM, AHM, etc.) preferred. Pre-
vious experience working with multi-family
Section 8 project based properties strongly
preferred. Other Section 8 and property man-
agement experience also considered. Knowl-
edge of HUD Uniform Physical Standards and
Occupancy requirements, policies and proce-
dures. Must attend Quadel Contract Adminis-
tration and Quadel HUD Subsidized Multi Fam-
ily Housing Occupancy Training and pass the
Quadel Certified Assisted Housing Manager
Exam. Basic computer experience with
Microsoft Office (Word, Excel , Outlook) is
required. Valid drivers license required. limit-
ed travel throughout New York State. Must be
willing and able to function in a "teamwork"
atmosphere. Must be able to demonstrate
problem-solving skills. Must have a positive
"can do" attitude, with excellent interpersonal
and organizational skills. Strong oral and writ-
ten communication skills and a commitment
to the effective use of technology to enhance
work place productivity and improve communi-
cation. Must have the ability to plan work and
meet ambitious performance goals and sched-
ules. Excellent salary & benefits package.
Qualified applicants send resume & salary
requirements to: NY Quadel Consulting Corpo-
ration, Human Resources Administrator, 217
Montgomery Street, Suite 400, Syracuse, New
York 13202, TPoushter@NYQuadel.com or fax
315-428-0088. EOE
SENIOR COMMUNICATIONS STRATEGIST -
Work with communications and development
directors to ensure cohesion in publications,
advertising and web activities; assist in
design of multi-media nationwide communi-
cations initiatives; supervises youth outreach
program coordinator. Bachelor of Arts in rele-
vant field; at least 10 years experience includ-
ing news media; ability to devise effective
communications strategies, strong journalistic
writing and editing skills, print and video pro-
duction skills. Reply to ACLU Human
ResourceslSCS, 125 Broad Street-18th Floor,
New York, NY 10004.
SENIOR HOUSING OEVELOPMENT PROJECT
MANAGER - Not-for-profit supportive hous-
ing development and property management
organization has a full-time opening for a
Senior Project Manager (SPM). The SPM will
participate in program design and research,
and obtain developmental funding and financ-
ing. BAlBS, program planning, superior writing
ability and budget design and administration
experience required; MAlMSIMBA and prior
comparable experience preferred. Send cover
letter that MUST include salary requirements
with resume to Director, Housing Development,
CGC, 505 Eighth Avenue, New York, New York
10018. Facsimile 212-389-9312
SENIOR PROGRAM EVALUATION ASSOCIATE -
Bailey House is a nationally recognized leader
providing innovative housing and support ser-
CITY LIMITS
vices for formerly homeless people living with
AIDS - Description: Provide technical assis-
tance in program evaluation to community-
based HIVIAIDS housing and service providers
in NYC. Assist organizations in defining mea-
surable program outcomes, implementing and
refining quantitative and qualitative outcomes
data collection and management systems,
producing reports and identifying and
responding to the impact of outcomes evalua-
tion on program and agency infrastructure.
Contribute to the development, analysis and
reporting of aggregate outcomes across par-
ticipating programs and categories. Provide
other technical assistance or appropriate
referrals as needed. Participate in developing
model outcome systems that can be adopted
by other AIDS housing and service providers.
Requirements: Master's Degree in Public
Health, Public Administration or other related
field plus two years in the service field. Experi-
ence in quantitative/qualitative analysis,
strong analytic and writing skills, excellent
communication, and presentation and project
management skills. Experience developing
resource materials. Ability to multi-task and
work in a highly collaborative setting and meet
individual program responsibilities. Computer
literate including but not limited to SPSS (pre-
ferred).we offer competitive salaries along
with a comprehensive benefits package that
includes medical/dental insurance, life/dis-
ability insurance, pension plan and five weeks
vacation. EDE. To apply send your
resume/cover hr@baileyhouse.org, by Fax:
212-414-1431.
SMAll BUSINESS LOAN OFFICER - The Lower
East Side People's Federal Credit Union, a 17
year-old innovative and growing community
development financial institution seeks a
highly motivated small business loan officer.
Primary responsibilities will include: sourcing,
underwriting and closing small business
loans. Candidates should have a bachelor's
degree and small business lending experience
with a similar organization. Working knowl-
edge of federal , state and city programs sup-
porting small business lending in New York
City preferred. Conversational Spanish
required. Please send cover letter, salary histo-
ry and requirements, and resume to: Lending
Manager, LESPFCU, 37 Ave B, New York, NY
10009, or email to: wmerkle@lespfcu.org
SOCIAL WORKER - The Citizens Advice Bureau
(CAB) is a large, multi-service non-profit serv-
ing the Bronx for more than 30 years. The
agency provides a broad range of individual
and family services, including walk-in assis-
tance and counseling, services to special-need
populations, such as immigrants, children,
adolescents, seniors, homeless families and
singles, individuals and families affected by
HIV/AIDS. CAB provides excellent benefits and
offers opportunities for advancement.
Resumes and cover letters indicating position
may be mailed to 2054 Morris Ave. Bronx, NY
10453, or faxed as directed. The Adolescent
Development Program seeks a Social Worker.
The position requires an MSW or CSW. Respon-
sibilities include providing individual and
group counseling to teens and early adoles-
cents. Fax credentials to J. Goldsmith at 718-
590-5866 or e-mail at jgoldsmith@cabny.org.
SOCIAL WORKER - Bi-lingual Social Worker
(Spanish/English) to provide services to indi-
viduals/families in our preventive services pro-
gram. Responsibilities include case manage-
ment, counseling, advocacy and crisis inter-
vention. Requirements: MSW (preferable) or
BSW or BA plus I-year experience in child wel-
fare setting. Mail resume with cover letter to
Lower East Side Family Union, Executive Office,
84 Sta nton Street, NY, NY 10002 or fax to 212-
529-3244 or Email to info@lesfu.org
SOCIAL WORKER (MSW) - The Center for
Employment Opportunities (CEO), a not- for-
profit organization with 115 employees, pro-
vides immediate, comprehensive and effective
employment services for men and women
returning from prison and other ex-offenders
under community supervision. The goal of the
social worker is to assist in alleviating our
clients' often stressful and challenging re-
entry into society. Essential Functions: The
essential functions include, but are not limited
to, the following: Design and facilitate group
counseling session. Counseling sessions may
include up to 10 people, involve father or
father and co-parent. Assessing clients needs
and referring clients to appropriate service.
Complete all required paperwork. Other duties
as determined by supervisor. CSW required, 3
years of experience working with families, ado-
lescentlyoung adults individually and in
groups. Excellent interpersonal skills and writ-
ten communication skills, Experience working
with persons from diverse cultures. Fluency in
a second language preferred(Spanish).This job
requires a great deal of flexibility and the abil-
ity to work well alone and as part of a team.
Fax or email resume with cover letter to
pmunoz@ceoworks.org fax 212-248-4432
SPECIAL EVENT ASSISTANT - Prospect Park
Alliance (non- profit organization) is search-
ing for a motivated professional with excel-
lent customer service, communication and
organizational skills to assist with events
and park security. (Gover/nment, special
event, security and/or law enforcement expe-
rience a plus.) Full-time seasonal (9 months)
pOSition requires flexible schedule and NYS
JOBADS
Drivers License. Fax resume and cover letter
to Special Events 718-965-8950. PPA is an
EED employer.
STAFF ATTORNEY - The Legal Aid Society,
Volunteer Division seeks Staff Attorney for
Housing Dev Unit. Works wltenant associa-
tions, individual tenants & community-based
organizations. Harlem & Upper Manhattan.
Must be dedicated to public in law. Resume &
cover letter to Andrew lehrer, Esq., The legal
Aid society, 230 E. 106th St, NYC 10029. Fax
212-876-5365 Email: aelehrer@legal-aid.org.
Women, people of color, gays and lesbians &
people with disabilities are especially encour-
aged to apply.
STAFF ATTORNEY - Requires 2-3 years expe-
rience in family law and criminal law. Experi-
ence with domestic violence legal issues nec-
essary. Practice in immigration, housing
and/or public benefits law helpful. Experience
supervising staff /students necessary. Span-
ish a plus. Salary: 50's DOE. Excellent bene-
fits. EOE. Resume & cover letter to
sfadel@connectnyc.org or Fax 212-683-0016.
STAFF ATTORNEY, IMMIGRANTS' RIGHTS PRO-
JECT - Primary focus on government's post-
9111 policies affecting immigrants; responsi-
ble for federal court litigation on behalf of
immigrants and refugees; litigation back-up;
policy advocacy. At least two years litigation
experience; commitmentto immigrants' rights;
excellent analytic, writing, and oral skills; will-
ingness to travel. Reply to AClU Immigrants'
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STAfF ATTORNEY, NATIONAL LEGAL DEPART-
MENT - Help spearhead AClU's litigation on
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I LLUSTR ATED MEMOS
OFFICE OFTIlE OTY VISIONARY:
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CITY LIMITS
church-state issues; work on other cases with
National legal Department as appropriate. Must
have practiced at least fouryears,experience lit-
igating constitutional and civil rights cases in
federal court; complex analytical work; excellent
legal research and writing skills essential. Send
letter of interest, resume, names and phone
numbers of two references, one recent legal writ-
ing sample to Ann Beeson, ACLU, 125 Broad
Street, New York, New York 10004, or e-mail
hrjobs@aclu.org by April 25, 2003.
STAFF ATTORNEYS, LEGAL AID - Several posi-
tions in neighborhood trial offices to provide
representation: for Housing (2 positions), or for
Public Benefits, or to assist the Aging (Brook-
lyn) or to assist Domestic Violence Victims
(Queens). Send cover letter (specify particular
job (s) of interest), resume and short writing
sample to: Helaine M. Bamett, Esq., Attorney-
in-Charge, Civil Division, legal Aid Society, 199
Water Street, New York, NY 10038. Women, Peo-
ple of Color, Gays & Lesbians and People with
Disabilities Especially Encouraged to Apply.
STAFF WRITER, COMMUNICATIONS DEPART-
MENT - Produce articles and publications for
mainstream audiences to promote and popu-
larize work of the ACLU; responsible for reports,
newsletters, updates, opinion pieces on civil-
liberties issues. College degree in relevant
field, three years' professional journalism
experience; proficiency in AP style; outstanding
written skills; ability to write and edit to space
requirements. Send letter of interest, salary
requirements, resume, three references, copies
of relevant clips to Communications Depart-
mentlET, ACLU, 125 Broad Street, 18th Floor,
New York, NY 10004.
SUPERVISING ATTORNEY - Attorney with five
years demonstrated civil litigation experience
in public benefits, including social security
law, family law or housing. Excellent research
and writing skills. Bilingual English/Spanish
helpful. Must be admitted to practice in NY
State. Salary commensurate with experience.
Resume writing sample and three references
to Shirley Traylor, Harlem Legal Services, 55
West 125 St. New York, NY 10027, email stray-
10r@hlsnyc.org fax: 212-348-4372
VICE-PRESIDENT, HOUSING - Westhab,
Westchester's leading nonprofit and social ser-
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WRITER - Creative, versatile writer needed
for busy communications department to write
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WRITERlEDITDRJPUBLIC RELATIONS - Harlem
activist non-profit seeks skilled writer! editor!
media person for environmental health publi-
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policy reports, testimony, press releases,
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berlinda@weact.org. High $30s. Paid bene-
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YOUTH COUNSELORS - The Green Chim-
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Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning Adoles-
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ly looking for Youth Counselors on a full time
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salary based on education and experience.
Knowledge of GLBTQ issues, ACSlFoster Care or
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City Limits and the Center for an Urban Future rely on the generous support of their readers and advertisers, as well as the following funders: The Robert Sterling Clark Foundation,. The Child
Welfare Fund, The Unitarian Universalist Veatch Program at Shelter Rock, Open Society Institute, The Joyce Mertz-Gilmore Foundation, The Scherman Foundaton, JPMorganChase, The Anme E. Casey
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One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime. Join the fight for your mother.
For your sister. For yourself. For the cure.
Your support will fund breast cancer education, screening and treatment programs in Greater New York City
and international research to find a cure.
p-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
You can make a diHerence.
Name:
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Address:
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City: _______________ _
State: ______ Zip: _______ _
E-mail:
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o I would like to make a donation of
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o Check enclosed to Komen Greater New York City
o Charge to: 0 Visa 0 MasterCard 0 Amex
Card Number: _____ Expiration Date: __
Signature: ______________ _
This gift is: 0 in celebration of: 0 in memory of:
please mail this form and your donation to:
Kornen Greater New York City
341 West 38th Street, New York, NY 10018
2003 Komen NYC Race for the Cure
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 14
The Greater New York City
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www.komennyc.org 212-293-CURE
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