NYCFC Willets Point Stadium to Revolutionize Soccer in NYC, says C.O.O.

By Alicia Venter

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Jennifer O’Sullivan grew up in an extensively athletic home, spearheaded by her sports-loving father, and played three sports in her home of Clinton, New Jersey.

Soccer was not one of those sports.

However, O’Sullivan now finds herself sitting in a position that can change Major League Soccer (MLS) at its core — to her, there is no better place to do it than Queens.

“The diversity of Queens as a borough cannot be denied,” O’Sullivan, 48, said over a phone interview. “It’s a true example of how the global game of soccer can really be used as a catalyst to bring people together culturally within the community, but also an economic boom for the borough and the city.”

As the C.O.O/Chief Legal & Administrative Officer at New York City Football Club (NYCFC), O’Sullivan has prioritized helping her club find a permanent place in Queens. The Willets Point Stadium, announced by Mayor Adams on Nov. 16, is a privately financed facility set to offer 2,500 affordable homes, a 25,000 seat stadium and a 250-room hotel. It’s expected to be completed in 2024.

Jen O’Sullivan. Photo: Matthew McDermott

O’Sullivan joined NYCFC in April 2020. Her role broadly encompasses running the operational and administrative areas of the business — human resources, IT infrastructure and facilities, navigating some of the contractual relationships with partners and working closely with NYCFC II, the reserve team and minor league affiliate of NYCFC.

Currently, NYCFC has no permanent place to call home. The team has been bouncing around from venue to venue — including Yankees Stadium — for their matches, but with a permanent stadium for their matches, they will be able to focus on the fan experience, and developing the talent of their organization, which is coming off the heels of a championship.

“I think in New York, you have this melting pot of people, many of whom came from nationalities and other areas of the world where the global game of soccer is just a way of life,” O’Sullivan said. “We’re really trying to identify people who have this strong love and passion for the game and say, ‘It’s okay for you to have your Mexican home team that you follow, but we can be your time here in New York,’”

MLS is a relatively young league in the United States, founded in 1993. NYCFC joined the league eight years ago, and in O’Sullivan’s three years with the organization, she has seen the program grow throughout the five boroughs, with a youth program or organization in approximately 70% of the city. In her time within the industry, she has seen soccer grow in New York City exponentially — instead of wearing NBA jerseys exclusively, her children and her friends are seen boasting soccer jerseys.

The United States hosting the 2024 World Cups, along with the men’s and women’s teams performing well in their performances in the past world cup, will likely add to this excitement around the sport. She hopes that this, plus the hard work of NYCFC to be involved in the community and be a presence beyond on the field, will help turn the occasional fan to an avid one.This involvement includes adding programs to schools and distributing food.

O’Sullivan hopes that the next step for NYCFC will be to add a women’s team and a women’s academy to complement their male teams, as “we see real opportunity in the women’s game as well.”

Despite being so young, she doesn’t want NYCFC to settle in their victory with the stadium — as C.O.O, she expects to continue growing the organization as forward as she can.

“We’re really doing everything we can do to ensure that this stadium journey and the stadium process is successful. Not just for us, but for part of the larger development of Willets Point and the borough of Queens, and growing out what those community initiatives look like,” she said. “If we can be a real catalyst for growth and change on the women’s side of the game, we would welcome that opportunity as well.”

Exclusive: One-on-One with Larry Grubler of TSINY

By Alicia Venter

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“Transitional Services is a not-for-profit mental health agency that provides both residential and outpatient services to anybody over the age of 18 who has a psychiatric diagnosis,” Larry Grubler recited, as if he had said the line a hundred times before.

He likely has — Transitional Services for New York (TSINY) works to make Queens safer for its struggling locals, not for the community’s praise and accolades.

With facilities throughout the borough and in the Bronx, TSINY, based in Whitestone, provides a continuum of rehabilitative services with a community-based approach to those recovering from mental illness.

Grubler has been the CEO of TSINY since 2007 and with the agency for a total of 31 years.

He has taken upon himself to expand the facilities and assets by which his organization can best support some of Queens’ most vulnerable.

What exactly do these rehabilitative services entail?

To Grubler, who attended St. John’s University for his masters degree and received his doctorate from Southern California University, this means that individuals have constant access to care at their own pace and need level.

The whole concept of TSINY — which has a staff of approximately 400 people — is to transition, avoiding a “one size fits all” mentality regarding psychiatric treatment.

“In the housing units, for instance, we have all the housing from supervised living settings for people that need staff available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to teach them the skills that they need to function out in the community…so then we can go from there, and they would transition out to an apartment,” Grubler said in an interview.

TSINY offers housing to over 600 individuals, with a variety of housing situations.

The supervised community residence programs, for instance, consist of single and shared living quarters, with amenities including exercise rooms, libraries, kitchens and dining facilities.

The different buildings, programs and apartments offer a range of treatments to facilitate the eventual adjustment by their patients into the community.

Their buildings offer courtyard space and rooftop access, as to provide a safe way for the patients to socially interact with one another.

There are currently two projects under development in Jamaica, as well as two housing facilities already there, called the Delson and Amelie’s. The additional facilities are expected to be completed in 2024.

Since he became CEO, the nonprofit’s assets have grown from $12 million to nearly $100 million, largely due to the development of their residential buildings and other day facilities.

Starting with a budget of $250,000, they now have $40 million to continue with projects to meet the continually shifting needs of people with mental illness.

“There’s a lot of needs out there, and there’s been a lot of growth in the mental health field,” Grubler said. “I’ve got a really good team of people that helps support that growth. We’re constantly writing proposals to do more — to do better.”

The difference between homeless shelters and the supportive housing provided by TSINY, Grubler described, is the on-site supportive services to people living in the buildings with psychiatric disabilities.

“There’s too many people that are living in a homeless shelter to really give them the individual attention that they need to be rehabilitated… 600 people living in a building, that’s hard.”

In the residential facilities, TSINY teaches skills that residents need in order to function in the community, including how to cook, clean, budget, take medication, to do laundry, and other things “you and I might take for granted,” Grubler detailed.

“Because of the illness, which usually starts between the ages of 18 to 24, [such as] the schizophrenia, major depression and things of that nature, they don’t usually get that opportunity to learn those skills as effectively and practice them,” Grubler said. It’s TSINY’s job to step in and provide what they can to develop those necessary skills.

A crucial part of this development is job training — TSINY offers job resume building courses and on site-job support. They also have an “affirmative business,” called Turn the Page.

This used bookstore — funded by the city — allows residents to maintain a job for approximately three months to learn work skills.

Through this transitioning business model, patients are able to earn work experience and garner a sense of pride in their work abilities.

There are a number of success stories garnered from this affirmative business model, Grubler detailed, including a woman who now works on the Intrepid.

“Because of the stigma of mental illness, people don’t usually want people who are mentally ill having a program in their neighborhoods,” he said. “But with [Turn the Page], other community boards, other communities have said, ‘please open one near us.’”

Grubler would be willing to open another affirmative business, he said, with the proper funding.

Through Grubler’s leadership, TSINY continues to grow, serving Queens’ vulnerable in a community-based supportive way.

For more information on TSINY, visit

Three Years Later, Memories of Neir’s Salvation

The jubilant scene outside Neir’s after it had been announced that the historic tavern had received a reprieve.

By Ed Wendell
What if you went to a funeral but the corpse didn’t show up? That’s what it was like at Neir’s Tavern, three years ago last week, when it rose triumphantly from its deathbed to become the toast of the town.
In the hours and days after the news broke that Neir’s was closing after 190 years of service, people began suggesting ways that this historic location could be saved.
Ideas came forth ranging from calling Martin Scorsese, who directed “Goodfellas” or Robert De Niro, who starred in it, to pulling together a large pool of investors to donate $1,000 each to make a down payment on the building.
But the problem that could not be solved in 10 years now needed to be solved in just a few days, before Sunday.
And the way the eulogies were pouring in, it seemed like Sunday was going to come and go without a resolution. People were leaving heartfelt messages of grief. The closest nearby bar, Geordie’s, posted a beautiful message of support for Neir’s owner Loy Gordon.
But as it turned out, there was a solution in the works, and the ball had gotten rolling on that nearly a year earlier when Assemblyman Mike Miller began a dialogue with Tom Grech, Executive Director of the Queens Chamber of Commerce (QCC).
With just days to go, Mike and Tom were able to pull together a meeting with the building’s owner and as Mr. Grech joked later, he locked the door to the meeting room and said no one was allowed to leave until they struck a deal.
The Mayor’s Office got involved after Loy called into a radio show and asked Mayor de Blasio for help. And Councilman Bob Holden was at the table, offering aid and support to this beloved historic location within his district.
And once everyone got together, a deal was reached and the next few hours were bedlam.
I was in the doctor’s office for a routine checkup. Even in the waiting room, the nurses were talking about the impending closure of Neir’s, I couldn’t get away from it. And while I was waiting in the doctor’s office, my phone rang.
It was Assemblyman Miller. The connection was bad and every time he started to tell me the good news, the connection would cut out. Finally, when we had a 10-second window of clear connection Mike gave me the good news, but told me to keep quiet, that it would be announced later.
We stopped by Neir’s which was solidly packed with revelers from around the city who had seen the news and came out to say farewell. For many, it was their first trip to this historic treasure.
Other people came from long distances to say farewell, including one gentleman who drove from Pennsylvania just to have a beer. And locals were wandering over all afternoon, many as they often do, to kick off the weekend at their favorite gathering spot.
We were surrounded by people who had come to see a funeral, and yet this good news was bursting to be let free.
It was the reporters who broke the news by asking those they were interviewing how they felt about it being saved. Quickly, word began to spread, tears of sadness turned to tears of joy. Hugs of comfort turned into hugs of relief and celebration.
Mayor de Blasio came out to Woodhaven and stood behind the bar and made it official. It was a remarkable night for this community.
There is a very old saying that success has a thousand parents but failure is an orphan. When it came to saving Neir’s, this old saying was very apt.
Every person who came to Neir’s, for lunch or for an evening out; each person who shared news stories about the place, who told friends or relatives about it, were all part of a 10-year campaign to get the city to stand up and recognize this historic location. And though it had been saved, it would soon face the same dangerous fight that doomed many bars and restaurants in New York City: Covid-19.
And yet it survived.
It survived thanks to every person who ordered out. It survived thanks to every person who sat outside in frigid temps to eat dinner.
Like a cat with many lives, Neir’s lives on, now just 6 years from what will be a remarkable 200th birthday party. Look forward to seeing you all there!

The scene from inside Neir’s while Mayor de Blasio came to announce the good news. We were way at the back and couldn’t see or hear anything, but word of the good news had already spread.

S:US holds MLK Food Drive in South Ozone Park

By: Alicia Venter

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Services of the Underserved (S:US) hosted a food drive in South Ozone Park this Martin Luther King Jr. Day, volunteering to collect over 50 bags of nonperishable goods, fruits and vegetables for families within their supported behavioral health housing units in Brooklyn and the Bronx.

Approximately 15 volunteers — many workers of S:US who were using their day off to provide this service — could be seen in the basement of the South Ozone Park S:US center bagging food in whatever bag they could find.

Planning to collect food to provide 40 families with food, they soon realized that the food collected that week surpassed that number.

With only 40 bags with the S:US logo brought to the event, the volunteers got creative. Foodtown bags, Target bags and boxes were quickly found within the center to be used collecting food.

Within the hour of the food drive starting, over 50 bags — or boxes — could be seen collected by the volunteers. Over 1,000 pounds of food and other items were collected and distributed to families served at two supportive housing programs the same day.

S:US is “all about creating opportunities for folks who are having challenges,” said S:US CEO Jorge R. Petit at the collection Monday, where he was helping in the collection. “We provide an array of services that actually help people on their road to recovery and we’re part of their journey to lead lives that are full of purpose.”

Believing in service, Petit described S:US as a platform for which people can provide others with that which they take for granted: food, security and a roof over their head.

There are numerous opportunities to get involved with S:US, including volunteering and donation. Among the different ways people can get involved include working at urban farms, teaching someone how to search for a job and even lead a yoga class.

“We really look at every day [as] doing a service for people,” said Monica Santos, Chief Program Officer at SUS, who was among the volunteers on Monday. “We help New Yorkers all over the city — ones with mental illness, behavioral health needs, homeless, veterans… and people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.”

The Ozone Park Center, located at ​​115-70 Lefferts Blvd, is a day program, with community residences in the area. People with developmental disabilities come during the day, and among the services provided by the location are two food fridges and a lending library.

“At the heart of what we do at S:US is a firm commitment to righting the disparities caused by racial discrimination, bias and health inequity and eradicating these within our practices and programs to help us move towards true social justice,” the S:US website stated.

As stated on their website, the mission of S:US is to “drive scalable solutions to transform the lives of people with disabilities, people in poverty and people facing homelessness: solutions that contribute to righting societal imbalances.”

For more information on the services provided by S:US, visit


“Science in a Box” kits delivered to District 29

New York City Council Member Lynn Schulman delivers materials to PS54. Photo Credit: Emil Cohen/NYC Council Media Unit

By Alicia Venter

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600 STEM Hydroponic Kits, also known as “Science in a Box” kits, were distributed to three elementary schools in Southeast Queens on Friday, Jan. 13.

The schools that received the kits include PS 54, The Hillside School; PS 99, The Kew Gardens School; and PS 144, The Col. Jeromus Remsen School in Forest Hills.

The hydroponic kits were provided by NY Sun Works — a non-profit organization that builds innovative science labs in urban schools — in partnership with local council member Lynn Schulman.

The kits came equipped with a 10-lesson climate and science curriculum meant to enable students, with a teacher’s guidance, to grow, study and run investigations with plants.

They are designed to expose students to hydroponic farming technology on a miniature, hands-on level.

Our kids only get one chance at a good education. That is why I am thrilled to partner with New York Sun Works to deliver 600 hydroponic STEM kits to local schools throughout Council District 29,” said Schulman in a press release. “These kits will be paired with a 10-lesson curriculum that teaches students the importance of sustainability and urban agriculture while enhancing their observation and data collection skills. I look forward to seeing the final results from this unique and vital life lesson program.”

The schools also received the Discovering Sustainability Science curriculum, and teachers are provided the tools to tailor the curriculum to address the needs of the students.

The program will reach more than 1000 elementary-age students at the three schools, all located in the 29th Council District that Schulman represents.

We are excited to engage young learners in plant biology by delivering hundreds of interactive and innovative STEM kits in Queens with Council Member Lynn Schulman,” said Manuela Zamora, NY Sun Works Executive Director in a press release. “We are fully committed to fostering the love for science to every New York City public school student and these kits are an incredible introduction to hydroponic farming that teach climate and the science of sustainability.”

NY Sun Works first introduced the ‘Science in a Box’ Hydroponic Kit program in September 2020. More than 5,000 kits were distributed last year, for both classroom and at-home learning.

In a 2021 study conducted by social science research organization Knology, the kits and curriculum “embody innovation, flexibility, hands-on learning, and critical thinking.

For more information on NY Sun Works, visit


Two sentenced for S. Richmond Hill, Ozone Park Slayings

By Alicia Venter

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Two men have been sentenced in connection with four fatal shootings that took place in South Richmond Hill and Ozone Park between 2015 and 2018, according to the Queens District Attorney’s Office on Jan. 13.

Richard Davenport, 46, of 139th St. in Jamaica, and Neville Brown, 42, of 197th Street in Hollis, pleaded guilty in November to two counts of manslaughter in the first degree. They each pleaded guilty to manslaughter in a third fatal shooting, and Davenport pled guilty to manslaughter in a fourth fatal shooting.

The latest crime took place on Jan. 16, 2018, with security camera footage showing Davenport exit a Mercedes Benz on 105th St. near 135th Ave. in South Richmond Hill around 9:30 p.m. and approaching Omaree Morrison, 19, while he was walking along 135th Avenue. The video footage shows Davenport fatally shoot Morrison, the charges claim.

A few weeks prior, on Dec. 19, 2017, the charges claim that Brown was seen driving the same Mercedes Benz at approximately 3 a.m. with Davenport in the passenger side front seat. Together, they drove past a Cadillac Escalade parked on 125th St. and Atlantic Ave. in South Richmond Hill numerous times.

Security camera footage captured the Mercedes Benz parking, the defendants exiting the vehicle, approaching the Cadillac from both sides and Davenport firing several times into the vehicle.

Dail Ramessar, 21, was struck in the car, and later died in the hospital. Davenport and Brown both fled in the Mercedes Benz.On July 15, 2016, the charges claim that Davenport approached the vehicle of Raaid Ali, 22, as he was sitting in the drivers seat in front of his residence at 107-60 114th Street in South Richmond Hill. He was shot by Davenport multiple times in the torso, fatally wounding him, at approximately 12:10 p.m., the charges claim, and Davenport fled in a vehicle driven by Brown.

The charges claim that the first murder took place on Oct. 4, 2015. The victim, Vickiram Ramlogan, 27, was shot multiple times while parked in front of his home at 111-21 120th Street, Ozone Park at around 8:15 p.m. by Davenport.

Davenport was sentenced a combined total of 29 years in prison — two consecutive 14.5 year sentences — and Brown was sentenced to 15 years in prison.

“Two very dangerous men are going to prison for a long time and the streets of Queens will be safer as a result,” said District Attorney Melinda Katz in a statement. “My number one priority will continue to be getting illegal guns, and those who use them, off our streets.”


AAFE Hosts Three Kings Day Celebration


By Alicia Venter

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Asian Americans for Equality (AAFE) took advantage of Three Kings Day — a holiday predominately celebrated by children — to provide Jackson Heights children a day of entertainment and inform their parents of services in their community.

The nonprofit held their Three Kings Day celebration on Jan. 5 at Blessed Sacrament Church. From 2 p.m. until 6 p.m., children were welcome to get their faces painted, to participate in different crafts, free churros and different gifts.

Three Kings Day is a Christian holiday celebrated on Jan. 6 that celebrates the day in which the three wise men brought gifts to the baby Jesus. It is also known as the Feast of Epiphany, and in many European and Latin American countries, parents will buy their children gifts on this day.

At any point, the area was packed with locals partaking in holiday festivities. Approximately 75 people could be seen enjoying the free activities or learning about the different Queens services.

Among the organizations distributing information and various gifts included Elmhurst Hospital, Communities Resist, Commonpoint Queens and the New York City Commission on Human Rights.

Council member Shekar Khrishnan, State Senator Jessica Ramos and Assembly member Catalina Cruz could be seen towards the beginning of the festivities distributing at home Covid-19 tests and greeting their constituents. Speaking primarily in Spanish, each wished the attendees to have a happy holiday and to take advantage of the services provided that day.

Understanding the NY legislation set to go into effect in 2023

January 1, 2023 – Albany, NY – Governor Kathy Hochul takes the oath of office and delivers an inaugural address at the Empire State Plaza Convention Center in Albany. (Mike Groll/Office of Governor Kathy Hochul)


By Alicia Venter

[email protected]

As the year came to a close, Governor Kathy Hochul had a busy two weeks. She became the first woman to be sworn into a full term as governor of New York on Jan. 1, and in the month prior, she signed numerous pending state legislation into law.

Notably, she signed a bill that prohibits discrimination based on citizenship or immigration status and immigration status is illegal in New York.

This law will expand the protections from the NYS Division of Human Rights, which currently investigates cases in which individuals have been potentially discriminated against due to their immigration status.

State Senator John Liu and State Assemblywoman Catalina Cruz came together with activists on Dec. 29 in front of Flushing Library to applaud the signing of this bill (S6586A/A6328A).

​​“We appreciate Governor Hochul for signing this legislation in recognition that our state is made greater by the vast contributions of talented and aspiring people from everywhere in the world who adopt New York as their new home,” Liu said in a statement. “Unfortunately, even as they pursue the American Dream, they are stymied by obsolete federal laws and byzantine bureaucracies that prolong their path to citizenship and subject them to bias and discrimination. This bill will help provide equal opportunity in employment, housing, and other needs that all New Yorkers should have access to.”

The first state program in the nation allowing individuals to be reimbursed for the costs of kidney and liver donations came from the governor’s office this week.

The legislation (S.1594/A.146A) amends the public health, tax and social services laws to enact the “New York State Living Donor Support Act,” which will establish a program to cover the extra costs that come with organ donation for New York residents who donate to a fellow New Yorker. The law comes in an effort to eliminate financial barriers to organ donation and, as a result, reduce wait times for organ transplants and address the organ shortage in New York.

As of publication, there are over 8,000 people on transplant wait lists, most of whom are awaiting a kidney, according to the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network.

A legislative package (S.3897/A.8936-A) supporting pedestrians, bikers and transit riders included increased funding for “Complete Street” projects.

A Complete Street is a roadway designed for all roadway users — not just drivers.

This includes pedestrians, bicyclists, public transit riders as well as motorists. It also makes an effort to focus on children, the elderly and persons with disabilities.

With this legislation, the state’s contribution to the non-federally funded portion of the project increases to 87.5 percent.

New legislation (S.3959-B/A.7822-C) will require the non-voting transit dependent representative be moved into a voting position on transportation authorities’ boards. In short, this new legislation will provide a vote — and a voice — to riders who permanently rely on transit services including bikeshares, buses and paratransit.

To protect existing labor laws on behalf of workers, Hochul signed legislation (S.5994C/A.1338C) that establishes a registration system for contractors and subcontractors engaged in public work and covered private projects. This law will require contractors and subcontractors to provide a series of disclosures about their businesses every two years with the Department of Labor.

The department will determine whether a contractor or subcontractor is fit to registers based on previous labor law and workers compensation law violations, including prevailing wage requirements. This law will create a publicly available database.

Furthermore, notable previously signed laws that are set to go into effect in 2023 include the establishment of a task force and annual report to examine social media and violent extremism.

The Electric Vehicle Rights Act, which prevents a homeowners association from adopting or enforcing any rules or regulations that would effectively prohibit, or impose unreasonable limitations on the installation or use of an electric vehicle charging station, is set to go into effect on Jan. 21.

In this year, student-athletes will be able to receive endorsement compensation, and New York schools will be prohibited from taking away the scholarships or eligibility of any athlete making money from such endorsements.

Husband Charged with Hitting Wife with SUV, Stabbing Her

By Alicia Venter

[email protected]


Stephen Giraldo, 36, has been charged for allegedly hitting his wife with his SUV — with their three children sitting in the car — and then stabbing her with a knife, according to the Office of the Queens District Attorney. The incident took place outside of her Flushing residence.

Sophia Giraldo, the defendant’s 41-year-old wife, has been left with severe neurological damage, broken bones in her leg and a stab wound that punctured her liver.

Giraldo, of 144th Street in Jamaica, was arraigned on charges of attempted murder in the second degree, assault in the first and second degree, reckless endangerment in the second degree, endangering the welfare of a child and criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree.

According to the charges, Giraldo entered the driver’s seat of a white Ford Explorer parked near the intersection of Parsons Boulevard and Sanford Avenue in Flushing at approximately 5:20 a.m.

The three children, ages 11, 9 and 6, were seated in the car.

The victim walked in front of the vehicle, and the defendant allegedly told the children to “keep your seatbelt on” before accelerating, striking the victim.

After the collision, the car turned onto its side; the defendant allegedly crawled out of the passenger side window of the vehicle and stabbed his wife with a knife.

The defendant was on the scene when police arrived.

“The brutality of the attack, and the fact that it was committed in full view of the victim’s three young children, stirs heartbreak and outrage in all of us,” said Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz in a statement. “My thoughts are with the children.”

Giraldo has been ordered to return to court on Jan. 12. If convicted, he faces up to 25 years in prison.

Carrol has been formally charged with the crime, but he has not been found guilty of committing the crime.

City Council Votes to Increase Language Accessibility

By Alicia Venter

[email protected]

Council Member Sandra Ung proposed two of the introductions to this package. (Photo: Emil Cohen/NYC Council Media Unit)

On Dec. 21, the New York City Council voted on a legislative package to increase language access in the city.

The Language Access Act is designed to strengthen language access for residents and small business owners. The legislation will increase the translation of city documents and materials into commonly spoken languages in the city with limited English proficiency.

This legislative package was introduced to the City Council at a time when the city is seeing an increased number of asylum seekers with the end of Title 42, a public health code that allowed the United States to expel those who crossed the border without authorization due to the risk COVID-19 posed. 

Many of these asylum seekers potentially have limited English proficiency.

Adding onto the Language Access Law — a law passed in 2017 to require city agencies to translate commonly distributed documents into 10 designated languages that are most spoken in the city — Queens Council Member Julie Won sponsored Introduction 136-B and Introduction 700-A.

“As our city continues to welcome thousands of new migrants and refugees with the end of Title 42, it’s critical to provide culturally competent language translations and interpretation services to our new neighbors,” Won said in a statement. 

If signed by Mayor Eric Adams, Introduction 136-B would require agencies designated by the mayor to conduct a survey of community-based organizations which would assess their capacity to provide translation, interpretation and other language services.

Introduction 700-A would require any city agencies that provide direct or emergency services to translate commonly distributed documents that relate to the enforcement of local laws. This direct expansion of the Language Access Law’s translation policy, these documents would need to be translated into each of the ten designated citywide languages spoken by New Yorkers with limited English proficiency.

The legislative package also includes the additions of Introduction 697-A and Introduction 699-A, introduced by Queens Council Member Sandra Ung.

Introduction 697-A would require the Office of the Language Services Coordinator, when informed of an event that is likely to cause a significant number of individuals to come into the City, to identify the primary languages spoken by those individuals and list such languages online. Such events could include a natural disaster or a conflict.

Introduction 699-A would require the Business Owners Bill of Rights and the Food Service Establishment Code of Conduct to be translated to additional languages. They also would include information about language access services provided in the city and would require city agencies that regularly conduct inspections to report annually on the number of bilingual inspectors they employ. It also would require the Hearings Division of the Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings to provide small business owners with translations of written decisions when requested.

Finally, Introduction 382-A, sponsored by Manhattan Council Member Gale Brewer, would provide in-language guidance to small business owners who receive a settlement offer from the City after being charged with a violation of the Administrative Code or the City Rules.

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