editorial 32 THE QUEENS COURIER • AUGUST 18, 2016 FOR BREAKING NEWS VISIT www.qns.com SNAPS QUEENS without cooking spaces. Registered sex offenders managed to be placed among children at the shelter. The city, to its shame, let this happen. And when approached by the press about why, they provided the same tone-deaf, boiler plate response they always give to every inquiry: the city is required by law to house homeless people, regardless of who they are or where it is. We get it; we know the law. What we don’t get is the city exploiting the law to create homeless shelters wherever it wants, conditions be damned. What we don’t get is the city continuing to rely on an easy and simple, yet blatantly ignorant, way to place a bandage on a crisis that’s complex PREGAME // PHOTO BY STEPHEN REINA in scale and scope. Send us your photos of Queens and you could see them online or in our paper! Finances aren’t the problem; the city is spending in excess of $80 Submit them to us tag @queenscourier on Instagram, Facebook page, tweeting billion this fi scal year in a balanced budget. Politics isn’t the problem; @queenscourier or by emailing email@example.com (subject: Queens Snaps). de Blasio and the City Council are cooperative and closely aligned in ideology. The city can’t take the easy, immoral way out any longer. It’s time for the city to adopt a real program that provides housing with a soul. CITY PUSHES FOR FEDERAL ZIKA FUNDING The easy way out isn’t working By the hundreds, Maspeth residents came out last week to voice their strong opposition to a homeless shelter planned for their neighborhood. They were hot under the collar for reasons that had nothing to do with a summer heatwave. Why were they so angry? Was it simply because of NIMBY-ism, as some have suggested? No doubt there were some in attendance who felt that way. For the vast majority of people, however, their anger was over a city government that just doesn’t seem to get it when it comes to tackling the homelessness crisis. Why can’t this city fi nd a better way to house the homeless other than cramming them into hotels? Queens has many abandoned homes that can be easily purchased at or below market rate, renovated and converted into affordable housing. Expanding housing subsidies and rent regulations would also be much more preferable than hotels with curfews and lax security. How many times must the city be told that converting any underused hotel or factory into a homeless haven is bad not just for the community but also for the homeless residents themselves? Mayor de Blasio himself acknowledged months ago that this was not the panacea to the crisis. He stated that the city had to move away from merely warehousing homeless persons and moving toward expanding affordable and sustainable housing programs citywide. Yet here we are with another Queens community forced into fi ghting City Hall over bad public policy and maltreatment. The problems documented at the Pan American Hotel-turned-homeless shelter in nearby Elmhurst are proof positive that the city’s homeless policy is a miserable failure. Families have had to live in cramped quarters THE QUEENS PUBLISHER & EDITOR CO-PUBLISHER ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER EDITOR-IN-CHIEF VP, EVENTS, WEB & SOCIAL MEDIA ART DIRECTOR ASSISTANT ART DIRECTOR ARTISTS STAFF REPORTERS DIGITAL EDITOR CONTRIBUTING REPORTERS EVENTS COORDINATOR ASSISTANT TO PUBLISHER CLASSIFIED MANAGER CONTROLLER PRESIDENT & CEO VICE PRESIDENT VICTORIA SCHNEPS-YUNIS JOSHUA A. SCHNEPS BOB BRENNAN ROBERT POZARYCKI AMY AMATO-SANCHEZ NIRMAL SINGH STEPHEN REINA RON TORINA, JONATHAN RODRIGUEZ, CHERYL GALLAGHER KATRINA MEDOFF, ANTHONY GIUDICE, ANGELA MATUA BRIANNA ELLIS KATARINA HYBENOVA CLIFF KASDEN, SAMANTHA SOHMER, ELIZABETH ALONI JACLYN HERTLING DEBORAH CUSICK CELESTE ALAMIN MARIA VALENCIA VICTORIA SCHNEPS-YUNIS JOSHUA A. SCHNEPS Schneps Communications, 38-15 Bell Blvd., Bayside, NY 11361 718-224-5863 • Fax 718-224-5441 www.qns.com editorial e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org for advertising e-mail: email@example.com Entire Contents Copyright 2016 by The Queens Courier All letters sent to THE QUEENS COURIER should be brief and are subject to condensing. Writers should include a full address and home and offi ce telephone numbers, where available, as well as affi liation, indicating special interest. Anonymous letters are not printed. Name withheld on request. LETTERS TO THE EDITOR, AS WELL AS OP-ED PIECES IN NO WAY REFLECT THE PAPER’S POSITION. No such ad or any part thereof may be reproduced without prior permission of THE QUEENS COURIER. The publishers will not be responsible for any error in advertising beyond the cost of the space occupied by the error. Errors must be reported to THE QUEENS COURIER within fi ve days of publication. Ad position cannot be guaranteed unless paid prior to publication. Schneps Communications assumes no liability for the content or reply to any ads. The advertiser assumes all liability for the content of and all replies. The advertiser agrees to hold THE QUEENS COURIER and its employees harmless from all cost, expenses, liabilities, and damages resulting from or caused by the publication or recording placed by the advertiser or any reply to any such advertisement. A new political push for federal funding to tackle the Zika crisis was announced Wednesday at the New York City Public Health Lab. The charge, led by Mayor Bill de Blasio, requests $1.9 billion in funding from the Republican controlled Congress in order to study and fi ght the disease. “This is how much the scientists tell us we need,” said de Blasio in a press conference. To his left was Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, fresh from a trip to Africa where she witnessed fi rsthand some of the devastation from the Ebola crisis. Maloney, tasked by the Queens Politics & More BY MIKE FRICCHIONE city to lead the efforts for more funding in Washington, D.C., noted that the currently underfunded Zika control efforts are actually funded by taking away some $589 million from Ebola funding to deal with the virus, but even that money is running out. “They’re stealing from Peter to pay Paul, and it is not a good way to address a crisis,” she said. The push by New York City offi cials for more federal funding comes on the heels of similar calls from Senator Charles Schumer and Governor Andrew Cuomo, and as some 489 people have been reportedly diagnosed with Zika in the city — including 49 pregnant women. In fact, one baby has even been born here with microcephaly, which is a severe birth defect caused by Zika where the baby is born with an abnormally small heads. New York City has thus far spent $21 million of its own on fi ghting Zika, which pales in comparison to any other large city in America, where spending is nominal at best. The price tag of course includes practical efforts to stop the spread of the virus by doubling the number of mosquito traps and increasing spraying. But more needs to be done. In these dog days of summer, the sultry and muggy heat radiating from the giant mass of steel and asphalt that is NYC is the perfect breeding ground for a crisis in waiting.
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