Local Leaders Urge Heightened Federal Response to September 11 Mental Health Issues
On September 15, 2001, Lower Manhattan residents, traumatized yet resolute, assembled at a Canal Street basketball court to hear from community leaders like Bob Townley (at left, addressing the crowd) and elected officials. It was the first community-wide gathering since the World Trade Center attacks, and people drew great solace from each other and from those who stepped forward to lead.
Community Board 1 (CB1) is urging federal lawmakers to expand benefits offered by the World Trade Center Health Program and the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund to include more robust help for survivors of the terrorist attacks who are grappling with mental health issues.
In a resolution enacted at its April 28 meeting, CB1, notes that “Lower Manhattan is one of the largest 9/11 survivor communities and has sustained lasting mental health impacts from 9/11 that have been compounded by multiple disasters since the attacks and are now being triggered by COVID-19.”
The same resolution observes that, “mental health is not currently covered by the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund,” calling this, “a conspicuous deficiency in the law depriving survivors of just compensation.”
The measure goes on to acknowledge that, although some mental health services are available through the World Trade Center Health Program, “many people are unable to schedule 9/11-related mental health visits during working hours,” and “mental health coverage by the Health Program could be improved by greater accessibility and a broad range of service hours.”
CB1’s resolution concludes by calling upon New York’s congressional delegation, “to propose legislation to amend the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation act to include mental health as a compensable condition for the VCF,” and urging the Health Program to provide mental health services to members on a 24/7 basis, and consider using its Nationwide Provider Network to accomplish this.”
A February, 2019 research paper published in the peer-reviewed scholarly journal, “Environment Health,” documented that among the survivor population (those who lived, worked, or attended school in Lower Manhattan on September 11, 2001, or in the months that followed, the prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder is 14.2 percent, while the rate of depression is 15.3 percent. The same paper estimates that as many as 125,000 survivors may need help with these conditions, while one quarter of this population reported, “unmet need for mental health care in the preceding year.”
‘A Fraudulent Scheme to Evade the Rent Stabilization Laws’
FiDi Renters Seek Recompense for Years of Rent Overcharges; U.S. Supreme Court Declines to Overturn Tenants’ Victory
More Financial District tenants are going to court to demand restitution from years of illegally high rent, on the heels of a 2019 ruling by New York State’s highest court, which found that as many as 5,000 Lower Manhattan apartments had been illegally deprived of rent stabilization benefits.
The most recent suit was filed on behalf of tenants at 90 Washington Street, a 397-unit rental building located between Rector and Joseph P. Ward Streets. This filing follows similar legal actions on behalf of tenants at 63-67 Wall Street, Ten Hanover Square, 50 Murray Street, 90 West Street, and 53 Park Place.
1) Howard Hughes Corporation Seaport Stakeholder Workshop #3 – Presentation by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill/Howard Hughes Corporation
June 17 6PM
Quality of Life & Service Delivery Committee
1) Social Distancing for Small Business, Sanitation & Noise Concerns – Discussion
2) Combined Sewer Overflows and Summer Swimming – Discussion
3) Addressing Systemic Racism and White Supremacy in Battery Park City & Lower Manhattan – Presentation by Taylor Banning & Katie Cuccia-Fenton, bpc4blm & Possible Resolution
4) Banning Pepper Spray to Prevent the Further Spread of COVID-19 – Discussion and Possible Resolution
5) The State of Policing in NYC – Discussion & Possible Resolution
June 18 6PM
1) Social Distancing for Small Business – Discussion and resolution
2) Improvements to Voting and Special Temporary COVID-19 Rules – Discussion & Resolution
3) Committee reports
Eyes to the Sky June 15 – 28, 2020
Summer Solstice – June 20, 2020
Every day is Sun day for the month of June, when the Sun is up for 15 hours plus a few minutes most days and darkness prevails, most days, for a few minutes less than 9 hours. The longest days of the year occur as Earth reaches the point in its orbit when the North Pole is tilted closest to the Sun, known as the summer solstice. This year, astronomers calculate that the solstice occurs on Saturday, June 20 at 5:44pm. According to my pencil on paper figuring from Starry Night* data, which is offered to a tenth of a second, day length at our location on Friday the 19this 3 seconds shorter than on the solstice and on the 20th day length is 2 seconds longer than on Sunday the 21st.
I found that dust-up between “All Lives Matter” versus “Black Lives Matter,” rather interesting.
When taken out of context, “All Lives Matter” is a mere truism, which has little meaning or significance. When used in response to “Black Lives Matter,” then it clearly has a malicious intent because the point is to negate the latter statement, i.e., that, in fact, Black lives do not matter.
Given the continued racism and its effects, for all people of good will, it is not enough to say “All Lives Matter.” We must embrace and affirm that “Black Lives Matter.”
To the editor:
Mariama James is a dedicated leader of the downtown community and her efforts have improved the quality of life for everyone who lives here.
Mariama’s work advocating for residents in the aftermath of 9/11 has been long, strong and effective. She has given an extraordinary amount of time and energy to help every one of us affected get the resources and medical care so desperately needed.
Mariama is also a long-time member of Community Board 1 – where she serves as co-chair of the Quality of Life Committee. Her efforts have resulted in countless improvements to the entire CB1 District on any number of issues including health and housing.
Most recently, she organized the Board’s Large Venue Working Group to ensure that noise, traffic, and safety are taken into consideration for our neighborhoods.
In sharing her personal story, Mariama James has taken another step in making a better world. This is an opportunity to listen and learn. Thank you Mariama. Black Lives Matter.
CB1 Wants to Claim Part of the Pike for Cyclists
Community Board 1 is calling upon City and State transportation officials to close—at least temporarily—the lane of Route 9A (also know as the West Side Highway) that adjoins the Hudson River Park, between Chambers and Canal Streets, to enable continued social distancing, as New York scales back quarantine measures in the wake of the pandemic coronavirus outbreak.
The plan would use concrete barriers to bar traffic from the westernmost lane of the eight-lane highway, for a half-mile stretch of the waterfront boulevard, in order to allow users of the Hudson River Park additional room for biking, jogging, and walking.
‘When People Answer that All Lives Matter, They are Lying’
A Lifelong Resident of Downtown Considers Blackness Within a Bubble of Privilege
Ms. James moved to Lower Manhattan as a child, in 1971, when her family took up residence in the newly opened Southbridge Towers. “My dad worked for Citibank, at 20 Exchange Place; my mom worked at Bache, on Gold Street, and I was a latchkey kid, attending local schools,” she says. “Race was something we were conscious of, but in different ways. My best friend growing up was Italian, and her family loved me, but always made clear that I was an exception in their eyes.”
City Pushes Plan to Move Iconic Sculpture Away from Bowling Green
The City’s Public Design Commission is slated to consider on Monday a controversial plan that would move Charging Bull—the the iconic Arturo Di Modica bronze sculpture that has been snarling and pawing the ground just north of Bowling Green since 1989—to a new location in front of the New York Stock Exchange. Several local leaders are concerned that the administration of Mayor Bill de Blasio is pushing this plan while ignoring community objections. To read more…
Honorable WilliamWall Opens for Business
The Honorable William Wall will open June 18. Click for more information.
Each day, a different encore presentation from the company’s Live in HD series is available for free streaming on the Met website, with each performance available for 23 hours, from 7:30 p.m. EDT until 6:30 p.m. the following day. The schedule will include outstanding complete performances from the past 14 years of cinema transmissions, starring all of opera’s greatest singers.
Lunchtime program with veteran CNBC reporter Bob Pisani, in conversation with “WealthTrack” anchor and executive producer Consuelo Mack, as they discuss what the financial markets may look like in the post-COVID world. Noon. Free. Museum of American Finance.
Test your trivia IQ at home with your friends and family! Follow along on Zoom and enter your answers via Kahoot (links to be provided) for a digital version of Brookfield Place’s weekly trivia series with ThinkFast. Part of the #BFPLatHome series. Prizes: 1st Place: $150 gift card to a BFPL restaurant of the winner’s choice; 2nd Place: $20 BFPL Gift Card; 3rd Place: Two bags of For Five Coffee – winner’s choice! (must live in NYC, NJ, or CT). Free. 7pm.
Inspired by confinement and virtual connectivity, The Attendants 2020 is a re-imagining of the cutting edge interactive performance presented at Brookfield Place in 2011, during which the public communicated with performers through text messages and tweets. The plexiglass cube from the 2011 performance has been replaced by the 2020 2-D rectangular screens we have all become so familiar with and reliant on. Viewers will be able to influence the piece by sending messages to the performers through a digital platform from noon to 6pm EST. The performers can only respond with their bodies, each streaming in from the safety of their own homes.
Artist & poet Rachel Eliza Griffiths reads from her forthcoming book Seeing the Body (W. W. Norton, 2020) from her home in New York. Rachel Eliza Griffiths is a multi-media artist, poet, and writer. She received the MFA in Creative Writing from Sarah Lawrence College and is the recipient of numerous fellowships including Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center, Kimbilio, Cave Canem Foundation, Vermont Studio Center, Millay Colony, and Yaddo. Noon. Free.
June 16: Today in History
Mary, Queen of Scots
1567 – Mary, Queen of Scots, imprisoned in Lochleven Castle prison Scotland
1779 – Spain declares war on Great Britain in support of the US, and the siege of Gibraltar begins.
1917 – Aurelio Lampredi, Italian mechanical engineer (Ferrari; d. 1989)
1917 – Irving Penn, American photographer
1935 – Jim Dine, Cincinnati Ohio, artist
1959 – George Reeves, actor (Superman, Gone with the Wind), suicide at 45
1977 – Wernher von Braun, rocket scientist (V1/V2), dies at 65 of smoking
Previously Published Downtown News
Gauges Become Less Grim
Fourteen New Cases, and One Additional Death in Lower Manhattan
A New York City prepares to begin reopening on Monday, this will be the Broadsheet’s final weekly update about local health statistic related to the pandemic coronavirus — until and unless the outbreak reemerges.
Downtown Non-Profit Sues to Gain Release of Protestors
A non-profit based in Lower Manhattan is suing the New York Police Department (NYPD) to obtain the release of more than 100 protestors arrested during the recent demonstrations over the death of George Perry Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on May 25.
The Legal Aid Society, headquartered at 199 Water Street, filed suit on Tuesday in New York State Supreme Court, on behalf of 108 detainees who were arrested in Manhattan during the first five days of protests.
CB1 Endorses Push to Expand VCF Coverage to Pandemic Illness
Community Board 1 (CB1) has signed on to a campaign that aims to expand the eligibility criteria of the September 11 Victims Compensation Fund (VCF) to include illnesses related to the outbreak of the pandemic coronavirus.
Crashes in Tourism and Business Travel May Signal Trouble for Downtown Hotel Sector
A hotel developer seeking to repeat a 2017 coup may face headwinds that could work against such a reprise. Last December, Hidrock Properties, a Manhattan-based builder of hotels and office properties, completed demolition of two small buildings at 110 and 112 Liberty Street, between Greenwich Street and Trinity Place, which it bought for $38 million in 2018. (Local residents may remember them as the home of the Ho-Yip and Essex World restaurants.)