Fundraiser Update

We have recently received some beautiful handsewn masks from a generous donor and Alphonso has handed them out at the 30th St. Men’s Shelter in Manhattan.

The remaining money that was raised was used to buy Alphonso new shoes and $50 in cash was given to him for food and legal fees for his lawsuite. Thank you to everyone who donated so we could give him some help.

Transparency in Our Fundraising

We have raised $275 so far. $99 has been handed off to Alphonso for him to survive including food, toiletries, notary and various court fees for his cases against the City. We have documented this the best we could from the photos below.

Finally DHS has been giving out masks so we are switching our fundraising right now solely so Alphonso can self-isolate in a hotel. Please give if you can. Also we are being sent 30 masks by a comrade’s relative and will distribute those soon. Stay tuned!

WOMAN WASTING AWAY IN NEW YORK HOMELESS SHELTER

The situation regarding COVID-19 is dire in New York City’s homeless shelters. 239 shelter residents have tested positive as of Sunday, April 5. 12 have died, including 11 unsheltered. 392 are in isolation units, of which there are only 500 available. Yet, New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio and New York State Governor Cuomo continue to ignore the recommendations of advocate organizations to swiftly move shelter residents to the over 100,000 vacant hotel rooms in New York City.

Yesterday I heard from someone inside a women’s shelter that people showing symptoms are being ignored. This person had this to say:

“Just saw a woman who looks like she’s wasting away. Haven’t seen her in over a week. She can barely walk. Wearing mask, walking extremely slow. In room with another woman who is sick and hacking her guts out. I told her to call EMS and go to ER.”

According to this person this shelter is continuing to bring in new clients and there is no sanitizer, wipes, gloves or alcohol.

On top of that people are not getting enough food. According to one resident:

“We can’t get deliveries, if places deliver. The corner store raised prices: sandwich that was $8 is now over $10. Not everyone has money. Can’t buy groceries, can’t cook. EVERYONE here is HUNGRY! No deliveries of supplies. Haven’t eaten since this morning at breakfast: plastic container of cheerios. Shelter is rationing food.”

While Toronto, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago and London have secured hotel rooms for their homeless populations, New York City continues to endanger our houseless family as more and more get sick. How many more deaths will it take for Mayor DeBlasio and Governor Cuomo to house our homeless?

COVID-19 CRISIS ON WARDS ISLAND

The COVID-19 cases continue to rise in the four homeless shelters on Wards Island in New York City as Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill DeBlasio refuse to test, isolate and treat our houseless family. According to The City, “As of Monday, 120 residents across 60 city shelter locations had contracted COVID-19. Four have died.” There is no social distancing in the shelters. There is no COVID-19 testing, isolating and treating in the shelters. In one homeless shelter on Wards Island there is plenty of unused empty space on three floors that could be immediately used for social distancing and isolating.

HELP USA is the operator of the four homeless shelters on Wards Island. It was created in 1986 by Andrew Cuomo himself while his sister, Maria Cuomo Cole, is the Chairman of the Board of Directors.

If they are the operator, why have they done next to nothing to save the people’s lives they are entrusted with, except to put up a few flyers? The price of inaction is death.

I called HELP USA at 212-400-7000 and got a voice message that gave me another number: 845-764-3275. A person named Cynthia picked up the phone and I told her about the situation on Wards Island. Her first response was “The office is closed and I can have someone call you back”. I said, “I don’t think you understand the seriousness of the situation”

“I don’t work with Wards Island so I can’t do anything”, said Cynthia

And then after I raised my voice telling her that people will die she said,

“I will send an email out to all staff”.

The following pictures show open garbage bins and a bag on the floor spilling out garbage in this shelter, as well as a client walking barefoot and a shelter employee who is pregnant.

The disregard of human life by Cuomo, DeBlasio, HELP USA and the New York City Department of Homeless Services is astounding. They want them to die. As one client told me, “It’s a death sentence. For real.”

All photos were taken April 2, 2020.

Sign the petition that sends an email directly to Cuomo, DeBlasio and HELP USA CEO Tom Hamerline.

I Was Violently Assaulted Simply Because I Wanted To Ask An Elected Official A Question

On Thursday April 11, 2019, I was violently assaulted by 4 SBH Health Systems security at 4422 3rd Avenue, Bronx, NY 10457 around approximately 2:50 pm.  The incident occurred in a hallway directly outside of the auditorium and then directly outside.  Instead of assisting me New York State Assemblyman Jose Rivera recorded the incident and went after me along with the security staff who violently assaulted me. There is video footage from my phone of this incident.

I attended a presentation by Lt. Governor Kathy Hochul on the New York State Fiscal Year 2020 Budget on Thursday April 11, 2019 at approximately 2:00pm at SBH Health Systems at 4422 3rd Avenue, Bronx, NY 10457.  I wanted to ask her why there was not any money allocated for New York City Housing Authority in this year’s state budget.  During her presentation I held up a sheet of paper that said the following: “$32 Billion Needed for NYCHA, Backlog of 170,000 Open Work Orders, Federal Budget FY2020: $0 For NYCHA, State Budget FY2020: $0 for NYCHA, Where’s the Money Kathy?” 

I was meeting a friend there but that person was on the opposite side of the room. After the presentation I walked from my seat toward the exit. I asked some men if I could ask her a question as I saw other people in the audience speaking to her. They said no and I insisted. Then I stepped into the area directly outside the auditorium.  They then asked me to step outside and I said I wanted to wait for my friend. Then I used my phone to start recording and that is when they violently assaulted me and pushed me to the ground.

They followed me and took my phone. The main person who assaulted me is the dark skinned black man you see in photos. Then after this man took my phone, he gave it to another person who was getting into a van and drove the van ahead of me so I had to run after him. New York State Assemblyman Jose Rivera recorded the violence with his phone outside and made no attempt to help me at any point.  He actually WALKED with these violent people after me. It was clear to me that he indeed condoned this violence by his actions.

I took a bus and then got on the subway downtown closer to where I live.  I got to Mount Sinai Beth Israel, a hospital I trust, where a police report was taken by PO Faini (white male) and his partner (white female).  At this time when I gave the report I did not realize that New York State Assemblyman Jose Rivera was involved.  Someone pointed out that Mr. Rivera was the person recording it in a video still I put online.  I asked if they could give me a copy of the report and they said no but you could do a FOIL for it.  PO Faini gave me the 13th Prescient contact information as well as contact information for the Department of Investigation.  My heart rate was 133 at the hospital.  I believe I was experiencing shock.  I was discharged with a minor head injury and blunt chest trauma.

Keep in mind this happened at SBH Health Services, a hospital whose mission is, according to their website:

“SBH Health System is committed to improving the health and wellness of our community and is dedicated to providing the highest quality care in a compassionate, comprehensive and safe environment where the patient always comes first, regardless of their ability to pay.”

I tried calling the 13th Prescient several times but no one picked up.  On April 12, 2019 I filled out and sent the Online Complaint Form for the New York City Department of Investigation. 

They used violence. I did not. They violently assaulted me because I wanted to wait for my friend and ask a question about NYCHA of an elected official. In my opinion Jose Rivera should NOT be an Assemblyman AT ALL! I am in pain both physically and mentally. 

Robert

New York City

Monday April 15, 2019