Thanks to Everyone for a Great Summer Picnic

Yesterday, NMASS members and their family and friends headed up to Welch Lake in Harriman State Park for our yearly NMASS Summer Picnic. Folks brought food and drinks for themselves and their families and to share with friends and other members. Some members organized kids games (many of which involved water balloons!), in addition to a big soccer game with kids and adults.

Thanks to everyone who helped to plan and who cam out to enjoy the beautiful weather! Check out some of the pictures below: (more…)

Sign the Petition: Stop the Racist Extell Development

Dear Mayor De Blasio,

We are concerned about the displacement of low-income working families and small businesses from the Lower East Side and Chinatown. The ultra-luxury Extell development on the former Pathmart site (227 Cherry Street) is racist and will devastate our low-income community of color. It should not be built. We do not need a “poor door”. We need real affordable housing for low-income families. We demand that you:

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Please Give to Help STOP Wage Theft

A few weeks ago, we launched the Workers Enforcement Fundraising Project to support workers who are organizing for just, enforceable labor laws in New York State. We’ve raised several thousand so far, but we need your help to reach out goal of $25,000! Help us continue to build this movement by visiting the fundraising campaign website to make a donation today and spread the word to friends and family.

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NYS Judiciary Committee Approves SWEAT Bill

Earlier this week, the SWEAT bill passed its first hurdle in the New York State Legislature. The Judiciary Committee voted to approve it, and the bill has now been referred to the Codes Committee, on its way to reaching the floor of the Assembly for a full vote. We are calling on members and supporters to call their state representatives, especially if they belong to the Codes or Rules Committee, to support SWEAT and help make the labor law enforceable!

Welcome Our New Board Member

Join us in welcoming a new member to the NMASS Board of Directors!

domingoDomingo Teofilo is a restaurant workers who lives in Washington Heights, NY. He’s been a member of NMASS since 2009. Domingo, an immigrant from Mexico, has organized co-workers at two restaurants to stand up to sweatshop conditions; and participates in our labor-law enforcement work.

Tenants Speak Out vs. Eviction by Slumlord, Urge Mayor to Take Steps to Prevent Further Displacement in Chinatown/LES

On May 18, 27 families of 83 and 85 Bowery protested with dozens of other residents, the Coalition to Protect Chinatown and Lower East Side, the office of Public Advocate Leticia James and District Leader Jenifer Rajkumar to condemn their slumlord Joseph Betesh, owner of the Dr. Jay’s hip hop clothing chain store. Since Betesh took ownership of their buildings in 2013, he has deliberately refused to do repairs and renew leases, in an effort to drive these low-income families out of their homes. (more…)

Lower East Side Says Hell No to Extell’s Racist Skyscraper, Demands Mayor de Blasio take Action

Over the past month, hundreds of residents in the Lower East Side and Chinatown have taken to the streets to send a message to Mayor de Blasio: Stop the displacement along the Lower East Side and Chinatown.

On April 28, over 200 residents of the Lower East Side and Chinatown came out to protest against Extell’s new skyscraper for billionaires on Cherry St–a racist development that will displace low income people of color from our own community. The Extell tower is being built on what was  public land that once housed a Pathmark, the only affordable supermarket serving the surrounding public housing developments. The community demanded that Mayor de Blasio take action to stop the Extell tower from being built, and to support the Chinatown Working Group’s rezoning plan to stop displacement.

The Extell development is possible because the racist 2008 East Village rezoning denied the Chinese, Latino, and African American community height protections that the wealthier and White community of the East Village received. This has pushed luxury development into the neighborhood and displaced thousands of low-income residents and small businesses over the past few years.

We are continuing to hold monthly rallies against Extell, the next on May 27 at 11AM. To get involved in the planning of these rallies and help with outreach, please contact us at 212-358-0295.

 

Check us out in the press!

NY1, Residents Protest Developer’s Plans for High Rise

Bowery Boogie , Anti-Extell Rally Planned This Morning to Oppose Gargantuan 56-Story Tower

The Lo-Down, Groups Set to Protest Extell’s Massive Two Bridges Project Tomorrow Morning

The Lo-Down, Local Groups Rally at Extell’s Cherry Street Site, Demand Zoning Changes

Bedford and Bowery, Protesters Voice Outrage Over Extell’s ‘Building From Hell,’ Coming to the LES

Curbed NY, Protesters Rally Against Extell’s Lower East Side Tower

 

DNAinfo, Community Activists Rally Against ‘Racist’ Luxury Tower on LES Waterfront, 4.29.2015

 

Gothamist, Protesters Fight New Luxury Tower Being Built On The LES, 4.29.2015

 

New York Observer, On the Market: Overcrowding in LIC Schools; the 1st Year Without a Rent Increase?, 4.29.2015

 

China Press, 纽约下城居民反对华埠附近建豪华高楼, 4.28.2014

Nail Salon, Restaurant, Day Laborer Workers and Advocates Urge Cuomo To Do More for Enforcement

Yesterday NMASS members were joined by other Coalition for a Real Minimum Wage Increase partners to hold a press conference to acknowledge Gov. Cuomo’s recent recognition that the lack of labor law enforcement is a problem and to urge him to do more.

For almost two years, the Coalition has been highlighting the problems of wage theft and lax enforcement. Workers picketed the State Department of Labor for months, protesting its lack of enforcement–long delays and cases settled for almost nothing.

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New York Times: When It Comes to Wage Abuses, It’s Not Just Nail Salons

by Jim Dwyer for the New York Times: “…As of the end of 2013, at least $125 million in unpaid judgments and orders for wage reimbursements had piled up over the previous 10 years, according to a study released in March, “Empty Judgments: The Wage Collection Crisis in New York.”

The laws are clear on minimum wages and overtime, and it is also evident that people inclined to beat the law can do so. (more…)

NYC Council & Leticia James Resolve to Stop Wage Theft!

The organizing work of NMASS and the Justice Will Be Served! Campaign inspired the Public Advocate Letitia James and City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito to introduce a resolution approved by the City Council to support the SWEAT (SecuringWages Earned Against Theft) that we helped to realize. This bill will help stop wage theft by making the law more enforceable–giving tools to workers and their advocates to hold scofflaw employers responsible for paying the wages stolen from workers. The City Council resolution sends a message to Albany that New York City is ready to stop wage theft now!