Help for the Rockaways is pouring in from all across New York City. Yetta Kurland, a City Council hopeful for Christie Quinn’s seat, led the Transit Forward Coalition to bring food, supplies, and an extra set of hands to help aid the victims of Hurricane Sandy.
[Press Release] The Transit Forward Coalition, a community-based coalition of New York City Transit Riders and Workers, has played a key role in responding to damage from Hurricane Sandy in New York . Most notably, members of the coalition from Transportation Workers Union Local 100 are working tirelessly to get New York City ’s essential transportation lifeline back on track. Within a few days, most lines in the 100-year-old system were restored. The work is arduous, often dangerous, vital and ongoing.
As though that were not enough, the Transit coalition spearheaded a major volunteer and donation drive throughout the five boroughs. Teaming up with members of the West Village in Manhattan , Transit Forward hosted a donation collection and distribution party at the famous Stonewall Inn on Saturday. The bar, site of the 1969 Stonewall Riots which gave birth to the modern LGBT movement, quickly filled with water, clothes, canned goods and medical supplies.
The following day, led by community organizer Yetta Kurland and others, over 100 volunteers transported the materials to community organizer Jacques Leandre who then distributed the goods to desperately underserved areas in the Far Rockaway section of Queens – neighborhoods that still had no electricity and very limited access to resources.
The Transit Forward Coalition was joined by members of Occupy Wall Street’s #OccupySandy movement. Their grassroots, no power organizing techniques proved perfectly suited for the unelectrified neighborhoods the community is serving.
Yetta Kurland said,
“My community has just gone through a week without power, hot water and lights. We can only imagine what our fellow New Yorkers in Far Rockaway are going through. It was incredible to see the care and thoughtfulness of the donations that people made. But given the freezing temperatures we are even more concerned for the residents of Far Rockaway and other impacted areas.”
Jacques Leandre stated,
“Nearly a week after Hurricane Sandy, the people of the Rockaways are desperate for relief and assistance. It is not fair and it is not just that the residents of the Rockaways have not received the attention they deserve, while people’s homes are still underwater in our community and families are begging for water on the streets. Transit Forward is coming to the Rockaways to not only deliver food, water, and flashlights, but also to make sure voters can still exercise their right to vote.”
Mona Davids, President, NYC Parents Union and member of the Coalition said,
“We’re so thankful for the support from the Transit Forward Coalition and LGBT Community. The outpouring of concern is overwhelming and uplifting. Transit Forward Coalition members are in Rockaways everyday helping families and giving them the assistance and support they desperately need to recover.
The Coalition is continuing to collect information, supplies and resources for New Yorkers recovering from the storm. If you need resources, or would like to help, contact the Transit Forward Coalition at http://www.transitforward.org/hurricane_sandy_assistance.
If you (or someone you know) doesn’t have access to the internet right now, contact the borough pepresentatives:
If you do not have access to the internet, contact our Borough representatives below.
Manhattan: Yetta Kurland | 917-701-9590
Queens: Jacques Leandre | 347-613-2315
Bronx: Mona Davids | 646-807-4191
Brooklyn: Rodneyse Bichotte | 718-744-8410
Staten Island: Ahmed Tigani | 718-312-9105