The End Overdose NY Campaign blasted Governor Andrew Cuomo’s proposal to add fentanyl, a powerful opioid, to the list of controlled substances.
About a dozen young people gathered outside City Hall Wednesday to urge council members to support the legislation. They emphasized the importance of the protections, particularly for young people in the LGBTQ community.
Members of Brooklyn-based VOCAL-NY said the governor isn’t doing enough to back up pledges made in recent years to spend billions of dollars for affordable housing, shelters and rental subsidies. The critics of Cuomo’s efforts say it’s not clear where the funding is going and how many homeless people are being housed under his plan.
More than 88,000 New Yorkers are living in homeless shelters across the state. That’s a number that advocates say needs to go down, and they’re asking Governor Andrew Cuomo to do his part.
As the meeting began to wrap up, Will Robertson, a former drug user, chimed in. Mr. Robertson, 58, said that he got through his addiction when he met people who understood where he was coming from. He supports the facilities, he said, because the sites could introduce drug users to recovery coaches like himself, “people there to engage.”
Saunders points out, “Despite what the governor says about the state’s investment in this lifesaving overdose-reversal medication, there’s still no line item in his budget that actually allocates money directly towards that.”
A new project, Court Watch NYC — a collaboration among VOCAL-NY, the Brooklyn Community Bail Fund, and 5 Boro Defenders — recently started placing volunteer observers in Manhattan and Brooklyn courtrooms to ensure that Vance and Gonzalez are following through on their campaign promises. Organizers say they hope to “shift court practices and culture” through community-driven accountability, and to eventually release data on how prosecutors are actually implementing their office’s policies.
Some drug-addiction treatment organizations are opposing Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s proposal to expand the laws on fentanyl, saying it will increase incarcerations and won’t save lives.
“Our neighborhoods are being transformed without us. The people of color and the working poor are being pushed out and priced out of their neighborhoods. Gentrification has become our new reality. We can no longer afford to live in the neighborhoods we were born in, grew up in and even worked in. New York is at its worst housing crisis since the Great Depression. We have over 88,000 people living in shelters across the state… housing is a human right, not a luxury.”