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From The Desk Of NY State Senator Jack Martins

Yesterday Is Already Too Late

The selfishness we’re witnessing in Albany right now has to stop.  

 

You know I’ve written in this column many times that New York State has made real progress these last three years.  Things are far better than they used to be simply because Republicans and Democrats alike are finally working together.  Despite the accompanying noise, there’s really no magic formula.  Legislators with common sense have finally realized that you can’t always get everything you want and that most times, the reasonable middle ground also happens to advance the people’s agenda very nicely.       

 

But I’m not “feeling the love” lately.    

 

In June, the New York State Senate passed an historic package of bills agreed to by Governor Cuomo that is of vital importance to women.  Among these was a measure to strengthen laws against human-trafficking.  Unfortunately, human-trafficking is a hidden scourge that most people don’t realize is happening every day in communities throughout New York, even here in our Long Island neighborhoods.  I’m not pulling any punches about this because it cannot be ignored any longer.  We have to try and wrap our minds around what’s happening:  there are rapidly growing numbers of young women being held against their will, forced into labor and even sold into the sex trade right here on Long Island.  And despite the heroic efforts of local law enforcement to free these women and the care nonprofits provide them afterwards, enough is not being done to stop it. 

 

That’s just not acceptable because New York has always lead the nation yet we’re failing miserably here.  Why?  Well, despite their initial praise for this package of laws, the

Assembly has refused to pass it thus far.  Despite the fact that just last week more than 159 people were arrested and 105 teenage girls were saved in nationwide, human-trafficking stings, despite the fact that New York ranks fourth in the nation for incidences of human trafficking, despite prosecutors who say we’re just scratching the surface

and that we need better laws – despite all this, the bill has not been taken up in the Assembly. 

 

We’re better than this.  There is clearly a need for the protections this law would provide and for the weapon it can become in the hands of law enforcement across New York. 

With it they can better protect the disenfranchised and abused women and children of our society.

 

The bill is written and ready.  The Senate passed it unanimously.  The Governor has agreed to sign it once the Assembly passes it.  The shame is that the Assembly didn’t take it up before the end of the legislative session and probably won’t before returning to Albany in January.  Again, we’re better than this.  As we have seen all too painfully on the faces of the women and children freed in the stings, yesterday is already too late. 

Recognize The Signs Of Human-Trafficking

•Is the person free to leave the work site?

 

•Is the person physically, sexually or psychologically abused?

 

•Does the person have a passport or valid I.D. card, and is he/she in possession of such documents? Is someone else holding them?

 

•Has the person or a family member been threatened?

 

•Does the person fear that something bad will happen to him or her,

or to a family member, if he/she leaves the job?

Visible Indicators

•Heavy security at the commercial establishment, including barred

windows, locked doors, and electronic surveillance.

 

•Women are never seen leaving the premises unless escorted. 

 

•Victims are kept under surveillance when taken to a doctor, hospital or clinic for treatment. Trafficker may act as a translator.  

 

•High foot traffic, especially for brothels, often by a stream of men arriving and leaving the premises.

Call the National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) at 1-888-373-7888 to report a tip.  

News

At the eleventh hour on the eleventh day of the eleventh month, residents and community members joined with the Floral Park American Legion to honor veterans at the annual Veteran’s Day ceremonies at Memorial Park, following a march down Tulip Avenue to the park with the members of the veterans of the Legion post, American Legion Auxiliary members, Sons of the American Legion, Boy and Cub Scouts from Troops 482 and 678 and local officials.

During the ceremony, a plaque was dedicated in memory of General Kazimierz Pulaski and others of Polish heritage who have served in the U.S. military. The plaque dedication was led by members of the Polish American Congress, Long Island Division, President Grzegorz Worma and Honorary President Richard Brzozowski. An invocation was delivered by Father Peter Rozek of St. Hedwig Church, followed by a POW-MIA ceremony by Post 334 Vice Commander Matthew Cacciatore.

While parking around Long Island Rail Road train stations is typically a challenge, even on a regular work day, the holidays create more of a struggle for commuters in search of parking spots. LIRR spokesman Salvatore Arena said that ridership between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day increases by at least 10 percent; last year it was by 12 percent. Though the MTA is adding more trains to the schedule, that doesn’t ease the parking situation, which is operated not by the LIRR, but by individual municipalities in each town.

“Every station is different,” Arena said. “A good part of our parking is in the hands of the locality. They set the rules essentially.”


Calendar

Floral Park Memorial PTSA Fall Fest Fundraiser

Friday, November 21

Buy A Meal, Wag A Tail

Saturday, November 22

Hanging of the Greens and Potluck Luncheon

Sunday, November 23



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