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Around Brooklyn: Food pantries are stressed amid unemployment claims

April 9, 2020 Editorial Staff
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Food pantries are stressed amid unemployment claims

Brooklyn’s food pantries are seeing a jump in distribution and dwindling supplies as hundreds more families rely on their services amid the current coronavirus pandemic, according to the Brooklyn Paper. “It has been a tough time for us as an organization, it is like we are going into a new pathway that we have never been before,” said Dr. Melony Samuels, founder and director of The Campaign against Hunger in Bedford-Stuyvesant. The heightened need for food services in Brooklyn follows a surge in borough residents seeking unemployment benefits, according to the Brooklyn Paper.

‘Bouncy bridge’ replacement appears near completion

When Claude Scales of the Brooklyn Heights Blog took a walk on the Promenade, Columbia Heights and Brooklyn Bridge Park recently, he saw that the “non-bouncy” replacement of the pedestrian bridge connecting Squibb Park and Brooklyn Bridge Park appears to be nearing completion. “The recently announced ban on non-essential construction will likely bring further work to a stop for an indefinite time, but at least we know the bridge hasn’t been abandoned,” he said.

News for those who live, work and play in Brooklyn and beyond

Small businesses try to adapt

Many local businesses are trying to stay open to serve the Carroll Street, Boerum Hill and Cobble Hill communities during the coronavirus pandemic, according to Pardon Me for Asking. The blog has heard from the majority of owners that things are really bad and that they might not survive without the community’s help. “We can all help by shopping in our local stores instead of going to the chain stores, which have  deeper pockets and can weather this pandemic much better,” the blog said.

Actor orders food for Brooklyn Hospital workers

“Westwood” star Jeffrey Wright has made it his mission to feed workers at The Brooklyn Hospital Center by calling up Graziella’s, a Fort Greene-Clinton Hill Italian restaurant. It was a simple idea: Call up and pay for large pies that would be delivered straight to the frontline. Award-winning actor Wright, who had been filming “The Batman” in London, began hatching plans to support his favorite Brooklyn businesses even before he got back to the U.S.

One toke over the line

Thieves made off with $4,000 worth of honey and rolling papers from a wholesale distributor in Brooklyn, according to the New York Post. At least four men walked into AAA Cash and Carry on Malta Street around 5:30 p.m. and started filling boxes with packets of Malaysian Golden Royal Honey and RAW rolling papers from the shelves. “We thought they were customers at first,” a manager told the Post. Not only did they run out the door, one of them bit the manager when he tried to apprehend them.

Cymbrowitz urges NYCHA in next stimulus package

Assemblymember Steven Cymbrowitz (D-Sheepshead Bay-Brighton Beach-Manhattan Beach) and 25 of his Assembly colleagues are urging the city’s congressional delegation to include the New York City Housing Authority’s total estimated $32 billion in capital needs in the next federal stimulus package. NYCHA failed to receive any capital funding in the recently enacted state budget despite the Assembly majority fighting for hundreds of millions of dollars for NYCHA, said Cymbrowitz. “Every dollar the federal government can set aside for NYCHA isn’t just an investment in buildings – it’s an investment in the futures of the authority’s residents and of our city,” their letter said.

Ambulance crash injures two EMTs in Brooklyn

A private ambulance running to a sick patient was cut off at a Flatlands intersection, sending the ambulance crashing into a parked car and a building, according to amNewYork. The two EMTs received minor injuries and were treated at a local hospital. The crash occurred about 1:45 p.m. on April 7 when the ambulance, belonging to Assist Ambulance, was traveling north on Flatbush Avenue with lights and sirens. After an unidentified red vehicle swerved, the ambulance driver lost control, amNewYork said.

BP Adams offers health tips

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams recently released a public service announcement in partnership with Dr. Mitchell Katz and 51 other doctors to offer basic tips on how everyday New Yorkers can help reduce the risk of contracting and spreading coronavirus.  The three tips are to quit smoking, take your medication as prescribed by a doctor and adopt a plant-based diet. “We want to thank all the doctors and public health professionals joining us in this call and we extend our deep gratitude for all they do to protect us,” Adams said.

Landlords: most tenants paid April rent

Landlords said Friday that most renters paid their bill on time or made arrangements to defer payments, according to Politico. “We’ve had our buildings for over 50 years and—some point or another—we’ve always had tenants in a crisis,” said Chris Athineos, whose family owns nine Brooklyn buildings with a total of 150 apartments. The property owner said he has always accommodated tenants through life challenges, whether it be the loss of a job, a death in the family or a medical issue. “No one is rushing to housing court to fill out a nonpayment proceeding,” he said.

Kin Housing opens Brooklyn building

Kin, a residential housing brand created by Common and Tishman Speyer, has opened its first Brooklyn location, Kin on Union, according to Multi-Housing News. The brand, created last year, is tailored toward families living in or near cities. The new building, at 305 Union Ave., is situated in Williamsburg and has convenient access to the L, G, M and J trains. The 19-unit community offers a mix of studio, one-, two and three-bedroom units, Multi-Housing News said.

Brooklyn Museum seeks federal aid

Anne Pasternak, the director of the Brooklyn Museum, recently decided that her institution needed to apply for federal aid to buoy losses resulting from the impact of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, according to Art News. In addition to lost revenue, she said, the museum’s endowment had diminished by 15 percent.  The museum, like most cultural institutions, is currently closed indefinitely, Art News said.

Employee beaten over broken washing machine

A violent attack at a Red Hook laundromat over a broken washing machine was caught on camera, according to ABC7 News. The incident, which was caught on video, took place at Hicks Mega Laundromat on Hicks Street. Police say the suspect started arguing with an employee when his washing machine malfunctioned. Then, the suspect started punching, kicking and pushing the employee before hitting him with a chair, then leaving, ABC7 reported.

Bed-Stuy fire kills one, injures two others

A fast-moving fire in Bedford-Stuyvesant killed one man and injured two others, including one firefighter, on Wednesday night, according to amNewYork. The victim suffered serious smoke inhalation and burns and died at Kings County Medical Center. The firefighter was also treated at Kings County for serious injuries after being struck by falling glass. Firefighters were called at 7:15 p.m. at 874 Jefferson Ave., a three-story home, where they found heavy smoke and flames. Most of the residents were home at the time because of the COVID-19 emergency, amNewYork reported.

Popular Brooklyn Chinese restaurant reopens

The popular Win Son Chinese restaurant and bakery, which closed a month ago due to threats related to the coronavirus pandemic, has reopened for takeout and delivery, according to CBS Local News. “Our hope is that people still feel good about ordering delivery and takeout,” said owner Josh Ku, who added that the restaurant will be operating with a very small staff. Patrons won’t be allowed to enter the restaurant, but can order through the Caviar app, CBS reported. The restaurant is at 159 Graham Ave.

Compiled by Raanan Geberer.

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