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Around Brooklyn: Deutsch combats digital terrorism, hate

December 1, 2020 Editorial Staff
A walker heads through Shore Road Park at dusk. Photo: Lore Croghan/Brooklyn Eagle
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Deutsch combats digital terrorism, hate

Councilmember Chaim Deutsch (D-Sheepshead Bay, Manhattan Beach, Brighton Beach, Homecrest) helped allocate a combined $115,000 under the City Council’s Digital Inclusion Initiative to fund Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Combat Digital Terrorism and Hate Project. SWC’s program will be brought to New York City public middle and high schools during this academic year, at a time when anti-Semitism, racism, bigotry, homophobia, Islamophobia and all other forms of online hate are dramatically increasing. “In recent years, we have seen an unfortunate rise in hate speech online translating into physically violent acts. The Simon Wiesenthal Center’s program to combat digital hate is fulfilling a critical need in teaching young people to identify and combat hate online,” said Deutsch.

Adams encourages local holiday shopping

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, city business leaders and local business owners on Friday called for a local “sales tax holiday for the holidays,” saying the city and state must do everything possible to encourage New Yorkers to shop locally during the COVID-19 crisis. Adams joined the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, the Bed-Stuy Gateway Business Improvement District (BID), and employees of Moshood Creations, a clothing store in Bedford-Stuyvesant, to push the tax-free proposal as New Yorkers considered their purchases on what is traditionally the busiest shopping day of the year.

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

106-year-old Caribbean ‘matriarch’ dies

Elis Weekes, the head of a large Weekes family spread across the U.S., the Caribbean, the U.K. and Canada, recently died of old age in her Canarsie home at age 106. She was the mother of 10 children, grandmother of 20, great-grandmother of 39 and great-great grandmother of 12. She left Barbados to come to the U.S. in the 1970s. “You are not going to meet a mother like her, not in this world, the one before or the one to come,” said her daughter Norma Weekes-Morgan, a health aide in Brooklyn. Two of the centenarian’s other daughters recently died of the coronavirus, according to Carib News.

Barclays names new senior execs

Barclays Center has made public several new top-level appointments. Emerson Moore has been named executive vice president and chief people officer of BSE Global. Moore will lead human resources for BSE Global. He joins the organization after spending 13 years at TMP Worldwide Advertising & Communications. Peter Stern has been announced as the new executive vice president and chief financial officer. He will oversee the finance department for BSE Global. In his prior role, Stern was head of U.S. investments at Alibaba Group. In addition, BSE Global has tapped Jackie Wilson II as executive director of diversity & inclusion. Wilson oversees BSE Global’s diversity and inclusion strategies and initiatives, and will help develop and execute the company’s overall social justice vision. Wilson began his career as a litigation associate at Graham Curtin law firm, before becoming general counsel at All Pro Sports & Entertainment Inc.

City Point to exhibit ‘Strangers Project’

City Point in Downtown Brooklyn plans to launch “The Strangers Project,” an art exhibit for the holidays featuring 500 real-life stories from people everywhere. Artist Brandon Doman, founder of the project, comments, “The Strangers Project celebrates and connects people with something greater than themselves.  This has undeniably an incredibly challenging year, and it’s during times like this that we need the opportunity to come together and celebrate.”

In a socially distanced winter wonderland

On Saturday, Bed-Stuy Gateway BID unveiled its outdoor socially distanced pop-up winter marketplace benefiting its BID Businesses. Thanks to a grant and support from the Neighborhoods Now project, the family-friendly experience will be environmentally sound. The COVID-safe zone will include testing stations, a Santa safety station, and a gift-wrapping market with plenty of room to social distance while purchasing great gift items from a variety of BID merchants. Masks are required and will be supplied. Founded by the Van Alen Institute and the Urban Design Forum, Neighborhoods Now is a rapid-response initiative to aid pandemic recovery in NYC, with the focus on lower-income communities and communities of color.

Colton boosts loan program for small biz

Assemblyman William Colton (D – Gravesend, Bensonhurst, Bath Beach, and Dyker Heights) recently publicized an economic recovery loan program called the New York Forward Loan Fund which is aimed at supporting New York State small businesses, nonprofits and small landlords as they reopen after the COVID-19 outbreak and NYS on PAUSE. “This past holiday weekend was designated as a day to shop at small businesses. I personally support small businesses and I urge people to make holiday purchases in our neighborhood stores. Small businesses are providing the lifeline for our city,” he said. The New York Forward Loan Fund is a program that loans money at interest rates between 2 to 3 percent to small businesses under 20 employees, nonprofits and small landlords.

JCH takes part in anti-poverty initiative

UJA-Federation and several of its network partners have launched a multimillion-dollar anti-poverty initiative across New York to serve tens of thousands of vulnerable New Yorkers. The effort encompasses seven service locations, or “Hubs,” in Jewish Community Centers across the boroughs, Long Island and Westchester. One of the sites where the program will be available to the community will be the Edith and Carl Marks Jewish Community House of Bensonhurst. The Jewish Community House, located at 7802 Bay Parkway, will provide mental health services, client advocacy, legal consultations, emergency cash relief, benefits assistance, and expanded workforce development. Three full-time new staff have been added to support the community. “The global pandemic has destabilized hundreds of vulnerable individuals and families simultaneously in our community,” noted Alex Budnitsky, CEO/ED of the JCH of Bensonhurst.

New motorcycle storage space opens

A new storage space for motorcycles and mopeds, the Gotham Depot Motor Storage, has opened at 51 Box St. in Greenpoint. The space, which is more than 3,000 square feet, has room for 47 bikes as well as a members’ sky lounge. The owners believe that the members will not only use the elegant space to store their bikes, but will take advantage of the lounge as a place to relax, work, and connect with other members. Before GDM opened, bikers’ only options for storage in NYC were garages primarily designed as spaces to work on bikes; not somewhere you’d want to voluntarily hang out, according to Thrillist. Stefon Davis, one of the owners, said he seeks to combat the image that people who ride motorbikes are ignorant, stupid or dumb jocks.

Coney Island school sues CDC

Coney Island Prep, a charter school, recently filed a lawsuit against Alex Azar, the secretary of health and human services, and Robert Redfield, the director of the Centers for Disease Control, for their handling of the pandemic. The school and several co-plaintiffs alleged that the government’s way of dealing with the crisis is not only destructive but illegal. “People are dying, and it’s our kids’ parents, our kids’ grandparents,” Leslie-Bernard Joseph, the C.E.O. of Coney Island Prep, told the New Yorker. Most of the school’s thousand students are Black or Latino. Many are poor. When the pandemic hit, the school distributed 800 laptops and tablets, 125,000 meals, and more than $100,00 to parents to cover rent and other expenses “that should be the government’s job,” Joseph told the magazine.

Cops seek serial robber

The NYPD is seeking a man in connection with seven robberies from homes and stores in Gravesend and Manhattan Beach that have taken place since Oct. 2. Police say the man has stolen more than $30,000 in cash, electronics, jewelry and personal property. The suspect is described as a man between 40 and 50 years old, according to Fox 5 News.

Compiled by Raanan Geberer.

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