Volume 20, Number 36 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | January 19 - 25, 2011

Letters to the Editor

Painful chapter is closed

To the Editor,
When the Deutsche Bank building at 130 Liberty Street finally comes down at the end of this month, it will close out a painful chapter in the history of our city and signal an era of new hope for our Downtown community.

Severely damaged in the 9/11 attacks, the building once again became a focus of grief and mourning when two city firefighters, Robert Beddia and Joseph Graffagnino, were tragically killed in a fire there six years later.

After that terrible day in 2007, I formed a task force made up of members of the community, oversight agencies and other local officials to ensure that the continued demolition of this building was carried out in a way that was safe, responsible and, above all, prioritized the concerns of our local residents.

I want to thank the members of the community who participated in these discussions and who expressed their ideas about how to make the demolition of the building as safe as possible.

Our task force produced positive results: new safety protocols were adopted for the demolition to minimize the risks to Downtown residents; a Community Notification Plan was put into place so that residents will be alerted to emergencies in the neighborhood; and those who were most affected by the ongoing work were given a seat at the table when important decisions were made about how the project was moving forward.

I think most would agree that this demolition took far too long and caused far too many problems: from the safety and health concerns raised by falling debris and contaminated air to the disruption of the sidewalks surrounding the site.

But, with the perseverance and dedication that our Downtown community has shown time and again since 9/11, we managed to get the demolition completed and we now look forward to better days for 130 Liberty Street and a bright future for all of Lower Manhattan.
Sheldon Silver
Speaker of the New York State Assembly

The killers among us

To The Editor:
Last month, Sylvie Cachay was murdered in my district. Last week, her ex-boyfriend, Nicholas Brooks, was charged with second-degree murder. She is just one victim in an upward trend of intimate-partner violence; yet membership to an exclusive club and family ties to an award-winning musician made this particular story infiltrate the media. Even stories about the poodle the victim left behind were published.

Each day in the United States, an average of three women are murdered by an intimate partner. Of female murder victims, one-third are killed by an intimate partner and this percentage is on the rise. In New York City, most crimes are committed by someone the victim knows, and rates of murder and rape are both on the rise. Yet victims of intimate-partner violence rarely become more than a statistic as the media fails to cover all but the most sensational of these stories.

All victims of intimate-partner violence were also sisters, friends, co-workers, daughters, mothers and girlfriends, yet not all victims have ties to prestigious places and people. This does not mean they do not warrant our attention or our empathy.

The gruesome reality of intimate-partner violence is that it is pervasive in society — but in order to curb the epidemic, we have to first acknowledge that it exists. We need to continue to shed light on all of these egregious acts, not just the ones with catchy headlines. We need to give voice to all of those who are no longer able to do so for themselves.
Deborah J. Glick
Glick is assemblymember for the 66th District

Letters policy
Downtown Express welcomes letters to The Editor. They must include the writer’s first and last name, a phone number for confirmation purposes only, and any affiliation that relates directly to the letter’s subject matter. Downtown Express reserves the right to edit letters for space, clarity, civility or libel reasons. Letters should be e-mailed to news@DowntownExpress.com or can be mailed to 145 Sixth Ave., N.Y., N.Y. 10013.

 

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