The street is lined with highrises. Only one three-story building remains today, a reminder of this downtown Brooklyn block’s 19th-century past. On Thursday, New Yorkers gathered in front of its broken windows to keep it from being demolished. They want instead for 227 Duffield Street, which once served as a sanctuary for southern blacks fleeing slavery, to be preserved as a landmark.
“There has been a long battle to retain this space and turn it into a museum,” said Imani Henry of Equality for Flatbush. “The city has not been respectful of the activists, the family that has been wanting to make sure that this becomes a landmark, that children walking up and down this block can go inside and know that this was a stop on the Underground Railroad, that this was a place of black abolitionist activism.”
Hundreds of bicyclists staged a die-in in Washington Square Park on Tuesday evening, calling attention to a nerve-rattling uptick in traffic fatalities. So far this year, 15 cyclists have been struck and killed by cars on the streets of New York City, whereas there were just 10 such deaths in all of 2018.
The NYC Rent Guidelines Board (RGB) held their third of four public forums at the Jamaica Performing Arts Center on Tuesday, where tenants rallied to prevent price bumps to their rent-stabilized apartments.
“No More Increases,” chanted housing activists with Woodside on the Move at one point during the meeting.
Underneath the roar of the Jackson Heights subway line on Thursday stood Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner. A coalition comprised of immigrants, Black Lives Matter, LGBTQ activists and the formerly incarcerated helped elect Krasner to his post in 2017 and the former civil liberties and criminal defense attorney was on hand to see if the same grassroots model that brought him to office is replicable in Queens.
“I am thrilled to be able to endorse Tiffany Cabán,” Krasner said from the podium, referencing the young public defender who, in her bid to be Queens’ next top prosecutor, is giving the borough’s political machine a run for its money. “Change has been a long time coming in the DA’s office but it is finally here. I want everybody who truly cares about criminal justice reform to register, to plan on it, to get out, to vote and to make sure that everyone they know votes too.”