In this most important political year for New York City, when the offices of Mayor, Comptroller, Borough Presidents and all City Council seats are up for grabs, Local 153 has made some key endorsements. The Democratic primary will be held on June 22, and the general election is on November 2.
Eric Adams for Mayor
Our union has endorsed Eric Adams for Mayor. Currently the Brooklyn Borough President, Eric Adams has spent his entire adult life in public service. After two decades as an officer in the NYC Transit Police and then NYPD, Adams retired with the rank of captain. He represented New York State’s 20th Senate District from 2006 to 2013 before being elected Brooklyn Borough President in 2013. He was re-elected to that position in 2017.
Adams was one of the 24 state senators to vote in favor of marriage equality in New York State until it was passed in 2011. Adams was a strong opponent of the NYPD's "stop and frisk" policy and served as co-chair of New York State Legislators Against Illegal Guns.
In his role as Brooklyn Borough President, Adams has been active in making it easier to seek appointments to each of the 18 community boards in Brooklyn. He has used his right as B.P. to submit Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP) recommendations to propose additional permanently affordable housing units in the rezoning of East New York. He has proposed other initiatives to create jobs in the community. He has urged New York to build affordable housing on city-owned properties, over railways and on space now used for parking lots. He created the Faith-Based Property Development Initiative to support religious institutions that want to develop property for the benefit of the community, such as affordable housing and other projects.
Adams favors responsible hotel development. He supports expanding special permits city-wide and he recently endorsed plans to convert bad hotels in the outer boroughs into affordable housing, issues of extreme importance to our brothers and sisters in the Hotel Trades Council (HTC). He strongly supports efforts to regulate companies like Airbnb in order to stop the spread of illegal hotels, and he has committed to fund the enforcement of those laws. These positions are also vital to HTC, of which Local 153 has more than 1,500 members.
Adams supports providing childcare to every parent who can’t afford it, increasing job-training programs and prioritizing investments in poorly performing school districts. He plans to extend the reduced fare metro card, create more bus routes and invest in electric buses.
In his career in public service Adams has repeatedly demonstrated unqualified support for working men and women and the unions that represent them. Considering his track record and his position on issues of importance to Local 153, he clearly deserves our union’s support.
Local 153 endorses Eric Adams for Mayor of New York and we urge our members to help support his candidacy.
Corey Johnson for Comptroller
Currently Speaker of the New York City Council, Corey Johnson has consistently demonstrated his support for labor unions and their members. He was first elected to the City Council in 2013 and has been a leading advocate for criminal justice reform, LGBT rights, and women’s issues since then.
In an innovative and important step to improve the health of the children of New York City, Johnson introduced legislation that required the NYC Department of Education to regularly report on student health services in public schools, thus ensuring that such services are adequately serving students. The bill became law in 2016.
A consistent advocate for renters’ rights, Corey Johnson was the prime sponsor of legislation declaring a housing shortage emergency in 2015. This forced rent stabilization laws to be extended.
In response to a growing trend of hotel rooms being converted into luxury condominiums, Johnson introduced legislation to limit the number of condo conversions hotel owners can make. The legislation's goal was to protect jobs in the hotel industry that employs more than 1,500 Local 153 members. The bill became law in 2016.
As City Council Speaker Johnson has repeatedly displayed strict concern for NYC budget issues, a factor that merits strong consideration for his candidacy for Comptroller. He takes public service quite seriously, as evidenced by his arrest in Albany for joining sit-ins to force Republican State Senators to vote for laws helping renters. He has wide support from other labor unions besides ours, and he has courageously and publicly discussed his battle with depression, exhibiting a candor that is still too rare among public officials. Local 153 is proud to endorse his candidacy for New York City Comptroller.
Mark Levine for Manhattan Borough President
New York City Council member Mark Levine represents the 7th District in Northern Manhattan. He has been very supportive of FCT members who lost the use of Montefiore services through their United Health Care coverage. He serves as Chairperson of the City Council’s Committee on Health and as a member of the Progressive Caucus. He is a leader on many issues including housing, education, economic justice, transportation, and environmentalism.
As a member of the City Council Mark Levine has been a powerful advocate for addressing inequality in New York City. As an example, he successfully pushed for greater equity for parks in New York’s low- and moderate-income neighborhoods when he was the Council’s Parks Committee Chairperson in the 2014-2017 session. He is also a leading voice on affordable housing issues, including the fight to get legal representation for all tenants in housing court.
Mark Levine is a former teacher, bilingually instructing students in math and science in the South Bronx. He founded the Neighborhood Trust Federal Credit Union, and before serving on the City Council he was Executive Director of Teach For America-New York, Executive Director of the Center for After-School Excellence at TASC, and Chairperson of the Traffic and Transportation Committee on Manhattan Community Board 12.
It is obvious that Mark Levine would bring a wealth of community and legislative experience to the office of Manhattan Borough President. Local 153 enthusiastically endorses his candidacy for that position and we urge members to vote for him, Corey Johnson, and Eric Adams in the Democratic primary election on June 22.