October 6, 2021 // 0 Comments

BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, an ideal time to take action on your health. Here’s how Ariel took charge of hers: Ariel was a healthy, 38-year-old mother of two when she was diagnosed with stage II breast cancer. “We were all so surprised because I have no family history of breast cancer or cancer. It really rocked our world.” At Ariel’s yearly OB/GYN appointment, her doctor did a breast exam. He felt a little lump underneath her armpit and under her breast. The doctor sent her for a mammogram, which showed that her lymph nodes were enlarged. As a precaution, the doctor recommended a follow-up sonogram. “I went back, and thank goodness I did, because they found tiny signs of breast cancer. I jumped into treatment [at Memorial Sloan Kettering] relatively quickly.” Cancer screenings and preventive care visits are essential to good [More...]


September 15, 2021 // 0 Comments

The DC 37 Municipal Employees Legal Services (MELS), the Building Service 32BJ Legal Services Fund,  CUNY’s Citizenship Now! Program and the Emerald Isle Immigration Center (EIIC) are jointly presenting a citizenship seminar on Wednesday Sept. 22 at 6 pm on Zoom. Learn how to become a U.S. citizen and the benefits of citizenship. To join the Benefits of Becoming a U.S. Citizen Seminar, register [More...]


September 7, 2021 // 0 Comments

IMPACT of 9/11 TOXINS 20 YEARS LATER and the FEDERAL RESPONSE THURSDAY, SEPT. 9, 9:30 am to 12 pm and 2 to 3:30 pm FRIDAY, SEPT. 10, 9:30 am to 1 pm Join this live-stream, two-day event from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. This program will bring together health professionals, legal experts, elected officials, as well as responders and 9/11 survivors. Thursday’s presentation will highlight the health effects of the toxins at the WTC, the Pentagon, and the Shanksville crash site and the lifesaving medical monitoring and treatment that responders and survivors receive through the WTC Health Program Clinical Centers of Excellence and National Provider Services that help more than 110,000 responders and survivors in every state across the country. Friday’s program will discuss efforts to pass the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act and reauthorize the WTC [More...]


August 24, 2021 // 0 Comments

MELS NEW YORK EVICTION MORATORIUM The US Supreme Court issued an injunction suspending New York’s Eviction Moratorium. This means that tenants who filed a hardship declaration are no longer protected and landlords can now ask the court for the necessary permission needed to evict. This does not mean that tenants who owe rent or are facing an eviction case should give up and move out. There are still many steps landlords must take to proceed with an eviction, and there are still many ways tenants can defend their homes. MELS can help. Call our Screening Unit at (212) 815-1111 for advice and legal representation. ### EMERGENCY RENTAL ASSISTANCE PROGRAM (ERAP) New York State’s Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance is accepting applications to help tenants pay rent arrears. The Emergency Rental Assistance Program can provide up to 15 months of rent and up to 12 months of gas [More...]

MELS: Eviction Moratorium Update

August 11, 2021 // 0 Comments

In May 2021, Governor Cuomo signed a bill continuing the eviction moratorium to August 31, 2021.  Any tenant who has not served their landlord with a New York State Hardship Declaration form or filed the form in Housing Court can do so at any time before August 31, 2021 to secure coverage under the Act. On August 3, 2021, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) issued an eviction moratorium that remains in effect for two months, until October 3, 2021. The CDC issued the order temporarily halting evictions in counties with heightened levels of community transmission to respond to recent unexpected developments in the trajectory of the COVID-19 pandemic, including the rise of the Delta variant. All five counties of New York City are covered by the CDC order.   Any tenant may serve their landlord a completed CDC Hardship Declaration form and file it with [More...]


August 10, 2021 // 0 Comments

EARLY DETECTION SAVES LIVES “Post-pandemic, it is important to prioritize your health and wellbeing. Be proactive. A lot of things can be caught early.”   – MSK Cancer Survivor DC 37 has partnered with Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK) to help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening and prevention. Screenings help detect cancer early when it’s easier to treat. Take MSK’s short assessment here to get personalized screening recommendations and tips on how to lower your risk for cancer. In less than 5 minutes, you can take the first step toward taking charge of your health. Note:  On July 27, MSK discovered a system glitch where a few users did not receive their results. MSK immediately resolved the issue and sends their sincere apologies to those affected. If you did not receive your results, please retake the test to get your results. — DC 37 [More...]

PSU Use Rises as Union Responds to Members’ Needs

August 3, 2021 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS When a DC 37 member lost multiple family members and coworkers to COVID-19, she was deeply affected by their sudden deaths. She developed paralyzing anxiety and could not leave her home for fear of contracting the coronavirus. Another member struggled with substance misuse that put his job at risk, even as he helped fellow New Yorkers in crisis. These two DC 37 members—and hundreds more—received help and coping techniques from DC 37’s Personal Services Unit. “During the pandemic, there has been an enormous amount of anxiety, grief, and depression among our members, especially those who are essential workers,” said Stephanie Kleinberg, PSU Director. “People are understandably grieving the loss of family members, friends, and coworkers to COVID. Also, the workplace is a community that people miss when working from home.” In 2020, the coronavirus outbreak [More...]

COVID-19 Cases Expose Workers’ Comp Failures

June 20, 2021 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS Calling for immediate policy changes to fix the broken New York State Workers’ Compensation system, a coalition of unions joined the New York Committee on Occupational Safety and Health (NYCOSH) and attorney Robert E. Grey on April 27, to say the Workers’ Compensation system has failed some 250,000 workers who got sick on the job from COVID-19.  The group introduced policy changes and new state legislation (S.1241 and S.1721) that would make Workers’ Comp more accessible to workers sickened by coronavirus, regardless of language or immigration status. At the virtual press conference, Sen. Jessica Ramos, Chair of the state Labor Committee, said the legislation is an “effort to get more workers just relief.” The report authored by Grey revealed that of the 250,000 workers with symptomatic COVID-19, less than 10%, or just 21,000 workers, applied for [More...]

OCB Sides with Local 1505 in IPP Win

June 9, 2021 // 0 Comments

By DIANE S. WILLIAMS An impartial Board of Collective Bargaining determined that the City and the Parks Department Advocate’s Office violated the New York State collective bargaining law when it tried to dictate to Local 1505 and the union who could represent members. The Office of Collective Bargaining also shot down management’s attempt to modify the procedure for scheduling investigatory interviews. It dismissed two other charges. “I have had issues with the Advocate’s Office ever since I became president in 2008,” said Local 1505 President Dilcy Benn, who filed the improper practice petition in 2018. “President Benn came to the DC 37 Legal Department with clear evidence of mistreatment by the Parks Advocate’s Office. Put simply, Local 1505 members, facing disciplinary charges or pre-disciplinary investigations, were being subject to treatment different than other Parks [More...]


May 25, 2021 // 0 Comments

APPLY FOR SECTION 8 RENT SUBSIDY NOW Waitlist Now Open Thru May 28, 2021 The Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Program, commonly known as Section 8, is a federal program designed to provide rental assistance to low-income families, the elderly, and the disabled to afford decent, safe, and sanitary housing in the private market. The New York State Division of Homes and Community Renewal (DHCR) opened the Section 8 waiting list on May 17 thru May 28, 11:59 PM. Applications will not be accepted outside of this period.  For information visit: There is no cost to submit an application. DHCR will select 15,000 households for the waitlist through a lottery. Applying does not guarantee a voucher. Applicants must be 18 or older. The income limits are set annually by HUD: Only on-line [More...]