Monday, November 17, 2014

Latinos abandoning de Blasio over public appointments

Chanting, “One-term mayor! One-term mayor!” nearly 100 Latino leaders converged on City Hall Monday to demand that Mayor de Blasio appoint more Hispanics to his administration.
Calling itself the Campaign for Fair Latino Representation, the coalition slammed the mayor for naming Hispanics to just 11 percent of his public appointments, even though they make up 29 percent of the city’s population.
We’re not garbage … so don’t treat us like garbage.
 - Lucky Rivera
“We’re not garbage . . . so don’t treat us like garbage,” said activist Lucky Rivera, of Boricuas for a Positive Image. “If you [don’t] want to be a one-term mayor, you better do the right thing.”
The group blasted the lack of Hispanic policy makers and board members at city agencies and said just 26 of the mayor’s 229 public appointments have been Latino.
They also blasted the NYPD, saying it has only 18 Hispanics among its 166 deputy inspectors, six among its 82 chiefs and three among it 33 executive positions.
“If he doesn’t deal with this now, he’s going to have a real problem with his re-election when it comes to support from the Latino community,” said Angelo Falcon, president of the National Institute for Latino Policy, which conducted the review of appointments.
The mayor was elected last year with the support of 85 percent of Latinos in the general election.
City Hall countered that de Blasio increased the representation of Latinos among agency heads to 14 percent, from 9.3 percent in the Bloomberg administration.
The protesters said Latino representation in the administration has gone from 10.1 to 12.1 percent.
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Boricuas for a Positive Image activist Lucky RiveraPhoto: David McGlynn
“We have been very clear in our intention to build an administration that is representative of all New Yorkers, and we are proud of the diverse team that we have built to date,” said City Hall spokeswoman Carmen Boon.
“There is always more we can do to increase diversity, and we won’t stop until we ensure that progress continues to be made.”
Advocates at Monday’s rally also criticized the mayor’s tardiness to last week’s Flight 587 memorial in Queens. The bulk of the 260 victims on the 2001 flight out of JFK Airport were Dominican.
“Unlike the mayor, we want to take a moment of silence. Unlike the mayor, we make it on time,” Anthony Miranda, chair of the National Latino Officers Association, said before a pause to honor them.
Group members also expressed disappointment with Latino elected officials for not joining the rally. The only elected official who showed was Councilwoman Inez Dickens (D-Harlem), who is black.
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