Share Carroll Gardens
Friday, December 19, 2003
Let's welcome Rose House to the neighborhood! There will be a food drive on Monday, December 22nd at 12 noon at St. Mary's Star of the Sea (467 Court St. near the corner of Luquer). We hope you'll find time during this busy season to show your support.
Sunday, November 23, 2003
Sorry...people keep emailing me! More news:

Sad to report that the "Concerned Citizens of Carroll Gardens" (or Carroll Gardens Concerned Citizens—it keeps changing) have set up a new website. Apparently, Danny Contreras thought that continuing to use his "Our Carroll Gardens site" as their base of operations was hurting business. Worse news is that the new site is once again posting Rose House's address. Since Danny is now providing a link to the new site, some SCAMPers are organizing a boycott of all businesses that advertise on "Our Carroll Gardens". You can visit or e-mail them and let them know what you are doing and why you are doing it (by advertising with Danny they are helping to enable the publication of the address). Tell them the boycott will end when they take their ad off Danny's site,or Danny discontinues the link, or the "Concerned Citizens" stop publicizing Rose House's address.

In the meantime, please be careful. There have been several instances of menacing behavior by shelter opponents. During a recent meeting of the First Place Tri-Block Association, a long time area resident who is not even involved with CG-SCAMP described being menaced at a public meeting at PS 142 for asking an “impertinent question.” In a recent CG-SCAMP e-mail, Howard Graubard described in incident which took place in a court room. Tuhina De O'Connor has described a threatening phone call. As opponents realize they no longer have a legal leg to stand on, it is not inconceivable that such isolated incidents may increase in number. Remember, these are people who think nothing of endangering the lives of women and children by posting the address of a battered women's facility.

I received some good news. The effort by opponents to obtain a Temporary restraining order against the operation of Rose House was unsuccessful. Judge Lawrence Knipl dismissed their motion at the conclusion of their evidence without even hearing from NYAWC or the City (also opposing the motion). Two CG-SCAMP activists had been ready to offer testimony, but were not disappointed by the results. We are told that one of the most interesting moments of the case was when Sal Russo, a member of the bar, testified under oath that one of his neighbors was visited by a man who appeared to be Asian, and asked where the shelter was, because he was looking for his wife; Sal also testified that his house was visited by a person looking for the shelter, although he did not elaborate that person's perceived ethnicity, and the visitor did not elaborate why he was asking. Given the litigious proclivities of Sal and some of his neighbors, we will refrain from further comment.
Monday, October 13, 2003
Howard mentioned this in an e-mail to some of you, but in case anyone missed it: There's a very touching and forceful letter at by an Italian-American woman who is appalled by the tactics of her fellow paesani in the neighborhood.

It's a little confusing to find the letter at the site (link above), but it's so short, I can post it in its entirety here:
    Dear Editor,

    I've been a resident of South Brooklyn for thirty years. In the late 1920s my paternal and maternal grandparents came her with their families, including both my mother and father, from Calabria, Italy. Though my parents raised me on the other side of Brooklyn, as an adult with a young daughter I  chose this neighborhood to raise my family. Here I found all of the heart of an old world commitment to one's neighbors(paesani), which I felt was absent from other parts of our borough. This heart that drew me here was one which instinctively held out a hand to the troubled, protected the defensless, and put up a fight against any bully. It was a heart that acted without thought to the pocket. It was a heart in command of ethical decisions.

    It was a heart that welcomed those chosing to live in peace.

    What I see here now, I am ashamed to acknowledge as the actions of my neighbors, my paesani. How do we look ourselves in the mirror after we have betrayed all that we know is righteous, for the sake of a buck. Disgraziata! E` una vergogna!

    I remain saddened,
    Sandra C.
    Brooklyn, N.Y.

By the way, vergogna means "shame."
Friday, October 10, 2003
There's a new article up about Rose House on Women's ENews. Check it out:

Also, there was on editorial in the Daily News yesterday (10/9/03) by Albor Ruiz.
Both articles seem pretty fair, which is good news for us.
Tuesday, October 07, 2003
Please come! There will be a Community Board Meeting Wednesday, October 8th at 6:30pm at the church at 7th Avenue and Carroll Street in Park Slope. It would be great if we could get a good turnout--we need to show our elected officials how much we care about this issue.
Friday, October 03, 2003
We have received questions about whether we will be present at the opponents' rally at the shelter site on Saturday. Though some of us may go to take note of what's said, we will make no concerted effort to attend. Our presence would only help the opponents by creating a greater fuss in a place that should be quiet. Furthermore, their flyer announcing the rally does not use the address (a great victory for us) and even co-opts a great deal of our own language. We have forced them to discuss the matter on our terms, rather than flail about with wild accusations and paranoia. We expect it to be a small gathering of the die-hard opponents, who, considering the weather forecast, are likely to be drenched in addition to desperate. Even if the more moderate members of their group show up--and I'd like to think that those people would understand that the rally is fundamentally inappropriate--Ashley and Damijan have both found evidence that there is no need to confront them because their tactics are more reasonable and their concerns deserve to be addressed.

For those of us who prefer action, though, I would like to point out an event on Friday the 17th. It's the Park Slope Safe Homes Project's Remembrance Vigil, and it's in remembrance of those Brooklyn residents who have died in the past year because of domestic violence. I spoke to one of the organizers, who was glad to hear about what we're doing and hopes that some of us will be able to make it. (I'll post more details later.) It's certainly appropriate that October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month!
I noticed that Our Carroll Gardens put up a statement by the AWC, sans any form of editorial commentary.  And in addition to no longer publishing Rose House's address on their flyers, they've removed all references to the specific location from their site as well.

While other pages on the site make clear that OCG's position in this matter has not changed, I for one appreciate their showing a willingness to let the other side's voice be heard.  We may reach a mutually agreeable resolution yet.
Tuesday, September 30, 2003
To the list of local elected officials who support leaving the shelter alone (De Blasio, Millman, and Velazquez--see below for their statements) we can now add Borough President Marty Markowitz, who released this statement last night:
"While we understand and respect the community's concerns, we are fully supportive of the efforts by Assemblymember Millman and Councilmember de Blasio to allay those concerns so that this facility can begin protecting a small number of abused women and children that desperately need a safe place to sleep. We can never shy away from our society's responsibility to take care of those suffering from the devastating effects of domestic abuse, including those most vulnerable - the children. And we also must remember that it is imperative, no matter how one feels about the shelter, not to do anything to publicize its location. I'm confident that a compromise will be reached and that the shelter and its neighbors will be able to peacefully co-exist."
I share his confidence that we will soon find a way to integrate the shelter (a.k.a. Rose House) into our community, and am once again proud to have him as Borough President!
I just noticed some (relatively) good news this morning. It seems our neighbors have stopped re-postering the 'stop the shelter' signs on public property. I think they've realized that it's illegal. Also, a few people on Clinton St and 3rd place have blackened or cut out the address number on the signs they have in their windows. These two things seem to make matters a little more civilized. I hope more will follow with removing the address number!

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