Mayor Bill de Blasio announces plan to protect New York City tenants

13 January, 2019, 01:58 | Author: Lillian Steele
  • Healthcare guaranteed for all New Yorkers, says Bill de Blasio

Mayor Bill de Blasio called on the City Council Wednesday to pass a bill that would grant two weeks of paid time off a year for workers at businesses with five or more employees. Some Americans want to see the health initiative replicated nationwide.

The plan won an endorsement from the Real Estate Board of NY, whose membership does not tend to include property owners on the "worst landlords" list.

Ironically, in one of her final acts as public advocate, new state Attorney General Letitia James declared the de Blasio-controlled New York City Housing Authority the worst landlord of 2018. "Today we celebrate our city's relentless commitment to accessible, high-quality health care".

The mayor added that other major nations recognize the need for paid personal time, and said New York City will lead the way in the U.S. NYC Care will launch in summer 2019 and will roll out geographically, starting in the Bronx.

In New York, more than 500,000 workers lack paid leave benefits, he said in a statement, including 200,000 who work in the restaurant and hospitality industries.

Healthcare guaranteed for all New Yorkers, says Bill de Blasio

The idea took inspiration from San Francisco's version of universal health care, Healthy San Francisco, enacted in 2007.

Providers ranging from primary doctors to pediatricians and obstetricians will be from the NYC Health + Hospitals system. Part-time workers would fall under a mandate allowing them to accrue paid time off at a guaranteed minimum rate.

Currently, no USA city or state, or the federal government, requires firms to offer paid leave - making the U.S. unique among developed countries.

Both stories being leaked first to national press, as opposed to local papers, had local journalists grumbling about - if not outright offended by - yet another display of the mayor's disdain for local NYC media, revealed explicitly a year ago in a series of emails released on court order. Those land deals often (but not always) come with public subsidies.

"When a landlord tries to push out a tenant by making their home unlivable, a team of inspectors and law enforcement will be on the ground to stop it in time", said de Blasio in his address. "Well-connected developers should not be getting sweetheart deals on the taxpayers' dime".

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