Demand that the quality of life be respected for a working class immigrant neighborhood in Brooklyn, NY. Tell elected officials to hold the bar owner accountable for over 200 311 complaints & anti-LGBTQ harassment of residents.
Why do the rights of the landlord of 1233 Flatbush Ave & owner of the Forkhold Bar and Restaurant surpass those of an entire community?
Why is an 10pm cut-off for use of outdoor patios by bars located in more affluent neighborhoods in our area upheld, while the Forkhold's patio can stay crowded and open until 4am during the work week?
What is being done about the campaign of anti-LGBTQ harassment orchestrated by the Forkhold bar staff against community residents?
Our Demands to Elected Officials are simple:
1. We want the Forkhold bar to operate within it's licenses as a "bar and restaurant" and NOT as a nightclub.
2. We want the music played at the Forkhold to be contained within it's 4 walls, and NOT amplified throughout the neighborhood, especially after 10pm.
3. We want the anti-LGBTQ/ sexist harassment and threats of violence by the Forkhold bar staff and patrons towards residents who speak out against their business practices to end immediately!
History of Quality of Life Violations:
Since July 2010, The Forkhold Bar and Restaurant has operated as “night club/dancehall” 7 days a week with business hours ranging 12pm - as late as 6am. This includes use of their outdoor patio that even contained a swimming pool during the summer of 2012. Year round especially on weekday nights, residents are disturbed by loud music, loud patrons, and multiple dominoes games up until 4am, as well as violent incidents.
In general, the bar is opened 7 days a week, with two advertised karaoke nights (Mondays and Wednesdays). The rest of the week there are openly advertised deejayed events where the admission charged is as high as $15-$20. https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150170372594960&set=a.400025164959.60194.251022669959&type=1&theater
For example On Sat, August 11th 2012, The Forkhold advertised a deejayed "pool party" starting at 4pm where patrons would be charged $15 admission before 6pm, $20 afterwards with no end time advertised on the poster. http://www.dotsnyc.com/2012/06/beach-party-at-fork-hold-lounge-
In general the noise from the Forkhold bar is excessive and unbearable. For example during the karaoke nights the microphone is turned up so high that residents can actually hear what is being sung from within our homes. Another example is that on Sunday August 5th, at approximately 5pm, the Forkhold amplified music into the entire block, by setting up speakers on tripods outside on it's backyard patio. This deejayed event was private birthday party with over 50 people in attendance.
The Forkhold also allows it's patrons to play dominoes games, on it's outdoor patio, where the playing pieces are slammed down loudly onto glass or wooden tables. These domino games as well as access to the bar patio can begin as early as 12noon and allowed by the bar management to continue until 4am on both weekdays and weekends.
There has been several occasions where the both music and loud patrons have been allowed to continue pass 4am especially on the weekends . In fact on holiday weekends such as Memorial and Labor Day, The Forkhold has continued to play music and have patrons use outside patio between the hours of 4:00am - 8am.
To our knowledge the Forkhold has licenses to serve food and alcohol but does NOT have a cabaret license to operate as a nightclub. There are over 200 311 calls that have been made and several court summons that have issued to the Forkhold bar. To our knowledge there has never been a formal meeting or request to meet by any elected officials with the landlord and bar owner Mr. Wayland Charles.
Another very serious problem is that the Forkhold owner and management have refused on several occasions to meet with community residents and/or change their business practices. In particular, the bar owner has even refused to post any signage asking it patrons to respect the neighborhood and has no cut-off time for use of it's backyard patio even from Sunday to Thursday nights. Instead the management of the bar has launched a campaign of daily harassment against both women and LGBTQ residents who have organized within our neighborhood to hold them accountable.
For the last two years several unidentified patrons and bar staff members yelled anti-LGBTQ slurs or have threatened violence against residents who have been vocal against their business practices as they entered or left their homes. For example, on Thursday, Aug 12th, 2012, a resident was publicly threathened in front of several witnesses with "being shot in my head" for being both "gay" and "calling the police" on the bar by a male possibly patron or staff member of the Forkhold bar.
Ways you can help & support :
All we have ever asked is for Mr. Wayland Charles, who is the both the bar owner and landlord of 1233 Flatbush Ave, to please be respectful of our residential neighborhood and operate his establishment as “a bar and restaurant” under the legal confines of his liquor license and not as a “nightclub”.
With that said:
1. We are asking people to please sign and forward this petition. We especially need the support of other Brooklyn residents, people living in the Flatbush area, residents of Caribbean heritage as well as LGBTQ people. All and anyone is welcome to sign the petition. THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT.
2. Please Contact Shawn Campbell, District Manager of Community Board 14 Phone: 718-859-6357 Fax: 718-421-6077 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Councilperson Jummane Williams' office at JWilliams@council.nyc.gov ;718-629-2900
and NY State Senator Kevin Parker 1300 Flatbush Avenue Brooklyn, NY 11210 Phone:email@example.com
•Why has the quality of life issues at the Forkhold bar been allowed to continue for 2 years and what is their office doing to change things?
•Ask them why is it that Forkhold's outdoor patio is allowed to stay open until 4am and later in this immigrant neighborhood when other nearby bars in more affluent areas in their district close by 11p on weeknights and 12p on the weekend?
• Let them know you are aware and concern that their have been violent threats made & constant harassment of LGBTQ residents and women in the neighborhood who have confronted the bar owner. Ask them what is their stance on anti-LGBTQ violence and have they done to ensure the safety and well being of residents of the neighborhood?
•Tell them that you will be calling back for updates and that you want to see that the noise and violence issues are resolved as soon as possible.