Decision Maker

Linda Rosenthal

  • NY067
  • State Representative

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Petitioning New York State Senate

Sign this petition. Protect 43,000 kids from sexual abuse

Do you worry about sex offenders teaching your children? Or coaching them? Or working in a daycare? Most people think sex offender registries and convictions protect their kids The problem is that 9 out of 10 sex offenders never get convicted, and never appear on sex abuse registries. Our criminal justice system fails victims, and statutes of limitation (SOL) on the child sex abuse keep most victims from pressing charges shortly after their 18th birthday. Researchers now know it takes victims, on average, 21 years to disclose their abuse. New York’s SOL on child sexual abuse bars most victims from the court on their 23rd birthday, which ensures most sex offenders stay off registries and around kids. The Child Victims Act lengthens New York’s SOL for this crime and gives older victims a chance to press charges in civil court. It’s a way to identify the predators who are lurking around children. Please, sign this petition and protect children from sexual abuse.

Stop Abuse Campaign
86,139 supporters
Petitioning Carl Heastie, Catherine Nolan, Carmen Arroyo, Jake Ashby, Michael Benedetto, Anthony Brindisi, Steve Englebright, Earlene Hooper, Alicia Hyndman, Ellen Jaffee, Ron Kim, Peter Lawrence, Barbara Lift...

Keep SHSAT as the sole specialized high school admissions criterion

Background: The mayor and several local politicians have advocated for changes to the admissions criteria for eight specialized high schools in New York City.  Currently, the Specialized High School Admissions Test (SHSAT) has been the sole criteria for admission to these elite schools; and because of their scores on this test, thousands of underserved minority Asian students have been able to obtain a quality education that they wouldn’t have otherwise. Politicians are proposing to scrap the SHSAT in order to increase the number of Black and Latino students in these specialized high schools.  Despite 10,000 signatures on a petition to preserve the SHSAT, new Bills (Assembly Bill A10427; Senate Bill S8503) to change the admission requirements away from the SHSAT have once again been proposed.   Listed in the reasoning for changing the admissions requirements is a claim that the SHSAT is an unfair measure of achievement because it favors only those who can afford test preparation, and thus limits the opportunity for a high-quality education for those from disadvantaged socioeconomic backgrounds. This claim, however, is unsubstantiated because between 34% to 61% of the current student body in these specialized high schools are eligible for free lunch ($35K annual income for a family of four) and more than three-quarters of the student body at Stuyvesant (one of the specialized schools) are either first- or second-generation immigrants where English isn’t their first language.  Several politicians argue even the best college in the nation use multiple criteria for admissions.  However, the median household income for Harvard undergrads is $168K and for Brown undergrads is $204K.  Is that the kind of socioeconomic diversity we are looking for in New York City’s public high schools? The under representation of Black and Latino students in specialized high schools is unacceptable, however, changing the admission requirements away from the SHSAT is not the solution. Changing the SHSAT will only hurt low-income families as a whole and disadvantage the poorest ethnic group in New York city.  Thus, we urge Mayor Bill de Blasio, Speaker of the New York State Assembly Carl Heastie and members of the New York State Assembly Education Committee (chaired by Catherine Nolan) to keep the SHSAT as the sole admission criterion for these hard-working, intelligent students who have worked hard for admission into these schools.  Taking away education opportunities from one disadvantaged minority group to serve another minority group is not the solution!

22,773 supporters
Petitioning Linda Rosenthal

We Support New York's Anti-Declaw Bills A595 (Rosenthal) and S3376 (Griffo)

Thank you, New York Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal and Senator Joseph Griffo for introducing legislation that would prohibit onychectomy (or declawing) and tendonectomy in New York state. We support your New York Anti-Declaw Bills A595 and S3376, which would forbid declawing in the state of New York and provides for a civil penalty of up to $1,000 for violations of the law. Declawing is amputation, whether performed by scalpel, clippers, or laser. We believe there is never a reason to declaw for non-therapeutic reasons (that is, unless surgery were necessary to treat animals' medical conditions). Declawing does not keep cats in homes, a fact acknowledged by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA).  Declawing is illegal or considered unethical by the veterinary profession in most of the world.  Eight cities in California - Los Angeles, San Francisco, West Hollywood, Burbank, Santa Monica, Berkeley, Beverly Hills, and Culver City - plus the City and County of Denver, Colorado, have enacted declaw bans.  Statistics from those cities indicate that the relinquishment of cats to shelters in those cities, in the years since the bans were enacted, has not increased - in fact, the number of cats dumped in shelters has DECREASED consistently in the many years since the laws went into effect. There is no reason to declaw cats to protect human health. The NIH, CDC, US Public Health Service, the Infectious Diseases Society of America, and the Canadian Medical Association, all have specifically stated that the declawing is "not advised," even for the animals of persons who are severely immunocompromised, including those with HIV. This opinion is echoed in statements on declawing published by the AAHA and the American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP). Declaw-type procedures to treat tumor, infection, disease, or injury would be allowed to benefit the health of the cat. Thank you, Assemblymember Rosenthal and Senator Griffo. We hope your bills will be successful and will be models for humane legislation in other states. These bills have been re-introduced by the authors. The previous bill numbers in earlier sessions were A1297 and S5084.

The Paw Project
9,309 supporters
Petitioning Marc Butler, Fred Thiele, Anthony Palumbo, Steve Englebright, Philip Ramos, Andrew Garbarino, Michael Fitzpatrick, Christine Pellegrino, Kimberly Jean-Pierre, Andrew Raia, Andrew Cuomo, Charles Lav...

Protect Sex-Trafficked Children From Being Further Victimized By The NYS Courts

Written by Angel Warner on behalf of UAlbany SSTEP Sanctuary For Families has brought it to our group’s attention that they are pushing for a new law to be signed, New York State Assembly Bill A6823-b. This law specifies that the trafficking of a child is a class B felony, and would protect child victims of sex trafficking from having to testify and provide details of the events and activities that they were forced to engage in. Under the current anti-trafficking law in New York State, prosecutors must prove that the child was coerced into participating in these sexual activities, even though under New York State law children are legally unable to consent. The requirement for child victims to testify against their traffickers and abusers is often re-traumatizing. Changing the coercion proof requirement will enable prosecutors to create a stronger case without subjecting the survivor to further distress. Take a moment to think about the following: this could be your child, your cousin, the child next door, or in the school down the street. New York State Law must acknowledge that the sex trafficking of children happens here, children who are subjected to rape, abuse and related forms of violence. We must take a stand and hold traffickers accountable through this legislation. New York is one of three states that does not align with Federal Law regarding coercion and the criminalization of child sex trafficking. Through these changes in legislation, we give child victims the opportunity to heal from their experiences in their own time as they, and those who care about them, see fit. We must take a survivor-centered approach. We demand New York State lawmakers to pass the New York State Assembly Bill A6823-b. We plead that these children no longer have to give such a testimony. We ask New York State residents to plead with their representatives, demand that they support this bill. Please, join us in this fight.

UAlbany Students Against Human Trafficking
5,866 supporters
Petitioning Gale Brewer (Manhattan Borough President)

Save Theodore Roosevelt Park

Theodore Roosevelt Park is an integral part of the Upper West Side neighborhood that surrounds the American Museum of Natural History. The Park is populated with children playing, people reading, neighbors conversing and residents exercising and commuting.  Its mature trees and lush gardens provide a sanctuary from the busy streets.  The museum proposes to expand its footprint into the West 79th Street section of the Park, removing trees, plantings and an important gathering spot for the neighborhood.  The lush Park would become a giant building! Save our Park!  Once it is gone,we will NEVER get it back!

Defenders of Teddy Roosevelt Park -
4,024 supporters
Petitioning Scott Stringer

Michael Bloomberg, Dennis Walcott, Scott Stringer, Gale Brewer: Stop the redevelopment plans for the Museum Magnet School/P.S.191

Building a high-rise will negatively affect the lives of the community residents, particularly in the Amsterdam Houses, as well as negatively affect the Museum Magnet School students and staff. We are strongly opposed to this development plan because we believe it will negatively affect the quality and cohesiveness of instruction at the Museum Magnet School, and will displace our school children. We are dismayed that there has been a lack of effort on the part of the DOE and the ECF to allow the community to be involved and educated in this process.

Museum Magnet School/P.S.191
1,005 supporters
Petitioning European Parliament, Council of the European Union, Bundesrat, Sahra Wagenknecht (LINKE), Linda Rosenthal, European Commission, Human Rights Campaign, Bernard Sanders, Hillary Clinton, Christian Li...

Rainbow for Bosnia & Herzegovina

Rainbow for Bosnia & Herzegovina. Liebe Freundinnen und Freunde, ich als Vater, Künstler, Sozialarbeiter und politischer Aktivist möchte euch bitten, diese Petition zu unterstützen und zu unterschreiben. Ziel der Petition ist es, von Deutschland (und darüber hinaus) aus, eine Politik des gesunden Menschenverstandes in Bosnien und Herzegowina zu unterstützen. Die bosnisch-herzegowinische Gesellschaft verdient es, über die dunklen Wolken gescheiterter Politik und Verbrechen aus der Vergangenheit hinauszuwachsen. Ich bitte euch, diese Petition zu unterstützen, nicht nur im Interesse der Gesellschaft in Bosnien und Herzegowina und ihrer Hoffnung auf ein besseres Leben, sondern weil das auch im Sinne einer demokratischen, multikulturellen, sozialen Zukunft Europas ist. Für eine EU, die auf Rechtsstaatlichkeit, Schutz von Minderheiten, Menschenrechten und der Kultur des Antifaschismus aufbaut! Seit mehr als einem Vierteljahrhundert ist die europäische multikulturelle Gesellschaft in Südosteuropa im Gefahr. Die Regierungen der Nachfolgestaaten des ehemaligen Jugoslawien, geführt durch nationalistische und populistische Politik, zettelten einen Krieg an, der mehr als 100.000 Menschenleben forderte, dabei eine Politik der ethnischen Säuberungen, Kriegsverbrechens, Vergewaltigungen und Völkermordes verfolgen. Das Friedensabkommen, das dem Krieg in Bosnien und Herzegowina im Jahr 1995 mit Hilfe der EU und den USA eine Ende setzte, verlängert die Qual von Bosnien und Herzegowina, denn er steht im Widerspruch zu den Menschenrechtskonventionen und schafft korrupte politische Systeme und Regierungen, die organisierte Kriminalität unterstützen. Das Friedensabkommen von Dayton schaffte im 21. Jahrhundert in Europa politische Systeme, die auf religiöser und nationaler Trennung basieren. Die gleichen politischen Systeme verherrlichen verurteilte Kriegsverbrecher, unterstützen und schaffen Relativierung der nazistischen und faschistischen Politik und der Verbrechen des Zweiten Weltkriegs. Können wir mit einer solchen Politik in der Nachbarstaaten der EU im 21. Jahrhundert leben? Müssen wir auf den Moment warten, in dem an unsere Tür geklopft wird? Verstecken wir uns und werden alle leiser, während die Regeln der Dummheit herrschen? Nein, ich kann nicht still sein und so erhebe ich meine Stimme, und tue es auch Du für Deine Zukunft. Ein befreundeter Musiker aus USA nannte seine Band "Bosnian Rainbows". Ich fragte ihn einmal: „Warum dieser Name, Du warst nie in Bosnien, warum?“ Und er antwortete: „In den neunziger Jahren, in den unglücklichen Momenten, tröstete mich meine Mutter oft mit dem Satz: Siehst du Sohn, selbst in Bosnien kommt nach dem Regen ein Regenbogen." Lasst uns dem Regenbogen helfen, sich über Bosnien zu entfalten!  

Asmir Šabić
256 supporters
Petitioning New York Governor

Replace Property Tax with Ground Rent

Governor Cuomo’s property tax cap sets the cap at the rate of inflation or 2%, whichever is less; prohibits any property tax levy above the cap unless endorsed by both by the local governing board and a 60% electoral majority, and provides only limited exceptions such as extraordinary legal or capital expenditures. Whether it is a tax cap or a circuit-breaker that several “progressive” organizations like the unions are proposing, neither is a sound policy. What makes sense to those who understand land economics is to shift the tax off improvements and onto land.  This would tend to lower the tax for most homeowners and shift the burden to underused parcels (e.g., vacant lots, derelict buildings, and land containing unexploited natural resources).  For those homeowners who do own property and are hard-pressed to pay, there is another option, called deferral, wherein the Ground Rent (aka: Land Value Tax) would only be collected upon sale of the property.  Arbitrarily capping the property tax will be a disaster equal to that of proposition 13 in California, which single-handedly brought down the most prosperous state, while providing taxless windfalls for large landholders like the oil & gas industry.  Furthermore, a cap on taxes forces up prices, and promotes sprawl while taking away funding for education.  Ideally, we should only pay a Land Value Tax, and no tax on buildings or other improvements.  For more information, please see and Our proposal is to eliminate taxes on all productive activity, charge 8%/year on assessed values of Land instead.  Then, the state will free up underused land (22 square miles in NYC alone!) for productive purposes, end the land speculation that is responsible for the current economic crisis, and produce more affordable housing.  This revenue-neutral proposal will attract new businesses and prevent flight of existing businesses. On behalf of all New Yorkers and not just the special Land-holding speculators, please enact a Land Value Tax, and repeal the property tax cap.  

Scott Baker
191 supporters
Michael Bloomberg, Dennis Walcott, Scott Stringer, Gale Brewer: Stop the redevelopment plans for the Museum Magnet School/P.S.191

Dear Constituent: Thank you for contacting me to express your opposition to redevelopment of P.S. 191, the Museum Magnet School. I share your concerns about the impacts of the proposed development on the school and the surrounding community and the decision by the New York City Department of Education (DOE) to develop this plan in secret. It has been more than three months since the DOE closed the Request for Expressions of Interest for development at P.S. 191, P.S. 199 and the School of Cooperative Technology on the Upper East Side, and yet the DOE has still not given any indication of how or whether it will solicit and incorporate community feedback into its decision process. I have written two letters to Chancellor Dennis Walcott to express my strong opposition to the DOE’s lack of public process or consideration of parent and community feedback, and to demand answers detailed answers to questions about the proposed development. I am still awaiting a reply to these letters, which are included below. As many of you know, I also worked with P.S. 191 and the Amsterdam Houses Residents Association to organize a meeting of members of both communities to discuss the proposed development, and I continue to work with this coalition. I have also introduced legislation to ensure that the DOE does not give away public land to developers to create luxury housing without the public having an instrumental role in all decisions. I am inspired by your advocacy and am proud to stand with you. Signing this petition, however, is only the first step, and I will continue to work with you to make sure that your voice is heard by the DOE. If you are interested in additional steps you can take or if you have questions about this or any other issue, please do not hesitate to contact me at (212) 873-6368 or Thank you again for contacting my office. Sincerely, Linda B. Rosenthal Member of Assembly – 67 AD ------------------------------------ March 5, 2013 Dennis Walcott Chancellor New York City Department of Education 52 Chambers Street New York, NY 10007 Dear Chancellor Walcott: I am writing regarding proposed development in my district in Manhattan at P.S. 199 and P.S. 191. Like many parents and neighbors, I was outraged when I learned that the New York City Department of Education (DOE) began looking for developers to potentially demolish and build on the sites of Manhattan's P.S. 199 and/or P.S. 191 without first consulting the community. Only after a parent found a Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) for developers in a November 2012 issue of Crain’s did DOE even acknowledge it was considering development. DOE and the New York City Educational Construction Fund (ECF) not only failed to notify any stakeholders before publishing the RFEI, but then waited nearly three months after its publication to present the potential development to the Parents Associations of the schools and to the Community Education Council (CEC). Countless numbers of constituents have contacted me since learning about the proposed development with serious concerns about the strain that runaway development has already placed on City infrastructure, the impacts of ongoing construction near both schools on neighbors’ quality of life and many questions about plans for the displaced students' education. It is unfortunate, although not shocking, that DOE and ECF decided not to solicit input before putting forward a proposal in the RFEI which includes 420-foot tall buildings in all versions of the potential development at either site. These residential towers will only add to the ever-growing demand for school seats even as DOE says it will expand the schools. By attempting to hide its plans from the community and waiting so long to present the proposed development, the DOE has created an antagonistic process and deceitful atmosphere from the start. While ECF’s Executive Director, Jamie Smarr, expressed DOE and ECF’s intention to pursue a special permit through the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP) if a developer is chosen, there was no commitment to a similar public process if DOE opts to build within what the zoning for the buildings allows. This would essentially mean that the only way for the community to have an opportunity to express its concerns through a public process would be if DOE and ECF decide to obtain a zoning waiver to build a larger building, even though one of the primary concerns of my constituents is the impact of the proposed development, which is only exacerbated the larger it gets. From the DOE to the New York City Housing Authority, there has been a disturbing trend of putting public land up for grabs by private developers without discerning if this is in the best interest of the community. A presentation to the CEC is a good start, even if it was by someone who left his position with ECF the same week, but DOE must commit not only to a public process whether the special permit or the as-of-right scheme is chosen, but also to ensuring that no development will move forward until the concerns of the parents and of the community at large have been addressed. I strongly urge DOE to be far more open and transparent about this process than it has been in the past, and I will vigilantly work to ensure that any final proposal is fully inclusive of community needs. Thank you for your attention to this matter. Sincerely, Linda B. Rosenthal Member of Assembly – 67 AD ----------------- April 23, 2013 Dennis Walcott Chancellor New York City Department of Education 52 Chambers Street New York, NY 10007 Lorraine Grillo President & Chief Executive Officer New York City School Construction Authority 30-30 Thompson Avenue Long Island City, NY 11101 Jennifer Maldonado Executive Director New York City Educational Construction Fund 30-30 Thompson Avenue, 4th Floor Long Island City, NY 11101 Dear Chancellor Walcott, Ms. Grillo and Ms. Maldonado: I am writing once again regarding the potential demolition and redevelopment of P.S. 199 and/or P.S. 191 in my district in Manhattan. As you are well aware, I, along with other area elected officials, parents and concerned residents have written to you previously expressing deep concern with the proposed development and with the New York City Department of Education’s (DOE) secretive approach to the entire process. After the Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) was discovered by a parent—rather than publicly announced by the DOE—the first step should have been the creation of an open and public process so that community concerns could not only be heard, but incorporated into any DOE plans. The community has expressed alarm at the proposed development plans, and the paucity of details from the DOE about the timeline and the means for public input has increased confusion and trepidation among residents. Parents received just one limited presentation from Jamie Smarr, former Executive Director of the Educational Construction Fund, during his last week on the job and months after the RFEI was discovered with no word even on which developers responded. It has been more than three months since the RFEI was closed, and yet the DOE has so far given no indication of how or whether it will solicit and incorporate community feedback into its decision process. The level and intensity of public outcry after the revelation that the DOE had released the RFEI without informing the public speaks not only to the controversial nature of giving away public land to private developers in an already over-developed community, but also to the community’s frustration with a DOE that has consistently shown a blatant disregard for public input and public process. The community deserves clear information now, and I therefore request written answers to the following questions: 1. What is the DOE’s anticipated timeline for making a decision on the RFEI and issuing a Request for Proposals? 2. How many developers responded to the RFEI for each of the three sites? Which developers responded to RFEI? 3. Is the DOE considering developing on one of these sites or both of these sites? 4. When will the DOE make a determination on whether to pursue development at these sites? 5. Will the DOE engage parents with an open and public process throughout the development of any plans for the schools, starting with a forum devoted specifically to the RFEI before a decision is made, so that parent and community concerns can be considered before DOE decides whether or not to pursue development? 6. If a site is chosen for development, will the DOE guarantee that the school’s temporary relocation site be located within the school’s zone or catchment area? 7. Have the developers who responded to the RFEI identified potential relocation sites for the schools? If so, which sites were identified? 8. If a site is chosen for development, will the DOE commit to a binding public process, such as the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP), for the entirety of the development, rather than solely the portion of the development which requires a special permit? 9. If a site is chosen for development, will DOE require that any residential development on the site be fully or majority permanent affordable housing, rather than the bare minimum of 20% of apartments as required for City and State financial incentives? I look forward to your response. Sincerely, Linda B. Rosenthal Member of Assembly – 67 AD

6 years ago