NEW YORK PEACE COALITION
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Honorable Michael Bloomberg
New York City Mayor
City Hall, New York NY 10007
Dear Mr. Mayor,
Borough wide Peace December Awareness to end Gun Violence in New York City.
On behalf of a network of community organizations that witnessed your proclamation through your Commissioner of Immigrants’ Affairs to declare the month of December as a peace month in 2010, we would like to thank your offices for spearheading this effort which diverse communities that were initially involved, have decided to embark on a borough wide commemoration.
As a community, we can assert with confidence that your 2010 Peace December Proclamation has heralded a message of awareness and reinforced feasible relations between the New York Police Department and the community and therefore establishing collaborative inroads to preventing gun violence. We are indebted to your Commissioner of Immigrants’ Affairs availability to engage with our communities in promoting peace.
The 2012 Peace December is no different except that the interest has grown beyond the Borough of the Bronx. Therefore, we are requesting all Borough Presidents from the five boroughs to amplify your 2010 Proclamation in order to create awareness and reduce the violence that results from guns during the month of December.
While the main event will be held in the Borough of the Bronx as per our earlier correspondences with your offices, we are asking all Borough Presidents to conduct a brief candle lighting ceremony which will be emblematic of the light that we need as communities as we enter into the month of December. It is envisioned that the candle lighting ceremony be held on Friday, November 30, 2012, 4:30PM sharp.
According to the Lunar Calendar, the first day of December starts at 4:29PM on Friday the 30th. Therefore we request that all lighting takes place at the same time.
It is our hope that as we bring the aspect of program development, you will advise us accordingly as you work around your schedules and the New York City Elected Officials and District Attorneys.
We are looking forward to getting your insights as we move towards this program.
Yours in community service,
2010 Peace December Mayor’s Proclamation Committee.
Cc: Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.
Cc: Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz
Cc: Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer
Cc: Staten Island Borough President James P. Molinaro
Cc: Queens Borough President Helen M. Marshall.
Cc: New York City Council Speaker
Cc: New York City Police Commissioner
Cc: Bronx District Attorney
Cc: Brooklyn District Attorney
Cc: Manhattan District Attorney
Cc: Queens District Attorney
Cc: Staten Island District Attorney
Sheikh Moussa Drammeh
New York Peace Coalition
NEW YORK PEACE COALITION
Third Annual Peace December
In 2010, Governor David Paterson, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr. and New York State Senator Ruth Hassell- Thompson issued proclamations to declare the month of December as Peace Month in New York City.
This historic moment was hosted in the Bronx Rotunda under the auspices of a diverse cross section of elected officials from across the City, State and Federal agencies including the Mayor’s Office, Bronx Borough President Office, Bronx District Attorney, New York State Senator Ruth Hassell-Thompson, DYCD, the New York Police Department, New York City Parks, African Union Day Foundation, Bangladeshi American National Democratic Society, USA, Inc, and several other elected officials.
This initiative was born out of the need to lower the crime and violence that takes place in New York City every year and to herald a call for peace, respect and responsibility. With proclamations from the governor, the mayor and series of endorsements from elected officials, government agencies, the clergy and community leaders, the momentum to celebrate December as a peace month is galvanizing diverse communities from across New York City to partner in the process.
The New York Peace Coalition partnership is an embodiment of governmental and nongovernmental organizations and initiatives that include Adopt-A-Friend, Bronx Clergy Task Force, NAACP Parkchester Branch, New York Center For Conflict Dialogue, LaCrown Initiatives- It Takes A Village Inc, African Union Day Foundation, Latin America-Muslim Women Organization, Islamic Leadership School, St Ann Anti Violence Program, Vishnu Mandir Hindu Temple, The Garifuna Community, The Mayor and the Bronx Borough President Offices, Bronx District Attorney, NYS State Senator Ruth Hassell- Thompson, Kuki Ndiho Rwanda Orphans Support Project, DYCD, NYC Parks and JCRC-Cause-NY, Islamic Cultural Center of North America, just to name a few.
December is the month of the winter solstice. Nights are long and, between the increased darkness and the changing social patterns that ensue from the December holidays, many communities experience increased incidents of violence, larceny, and hate crime. Many communities have traditions of bringing light to this darker time of year: candles are lit for Kwanzaa and Hannukah, trees are decorated with lights for Christmas, and fireplaces and decorative lights are enjoyed by all. Peace December is our way of shining a more proverbial light into the darkness of winter by creating programming aimed directly at combatting the darkness within our society. Instead of the darkness of violence, hatred and intolerance, we hope to promote the light of peace, respect, and diversity.
Declaring December a Peace Month will not only reduce violence but create a communal sense of responsibility to focus our minds on programs that lead to peace. It is an excellent way to enter a new year.
Proposed Programs during Peace December.
(i) General Programmatic Landscape in Reflecting on Peace– All activities taking place in the five borough of the city in December must be commensurate with an awareness of peace. This may take different forms be it in the churches, mosques, synagogues, temples, community centers, schools, for-profit companies or law enforcement activities. This concept will not offer any guided prescription on how this will be done. It will be at the prerogative of the individual, the organizing party or any undertaking that will be doing any activity in the five boroughs of the city.
(ii) Community Joint Collaborative Programs with the District Attorneys Offices and the law enforcement community. – Both the community and law enforcement agencies, the District Attorneys, the NYPD, families and community leaders will choose a day within December on which the residents will surrender their illegal guns and other weapons without questions asked. The modalities and implications that may come with this exercise may be discussed with the concerned parties ahead of December.
(iii) Media & entertainment Peace-Media programming, Hollywood movies, Broadway shows, Entertainments and sports activities must all recognize Peace December.
(iv) Diplomatic Diaspora Peace- Since New York is home to not only the United Nations, but also to people from all nations, UN permanent representatives holding forums and events during December dedicated to promoting peaceful coexistence among their nationals in the city would pave ways for national peaceful dialogues in their home countries.
(v) Preservation of Nature and Animal Life- For example the Special Prevention for the Cruelty of Animals (SPCA) in conjunction with Advocates for animals and organizations such as the Bronx Zoo may host a series of activities to raise awareness on easing human cruelty towards animals.
(vi) Disaster Relief and Community Development- Different groups can also focus on global disasters such as the Tsunami, Haiti Earthquake, Hurricane Katrina and other disasters that have called for peaceful coalitions to solve environmental problems.
(vii) Peace December Chapters- Individuals and organizations are encouraged to open Peace December chapters worldwide.
Countdown to Peace December
Friday, November 30, 2012, from 1:30PM-5:00PM.
Venue: Al Iman Community Center
2006 Westchester Avenue
Bronx, New York 10462
This year, entertainers will include Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Jewish and Islamic Faith, among others.
Objectives of the Countdown Celebration
i) Enhance strategic awareness in crime reductions.
ii) Promote peace and reduce homicides and other domestic violence cases
iii) Inspire inter agency and inter community coalitions that will cross fertilize ideas in the quest to eradicate crime in the city.
iv) Foster the voice of faith based houses in crime reduction
v) Facilitate experience sharing experiences from families and communities.
vi) Clergies of all faith to dedicate all their sermons in December to Peace & nonviolence.
vii) Public and Private Schools in New York to observe a Peace Day in December. And
viii) To promote public lighting of Peace December lights in houses, businesses, houses of worship, political offices and others…
Proposed Bill to install peace awareness week in New York Public Schools.
New York City continues to be susceptible to gun violence, hate crime, domestic violence and intolerance.
In 2010, the New York Peace Coalition, a coalition of representatives from houses of worship, elected officials, schools, civil society, community and business leaders came together for a historic installation of Peace December at the offices of the Borough President in the Bronx County. The initiative was endorsed, supported and welcomed by all the elected officials including Governor David Paterson, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Senator Ruth-Hassel Thompson.
Pursuant to the momentum that the Peace December initiative has generated, the New York Peace Coalition, through our elected official proposes a Bill to install a peace awareness week in the New York Public Schools.
Activity Plans and General Requests
1. During this week, we ask businesses, academics and people of goodwill to partner with the New York State and City legislative processes to assume conversations in creating endowments and funds through which teachers and parents will spend time in enriching students and the community during the awareness week as proposed herein.
2. Sponsor a community/elected officials/public schools planning caucuses to put together key benchmarks for operational of this initiative.
3. Besides the Department of Education, identify the State and City auspices under which peace awareness week shall be installed
Political Leaders invited last year: Hon. Andrew M. Cuomo, NYS Governor, Hon. Michael R. Bloomberg, NYC Mayor, Hon. David Paterson, Former NYS Governor, Hon. Dennis Walcott, NYC Schools Chancellor, Hon. Ruben Diaz, Jr. Bronx Borough President, Hon. Aurelia Greene, Deputy Bronx Borough President, Hon. Robert Johnson, Bronx District Attorney, Hon. Charles E. Schumer, US Senate, Hon. Kristen Gillibrand, US Senate, Hon. Thomas DiNapoli, NYS Comptroller, Hon. Eric Schneiderman, NYS Attorney General, Hon. Jose E. Serrano, US Congress, Hon. Carl E. Heastie, Chairman Bronx Democratic County Committee, Hon. Peter M. Rivera, NYS Assembly, Hon. Annabel Palma, NYC Council, Hon. Rev. Ruben Diaz, Sr., NYS Senate, Hon. Michael Benjamin, former NYS Assembly, Hon. Vanessa Gibson, NYS Assembly, Hon. Naomi Rivera, NYS Assembly, Hon. Jeffrey Dinowitz, NYS Assembly, Hon. Carmen E. Arroyo, NYS Assembly, Hon. Nelson Castro, NYS Assembly, Hon. Jeffrey D. Klein, NYS Senate, Hon. Marcos Crespo, NYS Assembly, Hon. Eric Stevenson, NYS Assembly, Non. Helen D. Foster, NYC Council, Hon. Gustavo Rivera, NYS Senate, Hon. Michael Benedetto, NYS Assembly, Hon. Jose M. Serrano, NYS Senate, Hon. Maria del Carmen Arroyo, NYC Council, Hon. Fernando Cabrera, NYC Council, Hon. Larry B. Seabrook, NYC Council, Hon. G. Oliver Koppell, NYC Council, Hon. Joel Rivera, NYC Council, Hon. James Vacca, NYC Council, Hon. Raymond Kelly, New York City Police Commissioner, and Community Board Leaders, Non-profit organization leaders, entertainers and some organizations in the city combating violence and abuse.
1. Participation: Should you want your organization or community to participate, please contact us so we can include your events in Peace December Events Calendar.
2. Endorsements: Elected officials to endorse Peace December with Proclamations and sponsoring peace event in their respective districts.
RSVP: firstname.lastname@example.org or call: Ms.Suhaylah James 646-667-0267 or 718-829-2323
Entertainment, prayers, food, performances & testimonials
PEACE DECEMBER PARTICIPANT LIST
Please select a day or days in which your organization hosts a peace program. If your organization already has peace programs in December, please let us know about them so that they can be included in Peace December Events Calendar for continued peace networking throughout the year. This calendar must be completed no later than November 25th each year.
Please submit your event in time so that they cam be included in the Peace December calendar.
Name of organization: _______________________________________________________________________
City: ____________________________________________ State: _____ _____ Zip Code: ________________
Contact Person: ___________________________________________________________________________
Type of organization: _______________________________________________________________________
Name of the Peace December event being organized: __________________________________________________
Description of the event: _____________________________________________________________________
The reason for organizing this event: _____________________________________________________________
Is this a new program or an existing one? __________________________________________________________
Is it open to the public? ____ Yes. ____No. Is it free of charge? _____ Yes. _____ No.
Select day or days and time this event is taking place in Peace December:
December ___ ____ , 2012. Other days? ________________________________________________________
From: ___ ___: ___ ___AM PM to ___ ___: ___ ___ AM PM
Submit this application to: New York Peace Coalition, c/o Peace December to be listed at Eventfulmanager.com. 2006 Westchester Avenue, Bronx, New York 10462. email@example.com
Thank you for making Peace December a successful nonviolence month. Crimes and violence are not inevitable. Together, we can fight them!
Ms. Suhaylah James,
Peace December Coordinator