A crowd including formerly incarcerated people, trans sex workers and immigrants fighting for their communities rallied at Corona Plaza Wednesday as Make the Road Action (MRA) and Vocal-NY Action endorsed public defender Tiffany Cabán for Queens District Attorney.
MRA and VOCAL-NY Action Fund, two of the city’s leading grassroots organizations representing immigrants and working-class people of color, join a growing coalition of progressive organizations to endorse Cabán, an Astoria resident whose campaign advocating for criminal justice reform, immigrant protections, and respect and dignity for transgender community members.
Leaders from both organizations interviewed candidates in the race and selected Cabán as their candidate because of her strong progressive platform and her commitment to: fighting for immigrant communities, including supporting the decriminalization of sex work; her commitment to decarcerate; creating community-based solutions to criminal justice reform; and protecting the rights of workers and tenants.
“As a transgender immigrant and sex worker, I believe that Tiffany Caban is the most qualified candidate to address the issues facing immigrants and people of color like me,” said Joselyn Castillo, member of Make the Road Action and Queens resident. “From the beginning of her campaign, Tiffany has repeatedly recognized that sex work is work for many in our community. She brings powerful energy to this race and the vision to lead for diverse communities across Queens. I am excited to talk to my neighbors about why they should support Tiffany, and I hope the enthusiasm she’s building in our communities carries her to victory in June, so that she can deliver for vulnerable people across the borough as our next DA.”
One key issue that resonated with the MRA leaders who interviewed Cabán was her intention to prosecute ICE agents who abuse their power.
“I’ve spent most of my life criminalized because I grew up poor and Black in New York City,” said Carl Stubbs, a leader with VOCAL-NY Action Fund. “The Queens DA’s office made my life worse by overcharging and punishing me when what I really needed was support and access to resources. I lost decades of my life to incarceration, but now at 67 years old I couldn’t be happier to support Tiffany Cabán for Queens District Attorney. Her bold agenda is exactly what we need to dramatically reduce incarceration, end the criminalization of poverty, and invest resources in communities as a means of preventing harm.”
Cabán told the crowd she was thrilled to receive such high profile endorsements.
“Both organizations have a long history of standing up for the needs working-class and marginalized New Yorkers, from demanding more from New York’s political system to fighting for greater access to resources,” Cabán said. “In centering the voices of the most marginalized in our city, Make the Road Action and VOCAL-NY Action Fund have improved conditions for countless communities of color. I could not ask for better partners as we work to ensure the Queens DA’s office is one that protects, defends, and safeguards the rights of all Queens residents.”
Caban will face City Councilman Rory Lancman, Borough President Melinda Katz, Judge Greg Lasak, former prosecutors Mina Malik and Jose Nieves, and attorney Betty Lugo in the Democratic primary that will be held June 25.