Queens electeds applaud City Cleanup Corps initiative as a win-win

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A new city program will cleanup streets while putting thousands on New Yorkers to work. (QNS/File)

Queens elected officials are welcoming a new city initiative that will tackle trash strewn streets while putting people to work.

The launch of the New Deal-inspired City Cleanup Corps will attempt to remediate an out-of-control garbage problem that was exacerbated by a $106 million budget cut to the Department of Sanitation at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The new program will create 10,000 jobs with hiring to begin this month across 10 different city agencies. The CCC will immediately get to work revitalizing public spaces and neighborhoods, beautifying parks and green spaces and include a citywide graffiti removal campaign and the pressure washing of sidewalks.

“The City Cleanup Corps is a tremendous initiative which aligns with the historic response to difficult times in our nation requiring collective action — federal, state and city programming that provides new work opportunities and a renewed sense of civic engagement for all involved,” Assemblyman Khaleel Anderson said. “This New Deal-inspired program brings me much hope in the months ahead and I look forward to collaborating with the mayor’s office to ensure that residents of southeast Queens have both equitable opportunities to apply for New York City CCC jobs and will also equitable reap the benefits of the CCC’s neighborhood revitalization and maintenance efforts.”

The CCC’s work will focus on key areas identified by local communities and elected leaders, business districts, and the 33 neighborhoods hit hardest during the COVID-19 pandemic as identified by the City’s Task Force on Racial Equity and Inclusion.

“As we begin the city’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, the new City Cleanup Corps will play a crucial role in greening and beautifying our public open spaces while employing thousands of New Yorkers,” Councilwoman Adrienne Adams said. “The particular focus on neighborhoods hardest hit by the virus is important because equity should be at the center of our recovery efforts.”

Mayor Bill de Blasio said the initiative would be funded by federal stimulus relief and pay workers $15 an hour.

“Beautifying our parks and space, and cleaning our streets throughout the pandemic has been a labor of love for so many New Yorkers, who have volunteered their time, especially across my district,” Councilman Francisco Moya said. “Now we can truly double down on having cleaner neighborhoods that we can be proud of while getting thousands of New Yorkers back to work. The City Cleanup Corps is great news for our city as we work to recover from this pandemic.”

Those interested in joining the CCC can find more information at this website. After the initial hiring of 1,000 workers this month, more than 7,700 positions will be posted in July and build to 10,000.

“As elected officials, our constituents expect us to ensure that their families are safe, and their streets are clean, among other duties,” Councilman Robert Holden said. “While in office, ensured that proper funding was allocated for street cleaning services, graffiti removal, snow shoveling, and additional basket collections. The mayor’s City Cleanup Corps is a great initiative that would not only create jobs but keep our streets clean.”

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