Letters to the Editor

Letter to the Editor: Vote to defund Planned Parenthood was wrong

As a native Staten Islander, a young woman, and former patient of Planned Parenthood of NYC, I am deeply saddened by Congressman Grimm’s vote to defund Planned Parenthood. For years, as a young adult, I traveled from Staten Island to Manhattan to Planned Parenthood’s Margaret Sanger Center for my annual reproductive health screenings and low-cost birth control. I am not alone; countless Staten Islanders turn to Planned Parenthood for reproductive health services every year.
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Letter to the Editor: Unions are Good for New York

The recently released numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show a slight drop below 25 percent of workers unionized. While New York is still the most unionized state in the country, the BLS reminds us that union rates have slowly fallen.

Much of this decrease is likely due to job losses during this tough period. Consequentially, we continue to support Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s efforts to invigorate the private sector through the state budget. New York is the best place to do business in the country and the state should help stimulate business development. We support Gov. Cuomo’s budget proposals where they help create private-sector jobs. It is even more important that newly created jobs pay a fair wage, provide for worker dignity and accept unionization.

We also recognize that excessive burdens placed on our hard-working teachers, police officers, firefighters and other public servants harms New York’s future. The pain of budget balancing should be shared by all, not placed solely on the backs of workers. New York’s union members are ready, as they always are, to do their part for their communities. Our state government should meet them halfway, and consider carefully potential consequences to working New Yorkers.

This letter appeared in the Journal News on February 8th, 2011.

The Department of Labor’s report can be found here.

Chairwoman of NYSYD’s Womens Caucus Publishes Letter to the Editor Regarding Arrival Staten Island Planned Parenthood

As a young woman born and raised on Staten Island, I am overjoyed at the arrival of Planned Parenthood of New York City to Staten Island

For years, as a young adult, I traveled to Manhattan to Planned Parenthood’s Margaret Sanger Center for my annual reproductive health screenings and low-cost birth control…. Click here to read more

Stop The Hate: My Letter To The Editor Of The Queens Tribune


From The Queens Tribune – Thursday October 29, 2009 Issue

To The Editor:

On October 17, hundreds of people gathered in College Point, Queens to share their disgust with the assault of Jack Price, an openly gay College Point resident.  I was one of those New Yorkers outraged that another citizen was brutally beaten to near death simply because of his sexual orientation. What was perhaps more outrageous was the disturbing revelation that was made at the rally.

Did you know that the majority of hate crimes are committed by young people under the age of 24? Think about that. Terrifying and true.

As the President of the New York State Young Democrats, an organization that represents this demographic of offenders, I feel that something must be done to address this issue. I call upon my local, state and federal elected officials to increase the amount of money allocated to tolerance and acceptance education. If we are going to reduce the amount of young people who commit hate crimes we must do so by doing a better job at educating our young people in love, tolerance and acceptance.

Let’s honor Jack Price by calling your elected officials and telling them that you demand an increase in funding for tolerance education.

Matthew Silverstein

New York State Young Democrats President & Bay Terrace Resident

MY Letter To The Editor – Allow Gays In Military


Queens Chronicle – Thursday, September 10, 2009

Allow gays in military 

 Dear Editor: 

 On the campaign trail, President Obama spoke out against the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy that prevents gays and lesbians from serving openly in our armed forces. Now, as commander in chief, the president has a chance to do something about it.

All qualified Americans should be able to serve openly in the military regardless of sexual orientation.Don’t ask, don’t tell is the only policy that mandates firing a person because of their sexual orientation. Nearly 13,000 service members have been discharged from the military since it was put in place. Of those, more than 800 have skills considered to be “mission-critical.”

The Military Readiness Enhancement Act would repeal don’t ask, don’t tell and allow all qualified Americans to serve openly regardless of sexual orientation. 

The time is now for President Obama to fulfill his campaign pledge to end this discriminatory law that prevents brave men and women from serving their country. It’s time for the president to partner with Congress to pass the Military Readiness Enhancement Act and get rid of don’t ask, don’t tell once and for all. 

Matthew Silverstein 
President, New York State Young Democrats