Blumenfield at a mobile COVID-19 Vaccine site in Canoga Park
Over the last few weeks, LA has ramped up vaccine distribution at mobile sites and has made it possible for folks to get their vaccine without needing an appointment. To be more accommodating, Pierce College will stay open and has expanded its hours from 8am-8pm and they offer your choice of the three approved vaccines.
As vaccinations continue to rollout, it’s important to see how far we have come and how much we have been able to reopen. But we cannot afford to let up or go backwards.
We have all heard plenty of PSA’s from celebrities and elected officials telling people to get vaccinated, but what also helps build trust is when you make a call to a friend or family member and personally encourage them to get their COVID-19 vaccine. Make a one-on-one connection, and give them the facts from the CDC and other reputable sources about why it is safe to get vaccinated.
The ads on your TV and social media can only go so far, but you can make a difference. If we want to end the pandemic and reach herd immunity by late July, it is going to take a village.
This week’s newsletter includes important updates on addressing homelessness, the new City budget, and more. If you ever have questions for me, please do not hesitate to email me at [email protected] or call 818-774-4330.
Cabin Communities Making Progress
Blumenfield touring the construction site for the Tarzana Cabin Community
The Reseda Cabin community is expected to open in just a few weeks and the Tarzana Cabin community is expected to open shortly afterward. The major construction for the Reseda site has been completed, and recently painting and other cosmetic improvements have wrapped. These two sites are part of the first batch of city cabin communities that are being built throughout the City of Los Angeles. There is already two up and running in North Hollywood in Council District 2, and both are next to a park and in a residential area. Please check out Councilmember Blumenfield’s various Q&As and resources here. He’s answered over 200 questions in writing and over the past year he has attempted to contact everyone in the immediate area through mailings, a virtual presentation, social media, written articles, an interactive virtual town hall, presentations to the Neighborhood Councils, a two hour outdoor in-person meeting with concerned neighbors, meeting with the local homeowner’s associations, personally calling neighbors, holding one-on-one virtual meetings and responding to all emails/letters.
He also meets monthly with a Reseda and a Tarzana Cabin Community Committees composed of neighbors and stakeholders. Nonetheless, there are still neighbors who remain fearful and opposed. Councilmember Blumenfield remains open and available to conversation with any constituent by appointment and he will not only assure people that their worst fears will not be realized, but he will work with them to make sure of it.
Blumenfield Measure Protects Vulnerable from Dangerous Air Quality Days
The City Council recently approved Blumenfield’s measure to have City departments create a comprehensive plan to protect those living unsheltered from exposure to unhealthy environmental elements. With the weather starting to warm up, there is greater exposure to unhealthy air due to fires and subsequent smoke. There have been instances where the unhealthy air, combined with the COVID-19 pandemic and excessive heat, have required people to temporarily stay inside and avoid strenuous activity. Similar to when Blumenfield worked to secure cooling centers throughout the City, this measure asks City Departments to write a plan and protocols to open certain City facilities during times of dangerous air quality. The plans need to identify staffing, facility and outreach needs, and to address the needs of unhoused individuals who have nowhere to go on unhealthy air days.
Over the past few weeks as the Vice Chair of the Budget and Finance Committee, Blumenfield has been going over the Mayor’s proposed budget and discussing every line item with heads of city departments in committee hearings. Though there are a few more steps before the July 2021-June 2022 budget is finalized, Blumenfield is proud that the City is on a path toward restoring and expanding many core city services like street services, sanitation and the urban forestry division as well as investing in communities throughout the city. Here are some of the district specific items in the budget Blumenfield has championed that will help make a big difference in the West Valley:
Soon the entire City Council will hear the budget and it will be finalized. Stay tuned for more updates.
Honoring Local AAPI Leader Corinne Ho
A pre-pandemic photo of Blumenfield and Corinne Ho
This month is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month and today Councilmember Blumenfield would like to honor a true civic leader from the West Valley, Corinne Ho. Blumenfield first met Corinne many years ago when they worked together to raise awareness of human trafficking and provide a path out of prostitution for exploited immigrant women and others. She later served as President of the Canoga Park Neighborhood Council and over the years she has championed social justice causes including continuing her work with the taskforce on human trafficking, supporting survivors of domestic violence, advocating for the Everyone In LA campaign to house the homeless, and guiding the Neighborhood Partners In Action Program to get Canoga Park residents better connected with civic resources. In service to the AAPI community, Corinne has also connected many local residents with the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, which helps AAPIs participate in the economy and broaden financial empowerment. Corinne is a local civic giant and a AAPI leader and the West Valley is lucky to have her.
Fighting Hate Against the AAPI Community
In a continued effort to address the rise of hate crimes against the AAPI community, Blumenfield seconded a measure requesting the LAPD identify additional resources to effectively combat hate crimes. According to the LAPD, there has been a 114% increase in hate crimes against the AAPI community over the past year. Learn more at CF 21-0264 Whether targeted at the AAPI community, religious communities, African Americans, Latinos, Armenians or any group, there is no place for hate in Los Angeles.
New Speed Humps Installed
Recently there has been new street work between Calabash Charter Academy and Avenue San Luis including these brand new speed humps which will help deter speeding and dangerous driving around the neighborhood. Blumenfield is happy to see families and neighbors walking around more and hope these improvements and refreshed streets will help keep everyone safe and more comfortable when walking.
3rd Annual Beautification Conference
Team Blumenfield is partnering with the Los Angeles Public Library’s (LAPL) photo archive to highlight historic photos of the West Valley. In honor of Jewish American Heritage Month, this week’s photo was taken in 1957 at LA Jewish Home for the Aging in Reseda during high holy day services. Originally founded in 1912 in Boyle Heights, the LA Jewish Home for the Aging has been serving Angelenos for well over a century. Ever since they opened their doors in Reseda, seniors have enjoyed quality programming and a strong community. Most recently during the COVID-19 pandemic, Blumenfield organized PPE donation drop offs to Jewish Home for the Aging and has directed thousands of dollars from his distrectionary office account to help maintain their vital operations. To learn more about this photo, click here.