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First Lady Chirlane McCray speaks at the Mayor Bill de Blasio Fundraiser.


Exclusive to the Filipino Reporter


Filipino-Americans joined New Yorkers in support for Mayor Bill de Blasio’s re-election recently on Central Park West.

First Lady Chirlane McCray spoke to a group of more than 50 supporters at the fundraiser hosted by Loida Nicolas Lewis, Isaac Kusi, Angie Cruz, Philip McCarthy, Lesia Devers, Carl Nelson and Elliott Wiley Jr.

The First Lady talked about immigration rights, public safety, education and mental health issues.

While it is expected that the incumbent Mayor Bill de Blasio would win, she stressed the importance of voting on Nov. 7 citing that a vote for the Mayor would be an approval of the Mayor’s NYC service record.

“He deserves our vote on Nov. 7,” said Loida Nicolas Lewis.

“Mayor Bill de Blasio is the only New York Mayor who appointed three Filipino-Americans to his cabinet.”

Carmelyn P. Malalis serves as Chair and Commissioner of the New York City Commission on Human Rights; Maria Torres-Springer is President of NYC Economic Development Corporation; and Minerva Tantoco was appointed NYC Chief Technology Officer.


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From left, Isaac Kusi, Lesia Devers, First Lady Chirlane McCray, Loida Nicolas Lewis, Carl Nelson, Angie Cruz and Philip McCarthy.


Steven Raga said, “Mayor Bill de Blasio has repeatedly appointed capable Filipino-Americans to high level positions in his administration. His trust in members of our community has been unparalleled and encourages our community’s reciprocity.”

The First Lady spoke about ThriveNYC, New York’s most comprehensive citywide mental health plan in the U.S.

ThriveNYC’s website, live-texting crisis service, and 24/7 hotline 1-888-NYC-WELL helps New Yorkers suffering from mental health or substance abuse issues connect with care whenever and wherever they are.

“We need to destigmatize mental illness,” said the First Lady, adding that the program aims to train 250,000 New Yorkers in mental health “first aid” and encourage an open conversation about mental health.

Four-hundred Mental Health Service Corps members would be placed in neighborhoods with the highest need across New York.


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From left, Loida Nicolas Lewis, Edmund Mercado, Leslie Lewis Sword and Steven Raga.


The Center for Health Equity of ThriveNYC specifically helps communities of color address health disparities.

Mental health services would be provided in schools, health and hospital locations and youth/runaway shelters.

McCray also spoke about immigration rights emphasizing that the Mayor would not allow families to be torn apart because of discriminatory, unconstitutional immigration orders.

She pointed out that murders and shootings are at historic lows and crime is at a record low.

Incidents of stop and frisk have been reduced by 93 percent since taking office in 2014.

In 2016, New York high schools recorded their highest-ever graduation rate (72.6%) and lowest-ever dropout rate (8.5%), with the largest gains for Hispanic and Black students, she reported.

“Go! De Blasio Go!” Juliet Payabyab cheered on.


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From left, Edwin Josue, Aureo Sales and Jerry Sibal.


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From left, Juliet Payabyab, Angie Granados and Angie Cruz.


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First Lady Chirlane McCray.