Town & Village holding holiday toy drive

Bonnie Robbins, coordinator of children and family services at Mt. Sinai Beth Israel, stands by some of the donated toys. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Bonnie Robbins, coordinator of children and family services at Mt. Sinai Beth Israel, stands by some of the donated toys from last year’s drive. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

With the holiday season around the corner, Town & Village is asking readers to help spread cheer by participating in our annual holiday toy drive.

The drive delivers gifts to Mount Sinai Beth Israel Medical Center, where they will then be distributed to children of patients of the hospital’s outpatient clinic programs as well as to children stuck spending their holidays in hospital rooms.

Gifts for children of all ages are welcome and should be new and unwrapped. Deadline is December 11 at noon, when the toys will be picked up.

Partnering with T&V on this endeavor is:

CompassRock, offering the use of Stuyvesant Town’s leasing office as a donation dropoff point, 252 First Avenue,

Waterside Plaza, where donation boxes will be at the management office, 30 Waterside Plaza; the Health Club, 35 Waterside Plaza; and the Community Center, 40 Waterside Plaza,

M&T Bank at the corner of East 23rd Street and First Avenue.

Donations may also be left at the Town & Village office, 20 West 22nd Street, Suite #1503.

Bonnie Robbins, PhD, coordinator of children and family services at Mount Sinai Beth Israel, said gifts from previous drives have made a world of a difference to the children the hospital serves.


City hospitals take aim at maternal depression

Bellevue commits to universal screenings

Chirlane McCray speaks at Bellevue Hospital. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

Chirlane McCray speaks at Bellevue Hospital. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

New York City First Lady Chirlane McCray recently announced that the city is setting a goal to provide universal screening and treatment for maternal depression for all pregnant women and new mothers.

McCray made the announcement at Bellevue Hospital on November 17 along with representatives from NYC Health and Hospitals (formerly HHC), Maimonides Medical Center and the Greater New York Hospital Association.

NYC Health and Hospitals and Maimonides, which together perform about 25 percent of all deliveries in New York, have committed to achieve universal screening and connection to treatment within two years as the first step towards the goal. The Greater New York Hospital Association will also begin developing a learning network of hospitals across the city to screen all pregnant women and new mothers for the condition within that two-year period.

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Garodnick questions Blackstone about crowded apartments

Councilmember Dan Garodnick (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Councilmember Dan Garodnick (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

Following years of Stuyvesant Town residents complaining of dorm-style apartments, or more specifically, young people packing into apartments with pressurized walls, Council Member Dan Garodnick asked Blackstone to address the issue before taking over the property.

Garodnick made the request via a letter to Jonathan Gray, the Blackstone Group’s Global Head of Real Estate, that was sent on Monday.

In it, he noted the “persistent and troubling issue for many tenants: overcapacity apartments.”

“The city’s Housing Maintenance Code restricts a single dwelling to ‘not more than three unrelated persons,’” Garodnick said. “It is clear the number of unrelated residents may exceed that number in many apartments throughout the complex.”

He went on to note that it’s often students from New York University and other schools moving into these apartments, and because they aren’t staying in the complex long term, tend to be the source of noise complaints from neighbors. “This behavior is especially common when there are more individuals in an apartment than the law allows,” Garodnick said. “As you take ownership of the property, I am hoping you will take immediate action to correct this situation — including additional steps to keep apartments from being blocked off as dorm rooms — throughout Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village.”

Garodnick told T&V he thought this issue “should be a top priority for Blackstone, to not only assess but also to develop a game plan to deal with it.”

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