Levin, DiBlasio Arrested At #SaveLICH Rally

NYC Councilmember Steve Levin, NYC Public Advocate and mayoral candidate Bill DiBlasio are among those arrested at today’s rally in front of SUNY’s offices to save Long Island College Hospital.

Capital New York: Organizers diverted the protesters who didn’t want to be arrested to the side of the building, where the group chanted and two men played guitar, while a small group, which included de Blasio and Levin, delivered petitions to the SUNY representative in front of the building’s glass doors.

De Blasio demanded a promise that the hopsital would remain open.

“You have nothing to say?” asked de Blasio. “They have no comment. That means we’re going to stay here, and we’re going to fight to make sure Long Island College Hospital stays open and every hospital stays open. We’re going to stand our ground here, because all SUNY is telling us today is they have nothing to say.”

A police officer with a megaphone warned them that they would be arrested for blocking the building’s entrances, and then shortly thereafter, the group peacefully submitted to the plastic protest handcuffs.

DiBlasio released this statement at 1:44pm today:

“We are going to lose a vital community hospital in a matter of weeks unless something changes. The Governor must act to save LICH, and SUNY Downstate must stop its end run around a judge’s direct order and commit to keeping this hospital up and running. This is a moment for all New Yorkers to stand up and fight, and I’m proud to do my part.”

At 2:36pm Levin released this statement:

Today, nurses, doctors, community members, and elected officials stand together against the blatant attempt by SUNY Downstate to shutdown Long Island College Hospital. Their actions fly in the face of the law and are literally risking the lives of Brooklyn residents. By getting arrested, we are sending a message that we will not tolerate SUNY’s disturbing disregard of the courts orders. LICH provides vital healthcare to our community and must be kept open for care.

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  • Remsen Street Dweller

    This photo taken from a tweet of the rally at SUNY headquarters in NYC.

  • David on Middagh

    I have new respect for the arrestees.

  • Montague, as in Romeo

    Very pleased to see Bill de Blasio giving this issue real attention. The rest of the candidates are dealing with nonsense and scandals. Glad that he’s focused on substance!

  • HenryLoL

    Close this dump down! The City has NO RIGHT to tell this organization what to do. We have more hospitals in a few square miles than most cities have in 100. Getting to the point of ABSURD! And it is all because of unions!

  • Alec

    what are you nuts? that’s the only hospital for miles in any direction. If you have a heart attack in Brooklyn Heights, it will be the difference between living or dying. Don’t you get that?

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UlsiLOnWCoI Arch Stanton

    He doesn’t “get it” because he’s a greedy realtor shill and an imbecile. LOL

  • Pineapple Walk

    He must be fit as a fiddle, for now, and obviously has no children or elderly parents in the area to worry about. It’s at least 20 minutes to the nearest ER. Let’s hope he doesn’t get hit by a car crossing the street outside his door or just walking the sidewalk, what with all the doors jumping the curb these days.

  • Marathoner

    It’s too bad the unions are so enthusiastic about fighting to keep their jobs and not nearly as enthusiastic about providing quality care – this is 100% self-interest

    I haven’t seen one argument for keeping LICH open based on quality of care – not one single comment that talks about quality of medical or nursing care. The only motivation is keeping an ER open in case of heart attack or imminently life-threatening injury without having to wait on traffic over the Bridge or FDR

    If there’s a need and market for medical care, let a for-profit hospital come in and run a quality operation

  • Knight

    Henry, we also have more people in a few square miles than most cities have in 100. It’s not about unions; it’s about quality medical care — particularly emergency medical care.

  • Knight

    For-profit hospitals are concerned about elective surgeries, especially plastic surgeries, where the fees are high and the morbidity risks are low. That’s not what we’re fighting for. We’re fighting for emergency medical care and family medical care. All taxes considered (income, property, sales, & others) Brooklyn Heights residents pay some of the highest taxes in NYC & NYS. Why should we get sub-standard medical attention in return?

  • henry

    Thank you Bill for answering the question I;ve been asking for months about where is the public advocate to advocate for the residents of Brooklyn/

  • henry

    You must have missed all the comments about its recent state & national ranking among the best including being #28 of the top 250 hospitals in this state & # 2 safest hospital in Brooklyn, its physicians ranked among the best in the US, the services that were ranked near top levels, the best door-to-doctor times in the borough for its stroke & cardiac centers, its neonatal services etc etc etc. Maybe expand your reading because you obviously, with all due respect, do not have a clue..

  • gbkm

    an emergency room is only a non-emergent urgent care room if it does not have medical-surgical services backing it up. If you want an emergency room for a heart attack or stroke, you need all the other services like OR, ICU, Cardiac Unit, medical-surgical in-patient beds, etc.

  • gbkm

    that is also tru if you have only have an urgent care center or stand-alone emergency room without a full hospital attached. You go to one of those with that kind of emergency & you have to get back in the ambulance to go to a cardiac center to clear the blockage in your heart. You could already be getting that roto-router in LICH cardiac center less than 10 minutes after arriving in LICH ER.

  • gbkm

    what if the closest ER is overcrowded, overwhelmed, and isn’t accepting anymore patients or ambulances until they can clear out the masses? he’s got a big problem then. But it Happens sometimes & will happen more without LICH. It Happened just hours after ambulances were barred from the LICH ER. Then it happened to the 2nd closest hospital the same time. For quite a while that 1st night of the ambulance diversion, there was no available ER from Park Slope to Fort Green because LICH was closed to ambulances & Brooklyn Hospital & Methodist were over-flowing & crashing under the impact. (They still are). Where’s the 3rd or 4th closest hospital? That’s what he’d be looking at.

  • gbkm

    case in point in this letter from a neighbor, sent to the Concerned Physicians of LICH & posted on their website at lichMedicalstaff.org:
    “This is what is going on in the streets of Brooklyn, 7/2/13.
    As I recall, it was Thursday morning, 6/ 27/ 13, around 11 – 11:30 when I crossed the intersection of Hicks and Pierrepont Streets to go to the senior center at 55 Pierrepont. There was a mother with two kids standing on the corner; the older one, who appeared to be about 8 or 9 years old, was crying. When I came out of the center about 12:30 pm, the same mother and two kids were at the corner. In addition, there was an ambulance on that same NE corner, blocking the crosswalk, making it difficult to cross. There were two police officers and two EMTs there, at least two of them on phones discussing what to do about the case. The discussion they were having indicated that LICH was diverting to Methodist, but Methodist was not taking any calls at that time so they would have to divert to WOODHULL! Much discussion ensued about diverting to a hospital so far away. After a while, one of the officers called again and emphasized that it was a pediatric call and could Methodist take it? I believe the answer was that Methodist would take a pediatric call. I crossed Pierrepont towards Montague and when I came back about 1 pm the ambulance was still there blocking the crosswalk, as were the mother, two kids, EMTs and Police Officers..”.

  • carol

    The comment by Henry LoL that Brooklyn has more hospitals in a few square miles than most cities have in a hundred square miles has no basis in fact. The average number of hospital beds per 10,000 people in the US is 30. Kings County has about 27 beds per 10,000 people; and should LICH, Interfaith and Wyckoff close, the ratio will drop to 23 beds.

    As one example Buffalo (Erie County, NY) has 30 beds per 10,000 people. According to the poster, the state ought to be closing hospitals in Buffalo.

    I understand that this is forum for sharing opinions, but a little reality goes a long way toward making a point. Unless you are a troll and just want to make trouble.

  • Joe A

    Nobody should ever take Henry LoL seriously.

  • gc

    We should all be contacting Cuomo indicating that our votes in his next election are directly connected to the LICH outcome.

  • gbkm

    Today the daily news already has its SUNY-machine PR going full blast in its opinion editorial. Full of misrepresentations to the rest of NYC about LICH. For example, the editorial states that
    “patients are not coming to LICH” and “nothing will bring them back”. It however fails to mention that SUNY patients are not coming to LICH right now because SUNY will not let them in! SUNY kidnapped the patients that were there, pulled them out of their LICH beds, sent them elsewhere & is doing everything possible to prevent new patients from coming in to the hospital. It also says “the best doctors and nurses have left LICH” #1 The doctors who have left were FORCED out by SUNY. #2 The nurses have not left at all. It’s Disgusting how SUNY is creating situations that cut off LICH legs so they can invent an excuse to convince this city & governor that LICH must be killed.

  • Pineapple Walk

    Didn’t he also have a problem with the Mount Sinai Medical Group opening offices here? He wants no hospitals and no medical offices in the area because he doesn’t need them and thinks he will never need them. No concern for anyone but himself.

  • carol

    So who is Mort Zuckerman(NY Daily News) shilling for?
    Bklyn Hospital CMO Becker and his PR guy Jeffrey Sachs (Friend of Cuomo) who think they will gain if LICH closes; or Stanley Breznoff of Continuum who wants to bury the financial misdeeds to LICH by Continuum – including the plunder of the Othmer Trust; or the Governor who wants the Daily News endorsement for his next race.
    Do the doctors, nurses, staff and patients at LICH stand a chance against those who want to cast it aside?

  • Guest

    Salute to SUNY

  • Remsen Street Dweller

    Would you want these people leading your children’s schools?

  • Peter Pan

    If NY State won’t protect the civil rights of the citizens, can the Federal Government get involved? All of the jailed ex-governors of Illinois were taken down by the Feds, not the corrupt state government apparatus.

  • Susan Raboy

    Thank you for posting this, SUNY is creating the medical crisis. We need to take back our hospital!

  • Susan Raboy

    You are wrong. I have been speaking at rallies and to the print media and TV reporters about how LICH saved my life so it is my turn to save LICH. And, I’m not the only patient speaking on behalf of LICH. If you come to a Rally you will hear this.

  • fast_walker

    The last thing this city needs is a mayor who is participates in public rallies and gets himself arrested without achieving anything. What we do need is a practical financially sound solution which restructures the hospital, closes underused maternity ward and garbage producing dialysis center on Atlantic and Hicks (I don’t know what they do behind those curtains but it just doesn’t seem hygenic) and perhaps leaves emergency room operational in the part of the of the enourmous and valuable real estate complex.

  • Michael D. D. White

    I notice that HenryLoL likes selling off public assets to benefit developers at the expense of the public. Using much the same kind of provocatively insulting language he also advocates selling libraries like the Brooklyn Heights Library and seems to be planning to vote for Mr. Squadron. I gather that HenryLoL never took anyone to LICH for treatment- If you have lived in the Heights or around here for any period of time
    its hard not to have ever made such any such visit.