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Khorri Atkinson

Stories by Khorri

City Council passes bill to track and limit the use of solitary confinement at Rikers Island

It was after visiting solitary confinement cells at Rikers Island and being greeted by “very small cells with graffitied walls, the smelling of urine, rusted beds with mattresses with mildew on them and a very small window letting in just a little bit of light” that induced City Councilman Daniel Dromm to draft legislation that could improve conditions inmates have been enduring for years.

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State lawmakers urge Cuomo to appoint special prosecutor in Garner’s death

Thirty-two days after Eric Garner died by an apparent and prohibited chokehold from NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo, 14 New York state lawmakers have expressed their frustrations in a letter to Gov. Andrew Cuomo over what they called a “gross and deliberate failure” and “lack of progress” by Staten Island District Attorney Daniel Donavan to pursue a case in Garner’s death.

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Parents of Ramarley Graham demand Dept. of Justice launch federal probe

It has been exactly one year since the U.S. Department of Justice promised to launch an investigation into the death of Ramarley Graham, an unarmed Bronx teen who was gunned down in his grandmother’s bathroom in February 2012 by NYPD Officer Richard Haste.

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College students nationwide show solidarity with Michael Brown

Frustration and the call for justice continues to reverberate across the country, including on college campuses, over the death of unarmed Black teen Michael Brown, who was killed by white police officer Darren Wilson in a St. Louis suburb two weeks ago.

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De Blasio rolls out $12.7 m plan to curb gun violence citywide 

Bill de Blasio is now counting on “violence interrupters” to help his administration prevent gun violence in some of the city’s most crime-infested neighborhoods. 

Schumer requests federal funds to expand security at Boulevard Houses

The tragic stabbing death of Prince Joshua Avitto, 6, and the stabbing of his friend, Mikayla Capers, 7, last June at the New York City Housing Authority’s Boulevard Houses in East New York, Brooklyn, underscore the reason why protection and federal intervention are needed at the apartment complex.

Mothers of unarmed sons killed by NYPD meet with Inspector General

Her message was to say, “Enough is enough,” and request that the IG’s office launch an investigation into the unjust killings of unarmed Black and Latino youths and the NYPD’s use of deadly force.

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Mayor de Blasio signs ‘Avonte’s Law’

Sometimes, it takes a tragedy for something to get done.

City to pay family $2.75 million for Rikers Island inmate

New York City has agreed to pay $2.75 million to settle a lawsuit that was filed by the family of a Rikers Island inmate who was allegedly beaten to death in December 2012 by corrections officers.

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City Council passes “Avonte’s Law”

The New York City Council unanimously passed “Avonte’s Law” last Thursday, which calls on the Department of Education and the New York Police Department to evaluate the need for alarms and install audible alarms on doors of public school buildings that house special needs programs.

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New York Gov. Cuomo allocates millions for low-income college students

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is prepping new ways to assist low-income college students, and Tuesday he allocated the $3.2 million College Access Innovation Grant that will be used to increase college enrollment and completion rates among low-income students across the state.

Rent increase upsets council members and tenants

Hundreds of tenants from across the city packed Cooper Union’s Great Hall last Monday, June 23 and attempted to convince the nine members of New York City’s Rent Guidelines Board to support their call for a rent freeze for those who live in stabilized apartments.

After bloody weekend, officials launch network to combat gun violence

In a recent series of shootings, at least four people were killed while another 19 were injured, including a 10-year-old boy who was innocently walking to a bodega in Coney Island to get something to drink, when a gunman opened fire. The boy was shot in the leg, while another man was shot in his torso.  

Dem Assembly women fail on human trafficking bill

At a recent rally at City Hall, Brianna (who’s real name has been withheld for safety) urged lawmakers in Albany to “put aside the politics” and pass the Trafficking Victims Protection and Justice Act. Her outcry aims to help prevent other women and children from experiencing what she endured. At the age of 9, she was sold to a pimp after being kidnapped by her school janitor.

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Bratton told Upper West Side cops to stop homeless shelter raid

Weeks after officers from the 24th Precinct in the Upper West Side swept through the Freedom House, a residence shelter on West 95th Street run by the Department of Homeless Shelters, and promised to conduct more raids after arresting 22 people, NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton told the cops to end the practice.  

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New Yorkers can sue NYPD over stop-and-frisk

The Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association (PBA) and the Sergeant’s Benevolent Association (SBA), two unions that represent NYPD officers, have attempted to block the Community Safety Act, which was passed into law last year by the City Council despite a veto from former Mayor Mike Bloomberg. The act makes it easier for New Yorkers to sue the NYPD for racial profiling. State Supreme Court Justice Anil Singh tossed the unions’ legal challenge and said the city’s ban on racial profiling is constitutional.

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Brooklyn community demands investigation into death of Laquan Nelson

Residents at Lafayette Gardens are demanding an investigation into the death of Laquan Nelson, a 16-year-old youth who was shot and killed by an unknown assailant a few yards from the 88th Precinct. They claim that “medical attention was delayed and police stood idly by.”

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‘Not in my hood’ gun violence awareness march

This is the message Shanduke McPhatter, a former member of the New York Bloods gang, delivered to gunmen at a rally in Brooklyn, pleading with them to stop the senseless killings. “It’s time for our kids to feel safe on the streets!” he declared.

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Anti-human trafficking advocates rally at City Hall

At the age of 9, Brianna says that she was sold to a pimp after being kidnapped by her school janitor.

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In wake of tragic stabbing cameras to be installed in public housing

As the Amsterdam News went to press Wednesday, it was announced that the city will begin security camera installation at Boulevard Houses and five more housing developments around Brooklyn, Manhattan, the Bronx and Queens.

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Sharpton demands justice for Bronx teen shoved through window by NYPD sergeant

The Rev. Al Sharpton recently came to the defense of a 14-year-old Bronx boy who underwent emergency surgery to remove pieces of glass from his chest, lungs and heart, and got at least 50 stitches following an altercation with a New York Police Department (NYPD) sergeant who allegedly shoved him into a glass storefront window.

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Mothers demand justice for Ramarley Graham; Bratton says he’s ‘comfortable’ with the caseworkers

It all started with unarmed Bronx teen Ramarley Graham being chased by NYPD officer Richard Haste into his grandmother’s bathroom in February 2012.

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Some Haitian earthquake displaced camps increasing despite significant drop

Four years after a 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck Haiti’s capital, Port-au-Prince, killing more than 200,000 people and leaving tens of thousands homeless, numbers of displaced camps are still growing, even though the homeless population continues to decrease, according to a recent report.

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NYPD gets inspector general

The city has welcomed its inspector general, an officer to oversee the New York Police Department.

Muslims appeal federal judge’s ruling on NYPD surveillance, turn to de Blasio

A group of New Jersey Muslims are responding swiftly after their case got thrown out of federal district court.

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De Blasio unveils Sandy recovery plans

It has been 17 months since Hurricane Sandy ripped through the East Coast, leaving hundreds of houses and properties destroyed.

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Jamaican judge rules homeless LGBT youths can live in sewers

A judge in Jamaica recently ruled that the country’s homeless LGBT youths, thrown out of their homes by relatives, have the right to live in sewers and gullies, published reports say.

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Cuomo’s new charter school favors raise more concerns

As Gov. Andrew Cuomo stands shoulder-to-shoulder with charter school officials, and as the expansion of colocated charter schools inside traditional public schools continues to be in effect, his new favors have raised more questions than answers for parents, educators and City Council officials.

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Hoodies up for Trayvon: Two years later

Dozens of angry protesters representing various grassroots organizations rallied in Times Square to commemorate the second anniversary of the death of Trayvon Martin

Comptroller Stringer names chief diversity officer

In his effort for the city to increase its number of contracts and subcontracts to female- and minority-owned contractors, New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer has named Carra Wallace as the city’s first chief diversity officer to oversee city agencies.

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International Women’s Day rally for NYC to raise minimum wage

Living on minimum wage is a harsh reality for many New Yorkers like Sabrina Storey, a fast-food worker, who has been working at a local KFC franchise since December of last year.

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Federal judge throws out lawsuit challenging NYPD spying on Muslims

Is it OK to profile Muslims? The answer depends on who you ask.

Mothers who lost sons to gun violence honored

Sabrina Fulton, the mother of Trayvon Martin, was one of the most recognizable guests last Friday, along with Constance Malcolm, Valerie Bell and Jackie Rowe-Adams, all of whom have a similar story.

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AIDS advocates call for more affordable housing in NYC

For HIV/AIDS advocates, it just boils down to one thing: “Provide more affordable housing for New Yorkers living with HIV/AIDS.”

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Rangel launches congressional app competition

In an effort to have more students nationwide pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields, members of Congress, including Rep. Charles Rangel, have launched the House Student App Challenge, a competition for high school students from his district.

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Mayor de Blasio to reform stop-and-frisk

Last Thursday, delivering on a campaign promise that helped him get a landslide victory, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that his administration will reform the NYPD’s controversial stop-and-frisk policy.

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Congress and Haiti funds: Where is the money?

Four years ago, when a 7.0 magnitude earthquake damaged Haiti’s capital, Port-au-Prince, many countries, including the United States, pledged large sums of money to assist with rescue, recovery and reconstruction efforts

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NYC Haitian community memorializes earthquake victims, looks to the future

It has been four years since a 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck Haiti’s capital of Port-au-Prince and surrounding cities on Jan. 12, 2010, killing more than 200,000 people.

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Ramarley Graham case against NYC and the NYPD opens

There might be a ray of hope for the family of Ramarley Graham, as Judge P. Kevin Castel opened a federal civil lawsuit case against the city of New York, former Police Commissioner Ray Kelly and NYPD officers, including Graham’s shooter, Officer Richard Haste, on Jan. 7.

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Tata Mandela: rest in perfect peaceful

outh African President Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela died on December 5

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Founder of Black New Yorker column inducted into Black Journalists Hall of Fame

Herb Boyd, a veteran and freelance reporter at the New York Amsterdam News and an adjunct Black studies professor at City College of New York, is one of eight legendary African-American journalists who will be inducted into the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) Hall of Fame. This is the association’s highest honor.

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Brooklyn Author With Cerebral Palsy Launch Book

Family members siad "achieving one’s dream against the odds" fittingly describes Atiba Clarke, a 20-year-old student at LaGuardia Community College

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Death in Police Custody: Kyam Livingston's family demands answers

According to her family, it was the purely insensitive mindset of the NYPD that may have caused the death of 37-year-old Kyam Livingston in a Brooklyn Central Booking cell on July 21.

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Brooklyn family demanding answers from NYPD for relative who died while in custody

Two months after Kyam Livingston died while in custody at Brooklyn Central Bookings Jail, after pleading for medical attention but was ignored by officers, enraged family members are still demanding answers for her death from Police Commissioner Ray Kelly and Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes.

U.S. contemplates response to Syria

There seems to be a diplomatic solution in the works as President Barack Obama waits on Congress to give him the authority to use military force against Syria’s regime for allegedly using deadly chemical weapons against civilians without presenting concrete proof to the public.

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Black New Yorkers protest possible U.S. military invasion of Syria

As President Obama weighed in on a possible military strike against Syria's regime, for allegedly using deadly chemical weapons against civilians without having any proof, hundreds of New Yorkers protested in Times Square on Thursday urging their government to stay out of Syria.

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'Law & Order: SUV' to combine Trayvon Martin and Paula Deen cases in upcoming episode.

In its 15th season, producers of Law and Order: SUV will show an episode of a Paula Deen-esque celebrity chef will who claim to have used self-defence for shooting an unarmed black teen named Mehcad, who was wearing a hoodie in Upper West Side in Manhattan, N.Y. because she thought she was being pursued by a rapist.

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New York City Council overrides Bloomberg’s veto of Community Safety Act

On the eve of the 50th anniversary of the historic March on Washington, the New City Council overrode Mayor Bloomberg’s veto of Community Safety Act on Thursday, clearing the way for the city to increase oversight of the NYPD and giving New Yorkers the ability to sue the Police Department if they are racially profiled.

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City Council to veto Bloomberg on Community Safety Act

The New York City Council plans to override Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s veto on a pair of two bills on Thursday, that will increase oversight of the NYPD and give New Yorkers the ability to sue the Police Department if they are racially profiled.

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Ramarley Graham parents still seeking justice for slain son

Emotions pored Thursday outside the Bronx District Attorney's office at a press conference, as Franclot Grahman and Constance Malcolm demanded the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to investigate the shooting death of their 18-year old son Ramarley Graham, a day after his killer Richard Haste was set free from manslaughter charges.

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