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Shema Kolainu Legislative Breakfast 2011

Tuesday, August 02, 2011
Honoring Boro Park Shomrim Patrol


Brooklyn, NY: On Tuesday morning, August 2nd nearly 200 of New York's most influential Jewish community leaders, policy makers, and their constituents gathered at the Renaissance Ballroom in Brooklyn, New York in support of Shema Kolainu: Hear Our Voices, a school and center for children with autism.

Legislators pledged their enduring support to secure legislation that benefits children and their parents who require ongoing personalized services such as those that Shema Kolainu provides. A special tribute was made to members of the New York State Legislature who acted as co-sponsors of a recent bill mandating insurance companies reimburse autism screenings. The award was presented to the following members of the Assembly and Senate: Adams, Brook-Krasny, Golden, Hikind, Heastie, Maisel, Ortiz, Parker, Weprin, and Weisenberg. Assemblyman Weisenberg recounted to the crowd that as a father of a special needs child, passing a bill like this will help schools such as Shema Kolainu-Hear Our Voices step in right away and provide services from the beginning.

Shema Kolainu expressed their gratitude to several additional honorees including NYC Comptroller John Liu who has hailed by State Comptroller DiNapoli for understanding the vital services the autistic population requires throughout his years in public service. Special Guest Consul General of Israel to New York Ido Aharoni, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer delivered greetings.

Assemblyman Dov Hikind spoke passionately in praise of the Shomrim patrol and presented Phil Goldfeder with a Public Service Award. A special presentation to the New York City Police Department and Boro Park Shomrim Patrol was also in order after the tragic search of Leiby Kletzky. Deputy Inspector John Sprague, Commanding Officer of 66th Precinct, was awarded the Community Appreciation Award.

Assemblyman David Weprin, currently running for the 9th Congressional District Special Election was also in attendance. Councilman David Greenfield thanked Assemblyman Weprin for his service in setting up the Autism Initiative during his days in City Council. As Councilman Greenfield mentioned "without David Weprin's leadership, we may not have the Autism Initiative at all." The Autism Initiative provides funding for schools and centers such as Shema Kolainu-Hear Our Voices who have pioneered a parent training program. The Initiative is now spearheaded by Councilman Mark Weprin who along with his colleagues Council Members: Eugene, Lander, Gentile, Fidler, Greenfield, and James, have ensured that funding was included in this year's City Budget. Special recognition was given to Councilman Brad Lander in whose district Shema Kolainu is located and is a tireless advocate for the school.

Shema Kolainu-Hear Our Voices was founded by the trailblazing Dr. Joshua Weinstein who said: “In the past 13 years, Shema Kolainu has served thousands of children with autism and has made a huge difference in improving their lives.Our Legislative Breakfast pays tribute to our elected officials who have contributed toward the goal of advancing autism education, and for that we are eternally grateful.” Opened in 1998, Shema Kolainu is headquartered in Brooklyn, New York. It is a non-profit, non-denominational organization dedicated to enhancing the quality of life of children with autism in the five boroughs of New York City. President and Founder Joshua Weinstein thanked everyone for coming and discussed the remarkable progress which had been made; Menachem Lubinsky, CEO of Lubicom Marketing, and Kalman Yeger, Masters of Ceremonies, thanked The Friedlander Group for coordinating the formal breakfast and also thanked everyone for coming to celebrate Shema Kolainu's Bar Mitzvah celebration.

Shema Kolainu: Hear Our Voices is a school for children with autism located in Brooklyn.
The Annual Shema Kolainu Legislative Breakfast is hosted annually to educate legislators about the urgency of Autism care and research, raise support and awareness and share ideas about working toward combating Autism through effective public policy and legislation. Communal, civic and religious leaders, philanthropists, and elected officials will be participating to pay tribute to several outstanding public officials for their role in furthering the mission of Shema Kolainu.
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One Seaport Plaza - 199 Water Street - 27th Floor
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t. (212) 233-5555
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