Protest Timeline

Please surf to Elmhurst United Homepage for the latest updates on the Pan Am protest.

Jan 21, 2015
Elmhurst United sends letter with an abundant amount of facts and reasons to Comptroller Scott Stringer urging him not to sign contract with Samaritan Village to covert the pan Am hotel into a homeless shelter

1) Exposing families with children to potential lead-paint poisoning and the City of New York to lead
paint litigation
2) Locking the City into a potential nine year long-term contract when other viable options may
become available
3) Violating NYC law which requires cooking facilities in each shelter unit
4) Paying a vendor who only allocates limited funds to assist the homeless out of their current
situation and who is destroying the community’s quality of life
5) Placing families with children in a shelter on the “Boulevard of Death”, thus exposing the City of
New York to lawsuits
6) Using taxpayers funds to pay $3,600+ per room, per month, when the average apartment rental
(with a kitchen and separate bedroom) in the area is $1,500
7) Placing the homeless in a facility with antiquated electrical wiring which cannot support a
computer or microwave usage in each room
8) Adding hundreds of students to the City’s most overcrowded school district (District 24)
9) Assigning the shelter with permanent status despite elected officials and the community’s
repeated objections without adding critical life involving resources (police, fire department,
hospitals, etc…)
10) Vendoring with a firm that the State Comptroller determined charged nearly $1 million in
questionable and unallowable expenses
11) Placing homeless families in a shelter deemed unsuitable, 4 or more to a hotel room with a length
of stay of several months
12) Moving 800+ individuals into one location to an already congested and under served community

December 13, 2014
“It is an outrage to take an abandoned hotel, warehouse homeless families inside it, ignore shocking City Code and HPD violations, waste an exorbitant amount of taxpayer dollars in the process, and then award a $42 million contract to a questionable-at-best organization, making the entire situation permanent,” Senator Avella said.

December 12, 2014
State Senator Avella said adults and children are living in rooms without kitchens, even though city law requires cooking units in family shelter facilities.

December 11, 2014
Pan Am Homeless Shelter open violations as cited by the Department of Housing Preservation & Development:
-No Water
-No Heat
-Peeling of lead based paint hazard



November 20, 2014
At nearly $4000 per month that the city pays for a prison-like cubicle to house a homeless family, the landlords and operators have found that capitalizing on the property as a shelter is much more profitable than maintaining the building as a hotel. Homelessness has been exploding in NYC, because it is such a lucrative enterprise at the taxpayers’ expense. Another example of a government welfare program run amok.

November 20, 2014
“What we are against is the process which condones negligence, and a ‘we will do it whether you like it or not’ attitude that has been so blatantly expressed by the agency (DHS).” said CB4 representative Christina Long.

November 20, 2014
“With no cooking facilities, very small rooms, bunk beds – it hardly seems cost efficient,” State Senator Stavisky said. “I think it’s too much money, too much work required and too many people.”

November 19, 2014
Another civic activist said the shelter would violate the state’s multiple dwellings law

November 18, 2014
Pan Am shelter violates laws as units do not have a kitchens

November 14, 2014
Cost breakdown of Samaritan Village’s contract with DHS for the operation of the 216 rooms Pan Am Homeless Shelter. This information was withheld from public viewing until it was announced by Calvin Pitter, Deputy Agency Chief Contracting officer at the contract hearing on November 13 at 11:am. 6 hours before the time limit for viewing the proposed contract expires.

Fair Share Analysis made by DHS for siting the Pan Am hotel as a Tier II homeless Shelter

November 13, 2014
“Asians are being bullied and discriminated against by the City of New York and the Department of Homeless Services,” said Elmhurst resisdent.

November 12, 2014
“Being here (Pan Am homeless shelter) is like being in Rikers Island, being in prison,” said shelter resident Weny Jamison.

November 06, 2014
Contract hearing for Pan Am and Westway to become permanent homeless shelter to be held at 10:00 AM on November 13th, 2014.
“NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that a Contract Public Hearing
will be held on Thursday, November 13, 2014, at 125 Worth
Street 2nd Floor Auditorium, Borough of Manhattan,
commencing at 10:00 A.M. on the following:
IN THE MATTER OF a proposed contract between the Department
of Homeless Services and Samaritan Village Inc., located at 138-02
Queens Boulevard, Briarwood, NY 11435, to operate a Stand Alone
Transitional Residence for homeless families located at 79-00 Queens
Boulevard, Elmhurst, NY 11373. The total contract amount shall be
$42,470,904. The contract term will be from December 6, 2014 to June
30, 2019, with a four year renewal option from July 1, 2019 to June 30,
2023. E-PIN #:07110P0002071.
The proposed contractor has been selected by means of Competitive
Sealed Proposals method (open-ended RFP), pursuant to Section 3-03
(b)(2) of the Procurement Policy Board Rules.
A draft copy of the proposed contract is available for public inspection
at the Department of Homeless Services, 33 Beaver Street, New York,
NY 10004, from October 31, 2014 to November 13, 2014, excluding
Saturdays, Sundays and holidays, from 9:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M.”

October 23, 2014
DHS Commisssioner Taylor admits lack of collaboration with impacted communities

October 22, 2014
DHS Commisssioner Taylor admits the Pan Am hotel do not meet all of DHS’s guidelines as a permanent shelters–discusses-transparency?

October 20, 2014
Less stringent requirements lead to dramatic increase in homeless shelter population in New York City

August 28, 2014
DHS a no-show at CEC 24 meeting

August 21, 2014
“(DHS provide) food you wouldn’t give to your dog” said shelter resident

August 14, 2014
Homelessness is a serious matter that Mayor de Blasio is ignoring

August 12, 2014
DHS’s response to Questions raised at Community Board meeting on July 1, 2014

July 31, 2014
Residents host BBQ for Pan Am families as most of the residents were upset over policy — not at the shelter families

July 24, 2014
Residents protest at the Pan Am for the third time

July 3, 2014
Residents rip city over Pan Am shelter as shelter residents accuse the local community of racism

June 126, 2014
Public meeting regarding the shelter at the Pan Am Hotel to be held at the Elks Lodge on June 30, 2014

June 19, 2014
A crowd of about 1,000 concerned area residents brought a stretch of the service road of Queens Boulevard to a standstill

June 12, 2014
DHS Assistant Commissioner Lisa Black insisted the 216-room Pan American Hotel at 79-00 Queens Blvd. would never be used as homeless housing But DHS did anyway!

June 10, 2014
Samaritan Village move 36 homeless families into the Pan Am Hotel and informs our elected officials at the last minutes as Comet organizes the first protest.