Budget hearing for youth services

Brooklyn Council Member Dr. Mathieu Eugene.

Brooklyn Council Member Dr. Mathieu Eugene, chair of the Committee on Youth Services, said his committee on Friday jointly hosted a preliminary budget hearing with the Committee on Community Development in the Council Chambers at City Hall in lower Manhattan.

Eugene, who represents the 40th Council District in Brooklyn, said the Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD) testified at the hearing.

Youth service providers, advocates, community leaders, and members of the public also presented testimony.

As someone who has long been an advocate for our young people, Eugene said he understands “how critically important it is for a society to make a strong investment in its youth.”

Last year, as the new chair of the Youth Services Committee, Eugene said he, combined with the strong support of Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, was instrumental in expanding the number of Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP) jobs from some 35,000 slots to nearly 47,000 positions, an increase of nearly 10,700 jobs.

Eugene said he also worked hard to increase funding for many other critically-needed youth programs and services that included Comprehensive After School System (COMPASS) programs and services for Homeless and Runaway Youth.

The council member said he is looking forward to continue working with others to increase and improve programs for youth in every part of New York City.

“There is no question that the most important investment that we can make is in our youth,” he said.

“In New York and in municipalities across the United States, the government has a moral obligation to provide our young people with the resources that will enable them to have the skills, experiences and self-esteem that they need to achieve anything that they set out to accomplish in life,” he added. Eugene said Friday’s hearing supports services and initiatives that are “essential to our youth achieving their maximum potential as children and throughout their adult years.”

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