Mayor: City, NYPD will ensure peaceful J’Ouvert

Senator Kevin Parker with colorfully dressed nationals at the Gracie Mansion Carnival kickoff.
Photo by Tangerine Clarke

New York City Mayor, Bill deBlasio, during a Caribbean American Carnival kick-off reception at Gracie Mansion, on Tuesday, Aug. 28, said the city is proud to be working together with the NYPD and the community to celebrate J’Ouvert in peace.

“We are proud of the fact that we will be working together with the community and the NYPD, to celebrate jouvert in peace, we will march down Eastern Parkway, and send a message of the greatness of this community,” said the politician, adding that the diversity of the city is its strength.

“This is the most diverse city on earth, and the safest big city in the world, with a strong economy, and the most immigrants. We are stronger because of immigration,” said deBlasio.

He spoke of the strength and resilience of the Caribbean region, and took a jab at President Trump, saying. “We are confused by President Trump who comes from New York city, but does not have the values of New York city. The strength of the city is in our people. I don’t know why the president is scared of the people who don’t look like him.”

He said New York city, will stand with the Caribbean. “We wish there would be no more hurricane, or disaster in the Caribbean, but whatever the situation, we will stand with the Caribbean.

DeBlasio, who led a resounding applause in memory of the late President of WIADCA, Bill Howard, for his sterling contribution to carnival, the community, and for making Shirley Chisholm, who she was, also acknowledged Howard’s son, William, and his family in the audience.

The Mayor, who quipped that he was not born in the Caribbean, but his claim to fame is the “wonderful First Lady,” his children Dante and Keira, and former winner of the Grace Jerk chicken competition, calling himself an innovator of jerk cooking, went on to honor radio personality Angela Yee, host of the Breakfast Club, with a proclamation and named Aug. 28, 2018 — Angela Yee day in New York city. She was born to a Montserratian mother and Chinese father in Brooklyn.

First Lady Chirlane McCray who introduced Mayor deBlasio, and welcomed hundreds of colorfully dressed Caribbean nationals to Gracie Mansion, along with the politicians, announced that she would be one of the Grand Marshalls on Eastern Parkway on Labor Day Monday. She also reminded the audience to support her mental health initiative, Thrive NYC.

The blistering heat, on Aug. 28, was befitting the stirring celebration of music by string band “Caribbean Splash” that got nationals on the dance floor. Costume clad couple, Susan Leung-Yuen and Tony Reece also got into the fun where festive Caribbean fare was the order of the evening.

In attendance, were Sen. Roxanne Persaud, Congresswoman Yvette Clarke, Dr. Una S. T. Clarke, Sen. Kevin Parker, Councilmember Mathieu Eugene, Councilmember, Jumaane D. Williams, President of the Caribbean Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Inc., Dr. Roy Hastick and others.

The mayor also welcomed, members of the CARICOM Consular Corps, Guyana’s CG to NY, Barbara Atherly, Barbados CG to NY, Dr. Donna Hunte-Cox, CG of Trinidad & Tobago to NY, Kiva Clarke and Trinidad and Tobago to the UN, Ambassador Pennelope Beckles.

More from Around NYC