Open Letter To Make Community Ad Initiative Signed By Harlem World Magazine And Others

On May 22, 2019, Mayor Bill de Blasio signed Executive Order 47, one of the most consequential measures supporting the city’s community media industry.

The order directs all city agencies to spend at least 50 percent of their annual print and digital advertising budgets on the community media publications.

The order directs all city agencies to spend at least 50 percent of their annual print and digital advertising budgets on the community media publications.

The initiative has been a resounding success, as shown in an independent report by the Center for Community Media (CCM) at CUNY’s Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism.

In the fiscal year after the executive order was signed, New York City spent a record $9.9 million on community media publications, 84 percent of its total print and digital advertising budget.

In the fiscal year after the executive order was signed, New York City spent a record $9.9 million on community media publications, 84 percent of its total print and digital advertising budget.

We were offered a lifeline as we saw city agency campaigns rolling in, many of us receiving them for the first time. 

We are more than 230 print and digital publications serving communities in all five of the city’s boroughs, publishing in 37 languages.

We are more than 230 print and digital publications serving communities in all five of the city’s boroughs, publishing in 37 languages.

Without advertising from city agencies, many of us would not have survived the pandemic that saw so many businesses – who had advertised in and even distributed our newspapers – shutter across the city.

Many of these businesses may not return, and now more than ever, we have an essential role to play in helping our readers survive and rebuild in the wake of this pandemic. 

These public service campaigns reached vital communities of color and immigrant communities, in many languages, creating awareness about the resources available to them during the pandemic, guiding them on how to access critical services, and encouraging stronger civic engagement from an informed and responsive citizenry. 

As we move into a new year and get ready for the 2021 municipal elections, it’s time to build on the remarkable progress made by the de Blasio administration. Important steps are necessary to build on the progress made by the mayor:

  1. A renewed commitment from city leaders to continue the current policy of allocating at least 50 percent of the total print and digital ad budgets to the local community media while maintaining a robust ad budget 
  2. City Council legislation to solidify this commitment and protect it from political or administrative changes 
  3. Effective implementation of the new legislation in its true spirit

We also ask that the New York State government and Legislature follow suit. Like the City, the State will also find the community media a necessary partner in building a more engaged society. 

Here’s the list of all those who signed:

  • Kowshik Ahmed, Editor, Weekly Bangalee
  • Najmul Ahsan, Publisher, Weekly Parichoy
  • Manuel Alcantara, Editor, Peruanisimo News
  • María del Carmen Amado, Newspapers Group General Manager-Editor, Westchester Hispano, New York Hispano
  • Czarinna Andres, Co-Publisher, QueensPost
  • Lovlu Ansar, Executive Editor, Bangladesh Pratidin
  • Ruben Avxhiu, Editor-in-Chief, Illyria
  • Michael Babwar, Publisher, Caribbean Times News
  • Liudmyla Balabai, Managing Editor, ForumDaily Inc (ForumDaily.com)
  • Kevin Benoit, Founder, Editor-in-Chief, Parlé Magazine
  • Helen Cadena, Ad Sales Representative, Ecuador News, Ayllu Times
  • Isseu Diouf Campbell, Publisher, Africa in Harlem
  • Ibrahim Chowdhury, Editor, Prothom Alo
  • Angie Damlakhi, Owner, Allewaa Alarabi Newspaper
  • Silvana Diaz, Publisher, Noticia, El Correo NY
  • Sheikh Musa Drammeh, Publisher, Parkchester Times
  • R. Farrukh, Publisher, Weekly Awaz
  • George Fiala, Publisher, Red Hook Star Revue
  • David Mark Greaves, President & Publisher, Our Time Press
  • Sunil K. Hali, Publisher, Divya Bhaskar North American Edition, The Indian Eye Newsweekly
  • Rick Ho, General Manager, Sing Tao Daily
  • Manzoor Hussain, Executive Editor, Weekly Dunya International
  • Paul Jackson, Publisher, Harlem Times
  • Léopold L. Joseph, Publisher/Editor-in-Chief, Haiti Observateur
  • Adnan Khalil, Chief Editor, Al Hawadeth Newspaper
  • Maude LeBlanc, Editor-in-Chief, Haiti Progres
  • Henry Levy, Editor & Publisher, Jewish Post
  • Debbie McGoldrick, Senior Editor, Irish Voice Newspaper
  • Alec Meeker, Owner, Bushwick Daily
  • Kamlesh C. Mehta, Publisher, The South Asian Times & Forsythe Media Group, LLC
  • Hameed Minhas, Publisher, New York Awam
  • Síle Moloney, Interim Editor-in-Chief, Norwood News
  • Mutiu Olawuyi, Editor-in-Chief, Parkchester Times
  • Kishor Panthi, Editor-in-Chief, Khasokhas
  • Cristina DC Pastor, Founding Editor, The FilAm
  • Pearl Phillip, Editor-in-Chief, Caribbean American Weekly, The Immigrant’s Journal & Workers’ World Today Publications
  • Garry Pierre-Pierre, Founder/Publisher, The Haitian Times
  • Edward B. Prial, Publisher, The Chief Leader
  • Ilayas Quraishi, Chief Operating Officer, Parikh Worldwide Media, LLC and ITV Gold
  • Mahfuzur Rahman, Editor & Publisher, Weekly Bornomola
  • Mizanur Rahman, Editor, Thikana
  • Ricky Rillera, Executive Editor, Philippine Daily Mirror
  • Prof. Indrajit S. Saluja, Chief Editor, The Indian Panorama
  • Angchhiring Sherpa, Publisher, Everest Times 
  • Sharanjit Singh, Publisher, The South Asian Insider and Punjabi Dunya
  • Mica Soffer, Publisher, COLlive.com
  • Scott Stiffler, Founder/Editor, ChelseaCommunityNews.com
  • Danny Tisdale, Founder and Publisher, Harlem World Magazine
  • Sunil Tristar, Managing Director, eMalayalee Online, IndiaLife Online, IndiaLife Television, Pravasi Channel
  • Angel Vazquez River, Local Sales & Marketing Director, El Diario
  • Momar G. Visaya, Executive Editor, Asian Journal
  • Stephen Witt, Publisher, KingsCountyPolitics.com, QueensCountyPolitics.com, NewYorkCountyPolitics.com
  • Jeong Shin Yoon, Publisher, The Korea Daily New York
  • Liena Zagare, Editor & Publisher, BKLYNER

To find out more about the initiative please click on the independent report.

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