By Kiely Westhoff
New York State is giving $2 million to a fund for the victims of final week’s Bronx hearth that killed 17 individuals, New York Lt. Governor Brian Benjamin introduced Sunday.
Benjamin made the announcement at a mass public funeral for the victims on the Islamic Cultural Heart within the Bronx on Sunday morning.
“Because the Lieutenant Governor of New York State, I stand right here on behalf of Governor Kathy Hochul to say ‘we will likely be with you to make sure that this tragedy by no means occurs once more and we are going to ensure that the entire households — the 15 right here, the 2 who aren’t right here, and the entire households who have been impacted by this fireplace — know that the state will arise and help,’” Benjamin mentioned.
The fund will “will present tenants with case administration companies, private property alternative, and relocation and rental help to assist tackle essential family wants,” in line with a press launch from Governor Hochul’s workplace.
State officers will work with BronxWorks, a nonprofit group contracted by the state’s Emergency Wants for the Homeless Program.
The group will present consumption workers at a New York Metropolis service middle and also will supply companies comparable to burial help “and different help to assist meet essential family wants comparable to lack of revenue because of the demise of a family member,” the discharge states.
The state’s Workplace for New People can be at the moment working to attach impacted people with immigration authorized help as wanted, Hochul’s workplace mentioned.
‘Time to finish inequalities’
Final Sunday’s hearth on the 19-story Twin Parks North West constructing was New York Metropolis’s deadliest since 1990.
The fireplace began when an area heater malfunctioned in a third-floor duplex, a hearth official informed CNN.
The self-closing entrance door of the unit failed to shut, in line with hearth officers. The fireplace-fueled smoke unfold upward to the fifteenth ground, the place one other door failed to shut mechanically. Victims have been present in stairwells on each ground, many in cardiac and respiratory arrest.
All 17 victims — together with eight kids — died of smoke inhalation, in line with the town health worker. Almost all of them have been immigrants from The Gambia and different West African international locations.
New York Senator Chuck Schumer mentioned at Sunday’s funeral members of the family of victims in The Gambia will likely be allowed to go to New York to be with their family members throughout this time.
Schumer mentioned he labored alongside Congressman Ritchie Torres to open the Gambian Embassy, which has been closed as a result of Covid-19, to make it attainable to obtain them. Relations will start arriving early this week, in line with Schumer.
New York Lawyer Basic Letitia James, and New York Metropolis Mayor Eric Adams additionally attended and spoke on the funeral service. Adams mentioned he and his colleagues consider the fireplace shouldn’t be the legacy of the Bronx and its residents shouldn’t be compelled to reside with out fundamental requirements they deserve.
“However what is occurring right here within the Bronx is what’s taking place right here throughout our metropolis in communities with Black, brown, and immigrant persons are. It’s time to finish these inequalities, so we don’t have our infants and our households torn aside by tragedy. The American Dream for too many burnt in that fireplace. It’s our obligation to ensure that identical dream stays alive for all others,” Adams mentioned.
The lifeless included Haji Dukary, 49, his spouse, Haja Dukureh, 37, and their three younger kids. Fatoumata Tunkara, 43, and her 6-year-old son, Omar Jambang. Fatoumata Drammeh, 50, and three of her kids. There was Seydou Toure, 12, and 5-year-old sister Haouwa Mahamadou. The youngest sufferer was 2-year-old Ousmane Konteh.
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CNN’s Susannah Cullinane, Tami Luhby and Jennifer Feldman contributed to this report.