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Bronin Signs Contract with Dept of Interior


HARTFORD — Mayor Luke Bronin on Wednesday announced that he has signed a General Agreement with the U.S. Department of Interior, National Park Service regarding security measures at Coltsville Park.

In December 2014, Coltsville became a National Historical Park. The areas within Coltsville that received “National Historical Park” status include the following sites: Colt Armory, Church of the Good Shepard, Caldwell Colt Memorial Parish House, Colt Park, the Potsdam Cottages, Armsmear, and the James Colt House. The Public Law designating Coltsville as a National Historical Park also required that the NPS and the City enter into a written agreement regarding management of the land within the National Historical Park.

In September 2016,  Bronin submitted a resolution to the Common Council authorizing the City to enter into a General Agreement with the U.S. Department of Interior, NPS for the Coltsville National Historical Park, which fulfills the management of the land within the National Park requirement.

The Common Council approved the resolution on Oct. 24, 2016.

 

The five-year agreement signed by Bronin stipulates that both parties work together for the preservation and redevelopment of the National Historical Park and the neighborhood, develop a pattern of collaboration and communication, develop projects of mutual benefit leading to the conservation of historic resources, and creatively research funding opportunities for projects.

The NPS will be responsible for providing interpretation and education and managing special events to be held on the NPS-owned property.

In addition, the NPS and the City will cooperate in protecting and preserving the historical and cultural resources in Coltsville National Historical Park.

 

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Asian Host First Culture Night


HARTFORD — The Asian American Student Association at Trinity College hosted the first Intercollegiate Asian American Culture Night in the Admissions Grand Room.

In addition to the Trinity students who hosted the event in November, the conference welcomed Asian culture clubs from the University of Connecticut, Eastern Connecticut State University, Connecticut College, and Wesleyan University.

Members of the Trinity College Asian American Student Association executive board with Trinity College President Joanne Berger-Sweeney

Members of the Trinity College Asian American Student Association executive board with Trinity College President Joanne Berger-Sweeney

Each club brought food to share with the group, and offered introductions and presentations as the students got to know one another. “The energy was very high, and the enthusiasm for future events such as this was very apparent,” said Ethan Yang, the first-year representative for Trinity’s AASA and one of the conference organizers. “During the open microphone session, many people passionately discussed issues relating to the Asian American identity, including conflicts with tradition, acceptance, fitting in, and being criticized for not looking Asian.”

The event organizers believe that this was the first step toward forming a coalition to unite Asian American culture clubs from colleges across Connecticut. The organization aims to encourage further collaboration and communication amongst its member clubs.

“My co-host Hamna Tariq and I had the privilege of hosting one of the most successful and productive AASA events ever,” Yang said. “Overall, this event was an unprecedented and historic step that has created momentum that will surely change the state of Connecticut for the collegiate Asian American, and hopefully all cultures.”

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Woman Reports Crucible Experience with Witchcraft


By Robin Adams, Contributor

AVON, Conn. — In what could be described as a crucible experience, an Avon woman was held hostage and tortured by more than a dozen people, who claimed they were  witches and wizards, according to eye witness reports to The Hartford Guardian.

The woman, who  was made unconscious on several occasions during daylong torture sessions since the 2014 election,  was attacked while she was sleeping in her Avon home.

Since then the women and men, who claimed they belong to a Santanic cult in the Avon Police Department and the Ku Klux Klan, also began isolating her  from her family–after setting up incidents to have her car towed.  Enying her beauty and youthful appearance, they used Santeria to wake her at nights, so that she could get bags under her eyes or sleep with makeup.

A former model, actress,  the woman apparently attracted someone several women dated, sources said. And they didn’t want her to be as pretty, slim, youthful and smart, neighbors said.

All year the women, who are mostly white, have been orchestrating several “witches brew”  and Seances to damage the woman’s teeth,  skin, hair, breasts, nails, figure, clothes, shoes, and  jewelry.

“They clearly wanted to cause damage to a woman, who is youthful, healthy and attractive,” said Robert Cotto.”They were not supposed to stay after the 2014 election campaign was over.”

witch-craftCotto said the political operatives, some of whom used witchcraft also  entered the woman’s home to damage her carpet,  windows,  stove, refrigerator,  bathroom, and other parts of her home. One of the alleged witches also moved in  the neighborhood to be the woman’s next door neighbor, so she could harass her every night, according to reports.

To date, the woman has made several complaints and there has been no arrests by the Avon Police Department because “the police chief was embarrassed by the woman’s barbaric behavior.”  However, the police allegedly used paranormal investigators, and the woman’s story was verified by Santeria priests.

According to sources, the modern practices of  “witchcraft” have grown dramatically since the early 20th century. Generally portrayed as revivals of pre-Christian European ritual that involves  varying degrees of magic, shamanism, calling on spirits.

Katie Stevenson, a neighbor watching the crime and who later became involved, allegedly threatened to kill the woman if she reported the crime to the police. The woman has reported several breakins and harassment by locals, who claim they were using a “hatch clause” to chase blacks out of Avon–an affluent and mostly white suburb in Greater Hartford.

Other town residents would also accost her while she was in the Avon Public Library, walking or jogging.

So far, the cult has caused about $80 million in damages.

The other women and men who are allegedly used witchcraft or Santeria to invite others  to damage the woman’s body, hair and face are:  Desiree Barnes, Andrea Comer, Shelly Sindland,  Chris Jansen, Michelle Kosinski, Janice Flemming, Rahiel Tesfamaiam, Francesca Chambers, Jennifer Tucker, Amber C. Leitao, Vanessa de la Torre, Katie Stevenson, Lisa Rabuse, Peter Velz, Brian Gabriel, Shawn Turner, Rachel Racusen and Jennifer Friedman.

Related Stories:

In Lawsuit, 3 Charge Racism Against Avon Police

Former Avon Police Officer Claims Racial Discrimination Led to Termination

Avon Police Scolded for Anti-Obama Email

 

 

 

 

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Middletown Group to Hold Annual Open House


MIDDLETOWN — Artists for World Peace, a non-profit humanitarian organization, will be holding our annual Open House event on Dec.  3 at the deKoven House Community Center

The event is scheduled from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. located at 27 Washington St. in Middletown.

Organizers said they will be hosting a community dialogue on peace and unity, and discussing how they can start to heal the divide that has come to light within different communities.  They  are welcoming community members from all over Connecticut to join them fora free event, they said.
They will have food, beverages, a holiday marketplace, and  showcase of the humanitarian work they have accomplished in 2016.
If you have an questions-or comments, call or email:  Kelley Salemi, 860-830-8736 or kelley@artistsforworldpeace.org.

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Connecticut State Troopers Investigate KKK Video


EAST WINDSOR — The Ku Klux Klan has emerged waving flags, lighting bon fires, and disrupting residents in East Windsor, police said early Monday.

According to State Police investigating the incident, a video recently  surfaced on Facebook showing someone dressed in a Ku Klux Klan outfit at a bonfire with Trump signs.

News reports say the video may have stemmed from a bonfire in Stafford Springs.

This is not the first time Connecticut has seen symbols of hate. In 1986,  the Ku Klux Klan held a national convention and burned a cross on an isolated farm in East Windsor.

It was also happening around the country. Most recently, the KKK rallied in Nevada in support of Donald Trump.

The video, posted on social media, shows an individual wearing a robe and a hood waving a Trump flag.

Stafford’s first selectman, Anthony Frassinelli, said he met with law enforcement Monday morning as the video was circulating online. He said they won’t let the actions of “a few ignorant people embarrass our town and its residents.”

Police said these individuals could face trespassing charges because they were rallying on someone else’s property.

East Windsor First Selectman Bob Maynard tells News 8 he believes the video was filmed in gravel pits in the southern part of town.  News 8 also reports that this is an area accessible only by off road vehicles.

Also on Monday, Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton posted on Facebook that recently spray painted swastikas in the city.

“Rest assured that the city of Danbury will not tolerate acts of hate. When the person or persons are apprehended they will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law,” Boughton wrote.

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East Hartford Police Seek Missing Elderly in Hartford


EAST HARTFORD —  Police is seeking the whereabouts of an elderly man whose last known address was in East Hartford.

Alexander Aleo, 94, was last seen on video and by a teller at Off Track Betting in Hartford. Police said he is a regular customer.

He has not contacted family and travels to very few other locations and always returns home before dark. Family last spoke to him by phone after 8PM on Saturday.

He has no major health issues, police said. He should be operating CT 685TML, a grey 2005 Hyundai Sonata 4 door sedan. Hospitals and other locations checked were negative.

Please give this announcement your widest broadcast.

Please contact East Hartford Police with any information.

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What Immigrant Communities Can Do to Prepare for Trump


SAN FRANCISCO — Two days after Donald Trump’s victory, immigration experts told reporters to keep a close eye on the president-elect’s transition team and his appointments to key government positions, for clues as to what to expect from his administration once he is sworn in on Jan. 20, 2017.

“We’re hearing a lot of questions and, honestly, a little bit of panic,” said Sally Kinoshita, deputy director of Immigrant Legal Resource Center.

But, she said, it’s important to put the election in context.

“When you look at the popular vote [which Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton won], “the majority of Americans did not vote for Trump and his anti-immigrant rhetoric,” Kinoshita said on a national press call organized by New America Media and Ready California, a coalition of nonprofits that serve immigrant communities.

“This election,” she cautioned, “is not a reflection of Americans in general and their views of immigrants.”

What the polls got wrong

The election of Donald Trump came as a surprise to pollsters, who had estimated Clinton’s chances of winning at 70 percent and up.

“From a historical standpoint, the polling was wrong for the following reasons: Turnout in urban centers [that traditionally vote Democratic] was slightly lighter than expected; and turnout in rural areas was higher than expected,” explained Anthony Williams, special project director of the Miami-based public opinion research firm Bendixen & Amandi International.

This had the effect of “flipping three states that nobody thought were in play: Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin, and, to a certain extent, Florida,” he said.

But a look at the total numbers shows that Trump prevailed in the Electoral College, not because of a swell of enthusiasm for the Republican candidate, but because of a lack of enthusiasm for Clinton.

Trump’s vote total was roughly equal to GOP candidate John McCain’s total in 2008, and he got fewer votes than GOP candidate Mitt Romney got in 2012.

Clinton, meanwhile, got about 60 million votes – six million fewer than Barack Obama got in 2012, and 10 million fewer than Obama got in 2008.

While there was “very little evidence” of an insidious effort at voter suppression in this election, said Williams, there were “other forms of voter suppression, not the least of which was the overwhelming sense that it was over.

“You could make the argument,” he said, “that the perception of [Clinton’s] victory suppressed turnout [in urban areas that would have voted for Clinton].”

An increase in Hispanic, Asian voters and Senators

“The notion that there was a Hispanic wave was real,” noted Williams. “In Nevada, the increase in Hispanic turnout was the difference in the election.”

But Williams said that in other states, such as Florida, there were not enough Latino voters to overcome the increase in the rural, white voter turnout.

Christine Chen, executive director APIAVote, also saw an increased level of voter participation of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs), over two-thirds of whom are first-generation immigrants.

Based on early voter turnout, she said, the AAPI vote doubled in Florida, Arizona, Virginia and North Carolina, and tripled in Georgia.

Two Asian American women were elected to the U.S. Senate, joining Mazie Hirono of Hawaii: Tammy Duckworth of Illinois, who is Thai Chinese, and Kamala Harris of California, who is African American and Indian.

In Nevada, Catherine Cortez Masto became the first Latina ever elected to the U.S. Senate.

A challenging time ahead

The election of Trump, a candidate who made fear and xenophobia a central part of his campaign, has spurred advocates to pledge to fight for the dignity of all families.

“There’s no doubt we are entering a challenging period. The election was divisive and damaging. We saw hate crimes, hateful rhetoric,” said Kamal Essaheb, national director of policy and advocacy for National Immigration Law Center.

“President-Elect Trump has called for unity in his election night speech, but obviously his actions are going to have to speak louder,” Essaheb said.

The most important thing to do now, he said, is to make sure immigrants are prepared and know their rights.

One thing to keep in mind, he said, are the limits of presidential power.

“The Constitution protects everyone,” Essaheb said. “Law enforcement has to show you [a warrant to enter your house]. You have the right to remain silent. You have the right to call an attorney.”

“There are things he can do that will be harmful,” said Essaheb. But, he said, “Trump cannot take away the Constitution. He cannot take away the people’s rights.”

Another thing he can’t take away are state and local laws, such as California’s AB 60, which allows undocumented immigrants to get a driver’s license. “State and city-level policies did not change on Tuesday night,” Essaheb said. “The same opportunities are there; the imperative to act is higher.”

Trump has said that he would repeal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), the executive action taken by President Obama in 2012 that gives certain undocumented immigrants who came here as children access to a work permit.

He has said that he would eliminate federal funding to so-called “sanctuary cities” whose policies limit cooperation between local police and federal immigration authorities.

He has talked about stepping up deportations, with “zero tolerance for criminal aliens.”

He has also talked about building a wall, something that experts say is neither practical nor feasible.

He has even hinted at a path to legalization for undocumented immigrants, Essaheb noted, saying that once we enforce our laws, we can start to have a conversation about the people who are already here.

What families can do now

Although it is hard to know exactly what to expect under a Trump administration, there are some steps families can take now to stay safe and plan for their future.

Sally Kinoshita of Immigrant Legal Resource Center noted that Trump is not president until Jan. 20, 2016. Until then, the DACA program remains in effect.

It takes several months for DACA applications to be processed, Kinoshita said, so if people have not applied for DACA, it might be too late.

Trump has said he would get rid of the program; the earliest this would happen is his first day in office.

Renewals, which take eight weeks to be processed, would be much less of a risk, said Kinoshita. Some people are renewing their DACA now while Obama is in office, in order to get a two-year work permit.

Anyone planning to renew DACA now should know that the price for DACA increases to $495 on Dec. 23, 2016. Loans are available through the Mission Asset Fund, Self-Help Federal Credit Union, the Mexican Consulate or local service providers.

Because there is expected to be an increase in enforcement, prioritizing those with criminal records, she said, people should avoid brushes with the law.

“Something like a DUI or a drug conviction can have permanent immigration consequences,” Kinoshita said.

Those who live in California can get certain felonies reduced to misdemeanors under Prop 47.

Kinoshita encouraged all immigrants to go to a qualified legal services provider to be screened for other forms of immigration relief.

To find free or low-cost nonprofit legal services providers near you, go to the Immigration Advocates Network’s national directory.

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Mayor Ganim Swears In New Health Director


BRIDGEPORT —  Mayor Joe Ganim on Tuesday swore in a new Director of Health for the city of Bridgeport.

Maritza Bond brings extensive experience in health administration including nearly a decade with the Eastern Area Health Education Center covering Eastern Connecticut from a base in New London, serving as the organization’s executive director for the last four years.  Bond also has experience managing immunization, medical interpretation  and other programs for diverse populations in the Bridgeport area and the Naugatuck Valley.

Bond’s first official day as Bridgeport Director of Health was on Nov. 1  and according to Connecticut state law, she is now sworn in for a term of four years, to conclude on October 31, 2020.

She is a graduate of Southern Connecticut State University and holds a Master of Public Health Degree from the University of Connecticut Medical School in Farmington.

Bond was nominated for the position by Mayor Ganim after a thorough search and was overwhelmingly approved by the Bridgeport city council on Oct. 17, 2016.

“I am very happy to have Maritza Bond as part of our administration, I am sure she will serve the residents of Bridgeport extremely well,” said Mayor Ganim.  “She clearly has passion and energy for this work and we look forward to years of accomplishments in improving public health in our city that Maritza will lead.”

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Supporter from Simsbury Vie for Lydia Tedone


Dear Editor,

I support  Lydia Tedone for state representative.

As a parent, a preschool teacher and as our voice in Hartford on key issues before the legislature, Lydia’s passion and experience is always evident. She has served as a leader of the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education and as a representative on the National Association of School Boards. Lydia is our voice in Washington, meeting with members of Congress to help craft education reform and funding that works. Imagine that drive and tenacity working for us in Hartford — we could not ask for better!

Given the state pressure on education funding, having someone with Lydia’s understanding is critical. As chairman, Lydia worked with school administrators and her fellow board members to craft responsible budgets that maintained the lowest budget increases over a sustained period of years on record, all while Simsbury continues to rank in the top 10 of national lists. Wouldn’t be nice to see what other lists we could top with Lydia in Hartford?

support for Lydia Tedone for state representative from Simsbury.

I have served on the board of education with Lydia for the last nine years. As a parent, a preschool teacher and as our voice in Hartford on key issues before the legislature, Lydia’s passion and experience is always evident. She has served as a leader of the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education and as a representative on the National Association of School Boards. Lydia is our voice in Washington, meeting with members of Congress to help craft education reform and funding that works. Imagine that drive and tenacity working for us in Hartford — we could not ask for better!

Given the state pressure on education funding, having someone with Lydia’s understanding is critical. As chairman, Lydia worked with school administrators and her fellow board members to craft responsible budgets that maintained the lowest budget increases over a sustained period of years on record, all while Simsbury continues to rank in the top 10 of national lists. Wouldn’t be nice to see what other lists we could top with Lydia in Hartford?

Please bring true change and balance back to our state government by voting for Lydia Tedone.

Susan Salina, Simsbury

 

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Hartford Parents Offered Money Workshops


HARTFORD —  Hartford parents can now learn steps they can take early on to save for college, use online financial tools, and how to find and apply for scholarships.

The city of Hartford in partership with other stakeholders will offer the following courses:
· Citizenship Status and Attaining Access to Education- Families will learn how citizen status is not a barrier to educational attainment on any level, elementary school to college. Presented by Stefan Keller, College Access Program Coordinator, Connecticut Students for a Dream.
· Careers in Computer Science – Families will learn how the field of computer science is growing and ways that students can fill the shortage in our labor market. Presented by James Veseskis, Project Coordinator Exploring Computer Science CT.
· College Fair – High school students will have the opportunity to talk with admissions representatives from colleges in the Hartford community, such as Central Connecticut State University and Tunxis Community College
· High School Planning- Middle school students will learn how to apply for the public, magnet, technical, and regional schools.
· Food and refreshments will be provided to those who register
· Childcare available for children 2-years-old and older
· Exciting games and prizes for students!
· Registration is currently open on Eventbrite (deadline for registration is October 21):
English: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/hartford-public-schools-college-and-career-readiness-family-event-tickets-28199343997
Spanish: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/evento-para-la-familia-acerca-de-la-preparacion-universitaria-y-profesional-de-las-escuelas-tickets-28394797604

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