Thursday, July 25, 2013
Gramercy Park Doe Fund street cleaning crew reassigned "temporarily"
Photo by Alex Nguyen
Left to right: Richard Witherspoon, Antonio Ayala, James, Clifford Andre Foster, GPBA President Arlene Harrison, Supervisor Frederick Torbert, Lawrence Green
According to many Gramercy Park area residents, The Doe Fund's Ready, Willing, and Able street cleaning crew, who have worked in the area since 2011, have made a huge difference in the neighborhood's cleanliness and quality of life. The Gramercy Park Block Association President Arlene Harrison, who originally welcomed The Doe Fund to the neighborhood, recently learned from the Director of their Community Improvement Project Raymond Damm that the crew would be reassigned "temporarily" to another location.
As a result, community members sent many dozens of e-mails to Damm to praise the crew's Supervisor Frederick Torbert and his men for their outstanding service, and to request their return to the Gramercy Park area. Damm responded to each individual e-mail, "We hope to be back in the Gramercy Park community in the near future."
To express the community's appreciation, GPBA board member Kathleen Scupp organized a luncheon for the men.
Ready, Willing and Able is a program for formally homeless individuals that seeks to prepare them for employment, self-supported housing, and independence, and is considered one of the most successful paid work programs in the country.