Afternoon Bulletin: New Women’s Homeless Shelter, Inmates Trounce Harvard in Debate

NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 28: A homeless person is viewed in Penn Station on January 28, 2014 in New York City. Over 3,000 volunteers canvased parks, subways, bus stations and other public spaces early Tuesday morning as part of the New York City Department of Homeless Services annual Homeless Outreach Population Estimate (HOPE), where it tries to gain an accurate estimate of the city's homeless population. The study is part of the federally required Point-In-Time survey, which serves as a snapshot of how many are homeless on any given day in a community. The results are used to devise ways to both better understand the nation's homeless population and ways to assist them in getting off of the streets. According to a recent study by the by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, New York City's homeless population increased by 13 percent at the beginning of 2013. Despite an improving local economy, as of last January an estimated 64,060 homeless people were in shelters and on the street in New York. Only Los Angeles had a larger percentage increase than New York for large cities. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

The city is tackling a rising number of homeless women by converting several hotels into shelters (Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images).

The city has announced that it is opening a homeless shelter in Long Island City that will be designated for women. With a rising number of single adult women entering the shelter system, the Verve Hotel in Dutch Kills will be opening its doors to 200 homeless women this Friday. As one of several hotels converted into homeless shelters in the area, it will offer services including mental health treatment and money management. Some have voiced concern over the shelter’s close proximity to Growing Up Green Charter School; however, city officials have said that the shelter will have 24-hour security on all six floors, along with three security guards at the front entrance and an X-ray scanner. (DNAinfo)

With a national title, the Harvard debate team fell short against a team of New York inmates. Two years ago, a group of inmates at the Eastern New York Correctional Facility—a maximum-security prison—teamed up to create a debate team, gaining enough confidence to invite the Ivy League team for a friendly competition. The inmates came out of the debate victorious, arguing several issues; one particular challenge for the team was arguing in favor of public schools that turn away students whose parents entered the U.S. illegally. The team is slowly building their reputation, with debate victories against the U.S. Military Academy at West Point as well as the University of Vermont. (New York Post)

Students and parents gathered in the city today to rally in support of a charter school expansion in New York City. Participants in the Education Inequality Rally believe that failing public schools should be shut down and replaced by charter schools, arguing charter schools to be more beneficial for children. Protesters will march across the Brooklyn Bridge and rally in front of City Hall, as they have done in the past. “They provide an educational opportunity for all these children that would not be provided otherwise,” said Tyrone Smith, a charter school parent. (NY1)

Urban Outfitters is the latest retailer to respond to Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s inquiry into stores that require workers to report to shifts on short notice. The store will now end on-call scheduling at all stores in New York. In April, the Attorney General’s office wrote a letter to 13 major retailers, denouncing the stores’ on-call customs and questioning potential violations of New York’s requirement to pay staff on an hourly basis. Mr. Schneiderman previously sought out New York employers who cheated or underpaid low-wage workers. (ABC News)

Afternoon Bulletin: New Women’s Homeless Shelter, Inmates Trounce Harvard in Debate