Mayor Endorsed For Reelection By Christian Cultural Center Pastor
Mayor Michael Bloomberg was endorsed Sunday by Reverend A.R. Bernard, Pastor and CEO of the Christian Cultural Center (CCC), which boasts 30,000 members and is located east of Canarsie. Joining Rev. Bernard at the press event were community and civic leaders Joyce S. Johnson and Virginia L. Montague, who also threw their support behind Bloomberg's campaign. All three praised the mayor for his commitment to improving New York's schools, creating jobs, building affordable housing and keeping New York's streets safe and clean.
"New York is a place of boundless energy, of big dreams and a can-do spirit that has shown America and the world, time and time again, the path out of darkness and despair and into the light of prosperity and opportunity. We've done it before and we'll do it again, with Mike Bloomberg at the helm of our ship," said Rev. Bernard. "I'm proud to unequivocally endorse Mike Bloomberg for Mayor. I lend my support not simply because of Mayor Bloomberg's acumen as an executive but because I am optimistic and hopeful about the future of the City I love dearly."
Reverend Bernard is the founding Pastor of the CCC. He is also the President of the Council of Churches of the City of New York representing 1.5 million Protestant, Anglicans and Orthodox Christians. Bernard sits on the New York City Economic Development Corporation Board and New York City School Chancellor's Advisory Cabinet.
"Reverend A.R. Bernard is a life-changing force in Brooklyn and in communities all across our country," said Mayor Bloomberg. "This endorsement speaks to the one New York we've become. We've improved our public schools, built affordable housing, and protected our most vulnerable; the elderly, the homeless and our children. Working side by side, during these difficult economic times is the only way that we can keep New York City moving forward. Together, in the next four years we'll achieve even more for all New Yorkers."
Mayor Bloomberg has created initiatives to help workers get training and jobs, as well as help small businesses thrive. He opened Workforce 1 Career Centers in neighborhoods across the city, including Brooklyn. He also created the Minority and Women Owned Business Enterprise Program to make sure that African American owned small businesses have a fair shot at landing City contracts. Nearly 2,000 companies have been certified to participate in this program.
Thanks in part to strong community relations, crime has been reduced by nearly 30 percent during Mayor Bloomberg's two terms. He has signed legislation forbidding racial profiling, and has been in the forefront of the fight against the scourge of illegal guns on New York City Streets, strengthening gun laws, suing out of state gun dealers and forming a national coalition to fight for tougher federal gun laws.
After the mayor abolished the ineffective Board of Education and brought standards and accountability to city public schools, student achievement has improved dramatically. He has also cracked down on the violence, disobedience and distractions that prevented children from learning. School crime is down 34% since 2001. Under the Mayor's leadership, there has been an 11.2 percentage point increase in the four-year high school graduation rate in New York City and 66,000 new classroom seats have been added in public schools across the city.