You should know that today’s “What You Should Know” column is a letter written to me by Mr. Jose Avila, President of Garifuna Coalition USA, Inc. Mr. Avila, through his organization, organized most of the Garifuna organizations in Bronx County.
“Blessings Councilman Ruben Diaz, as a black Honduran of Garifuna ancestry, I have had an affinity with you and great respect for your achievements.
I have witnessed your service to the entire Latin American, African American, Bangladesh, and Taiwanese community. My friends are surprised when I tell them that I met Assemblyman Marcos A. Crespo in Senator Diaz’s office as his community coordinator. I also met Senator Luis Sepulveda in Senator Diaz’s office after his first attempt to reach the assembly and his accomplishment later in 2012. I have also observed them put into practice their teachings of service to the community.
Personally, I am forever grateful for you opening the doors to empower the Garifuna community. You have been more than just an advisor, a great friend who put your office and staff at my disposal. You were the first state legislator who invited and led the Garifuna community to the capitol and the Chambers of the New York Senate, where the month of the Garifuna heritage was proclaimed, the invocation was presented in the Garifuna language and our story was read.
Both Senators and Assemblymembers from all over the state came to know our community during those tours. With increased visibility, our community sponsored the Abrazo Garifuna for seven years, where elected officials of all levels, Union leaders, lobbyists, and members of other communities, met our Garifuna community.
When moving to the City Council of New York, you assigned discretionary funds to the benefit of the Garifuna community.
I totally agree that the Black Puerto Rican, with kinky hair and a broken English, also known as “the cowboy” has been doing a great job here in Bronx County. The facts are the facts and I quoted them earlier.
Congratulations and thank you for your friendship and support. May God continue to bless you.”
I am Councilmember Rev. Rubén Díaz, Sr. and this is what you should know.