Accusation: Gannett silences black critics of Bramson

PRESS RELEASE FROM New Rochelle Lincoln Zuber Riders for Justice

Journal News takes local civil rights group cash, then spikes their ad

September 20, 2013 — NEW ROCHELLE, NY— New Rochelle Lincoln Zuber Riders  for Justice, a local New Rochelle organization made up of several prominent African-American leaders, held a press conference Saturday  in New Rochelle and demanded the Journal News run a print advertisement accepted and paid for earlier this week, but spiked Thursday night by Gannett corporate.

The advertisement documents New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson’s long-standing hostility and discrimination toward blacks in New Rochelle. It was only after the paper was put to bed last night that New Rochelle Lincoln Zuber Riders for Justice was notified that the newspaper wanted two words changed in the advertisement. After further discussion, a Journal News advertising executive admitted that even if the words were changed Gannett corporate had directed the Journal News not to run the ad. No explanation for corporate’s decision was provided.

“As long as I have been reading newspapers, I have never heard of a newspaper refusing to run an ad like this.” said McLean, Spokesman for the Zuber Riders. “This is the kind of underhanded tactics we have seen for years from Bramson and his allies.”

The Zuber Riders print ad banned by the Journal News lists the ways Noam Bramson has locked Blacks out of contracts, out of jobs, out of elected representation, even Lincoln Park, the site of one of the most important Civil Rights cases in U.S. history.

McLean said many in the New Rochelle black community have long felt bitterness and distrust for Mayor Bramson but said what galvanized the group to speak out was when the President of the NAACP, New Rochelle Chapter, was thrown out of historic Lincoln Park on September 5.

“When they threw Ron out of Lincoln Park, that was the straw that broke the camel’s back,” said McLean. “We knew we couldn’t remain silent anymore. People need to know what we know about Noam Bramson’s attitude towards blacks. For too long the black community in New Rochelle has be taken for granted, violated and silenced,” said McLean. “We will not stand for it anymore. We deserve better!”

On hand at the press conference were members of New Rochelle’s African-American community including Ron Williams, President of the NAACP New Rochelle Branch, Pearl Quarles, former Westchester County Legislator and former President of New Rochelle School Board.