April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month and in light of that I feel compelled to stand alongside so many dedicated individuals to end the often ignored epidemic of sexual abuse and sexual exploitation of innocent young girls and boys.  Recently, State Representative Erik Fresen and I, along with State Senator Anitere Flores, embarked on a journey in Tallahassee. This journey, known as House Bill 99, "Safe Harbor Act," recently culminated with the governor's signature and is now law in the State of Florida.  This bill ensures we adequately address victims of child exploitation as just that, victims. This good bill will protect young boys and girls who are being lured and trafficked in the sex industry in our own back yard. The bill was authored by Kristi House Executive Director Trudy Novicki. Kristi House is the Children's Advocacy Center for all of Miami-Dade County and is dedicated to providing a healing environment for child victims of sexual abuse and their families.
Commissioner Dorrin D. Rolle is releasing the following statement regarding the tenants of both the 820 and 840 buildings of NW 70th Street, who were evicted when both buildings went into foreclosure: “My heart goes out to the residents of the Liberty City apartment complex who now face uncertainty with the recent eviction from their homes.
The 2009 numbers are in and violent and non-violent crimes in unincorporated Miami-Dade are at their lowest levels in five years. Nearly every area tracked revealed decreases, including robberies and motor vehicle thefts. The drop is in line with national trends, but it's also the result of long-term, comprehensive efforts to fight crime through targeted enforcement, community engagement and interagency cooperation. To the men and women of the Miami-Dade Police Department, thank you for your hard work, dedication and determination to keep our neighborhoods safe.
It was just after 4:30 one quiet morning in Tallahassee when a gun fight broke out between rival street gang members, the gunfire piercing the slumber of many residents in this part of the Panhandle where ringing church bells are the more typical Sunday wake-up call. When it was over, 15-year old Michael Jackson was mortally wounded, later pronounced dead at a local hospital. The two other gang members? According to the trial judge, they were acting in self defense in the deadly 2008 shootout, and under Florida “Stand Your Ground law, the killing was justified.
During boom and bust, I'm bullish on Miami, and nothing about the last few years has changed that. Anyone who disagrees is welcome to take a walk onto Biscayne Boulevard past the condos, bustling shops and sidewalk cafes that were not there six years ago. I'll take you to the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts which helped reinvent Downtown Miami. I'll show you projects from the Building Better Communities bond program, which is laying the foundation for the next generation of growth in Miami-Dade. And I'll give you an amazing view of the whole thing from the upper deck of our new ballpark, which is on track to be a national model for public-private partnerships.