Sign up For DC 37 News


Public Employee Press: PEP Talk

Parks thanks locals for record cleanup


At a Sept. 25 ceremony in the Forest Park band shell, the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation thanked its employees, including Queens Forestry Supervisors in Local 1508, Local 1506 Climbers and Pruners, and Gardeners and Assistant Gardeners in Local 1507, for their essential role in the massive citywide cleanup after Hurricane Isaias.

Local 1508 coordinated with many other city agencies and Local 1506 to clear felled trees, very large limbs, and debris to reopen streets to emergency vehicles after Isaias generated 21,000 calls across the city. The storm killed one New Yorker in Queens when a tree crashed onto his vehicle.

“Queens was the hardest hit borough with more than 9,000 calls about trees,” said PS2 Mike Zeno, president of Local 1508.

Tens of thousands of residents in the tristate area lost power for more than two weeks after the August storm. Parks Deputy Commissioners recognized the unionized workers for their dedication, efficiency, and remarkably speedy cleanup.

“These men and women who are the city’s Delta Force of Climbers and Pruners did an outstanding job,” Zeno said. “We are very proud of their dedication and hard work as essential workers. No other group of city employees can do what they do. It’s good to hear Parks brass thank us because we are always relied on when disasters hit New York City.”

DC 37 continues to press City Hall to recognize these and other essential city workers as first responders.