Keep Your Promise
The following letter was sent to Liam Kavanagh, the operations director for the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation.
Two-thirds of the summer is over and there are just five weekends left. When I spoke to you at the beginning of July, as a follow-up to the meeting you attended about lifeguards in May, you assured me that there would be two additional lifeguard stands to the two already at Beach 29 Street and Beach 30 Street, for a total of four lifeguard stands. However, there are only three. We are grateful for all of them, but we want to hold you to your word and make sure that our end of the Rockaways gets its fair share of coverage.
The beaches, as you know, are well attended, especially with the heat that we’ve been experiencing this summer. It is only right that folks get to swim in the ocean freely, as opposed to being squished within the confines of limited parameters. This happens, of course, when there are fewer lifeguards.
One of our neighbors also received a letter from Amanda Levit stating that due to “safety reasons” Beach 19 to Beach 28 Streets, Beach 31 to Beach 35 Streets, and Beach 61 to Beach 66 Streets “have been permanently closed.” We find it hard to believe that these specific sections pose problems, yet the west end of the Rockaways is free and clear all the way from Beach 67 to Beach 145 Streets. The east end is being neglected ... that is clear. We are being penalized ... that is clear.
It may be too late in the season to address this, but please, open up all of the beaches in Far Rockaway for swimming next summer and all of the summers after that. What beach community is forbidden to take advantage of its greatest asset? It doesn’t make sense!
We look forward to continuing this ongoing conversation.