DMI Blog

Andrea Batista Schlesinger

Is NYC still a middle-class town?

With new research on the disappearance of middle-class neighborhoods in urban areas and on increasing economic inequality, and the future of projects designed to keep the middle class in NYC like Starrett City and Stuyvesant Town uncertain, what better time than now to ask the question:

Is NYC still a middle-class town?

That's just the question that DMI and the School of Public Affairs at Baruch College will ask on April 2, when we bring New York City's leaders together to talk about the American Dream in the Big Apple.

It's a half day conference featuring presentations of new research, two exciting panel discussions, and plenty of time for all of us to explore the challenge of making NYC a place where it is possible to become, and remain, middle class.

Speakers include New York City Comptroller Bill Thompson, Representative Anthony Weiner, Finance Commissioner Martha Stark, UFT President Randi Weingarten, and John Mollenkopf of the CUNY Center for urban Research. Doug Muzzio, NYC politics and public affairs guru, will moderate one of the panels; I will moderate the other. Additional speakers will be confirmed over the next couple of weeks.

To RSVP, please call 646.660.6851 or email

The conference will be held at the Baruch College Conference Center, Newman Vertical Campus, 55 Lexington Avenue at 24th Street, 14th floor.

Stay tuned for more details.

As someone who grew up in Brooklyn and watched my parents work their way up from poverty to attain a middle-class standard of living, I am personally very motivated to facilitate such an important conversation. New York City is my hometown, and I want to know that what my parents accomplished is possible for subsequent generations of New Yorkers (and especially my generation). After all, tackling poverty is just one half of the equation; there is no such thing as being "poor" or "not poor." To be not poor, you have to be able to survive here as a regular working class New Yorker, and if that isn't possible, we have a problem on our hands.

Look forward to talking with you on April 2.

Andrea Batista Schlesinger: Author Bio | Other Posts
Posted at 11:11 AM, Feb 23, 2007 in Middle-class squeeze | New York
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