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Protesters fight to keep LICH open at the eleventh hour

Posted at 6:35 PM, Jul 28, 2013
and last updated 2013-07-28 18:41:17-04

COBBLE HILL, BROOKLYN (PIX11) – “Health care not condos!” is what was getting chanted in Cobble Hill Brooklyn Sunday.

These words have floated in the Brooklyn air for months.

Sunday, political leaders and protestors say they will continue to fight to keep Long Island College Hospital open, as SUNY Downstate continues to close its doors, which was expected to officially happen Sunday morning.

“It’s cause SUNY wants to sell the property to build condos with a view of the Statue of Liberty,” one protestor said.

That response came from nearly every person out there, as to why SUNY would sell the 155-year-old facility, but SUNY claims it’s because they lose up to 15 million dollars each month.
“LICH must be preserved. Health care in this area must be preserved, and there has to be a compromise between SUNY and the Governor and the State Legislature that works for the health care needs for this neighborhood and right here in Brooklyn,” Borough president Marty Markowitz said.

Although LICH’s future is still unclear, a state supreme court justice did uphold a temporary restraining order to stop SUNY from forever shutting down over the weekend, regardless of its attempts to do so in recent days.

“It’s about life and death,” congresswoman Nydia Velezquez said. “Decisions regarding public health and access to quality health care are being driven by real-estate industry”