Legislator Lafazan calls for Nassau County building to be named after Shirley Chisholm
In an era when statues are being taken down and names are being removed from monuments, there's a call in Nassau County to add a name to one of the county buildings.
Legislator Josh Lafazan, of Syosset, tells News 12 that he's introduced a bill to name the office building at 240 Old Country Road in Mineola the Shirley Chisholm Building.
"As the conversation on civil rights and equality evolved over the past few weeks, I decided I wanted to take action locally," says Lafazan. "Shirley Chisholm fought for disadvantaged groups, she fought for vulnerable groups and she fought to make America more equal."
Chisholm, a Brooklyn native, was the first Black woman elected to Congress in the 1960s. She also became the first Black lawmaker to seek nomination for president of the United States in 1972.
Chisholm advocated for women, children and minorities during her seven terms in Congress.
Pastor Sedgwick Easley, of the Union Baptist Church in Hempstead, says naming the building after Chisholm would unify the county during these divisive times.
"She's a great American, not just a Black story, but one of the great American stories," says Sedgwick. "I think it's a grand idea that we take this opportunity, particularly in this climate."
The plan is to have Shirley Chisholm's name on the side of the building and to also have a plaque in place with a brief description of her contributions to history.
Lafazan says this would be the very first major county building in Nassau to be named after a Black leader.
The building that houses the Board of Elections and the county clerk currently has no name.