Nationally, women and men from across the country gathered in protest last weekend. In New York City, hundreds of thousands did the same by Trump Tower.
For Astoria resident Michael Reid, his response came in the form of starting a new local organization, the Astoria Ally Alliance.
“We started an organization immediately after the election of Donald Trump as a way for Astorians to come together and figure out how we can move forward in a very positive way and express our pride and the diversity of our community,” he said.
For the last few months, Reid has worked on developing a program to distribute know-your-rights materials to other local community groups and houses of worship. He’s also planning a community art project featuring self-portraits of Astoria residents.
He hopes the organization will at least start a conversation in Astoria, often recognized as a “remarkably diverse neighborhood,” Reid said.
“I know a lot of the policies being pushed by the GOP and Donald Trump are very anti-everything that’s not white, male and wealthy,” he said. “I thought it’d be important for us to start coming together as a community and show the world and even New York City that we can co-exist. Diversity can exist in a very successful, loving and wonderful way.”
The group is still in its infancy, and they’re still putting together the structure. So far, Astoria Ally Alliance is meeting every other week to establish some consistency.
They may have some short-term goals now, but the organization is looking to expand with greater involvement from the community.
“It’s clear there is a need for it,” Reid said. “People are willing to participate.”