December 19, 2003
At a news conference held by the Flushing
Korean Community Center on December 18th, 2003, New York State
Ann Stavisky talked about her research on the condition of
signboards on Northern Boulevard in Queens, where many Korean
stores run businesses.
Senator Stavisky explained, "Although
there is a suspicion that the inspection is directed only at
Korean stores, it is
not true because we are also looking at other districts like
Astoria where many other community groups are concentrated."
York City Councilmember John Liu and New York State Assemblymember
Barry Grodenchik were also present at the conference. They
said, "If Korean stores put Korean on their signboard
without English translation, non-Korean residents do not understand
what kind of stores they are, and the other residents are more
likely to feel alienated or even offended."
2003, Liu and Grodenchik organized a task force to investigate
the usage of English on the business stores' signboards
in Flushing from the Main Street to 162nd Street along the
The tension and complaints erupted among
the Flushing Korean Community because many Korean stores
are located in the area
of the inspection.
Chang Hyun Han, the president of Flushing
Korean Community, said, "Adding English on the signboard
is not a difficult job, and in fact, is very important for
us to have a good relationship
with our neighbors. But I can't help suspecting that
the inspection is targeted only at Koreans."
said, "They are investigating Korean stores
based on a law enacted in 1905 that now has become a mere scrape
of paper. We wonder why they are pressing us with regulations,
such as adjustments in letter size and brightness, which do
not appear on the New York City regulation clause."
inspection on Northern Boulevard is scheduled to continue
until the end of this month and the results will be released
by next month.
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Translated from Korean by