The Queens Libertarians (or QL, formerly the Libertarian Party of Queens County), the authentic voice of libertarian views, activism, education and advocacy in Queens since 1994, has completed its most successful Annual Toy Drive in its history. Members of the organization collected over 150 toys and donated them to homeless black children, through the family shelter support program Restfull Nights, at its Jamaica office in mid-December. The achievement, being the 17th straight toy drive conducted since 2001, was duly noted at the QL annual Holiday Dinner on December 17.
“This shows how libertarian beliefs also include individual responsibility for helping the community, as well as individual freedom,” says Toy Drive Coordinator Michelle Yaskel. This year the toys were personally delivered by Yaskel, with QL Chair Tom Stevens and Vice Chair John Clifton, and were the largest number collected to date for their annual drive. Following the September 11, 2001 tragedy, the drive was initially launched to benefit police and firefighter families, and the effort has been acclaimed by the national Libertarian Party (LP).
The event capped a very productive year for the Queens Libertarians, who in addition maintain an over 300 active email and member list, held a convention, holiday dinner, speaker program and 12 monthly meetings featuring guests including Fred Cookinham, Augustus Invictus, and 2018 LP gubernatorial contender Larry Sharpe. The QL meets (since 1994) on the second Saturday of each month at the Takara Sushi restaurant in Whitestone, and on January 13 at 11 am will hold its next convention, featuring a discussion of the state of Queens Republican politics by Tea Party activist Alan Bemben.
The Queens Libertarians is not currently chartered with the Libertarian Party of New York (LPNY) due to a bylaws dispute, and over its documenting wrongful expulsions, and ongoing defamations of several Queens activists led by certain factions within the state party. QL expects its positive achievements and fully active organization will result in a re-merging or restoration of its status and members with LPNY, through a future state convention or committee. The Queens Libertarians plan to further celebrate its history on their 25th anniversary in 2019.