Reduce the NYPD Budget and Invest Resources in Social Services
Now that the state has eliminated cash bail for most non violent crimes, we need to invest resources in alternatives to incarceration. We need to take mental illness seriously, and we need to treat drug addiction as the health crisis that it is. As Council Member, I will work to expand prison alternatives and mental health and addiction services. I would also work to implement a program modeled on Denver's Support Team Assistance Response program, which sends a mental health professional and a paramedic to some 911 calls instead of police.
Scale Up Successful Violence Interruption Programs
Within many communities, local groups have been working for years to reduce violence. Organizations like Man Up! and Save Our Streets work directly with young people. Their violence interrupters have first-hand knowledge of street and gang life and they use their credibility and relationships to mediate conflicts before they escalate. They also provide job assistance and after school programs. We need to invest in these programs, which have been effective in reducing violence in many of our neighborhoods.
Remove the NYPD from Schools
School safety should be a top priority for all city leaders, but a growing body of evidence suggests that the presence of police officers in school does not increase safety, and in many cases, unnecessarily escalates tensions. I would support removing the NYPD from schools and placing school safety back within the Department of Education.
Empower the CCRB
The CCRB is tasked with oversight of the NYPD, but it is hamstrung by both a lack of funding and lack of political will. We should:
Eliminate Police Commissioner review of CCRB recommended sanctions, thereby making CCRB recommendations binding
Provide CCRB with explicit authority to investigate, and if warranted, prosecute complaints against school safety agents
Fully fund CCRB’s current operations, and any expanded duties granted to the CCRB