I believe the NYPD’s current use of stop and frisk has created a troubling divide between the NYPD and the communities it serves. Too often, we have heard of innocent people being stopped and not treated with the respect all New Yorkers deserve. We must all work together to repair the breach between officers and communities, while at the same time maintaining the safety of neighborhoods throughout the City.
Earlier this year we in the Council and others called on the NYPD to reform certain aspects of stop question and frisk procedures and to make changes in training, monitoring, supervision, transparency and accountability. Our calls for reform were in part answered, and subsequently, a significant drop in the number of stops was reported. Even so, further reductions need to be seen and we will continue to work towards this goal.
But more must be done. That is why next month the City Council is holding a hearing of the Committee on Public Safety, at which four pieces of legislation regarding the NYPD will be considered. Additionally, the Committee on Civil Rights will be holding hearings in Brooklyn and Queens that will provide the public with additional opportunities to comment on or raise concerns regarding law enforcement in their communities.
I look forward to these hearings and to discussing ways to build on the progress we’ve made. I believe the NYPD can both keep us safe and protect our civil rights, with respect and justice for all New Yorkers.