New York City’s Democrat Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Sunday he was giving in to protestors demands to “defund the police” and will be stripping them of funds in the effort to fatten up social services.
The mayor announced during his daily briefing a number of reforms as proposed by a “task force on racial inclusion,” one of which was to shift funding from the police force to youth initiatives.
“The details will be worked out in the budget process in the weeks ahead. But, I want people to understand that we are committed to shifting resources to ensure that the focus is on our young people,” de Blasio said.
While De Blasio did not reveal the exact amount of funding that he would take from the NYPD budget, the New York Times pointed out that the NYPD proposed budget for 2021 was $6 billion – only 6 percent of NYC’s total budget for the year.
Today, there are about 36,000 NYPD officers who help keep law and order for about 8.4 million New Yorkers in the largest city in the United States.
De Blasio said that the details of the budget shift will be worked out prior to the July 1st deadline.
“We’re committed to seeing a shift of funding to youth services, to social services, that will happen literally in the course of the next three weeks, but I’m not going to go into detail because it is subject to negotiation and we want to figure out what makes sense,” de Blasio said.
De Blasio has suffered criticism throughout the protests, with many opponents claiming he’s sided with police too often – despite the evidence speaking to the contrary.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and NYC Mayor De Blasio have both been known to side with suspects in criminal cases rather than supporting the NYPD.
The state’s radical bail reform law has ensured that rioters in the last week are immediately freed from jail after their arrests, and Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance has said he will not prosecute “low-level” rioters.
When De Blasio attempted to give a speech at a Brooklyn memorial service for George Floyd last week, protesters shouted over him with chants of “Black lives matter!” and “George Floyd.” Many people in the crowd turned their backs on him and started to boo the mayor.
While this disturbing trend of targeting police forces as a whole has intensified throughout the country, the NYPD has arguably seen the worst of it.
Former New York City Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik says more than 300 NYPD officers have been injured in the riots nearly 600 are considering leaving their posts.
Kerik, during an interview with Fox News said hundreds of NYPD officers have been injured during riots in which rioters, arsonists, and looters ravaged neighborhoods in Manhattan and Brooklyn. “Well, you’ve had over 300 — I think about 320 — that have been injured, I think some in the hospital,” Kerik said. “But there were over 300 injuries.”
Kerik added that De Blasio’s budget cuts may lead to hundreds of officers losing their jobs. “And the thing that scares me … I’m hearing close to 600 cops have either put in their papers or they’re talking to the [NYPD] about resigning or retiring.”