In The News

Stringer address subway slashings

Stringer: “Any politician can come and talk to you about flooding the zone and putting cops in the subway system… But if we do not have a balanced, comprehensive approach, we will be cycling people from the subways to Rikers…at a tremendous financial cost to the city.”

New York, NY – Comptroller and mayoral candidate Scott Stringer today addressed the recent series of subway slashings in a statement at the start of his press conference on affordable housing:

“We have an obligation as a city to keep New Yorkers and all who come here safe. We need to make sure that we’re doing everything to look at violent crime and have an appropriate police response.

“I grew up here in the 1970s when there were 2,000 murders a year, and the A train I took every day was a rolling crime scene. Kids like me were told to stick in the conductor car and stay there until you had to go up into the staircases of the subway. We’re clearly not in that position today, and we can never go back.

“But I do want to make it very clear that the rush to send 1000s of police officers into the subway system with no plan makes no sense. We need a comprehensive plan. We need to deal with the fact that so many people who are living in our subway cars today are there because of mental health issues. They’re there today because they don’t have any options for supportive housing. And the next mayor must be somebody who understands that the future for the people who are living on our streets and below ground is a comprehensive mental health plan that addresses their needs – through medicine, through counseling, through affordable housing, through real services.

“Any politician can come and talk to you about flooding the zone and putting cops in the subway system. We have a lot of them there right now. But if we do not have a balanced, comprehensive approach, we will be cycling people from the subways to Rikers, back and forth — and at a tremendous financial cost to the city.

“So I just wanted to say that. I hope everybody who had an incident is safe. And I wanted very much to be able to say with certainty that the next mayor has to be ready on day one with an actual plan, not an actual sound bite.”

Video is available here.

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