NYC Public Advocate’s Statement On President Biden’s Visit To New York City To Discuss Public Safety

February 3rd, 2022

Press Release

"I’m grateful that the president is prioritizing public safety and the gun violence epidemic. I was glad to have the opportunity to briefly share my perspective and plan for public safety with him, one built on over a decade of community engagement and moving from proposals, to pilots, to programs that have become an essential part of our city’s efforts and a model for the nation. It was encouraging to hear him discuss some of these issues in a way many of us have for years, often facing resistance.

"It sends an important signal for the president to use this visit to meet not only with law enforcement, but with community organizations doing the work on the ground of preventing violence and saving lives. Now, we must go beyond the signal, and move quickly to structuralize these strategies and fully integrate these programs and philosophy into the work of redefining public safety. Last year, the White House committed crucial, first-of-its-kind funding to community-centered violence prevention, and that commitment must continue and grow. Collaboration across city, state, and federal government is vital to address both prevention of violence on the streets and prevention of the trafficking that bring guns to communities.

"We know which strategies can work to keep communities safe, and which approaches helped to bring crime to historic lows prior to the pandemic in spite of resistance and fearmongering. As we face a real, tragic increase in violence now, it is essential that we learn the lessons of the past and advance a model of public safety where everyone has a role to play in violence prevention and we work to address its root causes in communities. With executives on the city, state, and federal level appearing to value and validate this approach, I am hopeful that we can all move forward together in protecting, promoting, and producing true public safety."

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