New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) is proposing a $1 billion budget cut to the New York Police Department (NYPD) as several municipalities take steps to slash police departments’ budgets as the push to defund police forces gains steam.
However, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) says de Blasio’s proposal is “disingenuous” and “not a victory.”
In a statement, Ocasio-Cortez said, “Defunding police means defunding police. It does not mean budget tricks or funny math.”
“It does not mean moving school police officers from the NYPD budget to the Department of Educations budget so that the exact same police remain in schools. It does not mean counting overtime cuts as cuts, even as NYPD ignore every attempt by City Council to curb overtime spending and overspends on overtime anyways. It does not mean hiring more police officers while cutting more than $800M from NYC schools.”
“If these reports are accurate, then these proposed ‘cuts’ to NYPD’s budget are a disingenuous illusion. This is not a victory. The fight to defund policing continues,” she added.
Read the statement below:
During a press conference on Monday, de Blasio announced his proposed cuts to the NYPD budget.
He said, “My office presented to City Council a plan that would achieve the billion in savings for the NYPD and shift resources to young people, to communities in a way that would help address a lot of the underlying issues that we know are the cause of so many problems in our society.”
“We’re in a whole different situation in fact than New York City has ever faced in our history – a health care crisis, an economic crisis, a disparity crisis, a budget crisis all wrapped into one and on a massive, massive scale,” he added.
However, de Blasio said he views the moment as an “unprecedented opportunity to change some things.”
The push to defund police departments comes amid calls for police reforms after the death of George Floyd — a black man who died after a white Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes.
While de Blasio has proposed cutting the NYPD’s budget, some cities have gone further. The Minneapolis City Council has advanced a proposal to dismantle the city’s police department and replace it with a new public safety model.