Victory! The Community Safety Act passes!
The vote to pass the Community Safety Act happened very late last night -- and we won!
Just before 2:00am we had a majority on both Intro 1079 (establishing independent oversight for the NYPD) and Intro 1080 (banning police profiling). By 2:15am we had a veto-proof majority on Intro 1079, and then at 2:22am, we reached veto-proof majority on both bills and the community-packed chamber erupted in celebration!
This is a huge step to bring real accountability to the NYPD and significantly reduce stop-and-frisks and the unjust surveillance of Muslim communities in New York!
This victory wasn't inevitable. You and hundreds of other JFREJ members called, emailed, and met with your Council members urging them to vote for the two Community Safety Act bills. JFREJ members organized educational forums about discriminatory policing reaching thousands of New Yorkers, mobilized at press conferences, tweeted, posted, and made your voices heard. Together with the inspiring member organizations of Communities United for Police Reform from all parts of NYC, we persuaded our Council members to vote for the Community Safety Act -- and succeeded! You worked shoulder-to-shoulder with JFREJ's ally organizations as well as the lead sponsors of the Community Safety Act, Council members Jumaane Williams and former JFREJ Board member Brad Lander.
We're expecting Mayor Bloomberg to veto the two bills. While both bills did garner veto-proof majorities, they did so by a slim margin. The members of City Council could change their decisions in the override vote, especially if Mayor Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Kelly put on the pressure. We need to be prepared to fight back and convince the City Council to stay strong and override Bloomberg's veto. That's not going to be easy and we won't be able to do it without your support.
As a grassroots organization, we depend on your support. And you've already done so much to help end discriminatory policing; I have no doubt that I can count on you to show up now.
With gratitude and so much hope,
Marjorie Dove Kent
Jews for Racial & Economic Justice