Elias Husamudeen, president of the Correction Officers’ Benevolent Affiliation, questioned whether or not Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights would “take duty if these individuals commit one other crime whereas out on bail.” The initiative ignores the considerations of crime victims and would place the general public in peril, he added.
“We now have individuals in our custody who’ve bail, however they’re there for homicide, tried homicide, assault and sophistication A felonies,” Mr. Husamudeen stated. “The man that’s in for violating an order of safety and he has a $1,500 bail — hell yeah, there’s any individual’s security who can be in query.”
Efforts to cut back the jail inhabitants, similar to proposals to finish money bail and speedy trial reform, have stalled in Albany. The de Blasio administration has tried to divert individuals from jails by serving to relations of these accused of a criminal offense navigate the bail system, making a restricted on-line bail fee system and supervised launched.
About 87 p.c of the jail inhabitants is black or Latino and most are indigent. Roughly 80 p.c are awaiting trials and haven’t been convicted, however stay jailed as a result of they or their households can’t afford bail.
Greater than 75 p.c of individuals at Rikers are launched with out being sentenced to jail, in keeping with the Impartial Fee on New York Metropolis Legal Justice and Incarceration Reform. The price of housing an inmate for a 12 months at Rikers is $271,000, the fee discovered.
“These are assets we may redirect towards housing and towards well being care, drug rehabilitation or an Ivy League training for each individual we put in jail,” Ms. Kennedy stated. “You might argue that the town ought to be paying us.”
When the concept of closing Rikers was initially raised, Mr. de Blasio dismissed it as politically and financially infeasible. In August, nonetheless, the town unveiled the placement of the 4 jails that may change Rikers — one in each borough besides Staten Island.