In the News

#AskTheMayor (WNYC – The Brian Lehrer Show)

WNYC – The Brian Lehrer Show, May 19, 2017

Mayor Bill de Blasio: “‘It’s very distressing to hear that ICE is picking people who are law abiding and contributing to the community. That’s only going to undermine the relationship between our immigrants and our police and our government in general, and that’s not going to make anyone safe.’

Briah Lehrer: ‘And we have the City Bar Association now wanting you and the police department to expand the number of non-violent low-level offenses that will draw just summonses, not arrests, under a new law because many immigrants who get arrested for minor crimes like turnstile jumping that are not included are now deportable under President Trump’s new policies. Will you add turnstile jumping or any other small infractions to the summons policy in response to the Bar Association?’

Mayor de Blasio: ‘No….we’ll always evaluate the situation year by year, but that’s not how I look at it, and I want to be clear why. My mandate is public safety of all New Yorkers, we have 8.5 million people. And we need to do what we think will keep the city safe regardless of policies in Washington which I believe will be temporary in the larger scheme of things and are being played out in a very inconsistent fashion anyway. As you just said, some of these are random actions by ICE towards people who haven’t committed any crime that just proves how unpredictable all this is….Turnstile jumping is a classic area that is being fundamentally misportrayed by commentators. Generally speaking….if you do it, in isolation, you don’t have any warrants outstanding and you haven’t done it many times, you’re not going to be arrested, and you’re not going into any database. The folks who get arrested are those who consistently commit that offense. We’re not changing our basic approach to law enforcement. We’ve been driving down crime three years in a row now, we’re not going to stop doing that.’”

Listen to the full segment here.