‘Occupy City Hall’ protesters demand $1B budget cut for NYPD
Protesters calling themselves “Occupy City Hall” have camped out in New York to call for a cut of at least $1 billion to the city’s police department budget.
The more than 100 protesters began camping out in front of New York City’s City Hall beginning Tuesday night, and say they will stay there until their demand is met.
The cut would represent one-sixth of the New York Police Department’s $6 billion budget.
The protesters say the money should be redistributed to “community reinvestment” like social services, housing, health care and education. The protests organized by VOCAL-NY come ahead of the city’s June 30 deadline to finalize its budget, including for the police department.
“Mayor [Bill] de Blasio has thus far rejected this demand, which is unconscionable,” VOCAL-NY said in a release. “We have questions about City Council promises to support our demands, because we have not seen their plan outside of a vague press release. We view this lack of transparency and specific public commitments as a red flag.”
The Sun is rising on @NYCMayor’s inaction, and on us that are occupied outside City Hall.
We say #DefundNYPD by at least $1B t reinvest in housing, healthcare, education and social services.
The movement is headed here.#OccupyCityHall #DefundThePolice pic.twitter.com/RGJS9xdHjX
— VOCAL-NY (@VOCALNewYork) June 24, 2020
Occupy City Hall protests arose out of the demonstrations over the killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Rayshard Brooks and other Black people at the hands of police.
After 4 weeks of marching every day for police reform, protesters are now occupying City Hall Park until the NYPD budget is reduced. @CBSNewYork #nycprotests pic.twitter.com/bd4DwoizxL
— Ali Bauman (@AliBaumanTV) June 24, 2020
The demonstrations have also led to calls to defund the police, which involves shifting money from police departments to other resources,.
“We wanted to make sure that the whole world knew that if you’re calling to defund the NYPD, that you need to be here to make sure those folks in the building behind us know what’s happening,” Jawanza James Williams, the director of organizing for VOCAL-NY, told BuzzFeed News.