4 thoughts on “Closing Rikers: The 10 Major Concerns That Emerged at the Public Hearing

  1. Why hasn’t City Limits investigated or voiced concern over
    #1. The Air and Noise pollution and traffic congestion? Building the jails in the locations proposed by the Mayor will be a nightmare for the persons living in the area. The South Bronx has the worst rate of air pollution in the city. Asthma rates are the highest in the nation. Bring correction busses (most of which are diesel) to the area will increase asthma deaths in the area. The main streets in the areas of the jail will probably be closed to traffic as is One Police Plaza. The highways in the area are a major artery to the Triboro Bridge Queens and Manhattan. Increasing traffic will probably increase traffic accidents and pedestrian accidents.
    #2. Why does Rikers have to be closed? Why not improve the Jail by over hauling the infrastructure. It would cost a-lot less.
    #3. What does the Mayor propose to do with With the property of Rikers Island? Are they going to sell it to a developer? To build more housing for the rich?

  2. No question that the criminal justice system needs major reform and overhaul, including reducing incarceration, reducing bail, good mental health, medical, educational services, decent facilities, training and less stress for guards etc. But still do not see how moving jails from Rikers to borough based jails does any of that?

    Why not rebuild on Rikers where there is space to do so? Build a decent facility with a therapeutic environment plus recreation and green space.

    Cramming jails into areas with out space or into high rise buildings is absurd and expensive, not to mention logistically and operationally challenging. There will not be sufficient space for what is needed. There will be no green space. Instead of one dedicated expert medical facility there will be four? And thinking about the logistics of staffing, being a guard is not a particularly desirable job. It is tough and stressful. Where are DOC guards (many who cannot afford to live in NYC) going to park? How will DOC manage coverage when guards in one borough are out?

    Some inmates may be closer to families but not everyone. Commuting from Staten Island to the Bronx is not easier than to Rikers. Why not just rebuild a good facility on Rikers and set up free shuttle bus and/or ferry service for families and attorneys to Rikers?

    If there is “available” space in the boroughs it should be for affordable housing.

  3. The closing of Rikers in one of the most foolish ideas that our City Officials have come up with. The question(s) required should be: Where are the oversight Agencies? (NYC-DOI, NYS Inspector General, U.S. Commission of Civil Rights, etc that have allowed Rikers to become so bad?
    Our foolish City Officials have been putting the so called “carriage in front of the horse.”
    We should have built the off-site Correctional facilities then empty Rikers. Now, those who do not want the facilities in their neighborhoods are being now forced to accept these facilities, so much for the “rights of the people of NYC.”

  4. Pingback: September 6, 2019 - Weekly News Roundup - New York, Manhattan, and Roosevelt Island | Manhattan Community Board 8

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