NYPD (79569)
NYPD/Police Credit: Bill Moore photo

Criminal justice advocates are calling on the city and state to suspend broken windows arrests and similar criminal penalty enforcement policies to prevent the spread of COVID-19 to vulnerable populations.

Public Advocate Jumaane D. Williams, Council Member Brad Lander, Communities United for Police Reform and a coalition of criminal justice reform advocates are calling for a transparent emergency planning process going forward that centers human rights.

The calls for reforms come in response to a rise in COVID-19 cases, and as thousands of New Yorkers are currently detained in what critics say are overcrowded, unsanitary, and unsafe conditions in city’s jails. On Sunday, a Department of Correction Investigator lost their life after testing positive for COVID-19.

Reports indicate that 17 NYPD officers from Lower Manhattan’s 1st Precinct called in sick in retaliation after an officer from the precinct tested positive for coronavirus. The city has provided masks for NYPD officers.