In my official ULURP recommendation , I supported approving the Manhattan component of the city’s Borough-Based Jail System plan, with some conditions that are necessary to make sure local businesses and tenants are protected. The bottom line is this: Rikers Island must close. For too long the criminal justice system has disproportionately punished people in poverty, rather than being restorative and transformative.
Last year, I formed a Rikers Task Force to gather ideas from key stakeholders—criminal justice advocates, elected officials, formerly incarcerated people, residents from Community Boards, and the legal community—for how to make the efforts to close Rikers Island a reality and ensure the broader community has robust input into a new facility. I believe the Borough-Based Jail System is the only way we can successfully close Rikers Island and transform the criminal justice system as it stands today.