Mayor Adams,


The [#] undersigned organizations wish to lodge our strenuous opposition to the plan to more
than triple the number of beds for women and gender-expansive people in the proposed Kew
Gardens jail, from 126 to 450. We call upon the administration to reassess its plans for the
borough jails to prioritize decarceration, diversion, and prevention over mass incarceration.


Expansion of incarceration in New York City is not a statistical inevitability. It is the product of
deliberate policy and practice, and it can be reversed by the same means.


In June 2022, the Path to Under 100 report, released jointly by the Women’s Community Justice
Association, the Independent Rikers Commission, the Center for Court Innovation, and John
Jay’s Data Collaborative for Justice, detailed a step-by-step process to reduce the population of
the Rose M. Singer Center—then roughly 300—to under 100. The steps were simple, common-
sense driven, and backed by decades of data. That the city has leapt to increase jail capacity
before attempting to implement any of the report’s recommendations is baffling at best,
unconscionable at worst.


Furthermore, New York City has successfully reduced its jail population before. For nearly three
decades, a declining jail population was accompanied by increased community safety. During
the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the jail population was reduced substantially and rapidly,
with no significant attendant rise in crime or pre-trial flight. During this period, the population
at the Rose M. Singer Center, the facility on Rikers Island where the city currently incarcerates
women and gender-expansive people, dropped below 150—close to the original number of
beds planned for the women’s facility in Kew Gardens.


In light of this evidence, there is no reasonable justification—practical, fiscal, or
humanitarian—for the city to more than triple its planned incarceration of women and gender-
expansive people. We have the means to reduce our jail population, and to do so is a moral and
practical imperative as we chart the course for the borough jails.

                                                                     

Sign on To Support 

 

Organization Sign Ons                                                               

Prison Families Alliance

Exodus Transitional Community

New Hour for Women & Children

Long Island Social Justice Action Network

The NYC Justice Peer Initiative

Freedom Agenda

Queens Defenders

Visionary V Ministries

V-Day

Legal Action Center

Hour Children

The New York Women's Foundation

The Riverside Church in the City of New York

Sadhana: Coalition of Progressive Hindus

NAMI Huntington

Peer Network of New York

Youth Represent

Mott Haven Reformed Church

A Little Piece of Light

Trellis

Jails Action Coalition

Housing Works, Inc.

Re/Creation

Providence House, Inc.

Center on Race, Inequality, and the Law at NYU School of Law

Women & Justice Project

Nurses for Social Justice

Fair Chance for Housing

Fortune Society

Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH)

Center for Urban Environmental Reform

Urban Justice Center Mental Health Project

AAS Empowerment LLC

BronxConnect (Urban Youth Alliance)

Osborne Association

Women's Community Justice Association

Individual Sign Ons

Betsy Ramos
Jordyn Rosenthal
Kandra Clark
Serena Martin-Liguori
Rebecca Figueroa
Helen 'Skip' Skipper
Chaplain Dr. Victoria A Phillips
Barat Ellman
Roslyn Smith
Danette Lipten
Rev. James Sheehan
Elizabeth G. Maxwell
Jeffrey Courter
Ryan Acquaotta
Emily Travers
Claire Deroche
Rev. Adriene Thorne
Amanda Jack
Rosaury Valenzuela
Jayette Lansbury
LaDeamMa McMoore
Pamela Neely
Nicole Scott
Lorie Goshin, PhD, PMHNP-BC
Marion Rodriguez
Dario Peña
Marilyn Reyes
Grace Ortez
Rev. Dr. Patricia A. Sealy
Donna Hylton
Jon McFarlane
Constance Tempel
Elizabeth Mayers
John Proctor
Kayla Vinson
Leah Sills
Danielle Minelli Pagnotta
Vivione Marshall
Jennifer Grossman
Erin Poll
Michal Richardson
Hilton N. Webb, Jr., LMSW, CASAC-T, CRPA
Rose Harris
Sarah Hoiland
Carole Eady-Porcher
The Rev. Mary Foulke
Brenda Berkman
Cassandra Kelly
Anna Pastoressa
Ashley Santiago Conrad
Angel Tueros
Jon McFarlane
Darren Mack
Rebecca Bratspies
Jennifer J. Parish
Anisah Sabur
Jack Beck
Reggie Miller
Frances Geteles-Shapiro PhD, Clinical Psychologist
Anthony Springer
Portia Seeley
Briana Binda
Tamar Kraft-Stolar
Stacy Ann Edman
Elaine Daly
Barbara Allen
Nora Moran
Sharon White-Harrigan
Dominique Pierce
Claire Stottlemyer
Jennifer Liles

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