Public Advocate Bill de Blasio continued ramping up opposition to what he called the “overuse” of the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk tactics today, unleashing a four point plan that notably focuses on a hypothetical executive order Mayor Michael Bloomberg is called on to sign. The executive order, which can be viewed below, requires that stop-and-frisk numbers be included with other crime data and for police commanders to actively seek ways to reduce the tactic’s use.
“A commander is in front of the superior officers at One Police Plaza and they review crime data,” Mr. de Blasio explained to reporters when taking questions after the event. “Now put stop-and-frisk into the question. The value in the discussion would now be getting the number right, not as high as can be as is the current situation.”
Of course, Mr. de Blasio, a candidate for mayor in 2013, isn’t the only likely contender for the office who’s come out hard against stop-and-frisk. For example, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer has been very vocal on the issue (and has issued his own plan to curtail its use), as have the three other of the main candidates for the job.
Asked what made his proposals unique, Mr. de Blasio said that his focus was on the present.
“This is not something that can wait 20 months until there’s a new administration,” he said. “The mayor has to take responsibility. So I respect and appreciate anyone who is raising concerns about the overuse of stop-and-frisk, but I think the clear thrust of today is that it needs to be addressed now.”
View the proposed executive order below:
EXECUTIVE ORDER: City Policy Concerning “Stop, Question, and Frisk”
WHEREAS, unwarranted stops severely undermine community trust and police-community relations;
WHEREAS, unwarranted stops have the effect of decreasing community cooperation with law enforcement and consequently erode public safety; and
WHEREAS, the New York City Police Department made 685,724 stops in 2011; and
WHEREAS, this number represents a 600% increase over the number of stops made in the year 2002; and
WHEREAS, these stops disproportionately impact communities of color; and
WHEREAS, the vast majority of those stopped are innocent of any crime; and
WHEREAS, it is the duty of the Office of the Mayor to protect the safety, welfare, and rights of all New Yorkers;
NOW, THEREFORE, by virtue of the power vested in me as the Mayor of the City of New York, it is hereby ordered:
Section 1. The New York City Police Department must take immediate steps to reduce the number of unwarranted stops.
a. The Police Commissioner shall ensure all sworn officers of the New York City Police Department only conduct stops in circumstances of reasonable suspicion.
b. The Police Commissioner shall also be responsible for ensuring that the Quality Assurance Division conducts regular internal audits to ensure all stops are warranted and based on reasonable suspicion.
Section 2. The New York City Police Department must analyze data on stop, question, and frisk practices utilizing CompStat.
a. The Police Commissioner shall ensure Stop and Frisk data collected through CompStat is published weekly on the internet.
b. The Police Commissioner shall utilize this data to detect and correct improper use of the tactic and to expand precinct commander responsibility for the quality of stops.
Section 3. The New York City Police Department shall make every effort to pursue proven alternative solution-oriented policing approaches in high-crime neighborhoods and ensure the continued protection of New York City residents.
Section 4. This Order shall take effect immediately.