New York Approved the Notorious Rikers Prison to Be Closed
A New York city government approved a plan yesterday that plans to close Rikers Island Prison - one of the largest prisons in the United States - by 2026, AP reported.
According to the plan, the large prison complex will be replaced by four small detention facilities located closer to the main court buildings in the Manhattan, Brooklyn, Bronx and Queens neighbourhoods.
City Council chairman Democrat Corey Johnson said Rikers has become notorious for brutality and cruelty and it is time to close it once and for all.
“For decades, this city and this country’s answer to every societal problem was to throw people in jail,”
“Nothing symbolizes those failed policies in this city more than Rikers Island.”, Corey Johnson, reported by The New York Times.
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and other Democrats support the $ 8 billion plan, in part because in a period of declining crime, huge prisons are part of the public safety problem, not its solution. Opponents of the plan said they did not want the city to build new prisons.
Rikers is a complex of 10 corps on an island between Queens and the Bronx, where mostly defendants are awaited awaiting the start of their case. The prison staff is about 9,000, with an annual budget in excess of $ 860 billion.
The number of people sent to Rikers on a daily basis has dropped dramatically since 1991. In recent years, an average of 10,000 people have been detained on Rikers Island in recent years. Many minor offenses are already subject to administrative penalties and the perpetrators are not subject to prior arrest.
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