In an effort to improve relations between the New York City Police Department and city residents, the mayor, police commissioner and community activists gathered at City Hall today for a roundtable discussion.
Television crews were allowed in for the first moments of the meeting, but were then cleared out so talks could begin.
The gathering comes after the death of Eric Garner, the Staten Island man who died while earlier this month while being placed under arrest for alleged illegal cigarette sales.
Video of the arrest sparked questions about an apparent chokehold, and prompted the department to review its procedures.
"The work of reform takes real intensity, real effort, and some real patience. Not the kind of patience that suggests we wait and wait and wait, the kind of patience that says we have to get it right. This is the path we're on now," De Blasio said.
"If Dante wasn't your son, he'd be a candidate for a chokehold. And we've got to deal with that reality, we're not talking about training. Training is important, but you don't need training if a man says 11 times I can't breathe and you've still got him in a grip lock," said Reverend Al Sharpton of National Action Network.
Just last night, Commissioner Bratton met with the NAACP to discuss the Garner case.