Patrick Gaspard, one of the mayor’s closest allies, is calling for change to the way the NYPD has enforced social distancing. This comes after newly released NYPD data showed that 81% of the people who received social distancing summonses are Black or Hispanic.
Gaspard, who is the President of the Open Society Foundation, which has pledged to give $37 million to help at-risk communities in New York amid the Coronavirus pandemic, told NY1 that the recent NYPD data depicts a tale of two cities.
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“We see in the West Village the police politely giving out masks to white residents of New York City but if you walk uptown, young people are being busted against the wall. They’re being given fines they can’t afford. They are being dragged off to jail, where of course they’ll be exposed to COVID,” he said. “We’ve got to end this.”
Mayor de Blasio on Friday said that the NYPD would work on correcting any racial disparities in social-distancing summonses.
Between March 16th and May 5th, 374 summonses were handed out by NYPD. Of that figure, 193 were black and 111 were Hispanic.