The commission's yearlong examination of problems at Rikers laid the groundwork for de Blasio's announcement Friday that the city would seek to close the embattled correctional facility, now home to about 7,000 inmates.
"We must do everything in our power to ensure that our criminal justice system is fair, transparent and accountable", James said during a press conference detailing a proposed plan to shutter Rikers Island and replace it with five smaller prisons for each of the boroughs.
The 27-member commission, formed previous year by City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and led by former New York Chief Justice Jonathan Lippman, argued closing Rikers is needed because the correctional complex's mass incarceration model has done little to rehabilitate convicts, and instead has fostered a culture of brutality and inhumane treatment of inmates. "It didn't begin here in New York City but it will end here in New York City". Two days later, de Blasio said, "nothing's off the table".
"A year ago, we didn't think it could be done", he said.
The plan would start by reducing the population of the island by about half, from roughly 9,700 inmates to 5,000 inmates, by introducing an array of programs to keep offenders out of jail.
Next, the plan calls for the construction of new, more humanely designed jails in the civic center areas of each borough in order to make it easier for inmates to have visitation, meet their lawyers, and travel to court, a process that sometimes requires inmates to get up at 3 a.m. and miss meals, according to the report.
CASA to hold candlelight vigil against child abuse
Children and their guardians are invited to Craft with a Cop at the Monmouth Police Department from 2 to 4 p.m. on April 5. Our goal this year is to have community members add individual pinwheels to existing gardens and plant new gardens.
The report, an early version of which was published in DNAinfo New York last year, spurred Mayor Bill de Blasio's decision to close the complex in 10 years.
The island, the report said, should be used to expand nearby LaGuardia Airport and to house waste-treatment and other unpopular facilities that are now housed primarily in poor neighborhoods.
Then the city would have to open alternative facilities outside the Rikers complex.
Mr.de Blasio said things had changed since his initial opposition to closing Rikers. For more, the magazine's editor in chief Susan Goldberg joins Hari Sreenivasan.http://d3i6fh83elv35t.cloudfront.net/newshour/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/seaice_max_2015_feb_25_overheadviewnoave_print-320x196.jpg23659903897lCmwWiXEzY211470211480http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/trump-supporters-michigan-confident-votes-will-pay-off/Trump supporters in Mich. confident their votes will pay offPresident Trump wasn't expected to win in MI, but his supporters there aren't surprised that he took the state back in November. Jails not on Rikers Island hold a total of 2,400 inmates.
"I saw fights people get stabbed, it really is survival of the fittest when you're in there", said Stanley Richards, a member of the commission who was locked up when he was a teen for robbery.