Search
Close this search box.

Katal New York Update- February 9, 2023

Share This Post

Rikers Still in Crisis – 20th Death Under Mayor Adams

On Saturday, news broke that yet another incarcerated person died at the Rikers Island Jail Complex. This is the 20th death of an incarcerated person in City jails since Mayor Adams took office a little over a year. In Mayor Adam’s first year, Rikers had the deadliest year on record in the past 25 years. 

We send our deepest condolences to Marvin Pines family. Mr. Pines was incarcerated on Rikers due to an unaffordable bail. Instead of working to save lives and shut down Rikers, Governor Hochul is acquiescing to Mayor Adams retrograde approach to public safety by calling for more people to be incarcerated at Rikers and putting further a proposal to gut bail reform. This is unacceptable. Here’s our statement in response to the recent death: 

“This weekend, yet another human being died at Rikers. Marvin Pines, 65 years old. We extend our condolences to the family of Mr. Pines. May he rest in peace. This is the latest in a seemingly endless string of deaths that are horrific as they are now predictable. Rikers is a five-alarm fire, but Mayor Adams has abandoned the plan to close Rikers and instead is working to send even more people to be jailed there. And Mr. Prices’s death comes less than a week after Governor Hochul’s proposal to send even more people to Rikers by changing the bail laws. Instead of pushing forward plans and proposals that would increase jail populations and keep Rikers open, the governor and mayor must work to reduce the reliance on jails and prisons, close Rikers and other deadly jails across New York, and invest in real public safety: housing, health care, education, and jobs.

We call on the state legislature to reject the governor’s baseless proposal to amend the state’s bail laws. Bail reform is working and must not be rolled back anymore. The NY Legislature must pass a budget that prioritizes people’s liberty and freedom, and invests in things that truly keep us safe.”

Check out the statement online here

Want to get involved in the fight to close Rikers? Join us next Thursday, February 16th from 5:00-6:00 pm for our Close Rikers Phone Banking Session! Register for the session here!

For more information about our campaign to shut down Rikers and to learn how to get involved, reach out to Melanie at melanie@katalcenter.org


Protecting Bail Reform in this Years Budget

On Tuesday, our director of advocacy, Yonah Zeitz, testified at the Senate Finance Committee and Assembly Ways and Means Committee’s joint legislative hearing on Public Protection for the 2024 Executive Budget Proposal. In our testimony, we call on the state legislature to reject the governor’s baseless proposal to amend the state’s bail laws. Instead of proposals that would increase jail populations and keep Rikers open, we demand that the governor work with the legislature to pass a budget that will reduce the reliance on jails and prisons, close Rikers and other deadly jails across New York, and invest in real public safety: housing, health care, education, and jobs. 

Read our full testimony here. 


Upcoming Long Island #LessIsMoreNY Town Hall on Wednesday, February 15th at 6 PM 

Prior to the passage of the Less Is More Act, New York spent over $680 million dollars a year incarcerating people for technical violations of parole. Now the the Less is More Act is law, the state will save hundreds of millions of dollars. Where should these funds be invested? 

Join us for our Long Island #LessIsMoreNY Town Hall on Wednesday, February 15 at 6:00 pm.

During the Town Hall, we will discuss implementation thus far, and hear from YOU about how you would invest the savings from the Less Is More Act. For more details, please reach out to Candice Fung at candice@katalcenter.org.


Katal Quotes of the Week

These are some of the quotes we’re thinking about this week.

“In order for us as poor and oppressed people to become part of a society that is meaningful, the system under which we now exist has to be radically changed. This means that we are going to have to learn to think in radical terms. I use the term radical in its original meaning–getting down to and understanding the root cause. It means facing a system that does not lend itself to your needs and devising means by which you change that system.” —Ella Baker

“In all our deeds, the proper value and respect for time determines success or failure.” —Malcolm X

 “Life is not what you alone make it. Life is the input of everyone who touched your life and every experience that entered it. We are all part of one another.” —Yuri Kochiyama


For printing and distribution, download the Katal Weekly Update PDF version.

Katal works to strengthen the people, policies, institutions, and movements that advance equity, health, and justice. Join us: web, Twitter, Instagram, & Facebook! Email: info@katalcenter.org Phone: 646.875.8822.

More To Explore

Rally to Shut Rikers

**PRESS RELEASE** July 9, 2024 Contact: Yonah Zeitz 347-201-2768 yonah@katalcenter.org  Followl Courts to Immediately Appoint an Independent Receiver to Take Over at Rikers and Save

Read More »