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Katal New York Update — May 16, 2024

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Next Thursday, 5/23: Info Session About Receivership Receivership at Rikers 

Join us next Thursday, May 23, 2024 from 12 – 1:30 pm for an Info Session about Receivership at Rikers. You’ll get to learn what an independent federal receiver at Rikers could look like and how it could impact the fight to shut down Rikers. Register here to attend!

Since Mayor Adam’s took office at least 31 people have died in city jails, violence at Rikers is out of control, and the jail population is on the rise. As a result of this crisis, the federal courts are becoming more deeply involved and could appoint an independent receiver to take control of Rikers to improve conditions and save lives until the city shuts down Rikers. Got questions about what this means? Join us next Thursday, May 23rd!

People and families directly impacted by Rikers, along with community and advocacy groups, know that the jail complex must be shut down – and until then, we must do everything we can to improve the conditions for people who are detained there and who work there. That is why over 70 community groups and dozens of city, state, and federal officials are calling for a federal receiver to take over at Rikers – you can see the full list here. To join the receivership support list, please fill out this quick form.

For more information about the next weeks info session or to get involved with our Shut Rikers campaign, please reach out to Melanie at

NY Senate Committee on Crime, Crime Victims, and Corrections Advances Legislation to Increase Oversight of Correctional Facilities Across the State

On Monday, May 6 the New York State Senate Committee on Crime, Crime Victims, and Correction voted to favorably advance S5877 (Salazar), which expands the number of members on the State Commission of Correction and codifies the manner of confirmation of such members to diversify the commission. This is a necessary step to ensure that New York has an effective independent watchdog for its correcitonal facilities. 

This was the first time this legislation to reform the State Commission of Correction was brought up for a committee vote in either house of the New York State Legislatures. We’re demanding that Albany do more to address the various crises unfolding in city jails across the state, including the deadly Rikers Island Jail Complex. This is a great first step. Now that the Committee has moved the bill forward, it’s time the full Senate takes up and passes this measure. And the Assembly must do the same. We urge the Legislature to act quickly and deliver this bill to the governor’s desk. 

See our press release featuring quotes from the prime sponsors in the Senate and Assembly, along with Katal members. 

To learn more about this legislation, check out Katal’s memo of support for S5877 here. If your organization would like to submit a memo of support, please reach out to Yonah Zeitz at

This Saturday 5/18: Speak Up Harlem Civic Engagement & Unity Festival

Join us this Saturday, May 18th, 2024 from 11am to 3pm at the Speak Up Harlem: Civic Engagement & Unity Festival (Harry Belafonte 115th Street Library: 205 W. 115th St.). We’ll be talbing at the event and talking to community members about our Shut Rikers campaign. 

This event will encourage and empower individuals to be involved in solving important societal issues. Attendants will engage in workshops, interactive activities, and panel discussions to expand knowledge on social, environmental, and political issues while connecting with local organizations.

For more information about the tabling event or if you’d like to join us, please reach out to Melanie at

Next Wednesday 5/22: Shut Rikers Phone Zap

Join us next Wednesday, May 22, from 12-1 pm for our Shut Rikers Phone Zap via Zoom! Click here to RSVP. We will be calling City Council Members to demand they take immediate action to end the suffering and violence unfolding at Rikers. The City Council must swiftly pass Resolution 183, which calls on the federal courts to immediately appoint an independent receiver to take over Rikers and improve conditions until it is shut down.

 Join us next Wednesday, May 16th from 12-1 pm for our Shut Rikers Phone Zap!

No prior experience is needed. If you know any friends, colleagues, or family members who would like to join this phone zap, please share with them this registration link

Got questions? Reach out to Ricky at 

Katal Quotes of the Week

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

“Do what must be done, discover your humanity and your love in revolution” ―George Jackon

  “Never to forget where we came from and always praise the bridges that carried us over.” –Fannie Lou Hamer

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, Facebook! Email: Phone: 64 6.875.8822.

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