NEW YORK, NY – In response to reports of NYPD using the subway surveillance cameras to monitor homeless New Yorkers to make arrests, the Coalition for the Homeless issued the following statement.
Giselle Routhier, Policy Director, said:
“The NYPD’s chilling use of Big Brother-like tactics to surveil homeless New Yorkers and target them for arrest is deeply disturbing, and redolent of the failed Giuliani-era tactics of criminalizing homelessness. Homelessness continues to ravage our city for one reason only: the lack of truly affordable housing. The public spectacle of human suffering is something that should move us to solve the problem by offering actual help to our homeless neighbors – specifically, low-threshold safe haven shelters and permanent housing with support services as needed. These heinous practices by the NYPD are not only counterproductive in the actual efforts to engage those who bed down in public spaces, but will only lead to further distrust and disengagement on the part of homeless New Yorkers who are (rightfully) skeptical of the actual intentions of law enforcement. These practices are an affront to the dignity of all New Yorkers and must stop immediately.”