NEW YORK — Hours after interim New York City Transit President Sarah Feinberg criticized Mayor Bill de Blasio and his administration’s approach to policing the subway system, de Blasio fired back Monday night, calling the critique “laughable” and a “political strategy dictated by the governor.”
The latest chapter in a dispute, which has played out for several months, between the mayor and city transit leaders revolves around how many police officers the city should dedicate to patrol the subway system.
On Monday morning, Feinberg appeared alongside Gov. Andrew Cuomo at a press conference where she called on de Blasio to add additional police personnel to the subway system, citing safety concerns among riders and MTA workers.
“The mayor has said he doesn’t think additional policing is necessary, and the vast majority of our customers, and certainly our leadership, and certainly our customers who we hear from are saying they absolutely want a more significant police presence — a unformed presence — and mental health resources,” Feinberg said.
“I think this has become laughable,” de Blasio told political anchor Errol Louis in his weekly “Mondays with the Mayor” interview on “Inside City Hall.” “I mean, she’s playing out a political strategy dictated by the governor for his own political needs in his moment of crisis.”
According to the NYPD, crime increased 30% in April 2021 compared to the same month in 2020. However, crime was down about 10% in the transit system, year over year.
De Blasio told NY1 the city deployed hundreds of additional officers to the subway system in February and they have remained there ever since, in addition to the thousands of officers already patrolling the system.
Additionally, the mayor continued to argue that the subway system will become even safer as more New Yorkers decide to take the transit system once again.
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Watch the full interview above.
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