Press TV: US organizations helping homeless individuals and families have criticized New York City’s mayor for ordering heavy-handed police tactics against people seeking shelter during the cold winter.
Mayor Eric Adams and Gov. Kathy Hochul on Friday announced stricter enforcement on New York City’s subways. Open drug use and smoking will no longer be tolerated. Any rider found sprawled across subway seats will be escorted off the train and offered help. https://t.co/0ydi3InGbM
— The New York Times (@nytimes) February 18, 2022
Mayor Eric Adamson, a former police captain, Friday announced plans to remove homeless people from the city’s subway system and bar people from sleeping on trains or riding the same lines all night.
Adamson, who likened homelessness to a “cancerous sore,” said he would deploy more teams of police officers and mental health workers to the subway to enforce rules more strictly.
Ex-White House Ethics Lawyer Says Moving New York Homeless Into Trump Tower Would Bring 'Higher Quality' People Into the Building
— PoliticsVideoChannel (@politvidchannel) February 17, 2022
Homeless advocates and others who have criticized police’s heavy-handed tactics said banning homeless people from subways won’t solve the problem.
Shelly Nortz, the deputy executive director for policy at the Coalition for the Homeless, denounced Adamson’s comments as “sickening”. She said criminalizing homelessness is not the solution to the problem of homeless people.
“Repeating the failed outreach-based policing strategies of the past will not end the suffering of homeless people bedding down on the subway. It is sickening to hear Mayor Adams liken unsheltered homeless people to cancer. They are human beings.”
MSNBC millionaires sat in their cushy New York studio trying to create a national panic over a homeless man stealing food — somehow never mentioning new government data showing a huge increase in food insecurity and starvation in the city. https://t.co/xLTs7yKuCG
— David Sirota (@davidsirota) February 14, 2022
Police Commissioner Keechant Seweell said the police department will start enforcing the new rules in New York City subway this week.
New York City will begin removing homeless people from subways at night… so we have funding for 1000 cops to police homeless people on the subway instead of using those resources to help them?… ok, cool story https://t.co/4NjHsxbyP4
— OccuWorld 🏴 (@OccuWorld) February 20, 2022
Police teams, she said, will focus on high-traffic areas or areas where there have been reports of crime.
Homeless people who live in the underground tunnels of New York City have been referred to as Mole People or Tunnel People.
British documentary feature film Dark Days (2000) is about a group of homeless people living in the New York City subway.
“The number of people experiencing homelessness in New York City is the highest since the Great Depression, with nearly 50,000 people counted last December“
NYC mayor announces plan to bar homeless people from sheltering in subway https://t.co/G6mQITw21b
— Catina Hyman 🇺🇸 (@catinahyman) February 19, 2022
Teun Voeten’s book Tunnel People, published in 2010 by the Oakland-based PM Press, also describes the underground homeless community in New York City.
Homelessness in the US is increasing in the least affordable rental housing markets and cities with skyrocketing home prices.
Expensive cities include New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Washington, DC, among others.
Last year in a similar move, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti signed a sweeping rule making it illegal for homeless people to be in almost all places across the west coast city.
Los Angeles, California’s largest city, has over 66,000 homeless people as of the last citywide count, a 12.7 percent increase over the previous year.
After implementing the new rule, homeless people there would face citations, fines, or misdemeanor charges for being homeless.