Transcript: Mayor Eric Adams Appears Live on 1010 WINS’ “Morning Drive”
January 6, 2023
Lee Harris: WINS the 8:15 news hour. As promised, Mayor Adams is joining us now to discuss the 2022 crime statistics report. Mayor Adams, thank you for joining us this morning. What did you like about the report and what concerned you about it?
Chairman Eric Adams: First of all, thank you and Happy New Year to you. When you do a real analysis, we realized when we came into administration in January that we were headed in the wrong direction. And we knew it was going to be a while before we could deal with the overproliferation of guns on the streets and the behavior of our gangs, that it was really driving crime in our city, and we did. In the last six months, we sent the trend in the right direction. We are seeing a decline in our major crime areas. In the last month alone, we’ve seen a significant drop in everything from shootings, to murders, to robberies, to grand theft. And we have to keep it up and I won’t be happy until every New Yorker is truly safe, based on the numbers, but more importantly feels safe in their city.
Harris: Now, overall, there was a 22 percent increase in crime even though some of those major categories were down. How big do you think bail reform has played in overall growth?
Chairman Adams: Yes. When you look at the overall crime of the year, the first six months when we put various initiatives in place to go after dangerous people – it was just crucial. And we started to see the turnaround after the next six months with the different weapon units that we deployed. But when you look at – in Albany, we focus primarily on the term, over and over, parole reform. It is much more than that. It is a criminal justice system that is clogged, too many recidivists, too many repeat offenders are allowed on our streets. We believe that approximately 1,600 people are driving a large amount of our violent crime, and our goal is to go back to Albany and work with our legislators to go after those recidivists and push for those initiatives that we think are important.
Harris: Now, you’ve talked to people in Albany. How much push are you getting in your efforts up there?
Mayor Adams: Well, there are different energies in 2023. We learned from 2022 that we’ve allowed the narrative to take over, that we haven’t pushed some successful initiatives. I had a great year in Albany. There was a list of things I needed, such as child care dollars, the earned income tax to put money in the pockets of struggling New Yorkers every day, the NYCHA Land Trust, and several other important initiatives. Leadership in Albany gave me those things. They knew New York City needed them. And we allowed an area we disagreed on to become the focal point. We will not do that this year. We will go and sit together; that’s what yesterday’s meeting was about. We will work together to address public safety and many of the other issues facing New Yorkers, especially around our economy and building more housing in the city and state.
Harris: So in summary, what would you say to New Yorkers who still feel the city is unsafe despite the progress you’re making?
Chairman Adams: Yes, we can respect and understand that. I know that public safety initiatives need to be real numbers, but there also needs to be how people feel. And we knew we had to zero in on the homelessness crisis we were facing, which contributed to the feeling of being unsafe, especially those with mental health illnesses. This is why we removed the camps from our subway system. That’s why we took the camps off our roads and put people in shelters so they could build a pathway to shelter. So we need to make sure that we have a clean and safe city, where people are actually seeing the indicators that they are safe in the city. And that is my focus.
Harris: All right. Thank you for joining us this morning, Mayor Adams, and let’s hope that 2023 is a better year than 2022 here.
Chairman Adams: Thank you and good to see you again.