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A coalition of New York City business and civic leaders on Monday backed Mayor Eric Adams’ recently released anti-gun violence plan — declaring the blueprint “courageous” and vowing to rally behind his strategies.
The support for the new mayor’s measures aimed at curbing shootings and other violent crime was delivered in a brief open letter, signed by a who’s who of the Big Apple real estate, finance, labor, medical, philanthropic and academic sectors.
“The mayor has taken a courageous position and we all share responsibility to help him carry out his agenda,” read the letter, which was signed by titans including JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, Knicks owner James Dolan, Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla and Durst Organization chairman Douglas Durst.
“We need to do everything in our power to make New York safe again.”
It cites two recent disturbing deadly incidents — the ambush shooting of NYPD officers Jason Rivera and Wilbert Mora while responding to a domestic disturbance as well as the random subway shove of Deloitte executive Michelle Go — and laments that both public safety and “quality-of-life conditions” have gone downhill across the five boroughs.
“New York cannot recover from the devastating impacts of the pandemic without first restoring the sense of personal security that every resident, worker, visitor, and community in our city has the right to expect,” the letter reads.
“The signatories to this letter are leaders in industries that represent more than three million jobs in New York City,” said Kathryn Wylde, president & CEO of Partnership for New York City. “We are united behind the mayor’s efforts to reverse the rise in crime.”
Following a string of harrowing violent crimes during his first weeks in office, including five cops shot in the line of duty, Adams last week unveiled his promised blueprint to curb shootings.
The plan includes rolling out an undercover NYPD anti-gun unit called “Neighborhood Safety Teams,” and a controversial call for the state legislature to allow judges “to take dangerousness into account” when setting bail or deciding to jail someone pending trial.
Judge Jonathan Lippman — the ex-chief judge of New York who led the commission that convinced ex-Mayor Bill de Blasio to attempt to close Rikers Island — labeled Adams’ plan a “common-sense approach.”
“The mayor’s blueprint for public safety is a common-sense approach to New York’s crime challenges, pairing essential social services and community-based interventions with appropriate tools for the courts and strategies for police,” he said in a statement.
“I very much urge our city, state, and federal leaders to collaboratively support the mayor’s smart and practical efforts to both tackle crime and ensure fairness in our system of justice.”
Also among the more than 200 signatories of the missive, distributed Monday morning by the mayor’s press office, are Jeff Blau, CEO of real estate firm The Related companies; Steven Roth, chairman of Vornado Realty Trust; and Macy’s CEO Jeff Gennette.
Along with real estate and business titans, the letter was signed by Columbia University president Lee Bollinger; Transport Workers Union head Tony Utano; Gary LaBarbera, president of the Building and Construction Trades Council; Eric Goldstein, CEO of the UJA Federation of New York; Stuart Appelbaum, president of the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union; Con Edison CEO Timothy Cawley; Met Council CEO and ex-Councilman David Greenfield; Brad Karp, chair of white-shoe law firm Paul, Weiss; and Mitchell Katz, head of the city’s public hospital system.
Adams, a former NYPD captain, welcomed the group’s support.
“Making New York a safer city is a prerequisite for prosperity and social justice — and will move us past the multiple crises we’re facing,” he said in a prepared statement.
“It will take all New Yorkers to help move us forward, and the support from this extraordinary coalition is an indication that we are on the right track.”