New York: Ending A Tale Of Two Cities
Bill de Blasio
[NYC: Mayoral Election 2013]
I am running for Mayor because New York has become a Tale of Two Cities.
Nearly 400,000 millionaires call the City home, while nearly half of our neighbors live at or near the poverty line. As mayor, I’ll spend every waking moment fighting to bring opportunity to every New Yorker — with a plan to create jobs in all five boroughs; dramatically expand affordable housing and accessible health care; increase taxes on the wealthy to fund early childhood and after-school programs; and build police-community relations that keep everyone safer.
As it stands, the overuse and abuse of stop-and-frisk has been disproportionately applied to young black and Latino men, driving a wedge between police-community relations. Mayor Bloomberg and some of my opponents are offering a false choice between public safety and our constitutional rights. To improve upon our current level of public safety while also bringing cops and neighbors closer together, we need a new police commissioner, an independent Inspector General to oversee NYPD policies, and a strong ban on racial-profiling. This approach will allow us to further strengthen public safety and restore police-community relations by ending the overuse of stop-and-frisk and divisive racial profiling.
As the first New York City mayor in history to serve with a child attending our public schools, I am also personally invested in preparing New York’s young people for a prosperous and productive future. By asking the wealthiest in our city to pay a little more, we can provide access to pre-k for every child and after-school programs for all middle school students. And, to create a gateway to the middle class for all New Yorkers, I will redirect $150 million in tax breaks the City currently gives away to big companies to CUNY, where a new range of educational and training programs can empower New Yorkers with the skills needed to compete for jobs with a living-wage.
Affordable housing is also fundamental to the strength of our city, but too many of our fellow citizens are currently being priced out of their own homes. That needs to end. I have called for stabilized rents to be frozen at their current level and, as mayor, I will mandate affordability from developers to help create or preserve 200,000 units of affordable housing over the next decade. I also have a plan to make sure NYCHA is held accountable and to advocate for better rent laws, so that every resident can live in the neighborhood they love.
Implementing these progressive reforms will not be a small task, but if we are to win the battle against our city's inequality crisis, they must be the focus of our next four years. As Mayor, I will institute these reforms and many others to build one New York, where everyone rises together.
New Yorkers have a choice in front of us. I ask you to help me build one New York, where we all rise together.
Public Advocate Bill de Blasio is a Democratic candidate for Mayor of New York. All the mayoral candidates have been invited to submit commentaries outlining their vision for the City.