Williams welcomes Council override of mayoral vetoes

New York City Councilman Jumaane Williams has welcomed the City Council’s votes to override two bills that would rein in the policies of the New York Police Department (NYPD) against Caribbean immigrants, Blacks and other minorities.

The Council voted 34-15 for a bill that would give Caribbean immigrants and others more options to sue the NYPD if they think they have been the victims of racial profiling through the department’s stop-and-frisk tactics.

The Council also voted 39-10 to override Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s veto of a bill to create an inspector general for the NYPD, who will oversee all police practices and policies, including the controversial stop and frisk.

“We are tired of the lies. We are tired of the fear mongering. We want good policing, and we want safer streets,” said Williams, a sponsor of the bills, who represents the largely Caribbean 45th Council District in Brooklyn.

Williams, a frequent critic of the NYPD and Grenadian American, who was unlawfully arrested two years ago during the West Indian American Day Carnival Parade in Brooklyn, said Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly “will go down in history as the people who tried to prevent progress.”

Bloomberg vowed to take legal action against the legislations, saying they will make it harder for police officers to protect the city.

“Make no mistake: the communities that will feel the most negative impacts of these bills will be minority communities across our city, which have been the greatest beneficiaries of New York City’s historic crime reductions,” he said.

“Both bills outsource management of the NYPD to unaccountable officials, making it harder for the next mayor and police commissioner to make the decisions they believe necessary to keep our city safe,” he added, claiming that the votes were “an example of election year politics.

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