New York city council votes to close infamous Rikers Island jails
18:50, Friday, 18 October, 2019
The New York City Council voted on Thursday to close the city’s infamous Rikers Island jail complex by 2026, casting off a detention system plagued by chronic violence and decrepit facilities, as the nation rethinks mass incarceration.
The council approved an $8.7 billion legislative package to close Rikers and three other jails, replace them with four more humane facilities throughout the city, and eventually turn Rikers Island itself into a public space.
“Rikers Island is a symbol of brutality and inhumanity and it is time for us to once and for all close Rikers Island,” City Council Speaker Corey Johnson told colleagues before the vote.