OUR DEMANDS

 

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Zero tolerance for police misconduct, brutality, corruption, perjury, and other criminal conduct
  • Create an independent unit within the Queens District Attorney’s office to prosecute the NYPD and its officers for misconduct including brutality, perjury and corruption
  • Support state special prosecutor legislation for all police killings and civilian deaths in custody
      - The Queens District Attorney should adhere to the letter and spirit of Executive Order 147 and state special prosecutor legislation once it’s passed by immediately reporting all police killings and deaths in custody to the Attorney General
  • Provide any material related to an arresting or case-involved police officers’ prior misconduct or history of non-credible statements to the defense at arraignment or as soon as identified by the Queens District Attorney’s office
  • Support legislative repeal of Civil Rights Law 50-a
  • Support the passage of the Police STAT Act to require public reporting of policing of minor offenses including violations, misdemeanors
  
Reform pre-trial practices that drive mass incarceration   
  • Commit to ending wealth- and race-based detention and eliminating money bail
  • Create public plan to reduce jail population from Queens by 50% within 5 years
  • Commit to open, early, automatic discovery
  • Commit to making every effort to ensure speedy trials and to making no plea offer contingent on waiving such rights
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    Implement an approach to sentencing that recognizes and seeks to eliminate systemic oppressions and prioritizes transformative justice over penalizing, disciplinary action   
  • Consider a person’s background and current life circumstances such as mental health, trauma, domestic violence, sexual, and gender-based violence and abuse when deciding to prosecute any charge and when considering sentencing
  • Individualize every case and operate from an orientation that every person is capable of change: eliminate blanket discriminatory plea policies that prohibit plea deals for specific classes of people, such as people who are on probation or parole
  • Require every Assistant District Attorney to explain why they are seeking jail or prison time at sentencing by writing a memo that explicitly includes a justification for incarceration and the expected cost of the incarceration requested
  • Consider the collateral consequences for all jail or prison sentences and negotiated pleas, including immigration, housing, parole or probation consequences
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    Decline to prosecute charges that are disproportionately used to criminalize Queens residents who are low-income, people of color, youth, LGBTQ and/or survivors of interpersonal violence.   
  • Decline to prosecute low-level charges
    1. - Marijuana
      - Trespassing
      - Petty Larceny
      - All sex work-related offenses, including unlicensed massage charges
      - Shoplifting
      - Disorderly conduct
      - Disturbing the peace
      - Minor driving offenses, including operating with a suspended or revoked license
      - Breaking and entering -- where it is into a vacant property or where it is for the purpose of sleeping or seeking refuge from the cold and there is no actual property damage
      - Minor in possession of alcohol
      - Drug possession
      - Possession with intent to distribute
      - Standalone resisting arrest charges or when resisting arrest charges are combined with only charges that fall under the decline to prosecute list.
      - Fare evasion (including Theft of Services, where the service is public transit)
      - 1220B taxi offenses
      - Civil disobedience
      - All misdemeanor school-based arrests
  • Remove all eligible youth arrests to Family Court under Raise the Age legislation and create a Youth Unit that will:
    1. - Decline to prosecute youth as adults and prioritize non-court alternatives, such as restorative justice programs, whenever possible.
      - Decline to prosecute arrests that were made in school for a non-school incident.
      - Remove all eligible youth arrests to Family Court under Raise the Age legislation.
  • Decline to prosecute survivors of domestic, sexual, or gender-based violence whose arrests were related to acts of survival, including: self-defense, “failure to protect,” migration, removing children from abusive people, being coerced into acting as an “accomplice,” and securing resources needed to live.
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    Protect immigrant communities   
  • Adopt policies, practices, and standards to limit the impact of local and federal policies designed to target, harass, and tear apart immigrant communities of color
    1. - Support legislation to remove the carveout list of 170 offenses New York City uses to cooperate with ICE
      - Keep ICE out of courts: Cooperate with defense council to protect people involved in any aspect of a criminal case from ICE detection/apprehension. If the Queens District Attorney’s office becomes aware of ICE presence in or outside the courthouse, promptly notify defense counsel and the defendant and provide support for defendants to leave the courthouse without ICE involvement.
      - Consider prompt resolution of charges, including immediate dismissal in lieu of dismissal upon completion of a rehabilitative program
      - Consider collateral consequences for immigrants in charging decisions, plea negotiations
      - Create a progressive, public policy for U-visa certification, in consultation with Queens immigrant rights organizations and city
      - Ensure language access at all stages of the criminal-legal process in which the DA’s office is involved
      
    Improve transparency and accountability of the DA’s Office   
  • Establish an independently-led wrongful conviction review unit
  • Commitment to quarterly town halls for the public
  • Maintain and publicly disclose a list of NYPD officers whose testimonies have been impeached in court, have received disciplinary infractions relating to criminal cases, or have been known to lie in any judicial proceedings
  • Fully cooperate with the commission on prosecutorial conduct and to follow its recommendations and findings
  • Create and make public an internal process for handling misconduct by ADAs
  • Make policies of the Queens District Attorney’s office public to community members.
  • Collect and share data about plea deals and outcomes of the office, disaggregated by race, gender, and ethnic background.
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    End nepotism in Queens County   
  • Ensure that the Queens District Attorney’s office does not employ ADAs whose parents or other close family members are sitting or retired judges in Queens County Criminal Court
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    Champion racial, economic and gender justice in Queens   
  • Restructure the Economic Crimes Bureau and develop holistic methods of prioritizing prosecutions by analyzing relative impact rather than gross dollar value
  • Institute mandatory training for every ADA on procedural justice, implicit bias, and racial justice
  • Work with local community organizations to establish mandatory competency trainings for the District Attorney’s Office, including trainings on TGNCNB competency and competency on differences between sex work, sex trafficking, and labor trafficking
    1. - Trainings should be provided by organizations that directly impacted people lead.
  • Develop and implement a publicly available plan for eliminating racial disparities for every stage of the criminal justice process
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