The hopeful NYC mayor has been endorsed by fellow defund police supporter Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — despite paying for private security to patrol her leafy Brooklyn street.
“We have an option of a candidate who can center people, racial justice, economic justice and climate justice,” Ocasio-Cortez said during her announcement in New York City on Saturday.
“(Wiley) didn’t just run for mayor, but has experience and a lifelong commitment to it,” she added.
AOC and Wiley have both been staunch supporters of the defunding of the police movement, with Wiley announcing that she would take a billion dollars out of the NYPD budget if elected, despite rising crime in the city.
She spoke earlier this month and said: “I’m going to take a billion dollars from the New York City Police Department and shift that money to create trauma-informed care in our schools because if we do that, the violence will decrease and graduation rates will go up,” she said.
But she spoke out on the matter even after she was exposed for paying $550 a month for a private security car to patrol the leafy street where she lives in Prospect Park, Brooklyn.
Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (left) backed civil rights attorney Maya Wiley (right) for New York City mayor as the race for the June 22 Democratic primary tightens
When asked about the apparent hypocrisy by the New York Daily News last December, Wiley said, ‘I think it’s ridiculous and we shouldn’t have it.
“It’s not effective, nor does it create the sense of community that I support. And I don’t think it reflects the real reality of our community in terms of whether it’s even necessary.”
Wiley claimed her partner Harlan Mandel had started paying the $550 annual fee for the service without telling her, after initially doing so after being “traumatized” by a 2001 robbery that left him with six weeks in the hospital.
She said: “The complicating factor is that Harlan was robbed after 9/11.
“To this day, when it’s dark, he walks in the middle of the street, he doesn’t walk on the… [poorly lit] sidewalk. And he said, one night he came home from work and he saw the car at the end of the block and he just felt better.
“And so he started paying again and I found it very difficult to say, ‘Don’t’.
“It’s not necessarily rational, but it’s his trauma response, so it’s a complicated one for our family.”
Wiley and neighbors cough up $550 a year for a private security car to keep an eye on the Brooklyn neighborhood
Democratic mayoral candidate Maya Wiley and her Prospect Park South neighbors hire private security guards to keep an eye on the neighborhood
Wiley, who previously served as counsel to outgoing Mayor Bill de Blasio, said: “I’ve lived here for 20 years and during that time there was the Harlan robbery, which was horrendous, and another robbery I know of in our area. . So it’s terrible, but that’s how likely you are to become a victim.
“And then there’s the trauma or the fear, because it’s as devastating as you are. It’s complicated from that point of view, but I don’t believe it makes people safer and I believe there are many ways we can achieve the same goals in different ways.”
Wiley announced on Saturday that she is pleased to be approved by AOC, saying, “The support of Rep. Ocasio-Cortez means the world to me,” Wiley said. “AOC is a fearless champion for our city in Congress.
She has fought for working people, adopted corporate greed, revolutionized the debate on the urgent need to tackle climate change, and championed a more equitable economy. No one says and means change like they do.’
Ocasio-Cortez’s endorsement could help change the election for Wiley, with a primary set to take place on June 22.
Wiley, (pictured) running on the police platform, pays for private security to patrol her Brooklyn neighborhood
AOC was even more unequivocal than Wiley about defunding, saying: ‘The defunding of the police means the defunding of the police.
“It’s not about budget tricks or funny math. It doesn’t mean moving school police officers from the NYPD budget to the Department of Education budget so that the exact same police force stays in schools.”
Defund the police have come under criticism from those who believe it intends to abolish law enforcement and encourage lawlessness.
Supporters argue, however, that the movement is not about eliminating police forces or robbing them of all their money.
Activists say it’s more about taking positive steps toward police reform in America by spending more on what communities in the US need, such as housing and education.
But both women face stiff opposition from many New Yorkers as serious crime continues to rise in the Big Apple.
Figures from the NYPD’s Compstate website show that serious crime rose 23.4 percent in May, compared to the same month last year.
Robberies skyrocketed to 1,082 in the 28 days to May 30, up from just 726 for the same period in 2020.
The crime rate also increased by 22.6 percent over the same period, from 1,443 in May 2020 to 1,769 in May 2021.
Mayor de Blasio has been repeatedly accused by critics of being ‘pro-criminal’. They say his bail reforms — designed to prevent people who can’t afford bail end up languishing in prison for months or years for petty crimes — put suspects back on the street to commit another crime.
Morale among the NYPD has plummeted under de Blasio’s lukewarm support. Crime on the city’s public transport network – including buses, metros and trains – doubled in May compared to May 2020, from 78 last year to 154 this year.